In chapter 1, there is a section regarding conflicting values and beliefs in social welfare policy. This brings to mind the social issues in Pennsylvania around gay marriage. On May 20th, a Pennsylvania judge declared that the DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act) unconstitutional meaning that gay couples can legally get married.
There was an uproar around my community. I was extremely excited to hear this because I believe that we, as a people, are getting closer to loving and excepting each other. I think this also is a social policy that can potentially help young teenagers who are gay and struggling with this idea.
According to PLFAG, a partnership of parents, allies, and LGBT working to make a better future for LGBT youth and adults, it is estimated that between 4 and 10% of the population is gay. This jumps out to me because that means there are many teenagers that are gay, and because of the values of many people that suggest that homosexuality is wrong, they struggle with being themselves. Because many states are now allowing for gay marriage, this can help LGBT youth see that the majority values and beliefs are accepting of their lifestyle.
Of course this is not everyone. In fact, many people are completely against homosexuality. Most people are not aware that many gay youth struggle with academics, bullying and are 8.4 times more likely to attempt suicide, and have the highest rate of suicide amongst all other teens. Because of these factors alone, you would think that more people would be aware of the struggles that these teens face. If a gay teen does not struggle with these issues, they are likely to face social welfare policies in adulthood such as not being able to marry the person they love.
But, we have come to a more open society as of May 20th in PA. We come to see that our values and beliefs have changed to allow everyone to have the opportunity to be covered under legal law to be someone else's spouse.