Catch-22 for Gays in Maryland : They can now get divorced in the state, but they can not get married ... yet. Stay Tuned.

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During the 2012 General Assembly session, Maryland passed legislation that legalizes same-sex weddings in the state beginning January 1, 2013, which was signed by the governor. This legislation is being opposed by a group that is trying to get the issue placed on a referendum to be included on the states ballot in November. This article in The Baltimore Sun by Andrea F. Siegel says the group has collected more than two-thirds of the signatures needed to have the measure placed on the ballot. While that is happening, the states highest appeals court on Friday issued a ruling that allows same-sex couples to obtain a divorce in Maryland ... so at this point in time, gay couples that were married in other states can get divorced here, but gay couples can't get married here. If the referendum is placed on the ballot in November, hopefully the vote will turn out better than it did in North Carolina.

note : in the print edition of the paper, the article was titled :

Md. court approves same-sex divorce
Couple married in Calf; decision does not affect state's gay marriage law,0,2475510.story

Jul. 7, 2011 11:13 am


Better than in NC? The majority spoke in NC . The matter was voted down by a large margin deal with it.

whiskeyman's picture
Mar. 7, 2012 5:57 pm

Some state needs to reform the legal framework of "marriage" so that if my wife negligently runs over a bunch of people in a crosswalk I can't be sued for my half of the property.

Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

On the contrary ... the majority did not speak in North Carolina ... far fewer voters showed up at the polls for that primary than would have voted in November, especially with this being a presidential election year.

One point I just realized was inadvertently left out of my original post :

During the news coverage of the results from North Carolina, one of the news commentators on a non-mainstream media channel mentioned that most of the 31 states that have passed constitutional amendments banning gay marriage did so during the states primary, not during the general election in November. Why ? This brief youtube clip will explain part of the motivation for such scheduling :

Passing an amendment such as this during a primary when turnout is historically lower than it will be in November means you are having a minority of the voters deny an even smaller minority the civil rights equality they are entitled to. Tell me, which of your rights would you want to risk losing because of a vote on a state constitutional amendment taking place during a low voter turnout period such as a primary ? Which rights do you want that others have, and would you rather have that issue voted on in November when more people are motivated to get off their asses and show up at the polls, or would you rather have that issue decided by a smaller minority of the voters during a lightly attended primary ?

I've heard several different intelligent people make basically the same statements in the last few weeks : we did not have a vote after the Civil War among the voters (i.e. white males) on the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, or Fifteenth Amendments to determine if blacks would be considered as slaves, or as whole free people and as citizens of this country with the right to vote, not as a fraction of a person as they were previously counted and treated; in 1919 and 1920 the Nineteenth Amendment, which gave women the right to vote, was debated and voted on by the US Congress and in the state legislatures, not by the white male voters of the states; we also did not have voters determine whether or not we would pass the Civil Rights legislation of the 1960's. There are several more examples along these lines, which I may add to this post later, if you do not yet get the point.

"deal with it" you say. I can, but can you ?

Jul. 7, 2011 11:13 am

Here is an update on the status of the referendum to repeal Maryland's recently passed but not yet in effect same-sex marriage law. This article is from The Baltimore Sun, and was written by Annie Linskey.

Same-sex marriage opponents have twice the needed signatures


It looks like Maryland's referendum on the state's version of the "Dream Act" will have company on the ballot this November, which will be sure to drive up turnout among conservatives due to the precense on the ballot of these two hot-button issues. I am against having referendums such as these placed on the ballot at all, but Maryland law allows such a process. The same-sex marriage law and the "Dream Act" were passed by both houses of the state legislature and signed by the governor. Most of the bills passed by the Maryland legislature have effective dates of 7/1 or 10/1 of the year it is passed, although some, like the same-sex marriage law, are delayed until January 1st of the new year. The effective date was set as 1/1/2013 to allow a vote on the issue in November's election.

As I stated in my earlier reply in this post, I do not feel that civil rights issues that affect a minority of the population should be subject to a vote by the people. That goes for Maryland's "Dream Act", as well as for the same-sex marriage law. Isn't that why we elect our state legislators and send them to the state capitol ? At least the issue will be decided during a presidential election when turnout is expected to be higher than it would be during a primary ... luckily, Maryland has not bought into the Paul Weyrich school of thinking like many of the other states have, including NC.

I guess my phone will soon be ringing off the hook with robocalls from both sides on the issue; glad I have an answering machine that I can set the number of rings on ... the current setting of 4 may be too many rings. And the DVR may come in handy, zapping the hateful propaganda ads against the same-sex marriage law and the "Dream Act" soon to be flooding the local TV channels, thanks to the Citizens United decision. No such luck with local radio ... changing the channel or turning it off are the only options.

I'm not sure when the exact language to be used for the two referendums will be made available for the public. I just hope they avoid the twisted legal language that is sometimes used on these state question issues, which can be confusing to the average voter, and sometimes causes people to misinterpret the question and vote the opposite way of how they intended to vote.


for other issues that are sure to push up turnout among conservatives :

Jul. 7, 2011 11:13 am

On the November 6th 2012 election day, Maryland voters approved Question 6 to uphold the Marriage Equality law that was passed earlier in the year by the state legislature and signed by the governor. The law will now take affect on Jan 1 2013, as scheduled.

Maryland voters also approved the states version of the Dream Act.

The frequent phone calls that came before the election and the annoying commercials on TV and radio are gone. Finally.

For more on Question 6 and Marriage Equality:

Jul. 7, 2011 11:13 am

Get Ready For A Climate Denier Heading up the EPA?!

You need to know this....

So far, Donald Trump's choice of cabinet members has been - well - deplorable.

He's picked someone who wants to privatize Medicare to oversee Medicare as his secretary of Health and Human Services.

He's picked a bankster who foreclosed on a 90-year-old over a 27 cent underpayment to oversee banksters as his Treasury Secretary.

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