Thursday, June 14, 2007

Legislators vote to defeat same-sex marriage ban

By Frank Phillips, Globe Staff

A proposed constitutional ban on same-sex marriage was defeated today by a joint session of the Legislature by a vote of 45 to 151, eliminating any chance of getting it on the ballot in November 2008. At least 50 votes were needed to advance the measure.

The vote came after House Speaker Salvatore F. DiMasi, Senate President Therese Murray, and Governor Deval Patrick conferred this morning and concluded that they have the votes to kill the proposal.

"In Massachusetts today, the freedom to marry is secure," Patrick told reporters after the vote.

The three leaders - along with gay rights activists - spent the last several days intensely lobbying a dozen or more state representatives and state senators who had previously supported the amendment but signaled that they were open to changing their positions.

Because fewer than 50 of the state's 200 lawmakers supported the amendment, it will not appear on the 2008 ballot, giving gay marriage advocates a major victory in their battle with social conservatives to keep same-sex marriage legal in Massachusetts.

Opponents of gay marriage face an increasingly tough battle to win legislative approval of any future petitions to appear on a statewide ballot. The next election available to them is 2012.

The Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, the group that spearheaded the court case that led to the Supreme Judicial Court's 2003 decision to legalize same-sex marriage, issued a statement praising the vote.

"We’re proud of our state today, and we applaud the legislature for showing that Massachusetts is strongly behind fairness," said Lee Swislow, executive director Advocates & Defenders. "The vote today was the triumph of time, experience, and understanding over fear and prejudice."

Posted by the Boston Globe City & Region Desk at 01:23 PM

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

My Sister and a Juliana Hatfield Moment

Me: “Hey do you have Ma’s work number?”

Her: “Yeah but it’s in my cell phone so I will have to call you back.”

Me: “OK can you just do it as soon as you can because it’s about tickets to Florida.”

Her: (Screaming) “Yeah sure right after I’m done running around taking Gram to the doctor’s and George to hokey.”

“Click!” She hangs up on me.

Now I have this conversation with her about once every six months or so it seems. I call her and ask her a completely benign question only to have her completely blow up at me for bothering her on a day when she has too many commitments, none of which have anything to do with me.

Granted she was having a bad day. My grandmother has a stress fracture in her back. My sister was shuttling her around to doctors appointments, because none of the grandmother’s five children could possibly be bothered living up to there obligations when it comes to my grandmother’s care.

Three days later my sister called me ask me if I was going to my Niece’s dance recital. When we spoke I asked her if I she was going to apologize for hanging up on me three days before. Yeah, it was the wrong thing to say. She told she was having a bad day that if I couldn’t accept the fact that she was having a bad day that it was just too bad for me. And at that moment she was way to busy to be bothered with my selfishness, a story I’ve heard many times before. I went on to say to her all she needed to say was, “I’m sorry I hung up on you. I was having a bad day.”

Her response was, “I’m not doing that!” Then there was more screaming about how she had a bad week. The whole world is against her and how dare I someone with no children ask her to apologize. She was will with in her right to act erratically and I should be the bigger person and just not mention it.

I’ve had enough of this bullshit. We have had fight after fight about her yelling at me for no reason then her expecting me not to say anything when she calls me however many days later and acts nothing ever happened. I am sure there will be more on this issue to come.