Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor



Business ethics and same-sex marriage
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Michelle Thomas

This article shared 5193 times since Wed Feb 1, 2012
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

When we think of business ethics, we think of corporations and financial institutions. We perceive them as hopefully having established good business ethics, as seen by their wholesome marketing campaigns backed by mandatory regulations. We search for corporate awards to back good corporate values and equate said values to the potential of monetary gain for stakeholders. As contented consumers, we encourage corporate and financial growth by purchasing products, services and stock options.

We count on legislators and regulators to enact fairness and fine the unlawful. When deviant schemes of the self-interested are exposed and losses come into play, lawmakers pay attention. Laws are enacted and amended for future stakeholder protection. When we think of the institution of marriage, we—unlike corporate and financial institutions—generally think of cultural beliefs instead of financial gains.

Similarly, guidelines and procedures regulate marriage, much like corporate and financial institutions. A marriage license has the same meaning everywhere and—although symbols and rituals can differ—stakeholder protection, accountability and sustainability should be exercised just the same.

How are ethical decisions being made to ensure protection, accountability and sustainability for marriage and its stakeholders? Marriage is at risk and is being compromised. Lawmakers and voters are making decisions, as legislation is considered and votes are cast with personal beliefs of traditional family values and to whom it applies. Two same-sex individuals desiring to marry and who meet the age and genealogical requirements can't wed in most of the United States. For the few states that offer same-sex marriage, there are accompanying limitations that are not imposed upon opposite-sex couples.

If legislation and regulation are to protect all stakeholders, the family unit ( as a stakeholder of marriage ) is at risk. The traditional family is changing. Families are led by same-sex couples with and without children, and those units are not being protected as their heterosexual counterparts are.

At the same time, the human rights of LGBT individuals are subject to him. The human rights to love; to raise a family with the benefits and protections of marriage; and to end life with security and peace are at stake. According to Article 16 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, "Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution. Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses. The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State."

Shouldn't marriage be all-inclusive and embrace men and women everywhere? As of July 2011—according to the National Conference of State Legislatures ( NCSL ) —Massachusetts, Connecticut, California, Iowa, Vermont, New Hampshire, New York and Washington, D.C., issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Although these states have legalized same-sex marriage, home-state marriage rights could be terminated or limited through appeals. Travel can be high-risk, as legal, financial and healthcare rights afforded by marriage can become void in certain states.

The sustainability of marriage is at risk. As families change, so do the expectation that marriage benefits and protections need to change as well. Human and legal rights are not being fulfilled. Marriage equality has become a battle of legalization—a battle fueled with self-interest. The self-interest is of the kind that, as we've learned from our corporate and financial institution history, can lead to disaster and collapse.

Compromising legislation in some states has enacted laws of domestic partnerships and civil unions. The NCSL also states that Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey and Rhode Island allow civil unions and California, Oregon, Nevada, Washington, Hawaii, Maine, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia allow domestic partnerships. Illinois has adopted reciprocity legislation, which states in Section 60 of Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act, "A marriage between persons of the same sex, a civil union, or a substantially similar legal relationship other than common law marriage, legally entered into in another jurisdiction, shall be recognized in Illinois."

While the actions of a few states recognizing same-sex marriage and reciprocity can be perceived as good, ethical business decision-making for the rights of all men and women and the sustainability of marriage, they can also be perceived as unethical, as these decisions can isolate, violate and cause negative messaging. Marriage has wrongfully become a state-level battleground for the gated, privileged and bigoted. Legislation may not change beliefs, but can protect the rights of those who are subject to bigotry.

Michelle Thomas is an Illinois resident and native Chicagoan. She earned a masters degree in business ethics and compliance. She hopes to advocate communication and activism of same-sex marriage.

This article shared 5193 times since Wed Feb 1, 2012
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Gay News

Thailand, Switzerland go in opposite directions regarding marriage equality 2021-11-18
- Thailand's Constitutional Court ruled a law that defines marriage as between a man and a woman in the country is constitutional, The Washington Blade reported. The Foundation for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Rights and Justice, ...

Gay News

Same-sex partners can now access Social Security survivor's benefits 2021-11-05
--From a press release - [New York, NY] This week, Lambda Legal has announced that the Social Security Administration (SSA) has withdrawn its appeals in two cases on behalf of surviving same-sex partners and spouses whom SSA had previously denied from ...

Gay News

Departments dismiss appeals of same-sex Social Security survivor case 2021-11-01
- On Nov. 1, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Social Security Administration (SSA) dismissed their Ninth Circuit appeals of two nationwide class-action suits that Lambda Legal won. The original ruling was in favor of surviving ...

Gay News

WORLD Japan politics, video games, lesbian tennis player, Mr. Gay World 2021-10-10
- LGBTQ+-rights activists were hoping Japan would finally allow same-sex marriage if Taro Kono, who has publicly supported same-sex marriage, became the country's next prime minister—but their hopes were dashed. Japan's ...

Gay News

"I can't be silent": Michael O'Connor discusses his longtime activism 2021-10-04
By Kayleigh Padar - Years ago, longtime activist Michael O'Connor heard that some Black legislators in Illinois didn't want to support the Marriage Equality Act because they didn't believe Black people would benefit from same-sex marriage. He decided to prove ...

Gay News

Liz Cheney: 'I was wrong' to oppose same-sex marriage 2021-09-27
- U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney said—in a segment of the CBS show 60 Minutes that aired Sept. 26—she was "wrong" to oppose same-sex marriage when her objection to it caused a public split with her family, including ...

Gay News

Nearly two-thirds of Swiss residents vote for marriage equality 2021-09-26
- Almost two-thirds of Switzerland's voters backed the government's plan to introduce same-sex marriage in a referendum held Sept. 26, with campaigners calling it a historic day for gay rights in Switzerland, Yahoo! News reported, citing AFP. ...

Gay News

NATIONAL Danica Roem, 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,' abortion appeal, Lambda Legal 2021-09-26
- Transgender Virginia legislator Danica Roem is facing a conservative marriage-equality opponent and former Trump administration member in her re-election race this November, Yahoo! News noted. Roem, a Democrat, was elected to the House of Delegates in ...

Gay News

WORLD Marches, world leaders, Swiss marriage, soccer match 2021-09-26
- Thousands of people including soldiers and diplomats marched peacefully through the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv in an annual Pride parade despite some opposition to an event called off last year because of the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters ...

Gay News

[UPDATE] Lisle school offers job to lacrosse coach in same-sex marriage 2021-09-21
- The administration at Lisle’s Benet Academy, a west suburban Catholic school, has reversed course and offered a job to a woman in a same-sex marriage after initially rescinding the offer, The Chicago Tribune reported. ...

Gay News

Pope again refuses to bless same-sex marriages 2021-09-18
- Pope Francis told reporters recently on a return flight from Hungary that the Catholic Church is unable to bless same-sex marriages because marriage is a divine sacrament between a man and a woman, per The Advocate. ...

Gay News

Polis marriage marks first same-sex wedding of sitting governor 2021-09-17
- On Sept. 15, Colorado Democratic Gov. Jared Polis wed longtime partner Marlon Reis—marking the first same-sex marriage of a sitting U.S. governor, NPR reported. Polis keeps making history. In 2018, Polis became the first openly gay ...

Gay News

LGBTQ advocates celebrate two Illinois marriage certificate modernization bills 2021-07-27
--From a press release - Trans and non-binary people who were married in Illinois will now be able to obtain marriage certificates that reflect their authentic selves thanks to legislation signed today by Governor JB Pritzker, according to Equality Illinois and ...

Gay News

WORLD Marriage in Chile, Polish website, Toronto news, 'Reclaim Pride' march 2021-07-25
- On July 21, Chile's Senate approved an equal-marriage bill, reported. The regulations were presented during the second government of the socialist Michelle Bachelet (2014-2018) and last June 1, during ...

Gay News

LGBTQ advocates celebrate passage of Illinois marriage certificate name change legislation 2021-05-28
--From a press release - LGBTQ advocates are celebrating passage of state legislation that will provide certainty for individuals requesting that their Illinois marriage certificates reflect a legal name change. HB 2590 is an initiative of Equality Illinois and Chicago House ...


Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.






About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.