Monday, January 02, 2006

D.C. gays almost have it - Vote on civil unions bill expected this week

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According to an article published by 365gay.com, the City Council for the District of Columbia has said that it will vote on a bill permitting civil unions in the District this week. One of the councilmembers, however, is considering submitting a competing bill, one which would make way for marraige. According to the article:
The civil union measure, authored by council member-at-large Phil Mendelson (D) has widespread support but granting full marriage has divided even the district's gay community. Civil unions would give same-sex and unmarried opposite-sex partners some of the broadest domestic partner rights in the country, including joint powers of attorney, tax benefits similar to those enjoyed by married couples, the right sue for negligence in the treatment or death of a partner and immunity for partners from testifying against one another. It also would provide for breakups including the right to alimony. The bill is scheduled for a vote on Wednesday. DC already offers same-sex couples some rights. In 1992 the district passed a law recognizing domestic partnerships that provides the power to make medical decisions.
===== My turn: I think it is really crappy that the new D.c. civil unions would include unmarried straight couples. They already have been given the right to get married. Gay people don't have that right, so civil union are our ONLY option if we want to have a legally recognized relationship. If straight people want to have a legally recognized relationship they should get married, simply because they already have that right. Don't you hate how people (straight people) take things for granted while others (gay people) are left off to the side? I also think that the D.C. Council should first vote on the marriage bill, just to see if it would pass. If it didn't pass, then they should bring up the civil unions bill. Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

3 Comments:

Isn't it a bit hypocritical to want marriage expanded to include gay couples, yet oppose allowing straight couples to enter into civil unions?

It's only a matter of time until straight couples start trying to enter into civil unions in Vermont and Connecticut. Attempting to oppose that on the grounds that civil unions are for homosexuals will strengthen the opposition to opening marriage to gays.
I guess my whole point on the issue is that straight people already have access to marriage, while gay people do not.

I mean, come on, civil unions were created simply because gay people weren't given access to marriage. That was the original intent: a reaction to not having marriage.

Why in the world would straight couples want civil unions anyway? They already have marriage, are they not happy with what they have (as it is many, many times better than a civil union)?

But you do have a point on your comment about it affecting gays' access to marriage.
Well, civil unions were created because the Vermont Supreme Court ruled that it was against the state constitution to deny gays the right to marry. The legislature created civil unions as a compromise to grant gay couples the same rights granted by the state as married couples without actually opening marriage up to them.

Civil unions were created to avoid gay marriage, and there's no real reason to deny straight couples the opportunity to enter into one if they don't wish to marry. Why they might want to do this, who knows... but somebody will have a reason sooner or later.

I think I'm going to blog about this topic actually. Look for a post to appear in the next few hours after I've composed my thoughts on it.