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New York ‘close to legalising gay marriage’

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  1. Flippin ‘eck, only the 6th state to legalise gay marriage? That’s not even 1/5 of the country. Then again, less than 1/5 of the EU currently offers same sex marriages so the situation aint much better over here.

    We’ll all be dead by the time marriage is equal everywhere. Why the hell is it taking so long?!!

  2. One vote short sure sucks.

    1. Just needs a bit more impetus and we will get there …

  3. Doesn’t say much for us in the UK Michael. Not one gay person can marry in our own country. At least America has 5 states, possibly six by week’s end. This is how it happened in Canada, province by province until the then Prime Minister, Paul Martin, realised that it needed nation-wide legalisation and made it happen. He was pro-active. I don’t see any of that in our government, just silence and traditional foot-dragging.

    If it happens in New York this week, the financial and business centre of the world, its going to have huge significance and influence on other countries to follow suit.

    1. Robert, no one in the US who even now who gets married gets any tax benefits as they are all federal.

      1. @Confused
        Hopefully that will come in time when federal legislators catch up as they did in Canada.
        As for the UK, there is a review and I am hopeful – but it is taking a long way round to get to the sensible rational answer

      2. jamestoronto 15 Jun 2011, 4:59pm

        You are still a bit Confused. Taxes are not just federal. In any federal system there are at least two if not three or four or more taxing authorities. Canada has federal and provincial taxes as well as municipal ones; the USA has federal and state taxes and, depending on where one is living, city and county taxes. Couples in those states having equal marriage have tax benefits when it comes to STATE taxes but not when it is Federal taxes. Likewise, in those states married persons, regardless of gender, have equal access to STATE benefits (pensions, etc) but not federal benefits.

    2. Dan Filson 15 Jun 2011, 1:28pm

      I think eventually there will have to be tidying Federal legislation. A nation cannot have marriages that are recognised in some states and not recognised in others. But a few more states need to legislate first before we get to that stage

  4. Either civil law is defined by the needs and rights of citizens and gay marriage will be legalized, or civil laws will be placed under the dominion of religious laws and gay marriage will remain banned. There are no secular grounds for denying gay marriage.

    1. Well certainly no rational secular grounds that I have come across …

      I personally favour secularising marriage entirely and allowing those (whether they are same sex couples or heterosexual) who wish to do so to have a separate religious ceremony. I would also expand the remit of CPs so that same sex and heterosexual couples can both benefit – it would amount to much the same thing and would be about semantics in a way – but if it was the perferred terminology for particular couples, what is the issue …

      1. Dan Filson 15 Jun 2011, 1:25pm

        We seem to agree, except that rather than expand the remit of CPs so that same sex and heterosexual couples can both benefit, I would simply make registry office marriages open to any couple not barred by consanguinity or being already married.

        1. @Dan

          I must admit your thoughts are appealling but I do recognise that some people find the label “marriage” unhelpful because of its historical religious connections and thus a widened CP may ensure they can publically state their commitment to each other and benefit from tax breaks etc but not have to use a label that they perceive as being irrelevant to them.

  5. I don’t understand those who say we should open CPs and marriage to both opposite and same-sex couples. What is the point? What is the point of having two vehicles that are entirely the same?

    This could be risky but I actually think we should just open civil partnerships to heterosexual couples. I think you will slowly see the decline of the ‘mariage option’ then becayse more and more heterosexual people would opt for CPs because it dosn’t have the baggage,patriarchical associations and et cetera of marriage.

    1. @SamB: if by that you mean that marriage should be reserved to oppostie sex couples I disagree with you because there are those in society who will view marriage as the superior type of relationship.

      I do agree wioth your general point, though, that we do not need two vehicles that are entirely the same. and the way to deal with that is simpy to call CPs what they are in law: marriage!

    2. Jock S. Trap 15 Jun 2011, 3:26pm

      There are plenty of Straight couples who want to commit but not via marriage so I think actually opening up Civil Partnerships is a positive step forward in the 21st century just as opening up marriage.
      I guess marriage to a lot of Straight couples has become too old fashioned and to be honest who cares if there is a decline in marriage in favour of CPs amongst Straight couple and a rise in marriages amongst Lesbian, Gay etc couples?
      Point is the choice should be there for all to decide how they wish to celebrate their love, marriage, CP or neither of course but that is how the choice should be.

  6. harry57, civil partnerships are NOT marriages under the law. Read the Marriage Causes Act, nowhere does it state that they are. CPs are NOT identical to marriage. There are a few discrepancies in the pensions area. There are no vows required or the exchange of rings a prerequisite, no divorce but dissolution. Its not even a question of semantics. The two are very different in how they’re contracted. There is no mandatory ceremony as there is in a civil marriage.

    SamB, civil partnerships will NEVER be the norm for straight couples or gay couples for that matter. We have 10 countries and two foreign cities where same-sex marriage is legal. Others merely offer a varying degree of civil unions/partnerships/PACs and are not uniform, e.g. PAC’s in no way confer anywhere near all the rights of a British CP. There is no equal parity among those unions. Marriage, whether you like it or not, IS and always will be the universal gold standard. CPs will never reach that level.

  7. Jessica Green, why do you persist in calling it “gay marriage”? Since when do we call hetero marriage “straight marriage”? Its gender neutral. The term “gay marriage” is code for right wing anti same-sex marriage opponents whose purpose is to agitate bigotry and emotions to condemn and ban it. Please stop using it.

    1. Jock S. Trap 15 Jun 2011, 3:21pm

      I must admit that does get to me too.
      Slightly more annoying than same sex marriage but nevertheless…
      I guess I understand why but it suggests we still want something separate when all we want is something Equal.

      Much prefer marriage Equality.

      1. I agree, but I do think in campaigning for equal marriage the label same sex marriage can be a useful descriptive – but ultimately all that is being sought is equality and not gay marriage per se

  8. Jock S. Trap 15 Jun 2011, 3:18pm

    Here’s hoping for the positive.

    Surely it doesn’t take too much to work out that an equal society works better than an unequal one.

  9. If New York legalises it this week, the impact this will have will be enormous. Its the world’s financial and business centre. The global implications are significant. Perhaps it will light a fire under Cameron’s coalition of lazy arses to earn their keep by legislating for it, not later, but NOW. No excuses!

  10. I’m afraid to get my hopes up – New York has burned us before. But it sure would be sweet to finally win this one.

    1. Yes, I was in New York last month, it would be so good but raising one’s hopes only to have them dashed at the last moment as so often happens has made me too wary. If it actually passes then wonderful, it will send a powerful signal across the US and the world.

  11. Will literally jump up in the air in joy if it’s legalised in the Big Apple.

    I will make my next holiday destination NY AGAIN next year.

  12. jamestoronto, not sure about that last sentence. In any of the five states that allow same-sex marriage, heterosexual married couples actually do enjoy federal benefits that exclude gay married couples of course. Take social security for instance, not to be confused with social security in the UK. If a straight spouse dies, he or she can collect their decedent’s social security in continuance, gays can’t receive any federal benefits if a partner dies of course. In effect, there is no full marriage equality in those five states as of yet. There are apparently 1138 federal benefits conferred on heterosexual married couples. State benefits confer roughly 300-400 on gay married couples which straight couples also enjoy.

  13. It wouldn’t be surprising if the one vote needed doesn’t materialise. Republicans are notorious for that, mean spirited and just hateful. The fact that just two of them have changed their minds proves how anti-gay the rest of their party really is. They’ll come up with all kinds of excuses not to support it and claim they’re not homophobic as if people can’t see through it. What it boils down to is the majority of them are not prepared to damage their careers and all the financial deals they make with corporations, while kow-towing to religion-based bigotry of many of their constituents. Classic republicanism. I’ve no doubt we have plenty of those types in our own Tory party.

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