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BYU Studies Quarterly

BYU Studies Quarterly

Abstract

Written by nineteen interdisciplinary authors and edited by BYU professor of family law Lynn D. Wardle, What's the Harm? responds to several questions concerning same-sex marriage: does legalizing same-sex marriage harm traditional families? Does it discourage responsible sexual behavior and procreation? How does it affect the meaning of marriage? Does it impair basic freedoms to citizens and institutions?

In this potpourri of scholarly and legal papers, attorneys, educators, family counselors, and even linguists document through scientific studies and court cases the consequences already inflicted on men, women, and innocent children through practices such as abortion and no-fault divorce. Because such practices contribute to the breakdown of families and have longitudinal and intergenerational effects, they provide the social, moral, familial, relational, political, and conceptual architecture of the community. The harms are seldom seen immediately by the general public. Likewise, the preponderance of evidence from more than a dozen authors is unified in agreeing that history, natural law, common law, and common sense uphold traditional marriage. These authors passionately support marriage between a male and female as the foundation of family and community morality.

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