Friday, June 08, 2007

Deval Call for Marriage Sanity

Defeat the amendment that would strip existing rights from a minority...this coming week and not after over a year of turmoil and waste money and energy. In his weekly podcast, Gov. Deval Patrick joins me in this call.

For those who find me a bit too abrasive on this, like here or here, you are likely to appreciate his reasoned and smooth style more.
In case you have friends who are confused or know of a legislator (including a senate president) who needs some clarification before the June 14th ConCon session, Patrick's views will come in very handy.

He calls for defeat of the amendment drive to take away homosexual couples' rights for civil marriage:
First, the court has not granted gay and lesbian couples any right different from anyone else. The court has affirmed the principle that people come before their government as equals, that’s all, saying simply that if the government is going to give marriage licenses to anyone, it has to give them to everyone, regardless of whether the spouse you choose is of the same gender.

Second, we have never in this state used the ballot process to limit individual freedoms and personal privacy. Our constitution is designed to protect freedom and stand against discrimination. Yet with this proposal we are being asked to take freedom away from some people and to insert discrimination into our constitution. Where then does that stop? Shall we take away the freedom to worship in religions that the majority does not approve of? Of course we shouldn't.

Third, even if you don’t support marriage equality, you have to realize that if this issue is placed on the ballot for a vote in 2008, for the next two years little else we need to do will get done. If we don’t lay this question to rest at the constitutional convention on June 14, a toxic debate will eclipse all the other business that you and I care about and drive us apart, just when we most need to work together. Instead of advancing our agenda in Massachusetts, we will spend the next two years surrounded by advocates from all over the country trying to make Massachusetts a political circus.
His call for activism is something we all can and most certainly should do. (What did you do in the fight for marriage equality?, your children may well ask.)

His call is:
I ask you please to stand with us. Whether you support the right of adults to make private choices about whom to marry or just feel that we have bigger challenges to face together, call your State Reps and Senators and tell them it’s time for us all to move on. Ask them to vote to defeat the ballot initiative once and for all in the constitutional convention on June 14. Ask your friends, your family and your neighbors to reach out as well.
As the expression goes, what could be fairer than that?

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