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Virginia House Passes Gay Marriage Constitutional Ban

Openly gay Delegate Adam Ebbin is a lonely voice of tolerance in the Virginia legislature. Del. Kathy J. Byron fears the destruction of “marriage as we know it.”

More bigoted legislative misery to the north of my state. What is even more distressing is that an alternative proposal, which would have removed elements prohibiting civil unions or contracts between two people of the same sex that approximate those of marriage was rejected. They want to leave that can of worms open and squirming. (WAVY):

The House voted 78-18 to complete passage of a resolution similar to one the Senate easily passed on Monday. “Today is one of those moments for which we shall one day be ashamed,” said Del. Adam P. Ebbin, D-Alexandria, elected in 2003 by voters who knew he was gay. “I cannot stand by as this body continues to use gays and lesbians as scapegoats.”

He likened them to slavery, the forced Trail of Tears migration for Indians, lynchings, anti-miscegenation laws and Massive Resistance, Virginia’s official effort to thwart court-ordered public school desegregation. “You may argue that these are different, but I would say that discrimination is discrimination is discrimination,” Ebbin said.

Supporters of the amendment contend it is vital to preserving marriage applying uniquely to one woman and one man and warding off court rulings such as one in Massachusetts which make gay marriage legal. “If we do not act today, marriage as we know it will be redefined by the judicial process,” said Del. Kathy J. Byron, R-Campbell County.

The House rejected an amendment by Del. James M. Scott, D-Fairfax County, that would have left the ban against gay marriage intact but eliminate provisions that would also prohibit civil unions or contractual agreements between two people of the same sex that approximate the privileges of marriage.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding