Several members of New York City’s Congressional delegation released an “It Gets Better” video today in an effort to stop Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender youth from committing suicide. Congressmen Jerry Nadler, Joe Crowley, Ed Towns, Eliot Engel and Jose Serrano and Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney all appeared in the video.
All of the members in the Congressional delegation make brief remarks in the video describing recent gains by the gay rights movement and assuring LGBT youth “it gets better.” Mr. Serrano recorded his remarks in Spanish. Mr. Nadler finishes the video by reciting the number for the Trevor Project Lifeline, a hotline for suicidal LGBT youth who are seeking help.
The video is part of the “It Gets Better Project,” an online initiative started by alt-weekly columnist Dan Savage and his husband in 2010. Several politicians and celebrities have recorded “It Gets Better” videos including President Barack Obama, Lady Gaga and “Harry Potter” star Daniel Radcliffe. Mr. Savage’s other well-known online political project was “Spreading Santorum,” an effort to promote Rick Santorum’s last name as a scatological euphemism in Google search results in response to the then Senator’s anti-gay comments. We doubt New York City’s House members will be making a “Spreading Santorum” video any time soon.
Watch the Congressional “It Gets Better” video below.
Proposition 8, the ban that ended California’s brief, four-month-long flirtation with same-sex marriage in 2008, was struck down today by a federal appeals court. The three judge panel of the ninth circuit court ruled 2-1 in favor of overturning the voter-approved measure.
“Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California,” judge Stephen Reinhardt wrote in the ruling.
On Sunday, as Governor Andrew Cuomo, Senator Chuck Schumer and over 400 other guests looked on, Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell married John Banta, his partner of over three decades. For Mr. O’Donnell, the wedding was the culmination of a more-than-four-year fight—which included numerous lawsuits and the introduction of five bills to the State Legislature—that finally resulted in same-sex marriage’s finally being legalized in New York last June.
During the discussion of gay marriage at the Republican presidential debate tonight, Newt Gingrich interjected to make the point that religious Christians face far more discrimination in this country than gays and other groups. He also accused the media of ignoring “anti-Christian bigotry.”
If Rick Santorum becomes President, he plans to pass a federal Constitutional amendment banning gay marriages that would invalidate marriage licenses that have been issued to couples in the states where same sex weddings are currently legal. Mr. Santorum outlined his position on gay marriage during the Republican presidential debate tonight in Manchester, New Hampshire.