NEW YORK - Following Fridays mayhem at New Paltz New York, whence 21 gay-couples received marriage licenses sanctioned by the small towns mayor, some 200 pro-gay demonstrators rallied at the steps of New Yorks City Hall to demand recognition and marriage rights, Sunday, February 29.
The City Council Speaker Gifford Miller led the parade of council members, state assembly members and vociferous protestors that carried signs that said Stop the Hate, under the guise of tolerance, diversity and unity. The protestors and council demanded that the Mayor Michael Bloomberg of NYC, hand out marriage licenses to homosexual couples, despite state laws that prohibit such sanctions.
On Friday, Governor George Pataki rightfully stated that the New York State laws, similar to laws in 37 other states, define marriage as between a man and a woman. On that same day, Mayor Bloomberg also clearly stated that he had no plans to offer gay marriage in Americas most populous city.
Meanwhile, at the national level several states voiced support to the Presidents call to amend the Constitution. At an urgent speech on Feb. 24 and a subsequent statement on Feb 27, President Bush adamantly declared that a constitutional process was the best way to keep the tradition of marriage as one that is only between a man and a woman.
Seven states have already begun debating resolutions that would ask Congress to seek such a necessary amendment. To date, 38 states have passed similar resolutions that would protect marriage the three-fourths majority needed to take such legislation to be passed at Congress.
In addition to the amendment, legislators have also started to move toward passing a bill to bar even the recognition of legal benefits for domestic partners, placing a positive forecast for republicans across the state.
"It would pass overwhelmingly," republican representative Jim Harrison, who oversees the House Judiciary Committee, said of the bill.
Despite the ongoing warfare over homosexual marriage, most of Americas churches have remained silent, and have even stood on the side of the pro-gay activists, ushering in confusion from even the most evangelical parishioners.
"For me personally, even though I have a strong religious belief, who am I to say?" said Grant Reed, a police officer, a Republican and a member of the evangelical Ada Bible Church. "I know my wife would say, `a marriage is between a man and a woman, and sin is sin,' but I think we have bigger things to worry about than whether two men or two women want to get married.
Pro-family groups however, disagree.
This is an issue of nationwide importance, said Doug Kmiec, an author and a constitutional law professor at Pepperdine University. I think we run serious risks as a nation if we leave out on the table the option that alternative family arrangements are a reasonable or perfect substitute for traditional marriage.
Stanley Kurtz, a contributing editor at National Review and a research fellow at Stanford's Hoover Institution, agreed that the repercussions of offering marriage licenses would wreak irrevocable havoc upon the whole nation.
Kurtz noted that if, as expected, Massachusetts begins issuing such licenses this May, gay and lesbian couples from other states would rush to get married, and then sue their own States court for not recognizing their legal status. The homosexual couples would argue under the full faith and credit clause in the U.S. Constitution that binds all public acts, records and judicial proceedings of every state as legal in every other state.
I think that the Supreme Court is going to be looking at a situation ... where the whole country is riled up, because weve never had a situation where a substantial body of people have marriages that are only valid in one or a few states, said Kurtz. Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans have any inkling of what is about to hit them.
Some of the nation-wide concerns of pro-family groups include:
--The possibility that public schools be pressured to include same-sex marriage as an acceptable, normal and alternative to opposite-sex marriage. Consequently, children may begin to believe that the pure innocent love they share with friends of the same sex is something different and impure.
--Newspapers may be sued for refusing to run same-sex wedding announcements. Similarly, businesses may be forced to require the same benefits to same-sex couples despite a religious objection.
Therefore, in the midst of such a critical moment, pro-family leaders agree: For the good of the nation and the world, we must stand together firmly in opposition to the movement that goes against the fabric of humanity.
Several pro-family groups have started a campaign to protect marriage, as it should be. For more information on campaigns, please visit: www.cc.org and www.nogaymarriage.org.