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Such is the title of an editorial published today by the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.

New York lawmakers should approve marriage equality legislation

It's pretty short and sweet, so I encourage you to read it in its entirety.  A few excepts, comments, and a couple of bonus links to a new piece in the New York Daily News on NOM, and another on NOM & the Catholic Church, after the jump.

The D & C editorial begins by stating the obvious: that our country has made progress toward providing "equal protection to all its citizens" while recognizing that "inequalities remain."  True enough.

Before getting into the meat of their opinion piece, they call on the NY legislature to pass the pending marriage equality legislation this week, before the current legislative session ends in Albany.  Bravo.

In explaining their position, they begin with this:

This issue is especially emotional and divisive, as were the debates over civil rights legislation in the 1960s. While it's sadly true that those and subsequent laws haven't completely ended discrimination, it's indisputable that they removed significant barriers to equality. Implementing a marriage equality law would do the same, by giving committed gay couples the same rights and responsibilities as married heterosexual couples outlined in more than 1,300 state laws.

They then proceed to address the most common attack against marriage equality from the likes of NOM and their ilk:

This proposed law is not an attack on the institution of marriage, though some people vehemently believe it redefines marriage. The measure in no way forces any religious institution to change tenets related to marriage, including that marriage is a sacred vow between a man and a woman. Nor would the law force clergy to go against their beliefs and perform marriage ceremonies for same-sex couples.

Interestingly, the editorial then shifts gears with a bit of self-reflection by the D & C editorial board.  Seems they withheld full endorsement of marriage equality last time it was up for a vote in 2009, opting to endorse civil unions instead.  What has changed their point-of-view this time, you ask?

But ultimately, because of evidence that the implementation of civil unions has been problematic in other states, the board is endorsing marriage equality. In too many instances, couples in states that allow civil unions found themselves discriminated against by employers, hospitals and insurers. Three of those states, Connecticut, Vermont and New Hampshire, now allow same-sex marriage.

Ah yes, the old "separate but equal" failure.  Glad to see they've come around to see the faulty logic of that approach.  Hopefully someone can explain it to NY State Senator Greg Ball so that it gets through his thick skull.

But I digress.

Next, they name names.  The emphasis in the following paragraph is mine.

In the Senate, which rejected the measure in 2009, the vote hinges on a handful, including James Alesi, who voted "no" previously. Alesi has said he's made up his mind but won't reveal it unless a vote happens. That shows an appalling lack of courage. Sens. George Maziarz, Joseph Robach and Michael Nozzolio remain opposed.
An appalling lack of courage indeed.  Similar to the same lack of courage shown by my own NY State Senator, millionaire homophobe Republican scum-bag Marty Golden, who tries to avoid meeting with activists to discuss the issue, and who dismisses any questions about his pending vote with such BS as his claim that his contituents "don't give a rat's ass about social issues.".  Guess what, millionaire homophobe scumbag Marty Golden - you're on the wrong side of history, and your district is changing.

Ah, I digress again.  Inhale, exhale.  Fuck Marty Golden.  There, I said it.

The D & C editorial closing, again, with the emphasis being mine:

Public opinion also is evolving, with recent polls showing at least 56 percent of New Yorkers in favor of marriage equality. That's no doubt because so many heterosexual citizens have seen homosexual family members and friends in committed relationships. Lawmakers should show they've evolved, too.

You can click here to add a comment supporting the editorial (registration required).

Meanwhile, Douglas Feiden writing for the Daily News reports National Organization for Marriage crusading against gay nuptials in NY

A shadowy group run by religious fundamentalists is bankrolling a pitched crusade against same-sex marriage in New York.

Secretive and flush with cash, the National Organization for Marriage is igniting a culture war as it battles Gov. Cuomo and Mayor Bloomberg in their campaign to legalize gay wedlock.

"If marriage is redefined, then New York schools will soon be teaching that it's just as good for Jimmy to grow up and marry Johnny as it is to marry Mary," says the group's $172,100-a-year president, Brian Brown.

He warned of dire consequences if Albany, which nixed same-sex nuptials in 2009, reverses course.

Read it.  He does a relatively decent job of shining some light on this nefarious crew of bigots.  For even better reporting on NOM, check out Alvin McEwen on AlterNet published on Friday:  Is the Catholic Church overstepping its bounds on marriage equality fight?  Good stuff there.

Originally posted to CDH in Brooklyn on Sun Jun 12, 2011 at 05:19 AM PDT.

Also republished by New York State, Milk Men And Women, and New York City.

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