The gay marriage issue (or same-sex marriage issue) is, like other gay rights issues, a civil rights issue. A civil rights issue exists when the state unfairly or unjustifiably denies an individual or group a right which it grants to other individuals or groups. The gay marriage issue is whether the state may use its authority to bar same-sex couples from doing what different-sex couples may do–get married. Once the issue is correctly framed, there can be no doubt how it should be resolved. Persons of the same sex (whether heterosexual or homosexual) should have the same right to marry each other as do persons of different sex. (It also follows that, to the extent civil unions are to be allowed, they should be available to both same-sex and different-sex couples.)
Wilkes, Donald E. Jr., "Bigotry Always Has Its Reasons" (2004). Popular Media. Paper 30.