I have plenty of friends in Maryland eager to vote on November 6th. Not because they’re staunch Democrats, but because their livelihood is on the ballots. This November, Marylanders have the opportunity to make history, by voting to legalize same-sex marriage. Maryland is one of four states (Maine, Washington and Minnesota- there’s a measure to place a ban on gay marriage in the state constitution) with the referendums on the issue. Same-sex couples in Maryland have hopes that Maryland will join the other six states and the District of Columbia that have already legalized same-sex marriages.
Irene Huskens and her partner, Leia Burks, recently told the Associated Press that they’ve already planned their wedding, in hopes of the referendum being passed. “There are a lot of Marylanders who want to set the precedent of equality who will vote from their gut for fairness,” she said at her colonial suburban home in Prince George’s County, where she and Burks are raising two adopted children.
Those organizations in support of same-sex marriage have donated millions or dollars to the four campaigns. They’re at least hoping for one victory out of the four. “If we’re able to win one of these four, it will be a narrative change – proof that the public has moved our way dramatically,” Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, said. So far the Human Rights Campaign has donated over $4.4 million to the four state campaigns.
But of course there are those who are in opposition of this referendum being passed. Black pastors in the area are playing a huge role in the opposition of same-sex marriage. Reverend Derek McCoy, is the campaign chairman of the Maryland Marriage Alliance and he is aware of what is at stake. McCoy feels that most black people in Maryland oppose same-sex marriage and his coalition’s job is to persuading them to vote “No”, even if they do support Obama. “Some people are in a quandary,” he said, “We’re telling them, `Don’t vote against your conscience.’”
With only a few weeks left, Irene Huskens and Leia Burks, pending nuptials lay in the hands of millions of Maryland voters. If there’s a vote of “Yes”, then they can officially become a married couple, but if a vote of “No” happens, they have other things to consider.
Do you think same-sex marriage should be passed in Maryland, along with other states? Why or why not? How does same-sex marriage affect other people?