Saturday, September 17, 2011

Heterosexuals and Committment

I don't see any problems here!
The latest news out of New York State: town clerks are resigning rather than sign same-gender marriage certificates. At least three town clerks have actually tendered their resignations rather than do the part of their job that requires signing the marriage certificate. Laura Fortusky, clerk of Barker in Broome County was the first.Ruth Sheldon in upstate Oswego County grabbed the number two spot, and now Rose Marie Belforti, the town clerk for the small town of Ledyard has declared that she will not sign the marriage document allowing Katie Carmichael and Deirdre DiBiaggio to tie the knot.

Even worse, a right-wing organization with the positively Orwellian moniker "New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms" is offering free legal support for Belforti and other poor town clerks forced into defending some of those pesky constitutional freedoms that keep getting in the way of other folks rights to bigotry and intolerance. Clearly, people have a right to be fascists on a personal level, but in a job the question of upholding the law comes into play and in New York State, same-sex marriage is the law.

The fervent fanaticism of anti-gay religious zealots is problematic for LGBT folks in the US. Studies have shown that queer-hating straight folk feel far more passionately about anti-gay bigotry than queer positive straight folks feel about equality. This simple fact could prove problematic as LGBT civil rights are eaten away by the T(tyranny) Party and right wing sympathizers. 

We queers are in the cross-hairs of the Perry-Bachmann crusaders. The GOP is successfully delaying the emergence of a military free from Don't Ask, Don't Tell. DOMA is still a federal law. Same-sex marriage nationally is a distant dream. We, as LGBTs have no federal protection against job or housing discrimination. And now that corporations are officially people, I don't see things improving anytime soon. 

Will our rights be eaten away slowly like the gradual implementation of the Nuremburg Laws? Are we now the proverbial lobsters in a pot who don't notice the water getting hotter and hotter? But most of all I wonder: Will there be enough straight people to defend our basic right to exist as it deteriorates before our eyes? I hope I never have to witness the answer to this question but, nonetheless, it's a crucial one to be asking.