Marriage Equality for New York sign now

Do you agree with Eliot Spitzer, The Daily Freeman, The New York Times, Empire State Pride Agenda, and well over half of New Yorkers across the state that gay marriage should be legalized?

If you do, sign on to this petition and pass it along to all you know; see just below a resolution submitted by yours truly for the Dutchess County Legislature to weigh in on this crucial human rights issue (contact [email protected] to help resolution passed on this locally).

"Support in New York has steadily grown over the last three years for the right of gay people to marry, according to a poll released today by Empire State Pride Agenda (Pride Agenda), the states lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization. Conducted by Global Strategy Group in March [2006], the poll found that 53\% of New Yorkers support marriage for same-sex couples..."
[from PrideAgenda.org/pressreleases/2006/pr-04-10-06.htm]

Joel Tyner
County Legislator
Clinton/Rhinebeck
324 Browns Pond Road
Staatsburg, NY 12580
[email protected]
RealMajorityProject.blogspot.com
845-876-2488

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[here below is the resolution submitted by yours truly for the Dutchess County Legislature]

WHEREAS, Governor Eliot Spitzer and Lieutenant Governor David Paterson recently submitted legislation to create civil marriage equality for all New Yorkers, as exists now in Massachusetts; this historic legislation would establish equal responsibilities, recognition, benefits and protections for all married couples; the bill would additionally stipulate that no clergy member or religious institution should be compelled to perform any same-sex marriage ceremony, and

WHEREAS, under current law, partners unable to enter into a civil marriage and their children lack legal protections taken for granted by married couples; in such areas as property ownership, inheritance, health care, hospital visitation, taxation, insurance coverage, child custody and pension benefits, married couples receive important safeguards against the loss or injury of a spouse, and crucial insurance against legal intrusion into marital privacy, and

WHEREAS, civil unions and domestic partnerships are an important recognition of gay relationships by a state, but they still represent separate and unequal treatment; one federal study identified more than 1,100 rights or benefits that are accorded only to the legally married; that means that even in states recognizing civil unions and domestic partnerships, gay couples often have to use legal contortions to protect their families in ways that married couples take for granted; gay couples may also be discriminated against when it comes to taxes and pension benefits, and

WHEREAS, this legislation would create equal legal protection and responsibilities for all individuals who seek to marry or have their marriage protected in the State of New York; strong, stable families are the cornerstones of our society; the responsibilities inherent in the institution of marriage benefit those individuals and society as a whole, and

WHEREAS, this bill guarantees that the inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness will be protected equally for all individuals in the State of New York-- an important step in the fight for civil rights for all people; no government should ever discriminate against its own citizens; there is no rational basis for the state denying these legal protections and this opportunity to consenting gays, and therefore be it

RESOLVED, that the Dutchess County Legislature calls on our state legislature to pass the Governor's proposal to create civil marriage equality for all New Yorkers; a marriage that is otherwise valid under the law will be valid regardless of the sex of the individuals; government treatment, legal status, and all rights, benefits, privileges, protections or responsibilities relating to marriage will be equal for all individual parties who enter into marriage regardless of the sex of their partner; no application for a marriage license will be denied on the ground that the parties are of the same, or a different, sex, and in consideration of private, ethical and religious beliefs, no clergy member or religious institution will be compelled to perform any marriage, and be it further

RESOLVED, that a copy of this resolution be sent to Governor Eliot Spitzer, State Senators Vincent Leibell and Stephen Saland, and Assemblymembers Greg Ball, Kevin Cahill, Tom Kirwan, Joel Miller, and Marcus Molinaro.

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From http://www.ny.gov/governor/press/0427071.html ...

Governor Eliot Spitzer and Lieutenant Governor David Paterson today submitted legislation to create civil marriage equality for all New Yorkers. This historic legislation would establish equal responsibilities, recognition, benefits and protections for all married couples. The bill would additionally stipulate that no clergy member or religious institution should be compelled to perform any same-sex marriage ceremony.

Under current law, partners unable to enter into a civil marriage -- and their children -- lack legal protections taken for granted by married couples. In such areas as property ownership, inheritance, health care, hospital visitation, taxation, insurance coverage, child custody and pension benefits, married couples receive important safeguards against the loss or injury of a spouse, and crucial insurance against legal intrusion into marital privacy.

This legislation would create equal legal protection and responsibilities for all individuals who seek to marry or have their marriage protected in the State of New York, said Governor Spitzer. Strong, stable families are the cornerstones of our society. The responsibilities inherent in the institution of marriage benefit those individuals and society as a whole.

This bill guarantees that the inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness will be protected equally for all individuals in the State of New York, said Lieutenant Governor David Paterson. This is an important step in the fight for civil rights for all people.

The legislation will include the following provisions:

A marriage that is otherwise valid under the law will be valid regardless of the sex of the individuals; Government treatment, legal status, and all rights, benefits, privileges, protections or responsibilities relating to marriage will be equal for all individual parties who enter into marriage regardless of the sex of their partner;

No application for a marriage license will be denied on the ground that the parties are of the same, or a different, sex, and;

In consideration of private, ethical and religious beliefs, no clergy member or religious institution will be compelled to perform any marriage.

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The May 6th Daily Freeman editorial...

"Gay Marriage"
http://www.dailyfreeman.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=18305035&BRD=1769&PAG=461&dept_id=82701&rfi=6


LESS THAN a year ago, the state's highest court declined the opportunity to find in the state constitution a basis for effectively establishing a new right of gay marriage.



Instead, the court put the matter squarely in the hands of state lawmakers.


In a fashion to which New York citizens have become cynically accustomed, legislators promptly did nothing.


Left to their own devices, it is highly unlikely that state legislators would ever take up such a matter of high public interest and essential fairness - unless, of course, it was somehow tied to a raise in their pay. In which case, listen for a chorus of hallelujahs and clear the decks for a voice vote and no legislative fingerprints.


But we digress.


Now, Gov. Eliot Spitzer has taken the bold step of forcing the issue, proposing that civil marriage be offered equally to all adult citizens. That's a proposal that does not mince the issue of marriage with half steps short of complete equality under the law, such as civil unions, which have been used in other states as a way to avoid meeting the matter fairly and squarely.


THE legislation proposed by Spitzer, he said, will include the following provisions:


* A marriage that is otherwise valid under the law will be valid regardless of the sex of the individuals; Government treatment, legal status, and all rights, benefits, privileges, protections or responsibilities relating to marriage will be equal for all individual parties who enter into marriage regardless of the sex of their partner.


* No application for a marriage license will be denied on the ground that the parties are of the same, or a different, sex.


* In consideration of private, ethical and religious beliefs, no clergy member or religious institution will be compelled to perform any marriage.


This is as it should be. We take the position that no government should ever discriminate against its own citizens, and the time has come to bring the law into line with the revolution in attitudes toward sexuality that has brought homosexuals out of the closet and into the mainstream of American society.


What unions religions decide to sanctify - and on what basis - is entirely the business of those religions.


But when any religion or religious adherent argues the state itself should be a tool of religious conformity, you just lose us. The United States of American is a vibrant, constitutionally secular political society with a multiplicity of religious expression and beliefs and widespread religious freedom. To maintain both those secular and religious values, let's not confuse the two. Or pretty soon we'll be banning books, movies and music, driving longtime neighbors from our neighborhoods as infidels and running around beating women with sticks for exposing their heads.


The emotional issue of gay marriage has tended to obscure the basic outlines of what marriage is under state laws. It is, in essence, a voluntary, contractual merging of fortunes between two consenting adults who wish to bring their lives together as one. Nothing more. Nothing less.


Now, history and personal experience have proven that people marry for all sorts of reasons. Some are quite traditional, including romance and procreation. And no one quarrels with that. But a well-considered prudence keeps both the state and others from inquiring too closely about those reasons on a case-by-case basis. Such is the nature, variation and creativity of human choice under the sun.


FOR INSTANCE, the argument by some opponents of gay marriage that procreation is a state purpose of marriage really doesn't hold up under scrutiny. To our knowledge, no one has ever seriously suggested the state should inquire into the fertility or reproductive intent of prospective heterosexual couples, although it would be entirely possible to do so.


Quite the contrary, the marriage of the elderly, well past any chance of reproduction, is typically received as quite a sweet and affirming event.


And society at large has no interest in returning to the days when at least some states banned contraception among even married couples, apparently on the assumption of some state legislators that the terms and purposes of sexual relations between heterosexuals was a legitimate state concern.


It wasn't a legitimate state concern in the mid-1960s when the Supreme Court finally banned that sort of intrusion and it isn't one now.

So what the state has done with marriage is set up a bare framework for interpersonal commitment and left the rest to the wedded couples to figure out. Experience teaches that, even in the most successful of marriages, it's an often intense, lifetime process of the greatest intimacy to figure out exactly what the institution means for those two people.


Pretty sensible, really.


In this day and age, there is no rational basis for the state denying that framework and that opportunity to consenting homosexuals.

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From PrideAgenda.org/issues/marriage/editorials/ed_new_york_times\%20_04_24_07.html...

"Mr. Spitzer and Gay Marriage"
New York Times Editorial April 24, 2007

The news that Gov. Eliot Spitzer will soon introduce a bill to legalize same-sex marriage what he calls a simple moral imperative is welcome and could give new national momentum to this important cause. Mr. Spitzer would be the first governor in the nation to introduce a gay marriage bill. But if he is going to make a real difference, rather than simply checking off a box to fulfill a campaign promise, he will have to fight for the law vigorously.

Even in a progressive state like New York, this will be a steep political climb. So far, only Massachusetts has enacted a gay marriage law after its highest court held that gay couples had a right under the State Constitution and while there is a similar bill working its way through the Connecticut legislature, its prospects are uncertain. Civil unions or domestic partnerships involving same-sex couples are now recognized by a small but growing number of states, including Connecticut, New Jersey, Vermont, California, Hawaii and Maine. It is an indication of how big a challenge Mr. Spitzer faces that New York is not, and hasnt come close to being, on this list.

Mr. Spitzer is right to be fighting for gay marriage. Civil unions and domestic partnerships are an important recognition of gay relationships by a state. But they still represent separate and unequal treatment. One federal study identified more than 1,100 rights or benefits that are accorded only to the legally married. That means that even in states recognizing civil unions and domestic partnerships, gay couples often have to use legal contortions to protect their families in ways that married couples take for granted. Gay couples may also be discriminated against when it comes to taxes and pension benefits.

The next step in building momentum for gay marriage in New York will be to get the State Assembly, which has a Democratic majority, on board. Speaker Sheldon Silver has said he will not take a stand until he talks with his fellow Democrats. But most of those Democrats have already publicly expressed support for gay marriage, so Mr. Silver has no excuse to delay. He should make it clear that he will join Governor Spitzer and press for the legislations swift passage.

The biggest stumbling block is likely to be, as it always is for gay rights measures in New York, the State Senate, which is controlled by Republicans. The majority leader, Joseph Bruno, has made it clear that he is against same-sex marriage, but he is also a pragmatist whose views on these issues have evolved and become more humane over the years.

Religious groups, particularly the Catholic Church, are likely to be the bills most outspoken opponents. It should be clear that these religious institutions have the right to refuse to marry anyone within their own religious houses. But they should not be allowed to dictate who can and cannot be married by the state.

Mr. Spitzer did not make gay marriage a priority in his first 100 days in office, and he did not mention it in his State of the State address or, more recently, when he laid out his agenda for the remainder of the legislative session. That may simply have been a pragmatic assessment that the bill would not pass right away.

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Latest Signatures

  • 24 November 2015148. Sarah D
    Every person should be able to marry regardless of their sexual orientation! This is long overdue for NYS! Address; Zip Code 401 Seneca Park Avenue Rochester, NY 14617
  • 09 November 2015147. Eric G
    let them get married Address; Zip Code 10021
  • 15 October 2015146. Rebecca C
    the petition will suffice Address; Zip Code 12571
  • 17 September 2015145. Nick Andgayleg
    equality for all Address; Zip Code 98 S. Hamilton St., Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
  • 13 August 2015144. Amy R
    It's time to start treating our gay and lesbian friends & family as equals under the law - discrimination of our citizens based on race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual orientation should not be tolerated or condoned by our government. Address;
  • 12 July 2015143. Connie H
    Eq uality for all is the rule of law in this country! Address; Zip Code 20 Hartsook Lane, Beacon NY 12508
  • 10 July 2015142. Jessica P
    I agree to this petition. Address; Zip Code NA
  • 23 June 2015141. Adam A
    about time Address; Zip Code 395 university ave. rochester, ny 14607
  • 13 June 2015140. Sarah C
    LOVE IS LOVE! Address; Zip Code 11718
  • 28 May 2015139. Leigh Annv
    It's time to move ahead. Address; Zip Code 14850
  • 30 April 2015138. Paula G
    I fail to see how it hurts anyone else's marriage to open the institution to more loving people. Rather than fighting this, we should be focussing on what is making so many marriages fail these days. Address; Zip Code 8 Jonathan Lane, Poughkeepsie, NY 126
  • 22 April 2015137. Carolann K
    Equal rights for EVERYONE! Address; Zip Code 12603
  • 19 April 2015136. Rebecca P
    Gay marriage should be legal Address; Zip Code 4 N Hinterland Dr, Rhinebeck NY, 12572
  • 11 April 2015135. Clara T
    Gay marriage should be legalized! Address; Zip Code 57 Hillview Avenue Port Washington NY 11050
  • 27 March 2015134. Carol M
    There is no reason to further delay giving full rights to same sex couples. Address; Zip Code 34 Carriage Hill Lane, Poughkeepsie NY 12603
  • 24 February 2015133. Kathleen W
    I agree with this petition Address; Zip Code 160 Village Lane, Rochester, NY 14610
  • 26 January 2015132. Sarah S
    I'm so happy for you both! Address; Zip Code 108 caitlin trail w henrietta ny 14586
  • 10 January 2015131. Rizzy K
    woot Address; Zip Code nesaquake avenue, 11050
  • 04 January 2015130. Erica N
    Absolutely! Address; Zip Code 1358 Ogden St; Denver, CO 80218
  • 03 January 2015129. Nicholas M
    whyu not??? Address; Zip Code 2 school street apt 3e poughkeepsie ny 12601
  • 03 November 2014128. Ethel A
    We pay taxes, we deserve the benefits of all married couples and need to live knowing that our loved ones are taken care of. Address; Zip Code 264 Tryon Estates, Rochester, NY 14609
  • 17 September 2014127. Diane S
    Equal rights for everybody in every state. Address; Zip Code LaGrangeville, NY 12540
  • 25 August 2014126. Eric D
    Please advance this! Address; Zip Code 333 E. 102nd. New York, 10029
  • 22 August 2014125. David N
    I want to get married Address; Zip Code 10009
  • 13 August 2014124. Aubrey S
    IThere are a lot of hateful things being said by people in NY state recently. Religion is being thrown into the conversation when really it is a human rights issue. As for the religious issue...did God make everyone? Did God make man and woman in his imag
  • 04 July 2014123. Darren Samsonj
    I believe in marriage equality Address; Zip Code 99 Walsh Road, LaGrangeville, NY 12540
  • 06 May 2014122. Dave F
    I strongly support the Marriage Equality for New York. I feel sorry for the opponents of this bill need to back off and realize that Gay people have rights too, and that this is a huge step towards progress in America towards equality. As it is single peo

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Jeanie GalvanBy:
SportIn:
Petition target:
New York State residents

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