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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

January 31, 2009 at 9:00 AM

“Everything But Marriage” bill

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Courtney Blethen / The Seattle Times

Impact/Equal Rights Washington and others rallied and marched against Washington state’s ban on gay marriage earlier this month. The protesters made their way from Seattle Central Community College down Pine Street to Westlake Park in downtown Seattle, where they gathered signatures for a letter to President Obama.

Providing security, second-class security

Editor, The Times:

Today I was pleased to celebrate the future rights of gays and lesbians in Washington state through the “Everything But Marriage” bill [“Domestic-partnership bill would expand protections,” Times, Local News, Jan. 28]. While the passage of this bill will help Washington’s lesbian and gay communities find much-needed security in these uncertain times, I am saddened by the second-class-citizen status domestic partnerships provide.

It is time for Washingtonians to give their hardworking neighbors, friends, co-workers and family the same dignity and respect of different-sex couples by granting full marriage equality. We need this legal protection now more than ever.

The Washington I know and love has a welcoming heart and an open mind. I believe with your help my family will finally be treated as full and equal citizens.

Please help us reach our goal of full-marriage equality by volunteering, donating money or simply engaging in positive conversations about the issues with your friends and family as we move toward full equality. The gay and lesbian communities will be forever grateful for your help and friendship.

— Joseph Mirabella, Seattle

A perverse agenda

While I do not oppose domestic partnerships in theory, I do find the ongoing march to same-sex marriage not only repulsive, but also a naked usurpation of the rights of Washington state voters.

If the supporters of homosexual marriage are so strident in their convictions, let them place it on the ballot and obtain the approval from the state electorate.

The fact of the matter is that not a single state in the union has legalized homosexual marriage by election.

Rather, unelected state supreme court judges have taken it upon themselves to advance their own perverse agenda and vision of marriage upon their states’ citizens.

— Brian Travis, Lynnwood

Passive oppression

I’ve always thought of myself as a fair, open-minded person. I assumed domestic partnerships offered same-sex couples the same domestic, legal and insurance rights as heterosexual couples. Boy, was I wrong.

As important as the progress in domestic partnerships has been, it doesn’t provide the same security as marriage; domestic partnerships are used as a way to treat people as second-class citizens.

My ignorance was a kind of passive oppression of my friends, neighbors, co-workers and family members who happen to be gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. Each of us deserves to be treated fairly and have the same chance to realize our hopes and dreams.

Why should I have a different set of rights when we all contribute equally to our communities, jobs and families?

— Deborah Skorstad, Seattle

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