Jed wrote a longer post…

Jed wrote a longer post in which he included some quotes from the four Republican senators who voted for marriage equality in New York. I thought they were worth propagating -- I find it fascinating, seeing the different paths whereby people come to what must be a very difficult choice for justice. People, this is what gives me hope for humanity -- that despite all the myriad reasons for an individual to hang on to power and privilege, at the expense of others, one by one, we rise above. It's rare to see that demonstrated so starkly.

  • Senator James Alesi, the first Republican in the NY state Senate to publicly say he was voting Yes. He recently said, [W]hen I told [my friends and supporters that] I am committed to giving people that live in America what every American wants, they told me I was no longer their friend. [...] I think I have some new friends.

  • Senator Roy McDonald, the second (and last) Republican to publicly support marriage equality before it came up for the vote, and who famously remarked: Well, fuck it, I don't care what you think. I'm trying to do the right thing.

  • Senator Stephen Saland, whose statement on the Senate floor last night made clear that he had struggled a great deal with this decision, but who concluded: I must define doing the right thing as treating all persons with equality in the definition of law as it pertains to marriage.

  • Senator Mark Grisanti, who went from publicly No to publicly undecided to an excellent statement on the Senate floor: I cannot legally come up with an argument against same-sex marriage. [...] I believe you can be wiser today than yesterday when you do the work.

3 thoughts on “Jed wrote a longer post…”

  1. I think the video of Grisanti’s full statement is especially worth watching.

    …Another aspect of this that I didn’t address in my entry is that Grisanti and Alesi are Catholic, as is Cuomo. (Saland is Jewish, not sure about McDonald’s religion.) I imagine several other senators and assembly members are Catholic too. It’ll be interesting to see, over the next few years, how things go between Catholic clergy (vehemently opposed to same-sex marriage, of course) and Catholics (many of whom support it—I think there was a poll in Rhode Island where the majority of Catholics in the state were in favor of marriage equality).

  2. These are lovely.

    I am also fascinated by Carl Kruger (who represents a district with a substantial Orthodox Jewish population, who are far right of your basic Catholic). He voted against the bill in 2009 but changed his vote this year, partly because of family pressure from a girlfriend(?) whose gay nephew stopped speaking to them after Kruger’s 2009 vote.

  3. Also interesting: There are rumors that Kruger is gay and in a longtime relationship with a man.

    It’s hard to know how much credence to give those rumors; Kruger says he’s not gay, and most of the rumors seem to have come from a New York Post (tabloid) article that may have just been reading too much into a New York Times article about Kruger’s recent legal troubles. It’s entirely possible that Kruger just has a particularly close heterosexual friendship with another man.

    So normally I wouldn’t consider the rumor worth spreading. But given Kruger’s prominent role as one of the people who voted No in 2009 and Yes this year, it seems relevant.

    Unrelated PS about Catholicism: a new poll shows NY’s Catholics evenly split on support of same-sex marriage. (The poll mentions Jewish support, but doesn’t subdivide Judaism, so there isn’t a specific number for Orthodox.)

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