Thursday, November 9

Victory


This evening the Massachusetts legislature effectively killed an initiative petition proposing a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage by postponing their vote on the measure until January 2007. Because they did not adjourn, but simply recessed, Governor Romney cannot order them back into session. Romney was understandably pissed and accused the 109 legislators who voted to recess until January of disgracing their oath of office. By January, however, we will have a new governor, Romney will be soon forgotten, and same-sex marriage will have become a permanent feature of our landscape.

The above photo shows a group of anti-gay protesters across the street from the Massachusetts state house on Beacon Hill in Boston. They stood with their signs and their chants and their prayers, while for the most part, it was known since late last evening that the legislature would recess without voting on the issue of same-sex marriage.

In the background is the Robert Gould Shaw (1837 – 1863) memorial. Shaw led the very first African-American regiment to be formed in the North, the hallowed Massachusetts 54th, during the American Civil War. Although Shaw and many of the brave men under his command were cut down at the battle of Fort Wagner (South Carolina) in 1863, their legacy is one of freedom and courage in the face of inequality and injustice.

In the photograph, it almost looks as if Shaw and his regiment are marching over the protesters.

Those who made their slogan “Let the people vote” believed that they could win by masking their bigotry as democracy. Despite the appeal that their false populism had for many in Massachusetts, there is absolutely nothing democratic about relegating an entire class of people to second class status. Democracy can never allow itself to be subverted in order to inflict inequality and injustice upon a minority group. Our legislators in Massachusetts demonstrated today their grasp of this basic truth. They did the right thing.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Woof! Now if only the rest of America would start getting with the program...

7:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very very sweet, indeed. You know, we had same-sex marriage here in Multnomah County (Oregon) for a brief week or two in March 2004. Sigh. Here's to continued victory everywhere!

3:44 PM  
Blogger HAIRYBEARS said...

COOL

GREAT WORDS

HUGZ FROM BRAZIL

HAIRYBEARS
http://hairybears.blogspot.com/

8:24 AM  
Blogger Will said...

Yes, they did the right thing although the idealist in my yearns for the day our legislators will approve of a gay rights initiative and put their actual names on it by voting for all the country to see.

That said, the thing isn't necessarily dead, The 'phobes have discovered a way to make an appeal to the state Supreme Judicial Court to put the proposed amendment on the 2008 ballot WITHOUT the legislature's say-so.

Yes, our good friends on the radical right have decided to look to the self-same "activist judges" who gave us gay marriage to advance their own clause. As Mr. Rodgers used to say, "Can you say irony? Sure you can!"

9:07 AM  
Blogger The Persian said...

“Let the people vote”

I am often amused by what we are fed by the media/government as "popular opinion" and what actually comes to pass as the result of the "popular vote".

8:47 PM  
Blogger Sandouri Dean Bey said...

guess not.

11:24 PM  

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