Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

Gay couples deserve the right to marry

Why should Stella Wilson care if the meaning of marriage is extended to include another "1.5%" of the population (Write Back, February 2)?

Even accepting her questionable statistic, it is comparable to many ethnic minorities. Should they be denied something everyone else has, just because their numbers are small?

As for what marriage is, over the ages it has included polygamy, under-age unions, incestuous ones, political ones, business arrangements, as well as expressions of love and commitment.

With the first four now, thankfully, history (at least in the UK) there is surely room to let a few gay people in.

Of course, all this debate would be ended at a stroke if marriage was abandoned as a legal concept and replaced with civil partnerships for all.

Couples would then be free to have whatever additional fancy-dress ceremony they liked, according to their own beliefs, with the State taking no interest.

DR STEPHEN MORETON

Warrington, Cheshire

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