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Functionalist view on Same-Sex Families

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Functionalist view on Same-Sex Families What is Functionalism? Functionalism is the belief that members of society form relationships with each other through rules and regulations i.e. the law. They also believe society is based on a consensus and there is no time for conflict, although it is acknowledged but is seen as only a temporary disturbance, which can be resolved. They believe it is the basis of social life without it there would be conflict and disorder. Society is seen like the human body, institutions within society playing a significant role to ensure its upkeep like schools. These institutions are what influence societies members on social behaviour. They see the family as how it functions and contributes towards society as a whole. They believe the function of a family is to educate and prepare children before they become adult workers. What is the New Right? The New Right believes the family is the cornerstone of society. They see the ideal family is that of the nuclear unit, a heterosexual relationship based on love and commitment with the reproduction of children. ...read more.


In today's society same-sex couples are becoming more and more common, and they contribute just as much to society as the average heterosexual couple. So why is it so hard for same-sex families to live like everyone else? Because society disapproves. During my research on the Internet I discovered a few news articles that can answer my question: SUIT OVER DEATH BENEFITS ASKS, WHAT IS A FAMILY? In 1977 Sandra Rovira and Marjorie Forlini formalised their relationship in a ceremony where they exchanged vows and rings in front of a gathering of friends and family. They did this because under American Law same-sex couples are not allowed to marry. Over their years together they did what every family does; bought a house, raised Ms Rovira's children, and cared for each other through sickness and in health. When Ms Forlini passed away, Ms Rovira was by her bedside. The company in which Ms Forlini worked for denied benefits to Ms Rovira. So she filed a lawsuit for breach of policy, AT&T clearly state in their benefit plan that it provides a years pay to the spouse and unmarried dependant children under 23 of an employee who dies of an illness. ...read more.


They have to argue their case in order to claim benefits that would be given to heterosexual couples without question. This is societies answer, to resolve the 'temporary disturbance'. In conclusion, functionalists believe that the nuclear family is the role model of society. There are several types of family in this day and age and not all of them follow the nuclear influence. Same sex couples are not yet recognised as a norm in society but the awareness is growing, they still have to keep fighting for their rights but there will be a day when people won't think anything of it. Functionalist place same sex couples in the 'underclass' category because they don't conform to their expectations. In a recent survey taken in America 50% of young Americans think gay people shouldn't have the same rights as everyone else, but they also said they didn't know enough to form a sound opinion. Most Americans said they think gay teachers should be fired, not only is that unfair dismissal, and discrimination. But what is it teaching the children? Functionalists say the main function of a family is to help educate children in social behaviour required by society. ...read more.

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