„I PRONOUNCE YOU MAN AND MAN”
– THE QUESTION OF RECOGNISING THE RIGHTS OF HOMOSEXUAL COUPLES IN POLAND.
A matter raising a great deal of controversy at present is the issue of whether homosexual couples should enjoy the equal rights and protections found in governmental recognition in Poland. Strong views exist in support of both sides of this debate, which implies that it is worth examining both points of view before reaching any conclusions.
Firstly, it is often put forward, that we live in a civilised country, therefore we should cease to perceive homosexuals as sick perverts with mental illnesses who should undergo psychiatric therapy. Due to their different sexual attitude gays have been persecuted, imprisoned, discriminated or penalised with death sentence all around the world. Even at present in Saudi Arabia having a homosexual intercourse is penalised with death penalty executed in public to deter others. However, there is a growing acceptance of gay couples in Western Europe and the United States where they are regarded just as people with a different sexual orientation. Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, France and Iceland have already sanctioned gay weddings.
Secondly, there is a great amount of people who declare their homosexual attitude, therefore they should be given the right to state their preferences openly without shame or being afraid of losing a job or friends. As people are often taught to be themselves, they should stop hiding their different sexual orientation and be rewarded with similar rights as traditional couples have, just as legal and financial rights concerning inheritance, tax deduction and health and life insurance. All couples sharing their everyday duties and working for their common good ought to be financially supported in case of the partner’s death no matter what kind of relationship it was.
On the other hand, according to opinion polls conducted in Poland, 80 per cent of our society opposes the idea of sanctioning same-sex weddings, while a huge majority is against adopting a child by a homosexual couple. In fact, there is a great probability of passing a homosexual attitude towards the adopted child and a fear of ridicule on side of the child’s environment at school and elsewhere. As the voice of the public is important in providing a recognition of gays’ rights, there is a little chance of their success in their struggle for social acceptance. Polish society seems to be slow at making progress in making improvements in social norms as there is a strong religious influence in our country supporting living in “God’s way” as the only acceptable relationship.
In addition, homosexuals have been blamed for the AIDS crisis which is widely seen as the “Gay Plague”, therefore they have been taunted, ridiculed, rejected and persecuted so far. AIDS is the most feared illness of our times due to the fact as it is incurable and viewing from this perspective, people are afraid of contacts with potential carriers of this disease. Therefore, homosexual sexual relationships arouse negative and close associations with illnesses, depravation and lack of morality so it is not surprising that social recognition is so hard to achieve.
All things considered, it can be concluded that although there are those who would perceive homosexual couples as deviants who are not worth any rights, there are also strong arguments supporting the idea of putting an equal sign between traditional couples consisting of different sexes and those consisting of the same ones. The best course of action would be to attempt to recognise the rights of gay couples in due course of time after having seen the consequences of the implementing the laws in other countries as recognising the rights of the homosexual minority seems to be inevitable in the world of declining of moral standards.