Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Andrew Altman - Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. William Edmundson

Third Advisor

Dr. George Rainbolt


For the past several years the issue of homosexual marriage has been at the forefront of an often intense debate in American political culture. Those who oppose the policy have, by and large, been in the majority. But in America, majority decisions are not automatically legal; such status is obtained only when policies are not in conflict with the Constitution. With that in mind, this paper aims to show how not allowing homosexual marriage can amount to an unconstitutional endorsement of religion. To accomplish this I will first examine the main arguments presented against the policy by the defenders of “traditional” marriage and show how they fail. With the main arguments undercut, opponents of gay marriage must have either no real basis for their position, or make their arguments from within specific comprehensive (generally religious) doctrines- a phenomenon widespread enough to possibly constitute a violation of the first amendment.


Included in

Philosophy Commons