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posted: 8/1/2012 5:00 AM

Writer's arguments not convincing

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On July 7, the Daily Herald published a letter by Jim Finnegan, who opposes gay marriage. Here's what's wrong with it: First, he explains that the issue at hand is a person's "choice of sexual activity" and, therefore, comparisons between gay rights and racial rights are flawed. But here, he muddles the distinction between "sexual activity" and "marriage." Having sex is a choice; loving someone is not.

Second, Mr. Finnegan attempts to explain away the Daily Herald's endorsement of gay marriage by attributing it to "liberal bias in the media." Yes, it's true that many journalists are liberal, but what does that have anything to do with them being right or wrong in this case?

Third, he explains that in the 32 states where there have been popular votes on gay marriage, all of them have voted to ban it. True enough, but the majority is not always right. The majority of Americans voted for Barack Obama, and I doubt Mr. Finnegan would be willing to accept that that was the right decision.

Fourth, he makes an appeal to religious authority. However, that argument won't convince anyone who doesn't subscribe to his beliefs, and that's a significant chunk of people. No more needs to be said about that.

Finally, Mr. Finnegan attempts to cite research showing that "children do far better when blessed with both father and mother." I hope he's not referring to the debunked study by Mark Regnerus of the University of Texas, which is anything but damning evidence. Explaining why would require more room, but I encourage people to look up the study and its criticism (LiveScience has a good article).

Mr. Finnegan is allowed to hold and express his beliefs, but his arguments remain unconvincing.

Joe Klein

Arlington Heights

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