Saturday, June 25, 2011

The price of equality in New York

New York's Marriage Equality Act just passed the State Senate, 33 to 29. Sadly, it was amended to allow religious groups not just to refuse to provide facilities (which respects their freedom of association), but also to engage in wider discrimination (with specific reference to provision of housing) to "promote their religious principles". This doesn't just apply to same-sex married couples, but to divorcees, de facto couples, single parents, and in the case of some US "religions", black people.

Way to go, guys. I bet you're real proud of yourselves there.

This sort of odious "compromise" - "you can have marriage, but it will not be legally enforceable and we're going to stick you in a ghetto" - is why it is better to go to the courts for justice on this issue. They will uphold equality, as required by law, without the nasty clawback.