Late Friday night, the state of New York legalized same-sex marriage. With a historic vote by its Legislature, New York became the sixth, and by far the most populous state to legalize same-sex marriage. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law Friday night. He said:
I am very proud of New York and I’m very proud of the statement we made today.
Same-sex couples will be able to get married by the end of July, as the law will go into effect in 30 days.
More than 35% of Americans now live in states where gay couples can effectively attain the rights and responsibilities of marriage.
According to The Associated Press, several recent opinion polls have shown that a majority of Americans now approve of same-sex marriages. It was only 10 years ago that there was less than 40% support.
Sometimes it is important to look at some of the people who are affected by this new legislation. It certainly makes it easier to understand why this is so important.
Meet Richard Dorr, 84, left, and John Mace, 91, at their home in New York City where they both work as voice teachers. They have been partners for 61 years, and have been hoping that legislation passes that would enable them to get married in New York. They plan to seek a marriage license as soon as possible but do not plan a big ceremony…just a couple of witnesses and a justice of the peace.
One of New York’s most famous gay couples is Neil Patrick Harris and his longtime partner, David Burtka. On Friday night, Harris tweeted words of encouragement to the State Senate. He wrote that he’d “sure love to get married.”
“David and I did propose to each other, but over five years ago! We’ve been wearing engagement rings for ages, waiting for an available date.”
It only makes sense that the pair should be allowed to marry. They have been together for many years and they are fathers to fraternal twins born in October 2010.
On Sunday, Ben Cohn posted a touching picture of himself and his long-time partner, Sean McDaniel…the important word…”engaged.” These two young people have their entire life ahead of them and now they can share it with someone they love and adore and have all the rights that we all have. Ben and Sean have performed and toured often with Clay Aiken. They are both outstanding musicians and seem like great people. I bet they got a mighty big “Congratulations” from Clay!
I saw a wonderful post from an active Clay fan on Sunday. She commented that she wished that there was a way for Clay to know and understand that he has made a huge impact when it comes to GLBT rights. She related that it was so much fun to see the celebration on the Clay-Boards and even FaceBook when the news of the Marriage Equality Bill passed. She said:
I’m sure some of those people would have been following it anyway, but it would be my guess that most of them would not be following this particular movement if it were not for Clay. He has led the way for people to get educated on this cause, to support the cause and to celebrate the victories and agonize over the defeats. He did that and I wish he could see it.