Congratulations, Illinoisans

Timothy Kincaid

June 1st, 2011

Today same-sex couples in Illinois can be joined in civil union and gain many of the state-granted advantages, obligations, and rights of marriage.

Our congratulations to all Illinoisans. To same-sex couples for expanded rights. To gay people for a step up in recognition of your worth as a fellow citizen. And to all other residents for your inclusion in the still-small number of states that have expressed their willingness to place humanity ahead of tradition, animus, or exclusion.

TampaZeke

June 1st, 2011

I thought they were called Illinoisnese.

But yeah, Congrats!

Richard Rush

June 1st, 2011

Good For You, Illinois!!!

And a really big GFY to Peter LaBarbera and Laurie Higgins! It’s gotta sting, in your home-state, no less! And what about God? Is He noticing how incompetent you two are in doing His work?. Or is He trying to send you the message that He is really on our side, and that He thinks your hate-campaign is pretty darn vile and bigoted? Either way, I think you should be expecting God to smite you.

Erin

June 1st, 2011

Congrats for what? Gays there are still second class citizens. They didn’t even try to pretend a civil union gets all the same rights st the state level as marriage like NJ did. Screw baby steps.

Timothy Kincaid

June 1st, 2011

Erin,

While a civil unions do not have the same status or advantage as marriages, they do have the same rights on the state level.

Illinois Senate bill 1716:

Section 20. Protections, obligations, and responsibilities. A party to a civil union is entitled to the same legal obligations, responsibilities, protections, and benefits as are afforded or recognized by the law of Illinois to spouses, whether they derive from statute, administrative rule, policy, common law, or any other source of civil or criminal law.

Erin

June 1st, 2011

Timothy, well you confuzzled me when you wrote “many of” instead of “all of the state-granted rights.” Also, when put into practice, as we have learned here in NJ, people in Civil Unions do not always get afforded all the same rights and respect they were supposed to when the legislation was passed. There is a middle-aged lesbian couple who speaks out about this at length on Garden State Equality’s website, and I have personally heard them discuss it in more detail at a townhall-style meeting when we were meeting to protest last summer’s NOM bus tour. They have run into problems at their places of employment and even in making funeral arrangements for their adopted son who passed. Other couples have been denied hospital visitation and decision-making in medical emergencies.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=46jccPGRmIg

These women live 20 minutes from where I live and work.

Rob in San Diego

June 1st, 2011

Way to go guys and gals, welcome to the club from your friends in San Diego California.

Timothy Kincaid

June 1st, 2011

Erin,

I get what you’re saying and we agree. They have the rights… but they aren’t always recognized.

This is not the final stop on our road to equality. But it is a nice rest area to have a picnic, celebrate the beautiful day, and relax for a breather before we continue our journey.

Second class status is not acceptable, but it certainly is better than no status at all. And as we continue our battle for equality, at least we can do so with some civil protections.

(And sorry about the confuzzlement)

Hunter

June 2nd, 2011

Erin —

No one is pretending that civil unions are the goal or the end point, and that includes the governor and legislature. Everyone here is regarding civil unions as step 1. There will be marriage bills appearing again (my state senator already introduced one last session, but civil unions won out), and it won’t be so long before Illinois joins the rest of the civilized world.

It’s just taking a while because we have a lot of Republicans, but they’re mostly not the crazy kind.

Regan DuCasse

June 2nd, 2011

What kind of person could be SO cruel, and so without human compassion that could look on these couples, smiling as happy as they can try to be, and think: ‘disgusting, they are harming marriage and these aren’t real couples who feel like normal people.’

Peter LaB and any anti gay person could do that. And try and take away those smiles, those ceremonies, those essential rights and protections that assure these people can look after each other. Especially in crisis.

Peter LaB and his ilk aren’t going to be the ones who comfort, or financially support or attend to the needs of these couples and their children.

Why are the anti gay so offended that gay people WANT to be responsible for each other and the children they’ve decided to care for and DO care for?

Mr. LaB and so on, like to think they are doing good work, and are frustrated that they haven’t been able to make gay people disappear from our lives as citizens and human beings.

But being offended by SMILING, happy, loving and caring gay people?!

WHAT kind of sick assholes ARE such people that they’d take that offense to the level of public policy to make those smiles, joy and care go away or be made difficult to attain?

THIS is the question I want these a-holes to answer. And they’d BETTER.
They damn well BETTER answer that one.

ebohlman

June 2nd, 2011

Today’s Chicago tribune, which made the first day of civil unions a front-page story (along with an additional full page) pointed out in interesting fact: some clergy will be required to obtain civil unions because their denominations’ rules about out-of-wedlock relationships will kick in.

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