You are here
Celebration in New York as gay marriages legalised
“I now pronounce you husband and husband” or “I now pronounce you wife and wife” will now be heard in marital ceremonies throughout New York state. At last Sunday’s Gay Pride parade, there was that extra display of exuberance as the landmark bill to make New York the sixth state to legalise marriage between same sex couples, received final legislative approval last Friday. Four Republicans joined 29 Democrats to push the measure through the by a 33-29 vote. The law, signed by Governor Cuomo and taking effect in 30 days, was not without controversy and opposition. In a bruising battle that pitted members of the same family, influential democratic senator, Ruben Diaz, Sr, marshalled opponents of the bill, while his granddaughter Erica Diaz, who is lesbian, publicly decried the senator’s views. “I was born and raised in New York. I vow that this is where I will get married and I will not be driven to another state to do so,” she is quoted as saying.
Testing the limits
At New York’s 42nd annual Gay Pride parade last Sunday in the West Village, thousands of revelers and well wishers jammed the streets, dancing, cheering and hugging, to various musical outfits, two of which added that distinct Caribbean beat. As Chutney Pride and Caribbean Spotlight sizzled with soca, chutney and dance hall music, a well represented Caribbean contingent with recycled costumes from this year’s Carnival, swayed and pranced. “Thirty years engaged! Let’s get married” trumpeted one of the signs. “Medical Marijuana Now,” read another, a sure indication that New Yorkers are now testing the limits. Toni Mohammed from Port-of-Spain, and her partner, a member of the Chutney Pride band, openly displayed their sentiment, “I am so happy now we can get married at home.”
Cliff from Tacarigua and Chris from Hungary, who have been together for three years, said, “What a day for New Yorker’s to celebrate! It’s time to end the prejudice and discrimination. No longer do children have to grow up emotionally crippled, verbally and socially abused, causing generations of prejudiced adults, no more suicides for being “different” because of who you love. Now everyone has the equal right to make their marriage good or bad, gay or straight! Thank God for equality!” Not everyone, though, was that buoyant. Eileen Smith of San Fernando was prophetically damning. “I think New York will be under water. The Man will speak now,” she said. “This is not of the Bible, not of God.”
Meanwhile, In Chicago, organisers of that city’s Gay Pride parade scrambled to repair dozens of floats, after someone slashed their tyres overnight at a garage on the South Side. Police said it was too early to determine whether the damage was a hate crime. The new law will undoubtedly attract more gay visitors to the Big Apple as the go-to place for nuptials. This will no doubt prove financially fortuitous as the sate grapples with a slowing economy. Interestingly, same-sex marriage licenses are granted by Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Washington, DC, while 29 states have constitutional bans on such unions, and 12 others have laws against it.
Coral King and
Dr Glenville Ashby
User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment writer and are not representative of Guardian Media Limited or its staff. Guardian Media Limited accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Please help us keep out site clean from inappropriate comments by using the flag option.
Guardian Media Limited reserves the right to remove, to edit or to censor any comments. Any content which is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will be removed.