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D.C. Council votes to legalize same-sex marriage

The D.C. Council has voted 11 to 2 to legalize same-sex marriage in the District.

Council members Marion Barry (D-Ward 8) and Yvette Alexander (D-Ward 7) were the only two members to vote against the bill.

The council will have to take a second vote in two weeks before the bill goes to Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D), who has pledged to sign it.

By Washington Post Editors  |  December 1, 2009; 12:06 PM ET
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Hmmmm, I wonder how Barry and Alexander would have voted if the question was whether DC should allow interracial marriage? Surely that is not the "traditional" definition of marriage either. . .

Posted by: JohnVisser | December 1, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Jesus! Equality will come to Washington DC! Gay marriage now!

Posted by: kcflood87 | December 1, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Its NOT the same thing so please don't define as such?

Posted by: hammer4 | December 1, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

For Barry and Alexander: I was very disappointed to see you vote against ending marital discrimination. Long gone should be the days when government or religion dictates to whom consenting adults should share a loving and legal existence. We have moved far from the days when the law prohibited interracial marriage, which was also justified on religious grounds. This should be a time to look back and reflect on how hurtful that ban must have been to those affected and to understand that many of the District's residents continue to be punished for who they are, denied a right to legally declare themselves equal to others, and pushed to the fringes of civil life.

Shame on both of you, not for having a different view, but for an attempt to enshrine into law the denial of many of the District's residents from having a different view than each of you.

Posted by: GTFWalker | December 1, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

At first I thought opponents' use of the referendum argument was smart spin ("we're not bigots, just fans of democracy), until it occurred to me, there is no substantive argument against gay marriage (as I believe Eugene Robinson has written).

Posted by: atz0 | December 1, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

This is great news!! Congratulations to the GLBT Community and their supports!!

Posted by: local200 | December 1, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

I love how someone married and divorced 4 times and a serial adulterer/drug abuser/crackhead votes to oppose the opportunity of others to marry.

Barry, you are such a hypocrite and someone without an ounce of shame.

Posted by: B-rod | December 1, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I meant to also add that Barry is a perfect representative of the "sanctity of marriage" crowd.

Posted by: B-rod | December 1, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Its NOT the same thing so please don't define as such?

Posted by: hammer4 | December 1, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse
It IS very much the same thing. They used the same arguments against allowing interracial marriage.

Posted by: JTDCA | December 1, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

In no way is a gay marriage the same as an interracial marriage. Color or nationality has nothing to do with it, rather gender. A traditional marriage is between a MAN and WOMAN!

Posted by: Deedee11 | December 1, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Deedee11: "Traditional" marriage is between a man and a piece, or pieces, of property: that property being either one or several women.

Marriage has gone through a lot of changes historically. This is really the most minor. Unlike other changes marriage has undergone, this does not change the _contract_ of heterosexual marriage. Heterosexual marriage stays exactly the same as it is. What it does do is allow gays and lesbians to marry, who are currently categorically barred from the institution of marriage.

The parallel with racial discrimination is that both forms of discrimination are irrational, unnecessary, and harmful. The _rationalizations_ for both kinds of discrimination have some similarities, and some differences. But the _reason_ for the discrimination is simply because some people are different than others in a certain way, and some people feel the desire (as a result of being born into a prejudiced culture), to discriminate against those who are different from themselves, for no other _reason_ than discrimination for it's own sake. That is, always has been, and always will be, wrong.

Posted by: esurience | December 1, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

People have a short memory. A generation or so ago, inter-racial marriage and de-sgregation were going to destroy American civilization and undermine the values we were founded on. And integrating the army was going to destroy unit cohesiveness. Have any of those changed America for the worse? As Deedee wisely and with historical accuracy points out, definitions of marriage change. They are changing now and have changed across Europe, to the north of us in Canada--and even in South Africa. How shameful that South Africa is more advanced than we are!

Posted by: LevRaphael | December 1, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

I think the problem is that when some people think about same-sex marriage, they can't get their minds off the actual sex act, which they, in their heterosexual way, find icky.

I think the same people would find viewing most heterosexual sex to be icky as well. That's because most of us are not so great looking. We're misshapen, hairy, ungraceful or otherwise unbecoming to the eye.

So just try to forget the actual sex part of relationships. It's private and we don't spend that much time at it, anyhow. Most of the time is spent working, cooking dinner, mowing the lawn, cleaning house and raising the kids. Who cares who's doing it.

Live and let live.

Posted by: efavorite | December 1, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

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