Very proud to be a New Yorker today, after the folks up in Albany finally got it right last night. It took a long time, but in the end the timing is impeccable as New York City gears up today for another Pride weekend.
I remember attending my cousin's wedding sometime in the spring of, I want to say, 1996 out in Washington State, and how he and his wife-to-be had the officiant acknowledge even back then that though we were celebrating a joyous occasion, until all of their loved ones had the same right to such a joyous occasion, their own beautiful celebration was tempered by sadness.
I remember thinking on the morning after President Obama was elected and Proposition 8 was approved, how sadly ironic an occasion that was, and how grateful I was to come from a family whose progressive worldview goes back generations.
I wrote my grandmother a letter that week thanking her for enshrining in her children and in her grandchildren such a sense of justice, such a sense of fairness and fair-play.
Our "fierce advocate" may have let us down these last two years, but four Republican senators up in Albany crossed the aisle last night and chose to treat all of their fellow New Yorkers with respect.
Today I am proud to be a New Yorker, and can't help but feel a certain sense of coming full circle: this beloved city, this huge state*, the birth place of the gay rights movement as we know it, is once again in the vanguard of civil rights. And yeah, that makes me a little bit teary-eyed.
*With the passage of same-sex marriage in New York (the third most populous state in the Union, after California and Texas) last night, the percentage of Americans living in states that recognize marriage equality has more than doubled, to 11% of the total population.