Speaking last week at a fundraising dinner for the top New York gay rights group ESPA, Senator Chuck Schumer articulated a far broader vision for same-sex marriage than he or most Democrats typically state publicly. “If Dick Cheney can support (same-sex) marriage, so can every Senator.”
Tag Archives: DOMA
Sen. Schumer at ESPA 2009 Fall Dinner: ‘If Dick Cheney Can Support Same-Sex Marriage, So Can Every Senator’
Posted by Audiegrl
In this poignant video below, 86 year old Philip Spooner, who is a life long resident of Maine and a Republican, speaks out on the reason we need marriage equality in this country. The fight for marriage equality in Maine is coming up in two weeks. If the “No on 1” campaign is successful, Maine will become the first state in the nation to successfully defend marriage equality in the voting booth.
Get this video out to as many people as you can.
Transcript: Good morning, Committee. My name is Phillip Spooner and I live at 5 Graham Street in Biddeford. I am 86 years old and a lifetime Republican and an active VFW chaplain. I still serve three hospitals and two nursing homes and I also serve Meals on Wheels for 28 years. My wife of 54 years, Jenny, died in 1997. Together we had four children, including the one gay son. All four of our boys were in the service. I was born on a potato farm north of Caribou and Perham, where I was raised to believe that all men are created equal and I’ve never forgotten that. I served in the U.S. Army, 1942-1945, in the First Army, as a medic and an ambulance driver. I worked with every outfit over there, including Patton’s Third Army. I saw action in all five major battles in Europe, and including the Battle of the Bulge. My unit was awarded Presidential Citations for transporting more patients with fewer accidents than any other ambulance unit I was in the liberation of Paris. After the war I carried POW’s back from Poland, Hungary, and Yugoslavia, and also hauled hundreds of injured Germans back to Germany.
I am here today because of a conversation I had last June when I was voting. A woman at my polling place asked me, “Do you believe in equal, equality for gay and lesbian people?” I was pretty surprised to be asked a question like that. It made no sense to me. Finally I asked her, “What do you think our boys fought for at Omaha Beach?” I haven’t seen much, so much blood and guts, so much suffering, much sacrifice. For what? For freedom and equality. These are the values that give America a great nation, one worth dying for.
I give talks to eighth grade teachers about World War II, and I don’t tell them about the horror. Maybe [inaudible] ovens of Buchenwald and Dachau. I’ve seen with my own eyes the consequences of caste systems and it make some people less than others, or second class. Never again. We must have equal rights for everyone. It’s what this country was started for. It takes all kinds of people to make a world war. It does make no sense that some people who love each other can marry and others can’t just because of who they are. This is what we fought for in World War II. That idea that we can be different and still be equal.
My wife and I did not raise four sons with the idea that three of them would have a certain set of rights, but our gay child would be left out. We raised them all to be hard-working, proud, and loyal Americans and they all did good. I think it’s too bad those who want to get married, they should be able to. Everybody’s supposed to be equal in equality in this country. Let gay people have the right to marry. Thank you
Posted by Audiegrl
Washington Post/Tim Craig—Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill said it appears unlikely that Congress will block a bill to be introduced Tuesday that would allow same-sex marriages in the District.
D.C. Council leaders have vowed to expedite the bill and said they hope to put it to a final vote before Christmas. But even if same-sex couples start marrying next year, the long-term survival of the practice would be in doubt for years, depending on the makeup of the House and Senate, congressional officials said.
“I hate to say this, but I think this is going to be rough sledding,” said Rep. James P. Moran Jr. (D-Va.). “I don’t think [conservatives] are going to give us a pass. . . . I don’t think we can always escape this issue coming to the floor.”
On Tuesday morning, D.C. Council member David A. Catania (I-At Large) will introduce his bill, which says that “any person . . . may marry any other eligible person regardless of gender.” The legislation, which has 10 co-sponsors including Catania, is expected to sail through the council’s committee process. Under Home Rule, Congress will have 30 legislative days to review the council’s action before it becomes law.
Given the stakes for the gay community locally and nationally, many city leaders and activists have begun calculating how Congress might react to the sight of same-sex couples getting married in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol.