I’ve heard from people on both sides. I understand that this is a very emotional visceral issue for many people. Personally, I don’t feel the constitution is the right place to add discrimination and hatred.
Susan Santa, St. Louis Park City Council Member
Source: TC Daily Planet
Santra’s reasoning why the Minnesota Marriage Amendment should be defeated this fall and why she supported a resolution for St. Louis Park to oppose the hateful amendment.
One of the key reasons is that right now our government has over 500 laws at the state level and 1000 laws at the federal level that convey benefits for marriage, at the same time denying a segment of our population the right to marry.
Ann Mavity, St. Louis Park City Council Member
Source: TC Daily Planet
Interesting article that sheds light on a couple of states where the Catholic Church seems to be reversing their hard stand against gay marriage:
- Roman Catholic Church of New Hampshire endorsed civil unions bill on March 19, just two days prior to the state legislature’s vote
- Roman Catholic Church of Maine ceased all external opposition to this year’s marriage equality ballot campaign
Oh, but don’t you worry! That’s not the full story. If you wander over to CatholicNH.org, you’ll see the broader story:
The Diocese of Manchester consistently has opposed legislation that would establish civil unions. However, the [civil unions bill] falls into a category of legislation which the US Bishops have previously considered: bills in civil law which may not reflect the fullness of the Church’s teaching, but which nonetheless provide an “incremental improvement” in the current law and a “step toward full restoration of justice.”
So, essentially what the Catholic Church of New Hampshire is saying is this:
Providing a committed and loving gay couple a Civil Union is far better than allowing them to get married. And while it’s only an “incremental improvement” we’ll keep fighting until those gay people have no rights, just like it was before. That’s what it means to have a “full restoration of justice!”
Yeah, no dice.
I’ve said this before and I’ll reiterate now: I don’t mean to speak out against any one group on this blog, but the Catholic Church continues to come out against marriage equality time and time again and it almost feels like now they’re just being mean. With that said, I was raised Catholic and have many Catholic friends that love me and don’t hold these same views. That’s why I will not lump all Catholics (or any religion, for that matter) together in one bucket. But it is important that we all know how these religious organizations are attempting to influence the governing body of the land.
And remember, it’s liberty and justice for all.
It really diminishes all of us. It creates in my mind a problem for the entire state… to be so embarrassed to be in a state where a number of legislators feel it is important to discriminate.
Susan Sanger, St. Louis Park City Council Member
Source: TC Daily Planet
Sanger shares why it was important for her to support a resolution for St. Louis Park to oppose the mean-spirited marriage amendment that will appear on ballots this fall.
According to Northfieldnews.com:
the [Northfield] council voted to ask the Human Rights Commission to draft an ordinance and determine how it should be implemented and paid for.
While a registry like this does not provide the legal benefits of marriage, it does provide some key benefits like partner insurance, hospital visitation, tax benefits and others.
[Councilor Betsey] Buckheit says a domestic partnership registry ordinance has nothing to do with marriage for same-sex couples. She calls registries a civil rights issue, noting that while religious organizations can make their own determinations about rights for same-sex couples, governmental entities must not discriminate.
The separation of church and state; I’m glad that someone gets it.
When my wife and I moved into this community, we found it to be a very welcome and open community… This constitutional amendment is a mean-spirited attempt to codify discrimination in our state constitution. I could not more strongly speak against it.
Jake Spano, St. Louis Park City Council Member
Source: TC Daily Planet
Spano led the effort to pass a resolution against the hurtful marriage amendment on Minnesotans’ ballots this November.
Do you recognize the name Michael Brodkorb? Well, if you followed the Amy Koch story this past December, you probably saw his name a couple times. You see, Brodkorb had an affair with Koch, then majority leader, and he was fired one day after Koch resigned abruptly.
Well now, according to Boston.com, Brodkorb is threatening a $1.5 million wrongful termination lawsuit. Not only that, his attorney threatens that a public lawsuit could expose more than a dozen other Capitol affairs.
Ironic, the folks so worried about “defending marriage” in the state of Minnesota might want to look in the mirror. Brodkorb is helping Minnesotans see how absurd the defending marriage claims are, and instead, he’s exposing amendment proponents in office for they hypocrites they are.
While this is somewhat dated now, I still wanted to make sure I posted the fact that another city came out this month against the mean-spirited marriage amendment that will appear on Minnesota ballots this November.
The St. Louis Park City Council voted in favor of a resolution against the marriage amendment. The best part from the article:
Every citizen speaking before the council supported the measure and every city council member voted in favor of it.
Way to go St. Louis Park!
Motivating article from Gallup that talks about the first time the majority of Americans favored the legalization of gay marriage: May, 2011.
Gallup first asked the question in 1996 and again in 1999, before adding it to their annual survey beginning in 2004. According to Gallup, just 15 years earlier in 1996, two-thirds of Americans were opposed to legalizing same-sex marriage with only 27% in favor.
The folks at Gallup have also provided some additional breakdowns of the data by party and age (which, provide numbers that one would expect; liberals and the young are more likely to be in favor).
I’ve been following some blogs from North Carolina as they fight the marriage amendment battle. In May, Amendment One will appear on North Carolinian’s ballots. Of course, NC state law already prohibits same-sex marriage, a constitutional amendment would just be an additional measure, I guess.
Anyway, even on the way to that constitutional amendment, it’s sad to see County Commissioners in parts of NC trying to pass resolutions to support the Defense of Marriage Act (US Federal Law defining marriage as one man and one woman).
Guess some folks in North Carolina just want to be super-duper sure that same-sex couples are very clear where their state stands on the matter of love. Sad.
To my friends in North Carolina: May hope carry you through.
Yesterday, I posted an article from the Washington Blade that spoke to rumors that the Obama Administration may be close to coming out in support of gay marriage. Michael Tomasky does a nice job capturing why the president shouldn’t defend gay marriage (for now, anyway, at least according to the article).
According to Tomasky, Obama’s reasons for supporting gay marriage include:
- It’s simply the right thing to do
- Pro-marriage position is now in step with the American majority
- Political benefit, including fund raising
- Energize young voters; give them a reason to go out canvassing again
- Powerful message, overall, to hear a leader make this type of proclamation
And Tomasky’s argument why Obama should not come out in support of gay marriage at this point:
- Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and North Carolina are put at risk (51 electoral votes)
- Win first and then do it; doing it in the context of campaigning may create a perception that there are other motives behind the decision
I can see the pros and cons on each side of the issue. I would add an additional con:
- By coming out in support of an issue that only has a slim majority, does the President actually do more to mobilize the far right; would this be the hot-button issue that gets out voters from the other side? For those of us in states facing a vote on marriage this November, I’d like to make sure we keep these folks as quiet as possible…
Mr. Tomasky goes on to muse about how Obama may legalize gay marriage, even painting a picture of Obama raising his glass to propose a toast at a gay wedding ceremony sometime in his second term.
The conclusion of the article gave me goosebumps:
And by Jan. 19, 2017, his last night in the White House, 65 percent of Americans will support the right, the usual 35 percent will be left wondering what happened to “their” country, and those new generations of Americans will still have seen, and still pretty dramatically, that a Democratic president took a risk and did the morally right thing. Which I’m all for. I’m just for winning first.
I think I’m with you, Mr. Tomasky!
The President has long believed that gay and lesbian couples deserve the same rights and legal protections as straight couples… That’s why he has called for repeal of the so-called ‘Defense of Marriage Act’ and determined that his Administration would no longer defend the constitutionality of DOMA in the courts.
Shin Inouye, White House spokesperson, June 25, 2011
Source: ABC News
Inouye made this statement after New York voted to legalize gay marriage last June.
I posted last week on how Obama opposes the North Carolina marriage amendment, but is the President really ready to endorse gay marriage as part of his platform? The Washington Blade seems to think that this could become a reality.
According to the Blade:
The chances that Obama will make such an announcement before the election are looking better than in previous months as the issue receives growing media attention and voters in a handful of states face ballot initiatives this year.
An informed source, who agreed to speak on condition of anonymity, said “active conversations” are taking place between the White House and the campaign about whether Obama should complete his evolution on marriage and that the chances of him making an announcement are about 50-50.
An “informed source” and chances of “50-50” don’t really instill a lot of confidence that Obama will come storming out in favor of same-sex marriage across the country. However, I do believe that Democrats may be realizing that they have the ability to send a message of equality and paint the picture of how they’re ‘fighting for the underdog’ in upcoming election battles. Will we arrive there in time for November? Guess we’ll just have to stay tuned!
Former Vice President Walter Mondale and former Minnesota Supreme Court Chief Justice Kathleen Blatz are encouraging voters to say NO to the mean-spirited marriage amendment this coming November. MinnPost quoted Blatz:
At this crossroads in Minnesota’s history we must not allow our state’s constitution to get caught up in the prevailing winds of the day. We may disagree on how best to recognize committed same-sex couples, but I believe quite firmly that legislating this issue by constitutional amendment is both inappropriate and a threat to the legacy of our state.
Link to Video (opens in new window)
Earlier, I posted the “Gathering Storm” ad Prop 8 supporters ran in California. I mentioned how funny man, Stephen Colbert, created his own parody of the ad. Colbert spends a couple minutes of this clip talking about how some cultures’ traditions are pretty #$&!ed up.
And get this, did you know that in some US states, it is legal for two dudes to get married?
Colbert goes on to talk about the National Organization for Marriage and plays the Gathering Storm ad I shared earlier today. Perhaps my favorite part of Colbert’s response:
I love that ad, it is like watching the 700 Club and the Weather Channel at the same time.
The comedian talks about how he expected this gay marriage thing to be kept to other states, but now this “arma-gay-don” is spreading.
He then shares how he knew he had to do something, and his commercial begins to play. There are some wonderful moments in this video that mock tactics used by Prop 8 supporters, including:
Did you know that if all 50 states approve gay marriage, straight marriage becomes illegal?
Yes, I heard that somewhere.
I’m a New Jersey pastor whose church was turned into an Abercrombie and Fitch.
I’ll let you watch and enjoy it for yourself. When the mocked up commercial is over, Colbert comes back and says:
Remember, when the gay community is granted personal freedoms, ours get taken away. How? Shhhhh… Did you see all that lightening?
While it’s a funny parody, it’s still bittersweet to know that Prop 8 passed in California and similar amendments have passed in every state where they’ve been proposed. Minnesotans, it’s time to stand up and land on the right side of history by voting NO this NOvember.