Gay Marriage's Secret Weapons: Local Politicians, like New Paltz, N.Y., Mayor Jason West, Are the Most Effective Activists for Marriage Equality

By Lisotta, Christopher | The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine), April 13, 2004 | Go to article overview

Gay Marriage's Secret Weapons: Local Politicians, like New Paltz, N.Y., Mayor Jason West, Are the Most Effective Activists for Marriage Equality


Lisotta, Christopher, The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)


Openly gay Nyack, N.Y., mayor John Shields is not performing same-sex marriages, but he's not sitting on file sidelines. He is suing the New York State Department of Health, which regulates marriage licenses, and lobbying state "lawmakers for support. "We're taking a different strategy, and my lawyer's experience is, the more strategies you take on a civil rights issue, the better off you are," says Shields.

While presidential candidates and members of Congress from both parties turn their backs on marriage equality, local mayors, city councils, and clerks are taking real action. Since San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom began marrying same-sex couples on February 12, a cascade of municipalities from Seattle to San Jose, Calif., to Iowa City have tried not always successfully--to get their gay residents hitched.

Local officials say they are not trying to break the law but are simply doing what's fair. But why are they willing to take larger political risks than most stale or federal lawmakers? "Honestly, I think mayors are closer to this issue. They are dealing with LGBT constituents on a daily basis," says Rod Colvin, research director for the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force's Policy Institute. "They have a much closer daily interaction with the community, and those communities include gay and lesbian people."

That was evident on Match 10 when file Asbm3r Park, NA., city council reluctantly announced the city had to stop marrying gay citizens because of legal action from the state's attorney general. "I've had friends who were beaten for no other reason than they were gay," councilman John M. Loffredo told reporters. "For us to deny anyone the right to marry is wrong." Council members said they would seek a court judgment to continue issuing same-sex marriage licenses.

"It's not surprising that you would see this happening in urban areas like San Francisco, and second, in smaller towns where a liberal mayor and a liberal constituency can make a difference," says Jonathan Rauch, author of file forthcoming Gay Marriage: Why Is It Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America. That was certainly the case in New Paltz, N.Y., where Mayor Jason West married 25 same-sex couples in late February. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Gay Marriage's Secret Weapons: Local Politicians, like New Paltz, N.Y., Mayor Jason West, Are the Most Effective Activists for Marriage Equality
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.