NO CONTROVERSY ALLOWED IN ODD OR EVEN YEARS
From Gay City News on the New York State Senate's new commitment to bring the marriage equality bill to a vote:
The commitment brokered did not come easy. According to several sources with direct knowledge of the discussions, for much of the day the leadership held out for its status quo position — that a vote would come only when success was assured, whatever that means precisely. In addition to the accountability issue, that made it likely the bill’s consideration would spill over into 2010, an election year for governor and the Legislature, the wrong time for taking action on controversial issues.
You know what? New York State senators serve two-year terms, so they can always claim it's "the wrong time for taking action on controversial bills." It's always either an election year or the year before that. I'm glad LGBT advocates didn't let the senate leadership get away with that bullshit claim.
By the way, a friend e-mailed me yesterday after my rant was posted here to tell me he thought I was being rash, and that a straight up-or-down vote could result in defeat of the legislation. To which I said, "I know that. In fact, that wouldn't surprise me."
If the bill is defeated, it can always be reintroduced. The State Assembly routinely voted down LGBT equal rights legislation for years until it finally passed. If the majority of the Senate does not support marriage equality, the world won't end. We can go on to fight another day.
But how is not voting for the bill better than losing a floor vote? Answer: it isn't.
And I want all of them -- Democrat, Republican, conservative, progressive, moderate, male, female, Upstate, Downstate -- to go on the record. I want to know who my friend are, and I want to know who isn't my friend.