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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

April 18, 2013 at 5:20 PM

New Zealand legalizes gay marriage

The United States is running behind

Celebrations begin at the Caluzzi Bar and Cabaret venue after New Zealand votes to legalize gay marriage on April 17, 2013. (Photo by Phil Walter / Getty Images)

Celebrations begin at the Caluzzi Bar and Cabaret venue after New Zealand votes to legalize gay marriage on April 17, 2013. (Photo by Phil Walter / Getty Images)

New Zealand became the 13th nation today to approve marriage equality [“New Zealand lawmakers make gay marriage legal,” page one, April 18]. Where is the United States with our “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” mantra? Not leading, that’s for sure.Currently 20 percent of states have passed marriage-quality laws and some of them by popular vote. Still, it seems the people screaming loudest about the government staying out of people’s lives are the ones behind the effort to ensure that government enshrines discrimination in Constitutional amendments if necessary.

Where is the leadership from companies like Boeing which remained silent during the vast corporate outpouring of support for the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act?

To this day, even though the majority of its workforce resides in a state where gay marriage is legal, Boeing chooses to use a loophole in the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 to exclude its legally married gay and lesbian employees and their families from equal benefits?

Someday we may be as enlightened as New Zealand, which actually broke out into song in their Parliament after voting to approve marriage equality. Until then, they can have the pedestal we put ourselves on. We certainly don’t deserve to stand on it.

Randy Sampson, Seattle

 

Comments | More in Gay marriage, Gay rights

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