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Saturday, November 07, 2009

Lighting the Way to Equality

There is a rally this Monday, November 9 from 6 to 7 pm at the Capitol Building in Albany, State Street entrance, in favor of marriage equality.

The NY State Senate is preparing for a special session on Tuesday, November 10th. Apparently, the Senate leadership has indicated that the Marriage Fairness bill (S.4401/Duane) might be voted on that day.

The local NYCLU even came up with talking points if one is speaking with a state senator, not the least of which that:

"Thousands of New York families have been denied the fundamental right to marriage and the basic dignity that comes with state recognition of their family. This discriminatory practice must end. It is time to grant all families the rights and responsibilities that come with marriage.

"New York has long been a leader in civil rights, and it’s time for this state to lead once again. New Yorkers – gay and straight alike – care deeply about this issue. New York already recognizes out-of-state same-sex marriages. It is time to allow same-sex marriages in this state; your vote will put you on the right side of history."

While I certainly agree with the goals of the rally - and I'm said about the recent vote in Maine on the topic is really depressing - I often wonder about the efficacy of protest generally. And I have been to a LOT of protests in my life. Still, because it is so specifically focused to that targeted date, I find that I am compelled to attend the event.

1. What are your feelings on gay maariage or domestic partnerships?
2. What are your feelings about the value of the street demonstration?



Scott said...

1. Totally for it. I don't want to get on my soapbox, because I would just be preaching to the choir, and/or another preacher. But I support gay marriage.

2. I have never been a part of a protest, and don't have the urge to either. I really think that they don't work. Unless it is an obvious thing that 90% of the population is behind, and politicians or leaders of some other type, depending on the situation, have made a horrible choice. However, I wouldn't discourage anyone from protesting.

Uthaclena said...

Count me as a supporter of Marriage Equality. I think that the two main reasons for its opposition are 1) Tradition (the religious excuses are included in this category) and 2) the "Yuck!" Factor, i.e. people obsessing about Gay sexual practices. Neither of these are valid reasons to deny people equal rights.

Having attended my fair share of demonstrations, I would suggest that we have been so saturated by protest marches and rallies for this and that for so long that their value has diminished. Other than an opportunity for the like-minded to get together and rub elbows, they accomplish little and are no substitute for organized lobbying and informational campaigns.

Anonymous said...

i support too!!

very important topic..

Alan David Doane said...

1. I support the rights of any adult to be married to any other willing adult, in whatever arrangement they believe works best for their family.

2. Meaningless as long as guns, batons and other weapons are wielded by the state to control the free speech of the demonstrators.

Jedediah said...

1. I support same-sex marriage. I'm part of the BDSM scene and we owe a lot to the gay movement, so how could I not be.

2. I think that protests can work in the right circumstances - the Monday protests in the GDR come to mind. They were not the only cause for the collapse of the whole system, but they certainly played a part and showed that peolpe were not accepting what was happening.
Protest (and I'm counting political-themed flash mobs) can be an effective tool and if it's only for showing politicians that not everyone just silently agrees. Make them afraid of us ;)
But I agree with Uthaclena: just protesting does nothing. As part of an organized campaign, it can be a very useful tool, though.