Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Pulling Maryland Into the Gutter?!?

Letter Published in July 29, 2011 Baltimore Sun

Al Eisner’s cynical letter should be labeled under the heading “Be careful what you wish for” ( “Md. Needs a referendum on same-sex marriage,” July 26). In chiding Gov. Martin O’Malley for making same-sex marriage a part of his 2012 legislative agenda and therefore, will, according to Eisner, “pull Maryland into the gutter,” he urges the state to do what many people consider to be is the un-American effort of putting minority’s rights up for a popular vote.

Marriage for same-sex couples has existed in Massachusetts for over seven years now. And with all fear mongering, doomsday scenarios, scare tactics and exaggerated hype, Massachusetts maintains the lowest divorce rate in the U.S.

People recognize that the sky did not fall since 2004, and the legalization of same-sex marriage has strengthened the institution, not dragging it into the gutter.

The trend continues to be favorable for marriage equality, thanks in part, to a realization that nobody’s marriage is threatened by the participation of others in the institution and to many of the enlightened and fair-minded younger generation who are still scratching their collective heads over this brand of discrimination.

Should a referendum take place next year, proponents of marriage equality will be ready to battle the anti-equality forces from inside and outside the state. And Al Eisner and his ilk will be surprised to discover that a majority of Maryland’s voters do not share his bigoted views, and the state will be poised to be the first to defeat a marriage equality referendum that would overturn the will of duly elected officials.

Steve Charing

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