New York same-sex marriage passage could change political climate

By: Kevin Lewis Email
By: Kevin Lewis Email

It's been a groundbreaking weekend for the Empire state as on Friday night, lawmakers voted to legalize same sex marriage, the bill barely passing by four votes.

From the Senate, it hit Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo's desk for signature just before midnight, which he immediately signed.

Coincidentally, the passing of the bill took place in the midst of New York City's gay pride weekend which draws nearly one million attendees.

New York now becomes the sixth state, as well as the District of Columbia, to pass such a bill. Forty-one states, including Indiana and Michigan, have laws specifically banning such a measure.

Among those voting in favor of the bill was Republican Senator Mark Grisanti, who ran for office vowing to oppose same sex marriage.

"Who am I to say that someone does not have the same rights that I have with my wife, whom I love, or have the 1,300 plus rights that share with her?" said the Buffalo Senator.

While many see this as a great leap toward unity, some feel the bill is plastered with moral consequences, evident in the comment sections NewsCenter 16's website and Facebook page.

"It is wrong and that's one of the many things that is destroying our country," said Nick Baughman. "The bible says god made marriage to be between a man and woman in holy matrimony!"

That definition is shared by others, such as New York Roman Catholic Archibishop Tim Dolan who, in a statement, said that he was, "Deeply disappointed and troubled by a measure that will alter radically and forever humanity's historic understanding of marriage."

But the new law has put some Michiana residents like Melody Towle on the fence.

"I do believe in the civil union," said Towle. "I do think they should have the same rights as any couple together, but an actual marriage. I don't think I'm for that."

Recent polls suggest that Americans are still divided over same-sex marriage. With support steadily increasing, it is forcing some Republicans to reconsider their strong views.

"The politicians realize, well, we're on the losing side of this," said Andrew Sullivan. "We're losing the under-30's by something like three to one and if we stick our heels in, we're going to look as if we were resistant to the forces of history."

For those in favor, the bill passing comes as great news.

"My relationship with my partner is no different that a straight couple's," said Chad Kaltenback. "We've been together over ten years. God created all of us, I am just loving someone that he created."

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