Saturday, June 18, 2011

Row by row...

The state of New York is literally one vote away from becoming the latest - and the largest - state to approve same-sex marriage.

The state Assembly passed the bill on Wednesday by a comfortable margin, as it has in the past. It has always been the state Senate where it got hung up. But this time, 31 of the 62 state senators have already announced their support of the bill, meaning it is one vote short of passage and being signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who strongly supports the measure.

The sticking point is over the extent of a carve-out for religious organizations that want to maintain their bigotry. Cuomo has been negotiating with GOPpers and said Friday that he expects the bill to pass before the legislative session ends this week.

The Catholic hierarchy in the state remains opposed - what a shock - with Archbishop Timothy Dolan calling the bill an “ominous threat” to society, writing on his blog (yes, he has one) that
God, not Albany, has settled the definition of marriage a long time ago.” This is New York and America, not China or North Korea, the archbishop said. “In those countries,” he wrote, “government presumes daily to ‘redefine’ rights, relationships, values and natural law.”
Still, he voiced some pessimism: "The forces pushing this are very strong,” he said. “They’re well oiled. They’re well financed.”

Which he apparently said with a straight face, even as
Dennis Poust, communications director for the New York State Catholic Conference, says it has a network of more than 60,000 people across the state emailing and making thousands of phone calls to senators' offices. ... [and] ...

Brooklyn Diocese' Monsignor Kieran Harrington says every diocese is now aggressively getting the word out to Catholics across New York, which make up 38 percent of the state population, to encourage parishioners to contact senators.

“Every diocese is speaking out to congregations to realize how significant this is,” he said.
Speaking of well-oiled. In fact, speaking of greasy....

Footnote: Clyde Haberman, linked above, quoted Dorothy L. Sayers: “As I grow older and older/And totter toward the tomb,/ I find that I care less and less/Who goes to bed with whom.”

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