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Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley
In a ceremony capping years of efforts by gay advocates, Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley will sign the Civil Marriage Protection Act in a few minutes. (Livestream here.) The new law will make marriage equality a reality in the state come January, making Maryland the eighth state to give the green-light to same-sex marriage in the past 12 months.

If, that is, the law can survive a probable voter referendum. Opponents of the law, which narrowly passed both houses of the Maryland legislature last month, have already begun a petition campaign to get the referendum on the November ballot. They need 55,736 valid signatures by June 30. They say they will gather 100,000. Language used while they are gathering signatures was approved by the state's board of elections Wednesday.

The opponents include The Maryland Marriage Alliance, mostly comprising African-American church leaders, the Maryland Catholic Conference and the National Organization for Marriage. The coalition got a boost when the local Fox TV station in Baltimore posted a prominent link to its web site.

Derek McCoy, executive director of the MMA, said petition-carriers will ask Marylanders attending church services for signatures as early as this Sunday. In November, the state's Roman Catholic bishops sent a 16-page statement to churches urging parishioners to reject the marriage-equality bill, which they claim threatens religious liberty. McCoy said supporters of marriage equality "have been seeking influence from an elite group of politicians and supporters" but "the average citizens of Maryland continue to believe in the time-tested, unalterable definition of marriage."

Unalterable, of course, if you ignore the experience of billions of people over the millennia.

gay marriage
On the other side is Marylanders for Marriage Equality, a coalition that includes 1199 SEIU, Human Rights Campaign, Progressive Maryland and others.

Sultan Shakir, campaign manager for MME, said in a statement, "We're fortunate to be riding a huge wave of momentum as we enter the referendum process. There is still a lot of work to do over the coming months, but we think voters will ultimately agree that all children, no matter who their parents are, should be protected under the law. Marriage equality is about building strong, stable families."

Foes would not tell reporters how much they plan to spend in their campaign to overturn the law, but supporters told the Baltimore Sun they expect to spend more than $500,000 to uphold it.

Both sides expect the results of referendum to be close. A Washington Post poll in January found 50 percent of Marylanders support letting gay and lesbian couples marry; 44 percent are opposed. That's a steady improvement since since 2004 when a poll found only 35 percent in favor, with 58 percent opposed. There are sharp differences along lines of religion, age and race.

Update 2:11 PT: The Governor is speaking now.

Update 2:15 PT : The bill is signed!

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Comment Preferences

  •  Surely Prop 8s ruling will apply here? (9+ / 0-)

    Also, I can kill you with my brain.

    by Puffin on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:02:58 PM PST

    •  Hope so. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AdamSelene, uciguy30, pademocrat

      Would we be so happy to have a military that dwarfs all others combined if it was a line item deduction on our paychecks next to FICA."

      by Back In Blue on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:11:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Some reasons why not: (13+ / 0-)

      (1)  Noone has been able to get married, and won't until the referendum is held (I think).  If people can get married and then are suddenly not allowed to marry any more then perhaps it would matter, but this will be more of a "right that was almost given and taken away, quite different from California.

      (2)  That ruling is currently only valid in the 9th Circuit.  Will it apply...probably. But it's not a given by any stretch.

      Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

      by lostboyjim on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:14:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Correct. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mungley

        No marriages until Jan 2013 either way.

        But was the ruling in Prop 8 because of taking away rights of those already married, or just that voters do not have the right to vote discrimination into law?

        Also, I can kill you with my brain.

        by Puffin on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:18:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Definite the latter (3+ / 0-)

          Prop 8 as currently held by the 9th Circuit is very very narrowly defined to apply only to California, because they gave a right and then took it away.  

          Washington State will have a similar referendum challenge on the ballot -- it's within the 9th Circuit, and may well be challenged there if it succeeds.

          Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

          by lostboyjim on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:31:24 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  The decision was a complex one (3+ / 0-)

          Even though on its face it was simple. It did, in the end (as I understand it) boil down to the notion that there is no constitutional justification, even at the rational basis level, for taking away a right that had been granted. In that respect it rested heavily on Romer vs Evans, which amended Colorado's Constitution by removing legal protection against discrimination, already granted in certain state jurisdictions, from one and only one group.

          Prop 8 was determined by the California supreme court not to affect those gay couples who had already been legally married and the subsequent federal case did not really address that question.

          The question of what voters can or cannot do by means of ballot initiative (though it was certainly discussed in the ruling) would appear to be a subsidiary one. I think the reason it is not so important is that, where states allow for ballot referenda, those referenda are construed pretty much on the same basis as legislation that is passed by elected representatives (although of course there is a difference; when a legislature passes a law it typically requires the signature of the state's governor to take effect; ballot measures are not subject to such a requirement).

          You don't have to be a lawyer (and I'm not one) to see how complicated the interplay of various laws is; I presume that if you are one, you appreciate it more.

      •  re: 1, yes. re: 2, I think you're also correct. nt (0+ / 0-)

        "Mitt Romney has more positions than the Kama Sutra." -- me "Social justice is love, made public." -- Cornel West

        by billlaurelMD on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:19:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  unfortunately, I think you're right. but I'm (0+ / 0-)

        hoping it never comes to that. If we can beat the referendum, then it won't matter that the Prop 8 ruling might not apply to us.

        We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

        by Tamar on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:22:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  From what I understand... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dave in Northridge

      In that case it was a judicial vs. legislative or initiative.  Basically, the ruling is, as I understand it, the California SC ruled that equal marriage was constitutional under the California Constitution.  The referendum process in CA just creates legislation - it does not amend the Constitution.  The case asked if Constitutionally guaranteed rights can be taken away by a legislative process.

      In Colorado, for instance, the referendum process actually amends the Constitution.  So I'm not sure the Prop 8 ruling would apply there.

      'Osama Bin Ladien is still dead and GM is still alive' - Joe Biden

      by RichM on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:20:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh and... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        trumpeter

        The referendum occurred after people were already allowed to marry.  So the right was already being exercised and then it was taken away.  Way different than this case because nobody will be able to exercise the right until after the referendum.

        'Osama Bin Ladien is still dead and GM is still alive' - Joe Biden

        by RichM on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:23:52 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  NO: Prop 8 Amended the state constitution (4+ / 0-)

        From ballotpedia

        Proposition 8, before it was declared null and void by the federal courts, created a new amendment to the California Constitution which said, "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California." Before it passed, same-sex marriage was a constitutionally-protected right in California; a majority of the justices of the California Supreme Court affirmed this understanding of the constitution in May 2008.
        Logically it would have had to do so:  The SCOCA found that marriage equality was a right found within the CA Constitution....Prop 8 had to remove that right found in the Constitution -- a simple law couldn't do that.

        Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

        by lostboyjim on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:36:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I'm sorry but you are mistaken (3+ / 0-)

        You said:

        The referendum process in CA just creates legislation - it does not amend the Constitution.
        Prop 8 did, in fact, amend the state constitution. Unlike most states that allow for state constitutional amendment by ballot measure, California's constitution itself requires only that a majority vote in favor of the amendment (most states require a super-majority to amend their constitution). Even where a revision of the California constitution is proposed, what is required is only that a 2/3 majority in both houses of the state legislature vote to place the revision on the ballot; the ballot measure then STILL only requires a majority vote. When Prop 8 was first being litigated (I believe even before it was voted on) the claim was made that it constituted a revision rather than an amendment. That claim was unfortunately not upheld by the state supreme court.
        •  My mistake... (0+ / 0-)

          I thought there was some question about that - but I think that was answered by the CA SC ruling.

          'Osama Bin Ladien is still dead and GM is still alive' - Joe Biden

          by RichM on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 03:05:04 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  there was no question (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            joe wobblie, RichM

            The state constitution itself very clearly provides for amendment of the constitution by ballot amendment.
            The state supreme court did rule first that Prop 8 was an amendment rather than a revision and later that the proponents of ballot measures have a right to defend those measures in court when the governor and the attorney general decline to do so.

            Personally I don't agree with either of those rulings but they are what they are. With respect to the latter, there are many here who would agree with it. I don't honestly see how you can permit the removal of a basic right from the constitution without calling the action of doing so a "revision" as it implies the ability of voters to move similarly with respect to any given right whatsoever, no matter how fundamental it might be. And if that isn't a constitutional revision, I don't know what is.

  •  i have an ulterior motive (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, skrekk

    I'm happy for the gays and all, and want them to marry for their own sake. But i'm also certain that if the GOP kills gay marriage they'll come after mine next.

  •  Take a leaf from Massachusetts (17+ / 0-)

    the vote to referendum was delayed and delayed and delayed for years on procedural issues, until finally, it didn't matter, gay marriage became normalized and the opposition gave up.

    Say what you want about Massachusetts state legislators, but they won this for marriage equity for us.  Marylanders, step up!

    "Out of Many, One." This is the great promise of our nation -9.75 -6.87

    by Uncle Moji on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:06:13 PM PST

    •  We will! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a gilas girl, pademocrat, Uncle Moji

      It's Mike Miller and Mike Busch as well they're pretty crafty legislators.

      Gov. O'Malley is going to keep pushing on this!

      Marylanders want this, even the younger repubs I know!

      In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God ~RFK

      by vcmvo2 on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:49:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not really possible. (0+ / 0-)

      The referendum in MA had to originate from the legislature, and the MA was sufficiently liberal to block it.

      In MD, the referendum can originate from citizen petition.

      And the bar is sufficiently low enough the opponent will almost certainly be able to do it.

      •  Not exactly, there was a citizen (0+ / 0-)

        petition for a referendum to ban same sex marriage.  In Dec 2005 there was a petition with over 170,000 signatures to require the legislature to vote on an amendment to place the issue onto the next election cycle ballot.  Same sex marriage became legal on May 17, 2004.

        (as a side note, in a very contested race in Western Mass in the last election cycle, one of the candidates who signed the anti-gay marriage petition - but then changed his mind years later - found that signing that petition may have cost him that Democratic primary).

        In January of 2007, on the last day of the Constitutional Convention (concon) the vote to put the issue to the voters PASSED because it got at least 25% of the yes votes (even though the vote was 132 against, 61 for).   On June 14, 2007, the required second vote which was tabled until June of 2007,  finally failed because it could not get even 25% of a yes vote to move it forward to the public ballot.  151 no, 45 yes, with 4 abstain/not present.  

        It took 3 years of tabling and maneuvering but by then, marriage equity had been in force for OVER 3 YEARS, and the opposition faded because the worst thing that happened was that people who loved each other got married.

        You can see that, in fact, the threshold for putting the measure on the ballot did not require the majority of a "liberal" Mass legislators' votes, and it was close.  But the tactic was to 1. poison pill the first amendment in 2004 by banning same sex marriage but legalizing civil unions - anti gay legislators couldn't do either and then to 2. Tabling and delaying a vote on an outright ban until the legislature was forced by the state supreme court to vote by the 170,000 signature petition 3.  Still waiting until the last possible minute to even call a vote (on Jan 2007) before 4.  Finally having the measure lose by not having even the required 25% support in June 2007.

        People take marriage equity in Mass for granted because it is the bluest state, but before the final vote in June 2007, many of us thought we might just lose our rights.  It was never a slam dunk, and there was tremendous opposition and hysteria about it when we first got our rights.  Time took care of the fear, and time took the wind out of the sails of the homophobes.

        "Out of Many, One." This is the great promise of our nation -9.75 -6.87

        by Uncle Moji on Fri Mar 02, 2012 at 12:43:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  the influx of Mormon money can't be far behind (14+ / 0-)
    Foes would not tell reporters how much they plan to spend in their campaign to overturn the law, but supporters told the Baltimore Sun they expect to spend more than $500,000 to uphold it.

    dangerous voter for a "dangerous president"; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Sciant terra viam monstrare."

    by annieli on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:08:04 PM PST

  •  As a native Marylander, (19+ / 0-)

    I couldn't be more proud right now!  I'd even sing Maryland My Maryland right now if it didn't diss Lincoln.

    -5.13,-5.64; If you gave [Jerry Falwell] an enema, you could bury him in a matchbox. -- Christopher Hitchens

    by gizmo59 on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:08:06 PM PST

  •  A brief moment of respite from the hate (12+ / 0-)

    is so very welcome. Particularly now as the hate machine ramps up so loudly in this election year.

    Score Card: Marriages won by me, 1. Marriages destroyed by me, 0.

    by Steven Payne on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:10:49 PM PST

  •  Great news for Maryland! (9+ / 0-)

    I have a question for well anyone. I don't really understand the opposistion, I mean if churches were actually forced to perform marriages agaisnt their will I would understand but since this comes down to civil marriage I have to ask: why don't most people know the difference and why do the people who do know the difference between civil marriage and "holy matrimony" still think they should be involved?

    •  why do churches get to have a say (6+ / 0-)

      about civic matters?

      There are many who say they shouldn't.  

      If Corporations are people, what are churches?  

      Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

      by a gilas girl on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:17:21 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  it's a fraudulent line of criticism perpetuated (8+ / 0-)

      by people who are anti-gay or who think being anti-gay gives them a political edge. They use religion as a battering ram, pretending that people's churches will be forced to perform marriages against their religious beliefs.
      It's an absolutely standard right-wing tactic.

      We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

      by Tamar on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:25:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  YES! (4+ / 0-)

      Thank you!  If you hadn't said this, I would have.  This is purely a civil affair.  It has nothing whatsoever to do with religious liberty.  If some church wants to refuse to lay their blessed hands on a gay couple's marriage, this law has nothing to say on that matter.  That is a religious issue.

      On the other hand, it is an unconstitutional meddling of religion in politics if legal contracts (and that is what marriage is when you get right down to it) can be nullified by religious entities with no legal standing in the contract.

    •  The whole religious freedom issue (6+ / 0-)

      is a red herring.  You don't understand the basis for their objection, because there is no basis for it.

      It is amazing to witness an organization of the size and importance and stature of the Catholic Church engaging in pure bald sophistry.  Of course this doesn't restrict religious freedom.  Nobody is going to make them marry gays in the cathedral.  It is an extraordinary grab for power to tell everyone else who they can and cannot marry.  They are the ones who are violating religious freedom, forcing those of us who don't believe to accept bizarre archaic superstitions as a constraint on our lives, or the lives of our relatives and friends.  

      I find it outrageous that they dare to drag out this religious freedom argument, in a country that gives them every opportunity to propagate their belief, and neither taxes them, nor prosecutes them for covering up child rape, for that matter. They have it pretty good in this country.  I wish it were not so.  If the Catholic Church is determined to interfere in US politics in a partisan fashion, I think they should be taxed.

      “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

      by ivorybill on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:43:30 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The argument is entirely a red herring (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a gilas girl, Dave in Northridge

      No court ever could force a member of the clergy to perform a marriage he (or she) did not want to perform.

      The problem is that people a) are poorly educated on the matter and b) are readily manipulated by means of political propaganda. Also c) many religious institutions would like to think that civil law should reflect their specific preferences and will therefore scream bloody murder when the civil authorities decide something differently. They will claim that when legislation doesn't go their way, it is their views and the rules they lay down for their members that are being outlawed. Hence the continuing debate on abortion and contraception.

    •  Possible answers: (0+ / 0-)

      The Harold Hill Paradigm: anything new is a threat and can be used to part the rustical rubes from their money.  In the case of The Music Man its a new pool table in the billiard parlor that Harold Hill uses to promote the sale of band instruments to "keep the young ones moral after school."  In this case, defending against the threat to traditional marriage  (more on this later) is certainly a reason to attend church more often and contribute to entrepreneurial philanthropists more generously.

      The Existential Contamination Premise :  Gay is the new "Jew" ... whose mere presence befouls and corrupts everything on the same continent, if not the same planet.  When the Nuremberg Tribunal  so thoroughly  discredited antisemitism,  and by extension made all "racialism" at least a little suspect, new demagogues needed new scapegoats to accomplish the same "unification" objectives with their audiences.

       (Of course, persecution of Gays and Lesbians on religious grounds predates Christianity by quite a few centuries.  It's the attempt to vilify them in terms a non-Believer might find convincing that is "new.")

      The Swedish Model  Such is the strength of post hoc ergo procter hoc thinking, that conservatives observe that as the Scandinavian societies have developed acceptance of homosexual partnerships in their communities ... so the central importance of Marriage as a prerequisite for child-bearing and the role of formal marriage in the lives of heterosexual couples has declined.  Because that which follows,  is caused by that which it follows --  obviously Scandinavian Straights have become more like Bloomsbury Gays because homosexuals have become less secretive and promiscuous.  

      And "if we're not careful, it could happen here, too".

      Now ... about "traditional marriage,"  in the sense of "What would Jesus want?"

      Originally, Marriage  was never thought of as a partnership between equal partners. Male supremacy (tempered by kindness and enlightened self interest. ) was the expected norm.  Among Christians, making the marital contract indissoluble was thought to both stabilize the community and promote that so-necessary  kindness and enlightened self interest.

      Then  Henry, by GraceofGod,  KingofEngland, of that name the Eighth started the trouble.   In the Protestant countries at least, Marriage was no longer indissoluble and the clergy was no longer necessarily celibate.)  Over the centuries, access to  Divorce "trickled down" to the masses ... so that even Catholic commoners of modest means could sometimes have their marriages annulled.

       In the United States the trend to Divorce on Demand  exploded in the late '50s when enormous numbers of older and wiser Greatest Generation brides and grooms came to regret their  wartime and "teen" marriages.

      But, before that could happen: Women's Rights!  Oh there had been hints of female humanity in both Christian and Jewish traditions.  But when Victoria came to the throne of England in 1837 , well, everything started going to hell in a hand basket.  In a mere 83 years, English speaking women had acquired significant  rights of person, property and progeny -- where previously they had had none at all.   Indeed, women became the more or less theoretical equals of men -- in everything except voting and access to professions and higher education.  Then in 1920 women got the vote -- and within mere decades,  began entering professions and running for public office in large numbers.

      Traditional Marriage was never intended to be a partnership of "equals."  For the longest time it was really a method of families obtaining advantageous in-laws and grandchildren, while providing for the orderly inheritance of land, wealth and social status.  (The happiness  of the Bride (or the Groom  for that matter)  as  not necessarily the most important consideration.

      Meanwhile, as Victoria was insisting on anesthesia for her child-birthing ... on the Continent, intellectuals were re-thinking their attitudes towards same-sex behavior and feeling.  Where the old model had progressed from Sin to Crime, the newer "psychology" came up with a number of new and somewhat less harshly judgmental interpretations.  The "Freemasonry of Urnlings" ...practiced several kinds of long-term relationships ... some modeled on classical  hetero normative lines of hierarchy and exploitation --  some of a more egalitarian nature.

  •  I'm sorry... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GRLionsFan, mdsiamese, jabney, pademocrat

    I'm trying to be sensitive here, but it really pisses me off that African-American groups oppose this.  40 years ago, states didn't allow them to marry white people.

    'Osama Bin Ladien is still dead and GM is still alive' - Joe Biden

    by RichM on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:12:31 PM PST

  •  As an ex-Maryland resident... (5+ / 0-)

    Three cheers for my former home state.  Someday my current home state - Ohio - will follow suit.

    The only thing we have to offer is fear itself. Republican Party, 2012.

    by KTinOhio on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:14:46 PM PST

  •  Wait, so once he signs it... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, a gilas girl

    will gay people be allowed to marry legally in Maryland, or will the law not take effect until after the referendum is voted on by the people, like SB 5 was in Ohio?

  •  Religious liberty? Protecting children? (8+ / 0-)

    I'm so sick of assholes who think that allowing Americans to pursue their own happiness somehow affects their religious freedom.  And protecting the children?  From whom? Their own parents?  The ones that love them, care for them and stay together when so many are working to keep them apart?  That's protecting families?   FUCK YOU!!  

    And I'm done with the Catholic church, or maybe we should now call it the Catholic PAC.  If you're Catholic and you don't write to your church leaders and demand them to get their asses out of politics, then you're just as bad as they are.

    Would we be so happy to have a military that dwarfs all others combined if it was a line item deduction on our paychecks next to FICA."

    by Back In Blue on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:16:56 PM PST

  •  There's something evil about a country (7+ / 0-)

    where people can vote to take away Civil Rights already granted.

    Something is inherently diseased at the very root of our form of democracy.

    Ironically, it's the very thing we left Europe to escape: the tyranny of certain religions dominating others and forcing religious dogma down our throats.

    In my view the American experiment has failed so long as we go on allowing people to vote to make people 2nd class citizens.

    Either we believe in why we came to America or we don't.

    Right now Americans don't.

    •  Thank progressive reform for that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ebohlman

      Whenever Americans have the chance to take away somebody's civil rights by initiative or referendum, they usually do.  So far, anti-gay initiatives and referenda have failed three times: in 1978, when California defeated the Briggs Initiative, which would have barred gay men and lesbians from teaching in public schools, and Seattle refused to remove sexual orientation from city employment and housing ordinances, and in 2004, Arizona voters rejected a measure that barred same-sex marriage.

      We all hope that things have changed significantly in the past eight years, but we don't know yet.  At least now we can see the value of the third reform; recall.

      All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

      by Dave in Northridge on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 03:22:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  At least four times (0+ / 0-)

        In 2009, a referendum to block Washington's expansion of domestic partnership to include all the rights and responsibilities of marriage failed handily.

        Banksters are harmful for the same reason neutrinos are harmless: neither are inclined to share what they've got (wealth and energy, respectively)

        by ebohlman on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 09:15:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  "And the bill is signed!" Just watched my (13+ / 0-)

    governor sign and announce his signature.
    I called in my younger daughter since she was at the rally in Annapolis for marriage equality with me and my husband (and a friend of hers and the friend's two mothers, and 700+ other people) but she got bored and left after 30 secs of O'Malley's remarks. Since she's only 11 1/2, I'll give her a break.
    I am tremendously proud and happy.
    Now we need to make sure it isn't overturned by the forces of homophobia and backwardism.
    We'll be campaigning for Obama and campaigning for preserving marriage equality in equal measures, meaning: A Lot!

    We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

    by Tamar on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:20:56 PM PST

  •  Mazel Tov! (11+ / 0-)

    Bigots gonna bigot. Let's take the win now and celebrate...deal with them later as needed.

    We view "The Handmaid's Tale" as cautionary. The GOP views it as an instruction book.

    by Vita Brevis on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:23:18 PM PST

  •  Troubling part of the diary (8+ / 0-)
    The opponents include The Maryland Marriage Alliance, mostly comprising African-American church leaders, the Maryland Catholic Conference and the National Organization for Marriage.
    This seems to harken back to the (false) meme following prop 8, where (so goes the meme),  liberal African-Americans voted for Obama, but also for Prop 8.  At the time there was fear that this would impact Gay/AA relationships.  Fortunately it was quickly discovered and publicized that this was in fact all false, and the news was more a result of the MSM looking for interesting ways to examine the issue.

    It looks to me like the Maryland Marriage Alliance is comprised of the Maryland Catholic Converence, NOW, and the Maryland Family Alliance.  Can you provide more detail on the "African-American church leaders" and their constituents? (Do that fall in that troubling spot of "Liberal but homophobic"?).   Is this really an issue?

    And if it is, how do we, as fellow liberals, address it?

    Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

    by lostboyjim on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:24:53 PM PST

  •  Today, Maryland, tomorrow, repeal of DOMA ... (10+ / 0-)

    ... As someone pointed out a couple of days ago, the fact that a bill establishing same-sex marriage equality has been passed and signed into law in the first state south of the Mason-Dixon line is big news. Progress is still way too slow. And yet, as Dr. Martin Luther King once said, "the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." Eventually, the rest of the country will catch up. It just has to. Institutionalized discrimination is simply unsustainable. There is no place for it in a supposedly civilized society anymore.

    Thanks, Gov. O'Malley, for helping to make this happen. And that picture of you and Sheila Vernon? We will just forget all about it.

    •  I'm proud of O'Malley, not only for his support (9+ / 0-)

      of marriage equality, but for the way he took on Bob McDonnell (Governor of Virginia) on PBS a few days ago.
      He was articulate, made McDonnell look like an uptight, narrow-minded idiot, and he also is incredibly good-looking! (well it doesn't hurt to have someone on our side who is that appealing. Just think how lucky we are in that regard with Obama -- what if we had to go out and campaign for someone who looked like Newt Gingrich -- but then, I think he looks awful because he is awful. I know that Barney Frank is not better looking than Newt Gingrich, but Frank always looks very cute to me probably because he makes me laugh so hard)
      http://www.bluevirginia.us/...

      We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

      by Tamar on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:54:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Barney Frank had a great line of his own recently. (5+ / 0-)

        IIRC, he was comparing the Democratic Party in general to the Republican Party. And he simply put it this way: "We're not perfect. But they're nuts!"

        Truer words were never said.

        Or as veep Joe Biden put it. "Bin Laden is dead. General Motors is alive." There's a lot more we need to get done to repair the damage Bush and company did to this country, but that's not a bad bumper sticker for Obama's re-election.

        If O'Malley ever runs for higher office or a Senate seat, I hope he wins.

  •  Proud to live in Maryland today (7+ / 0-)

    Just donated $100 to MME to fight the referendum.

    "Every Pootie is a masterpiece." - Da Vinci

    by mdsiamese on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:32:55 PM PST

  •  Bishops: Liars for Jesus? (5+ / 0-)

    "In November, the state's Roman Catholic bishops sent a 16-page statement to churches urging parishioners to reject the marriage-equality bill, which they claim threatens religious liberty."

    I guess telling a gigantic steaming lie is okay as long as it's in support of your regressive mythology?

    How much more of this bullshit do we have to put up with before we can finally do away with tax exemption for institutions like that?

  •  Wonderful mayhem! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson

    What a great video!

    Maryland will do the right thing on the referendum.

    In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God ~RFK

    by vcmvo2 on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:46:28 PM PST

  •  O'Malley for President in 2016! <nt> (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    askew

    "Every Pootie is a masterpiece." - Da Vinci

    by mdsiamese on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 02:58:34 PM PST

  •  Congratulations to Marryland! :) n/t (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TrueBlueMajority, Eric Nelson
  •  MMC also doing a prop to outlaw DIVORCE? (0+ / 0-)

    Its against Cathlic church doctrine too.  In fact, lets do props to ban all contraceptive and birth control as well.  And sex for purposes other than procreation, also a big no-no under Catholic doctrine.  

    A bunch of old guys in skirts who are prohibited from having any but the most tangential relations with women, let alone marrying.  Yeah, let them decide about your marriage.

    'Course, you know the reason the Church does this: they've convinced themselvs if they hate the gays loud enough, everyone will think it was the gays that made them diddle the kids and cover it up... and cover up the cover up... etc.  Its no coincidence Joey the Ratz was the Cover-up-er in Cheif.

    As I Catholic, this whole thing disgusts me.

  •  Huzza Maryland! (0+ / 0-)

    Pretty soon, it will be very hard for the bigots to claim that they are anything but bigots.

    Workers of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your shackles. It is by the picket line and direct action that true freedom will be won, not by electing people who promise to screw us less than the other guy.

    by rhonan on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 03:24:08 PM PST

  •  Prop 8 (Hate) (0+ / 0-)

    A federal panel of judges overturned Prop 8, ruling that it "serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California."
    We Californians are ready for yet another battle to secure Equal Rights for ALL it's citizens, remembering that doing what's right sometimes takes time and patience.
    Congratulations to the Great State of Maryland!

    Freedom is the exact distance between church and state.

    by Suburbanbum on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 03:37:45 PM PST

  •  Congrats Marryland! nt (0+ / 0-)

    California*, Conneticut, Iowa, Maryland*, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, Washington*. (and District of Columbia) *pending

    by cooper888 on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 03:40:30 PM PST

  •  Another referendum. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson

    Out of all the issues we are facing as a country, this is the one these haters find important enough to force a public vote in state after state.

    When (not if) they start losing in these referenda, hopefully that will put an end to this.

  •  Obama needs to get off the Sidelines (0+ / 0-)

    One of the demographics that are consistently opposed to gay marriage are African American Churches. Obama could make a huge impact on this issue by reminding Black Americans Black Slaves couldn't marry and Interracial marriage weren't allowed in many states up until 1967.

    If they think it is yucky, they need to get over it and focus on being on the side of Civil Rights for all Americans. I was raised by Grandmother who was born in 1910 and she had many views that were a sad legacy of the era she grew up in. Whenever she saw two Black people kiss on TV she would say "Why do they show such things on TV?." Yep, there were people like her, who would have preferred to never have to see Black people show each other physical affection. Fortunately people like my Grandmother didn't get a say in the matter because people's basic rights should not depend on people's notions about what they think is acceptable.

    •  It isn't a federal issue (0+ / 0-)

      and he is essentially refusing to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act, which wrongly tried to make it one.

      •  Wrong (0+ / 0-)

        He is refusing to defend it in court, big difference. If you say he is refusing to uphold a law he doesn't like you aren't doing him any good.

      •  It should be a Federal Issue (0+ / 0-)

        Civil Rights went no where until the Federal government took it up. Even if it is currently seen as a state issue, Obama should stand up for the rights of Gay people. Saying this is for the states to decide is at best a cop-out and at worst sides with those opposed to it.

        •  You're being a little revisionist here (0+ / 0-)
          Civil Rights went no where until the Federal government took it up.
          That's quite an exaggeration. Civil rights went quite a long way at the state level in the 1940s and 1950s. Of course, by the early 1960s pretty much everything that could be done at the state level had been done and it took Federal action to move things further, but it's quite doubtful that the Federal action would have been effective if it weren't for the groundwork that had been laid at the state level.

          For example, by the time Loving was decided, only 15 states still had miscegenation laws. 9 states never did, so almost two-thirds of the battle was won at the state level prior to 1967.

          Banksters are harmful for the same reason neutrinos are harmless: neither are inclined to share what they've got (wealth and energy, respectively)

          by ebohlman on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 11:02:57 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  I thought the rule of law (0+ / 0-)

    Was designed to protect the civil rights of the minority from the tyranny of the majority? If one group of people are attempting to deny another group of people their civil rights, the first group needs to be told, in no uncertain terms to STFU.

    "Political ends as sad remains will die." - YES 'And You and I' ; -8.88, -9.54

    by US Blues on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 04:05:43 PM PST

  •  New Jersey could do this (0+ / 0-)

    if the same sex marriage supporters would call Christie's bluff and pass a law calling for a referendum on the issue. It is entirely possible that both states could approve it this November.

    •  Perhaps, but I understand those who... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eric Nelson

      object because they don't think basic rights should be left to the popular will.

      I'm black and I'd be terrified, even to this day, to let people determine my rights by way of voting.
      Why should the lgbt community have to rely on the wisdom of the electorate in their respective states when the rights they claim are guaranteed under the US Constitution?

      Let The Wild Rumpus Begin!

      by dclawyer06 on Thu Mar 01, 2012 at 06:04:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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