Tag Archives: Lady Gaga

Marriage Equality Passes Assembly

16 Jun

Yesterday, Governor Cuomo submitted a message of necessity to the Assembly, which prompted that body to vote on the passage of the marriage equality bill that evening. (Text here). Governor Cuomo issued this statement upon its passage:

“The vote by the State Assembly has moved New York one step closer to making marriage equality a reality. I applaud these legislators’ prompt and courageous support on this measure, which will finally allow same-sex couples the freedom to marry and provide them with hundreds of rights that others take for granted. I commend Speaker Sheldon Silver for his leadership and Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell for his tireless work fighting for equality. We are on the verge of a pinnacle moment for this state.”

Of the local Assembly members, here’s how they voted:

In Favor: Hoyt, Peoples-Stokes, Schroeder

Against: Schimminger, Gabryszak, Corwin, Hayes, Ceretto

Although the measure passed 80 – 67, I’m still somewhat dumbstruck by the fact that Assemblymembers who represent largely City of Buffalo constituencies voted in favor of this measure, but the suburban ones – even the Democrats – voted against it. I’ll reach out to all of them to try and get a statement as to why. Corwin’s office sent this along:

The constituents of the 142nd Assembly District have made it very clear to me they do not want to change the definition of marriage in this state. While many of my colleagues shared moving, and very personal stories and I respect them immensely, I cannot vote against the conscience of the thousands of Western New Yorkers I represent.

But she can vote against the conscience and civil rights of her homosexual constituents. Let me put it this way, as bluntly as I can: there is no rational argument against legalizing marriage equality. There are only emotional arguments, religious arguments, and uninformed or outrageous arguments – there are no rational ones. So, to my mind, a vote against marriage equality is a vote against civil rights, is a vote that, in effect, makes same-sex marriage tantamount to a crime, and a de jure nullity. And for what? For nothing. I can pretty much guarantee to all of my religious friends that God and Jesus in heaven aren’t looking down and hoping that lawmakers ensure that gay children of God cannot live their lives as happy and committed couples. Literal reads of God’s book on the matter are unpersuasive, as it also endorses stonings and slavery.

Yesterday I appeared on Brad Riter’s show on WECK 1230-AM, and discussed the marriage equality bill, and gave Brad the “why you should care, and why you should support marriage equality” argument. Listen here.

Of note,

Assemblyman Harry Bronson, D-Rochester, explained how he was discriminated against as a young associate at a law firm for being gay. He soon quit the firm.

“What we do here today matters,” Bronson said on the Senate floor. “What we do here today is to recognize the rights of gay people, to enter a loving, committed relationship with all the protections that come from that marriage and all the responsibilities that come from that marriage.”

On the other hand, Assemblyman Dov Hikind held up the photograph shown above, and offered this sarcastic and noxious statement:

Noting that pop star Lady Gaga supported same-sex marriage, Assemblyman Dov Hikind said sarcastically, “When Lady Gaga got involved and told us and said we should support gay marriage, I said, you know, Lady Gaga, she is an example of how I should lead my life and how I should behave.”

If Hikind means “filthy rich” and “accepting of people’s uniqueness, individualism, and differences”, then yes, Mr. Hikind could indeed take an example from Gaga as to how to lead his life and behave. He chooses to perpetuate hatred, bigotry, and inequality.

So, John Ceretto, Robin Schimminger, Jim Hayes, and Dennis Gabryszak – what’s your excuse?

Epic Fail

With that said, much gratitude to Assemblyman Sam Hoyt, Assemblyman Mark Schroeder, and Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes, both of whom voted in favor of legalizing love. They deserve to be commended for their stand on behalf of equal rights and justice.

Now the attention turns again to the State Senate, which is on track to vote on this bill on Friday, but could receive a similar message of necessity from the Governor before then and accelerate the schedule. As far as we know, State Senator Kennedy will be voting in favor of the bill, and Senators Gallivan, Maziarz and Ranzenhofer are “no” votes. All eyes, therefore, are on Senator Mark Grisanti, who may be the pivotal vote in an evenly divided Senate, and who has expressed the fact that he is philosophically in favor of marriage equality, but that he feels bound by his Catholicism to vote against it. If you can, please contact Senator Grisanti’s office by email, phone, Twitter, or Facebook, and let him know (nicely) that a vote in favor of civil rights is the right choice.

#FakeGagaSightingsBUF

4 Mar

If you’re only reading our articles here on the WNYMedia.net homepage, you’re missing the plethora of workday information and entertainment we provide on other platforms.  On a daily basis, you’ll find Alan Bedenko, Chris Charvella, Brian Castner, Marc Odien, myself and dozens of other WNYMedia writers arguing, hectoring, bickering, and having fun on Twitter and Facebook.  Look us up and follow, if you’re interested in the extended conversation.

Fridays are typically active days on the social networks as people get ready for the weekend and have a little more time to check in on their phones.  The big story of the day in Buffalo is that pop superstar Lady GaGa is in town to perform at HSBC Arena tonight.

Around lunchtime, one of the BuffaloRising writers posted the following on their Twitter page.

Now, of course, that was bullshit.  I don’t know if they were serious or not, but I assume that it was posted in jest.  Alan and I were having lunch at Louie’s on Elmwood when we read it and laughed about the absurdity of the thought of Lady Gaga eating onion rings and footlongs at Ted’s.

Later in the day, Alan started a twitter hashtag titled #FakeGagaSightingsBUF and hilarity ensued.  Here’s the opening volleys of the Friday nonsense:

After a couple of dozen entries, John Borsa of Channel 7 helped spread the word to a larger audience…

And it took off from there…

Even Erie County Legislator Tom Mazur got into the act…BTW, it’s his day off.

After that, it just became a free-for-all as we attempted to fit LadyGaga into every existing Buffalo issue and story…

Finally, harkening back to the last time we had a notable visitor to our humble little ville

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