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Today, politics is fraught with civil debate and discourse that is not directly related to the well-being of the nation. Instead, politicians focus on what were termed in the 1960, first televised presidential debates between JFK and Nixon, “hot button issues”. The purpose of these hot button issues is to divide the nation and its citizens in favor of one presidential candidate or another, one senator or another, etc… However, these issues are not the issues that historic presidents would ever, or did ever, focus on during times of debate as they did not contribute to the success or downfall of a nation. One such hot button issue is legalizing same sex marriage.
Same sex marriage has been a standing hot button issue for decades, as more and more minority groups have turned to the Constitution of the United States for support in gaining equal rights. Originally, the discussion became so heated that the official executive decision was to allow state legislation to decide whether their state would allow gay marriage. As a result, some states legalized the idea while most others did not. This, in turn, meant that couples who were married in a state where it was legal were not recognized in states where it was not nor would they receive the same treatment and benefits that married couples would receive in states where it was not allowed.
Recently, the Supreme Court was turned to, as it is often turned to when the other three branches of government cannot make a decision. The Court was tasked with reviewing the legality of same sex marriage and its Constitutionalism. The final decision which will be put out by the Court will be a federal law which all states must adhere to. This removes the right for states to choose and makes the decision, whatever the outcome, a requirement for the entire federation.
Overall, the invention of the television, and by extension the first televised public presidential debates have led to the creation of issues that are far from relevant to the qualifications that a candidate holds and even further from relevant to the success of our nation. And yet, keeping the country more polarized than it was since the Civil War, these issues have been cultivated and allowed to continue thriving in spite of the clear Constitutional violation and the hurt it has caused our citizens across what once were the United states.
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