Thursday, July 21, 2011

Marriage for a lifetime — a gift that’s truly priceless.

A marriage is between two people who make a lifelong commitment to love and care for each other. But this historic moment is also a celebration for our community. For the first time in history, our families are being afforded the same rights and responsibilities as others; and that is momentous.

Many couples who have been together for years don’t need a blender or gravy boat. In lieu of a gift, they are asking friends and family to send them off into wedded bliss with a donation to support equality and justice. Marriage for a lifetime — a gift that’s truly priceless.

You can go to to either register your wedding with the Pride Agenda or give a gift in honor of a couple you know. Donations go toward defending the marriage victory we secured this year so that all marriages can last forever.

One to two business days after registering, you will be listed alphabetically in a drop-down menu at You will also receive an email with sample text to send to your friends and family explaining the gift registry. We then will provide you with a list of every guest who made a special gift in your name so that you can personally thank your friends and family for their support.

Marriage in New York State is a landmark accomplishment, and the result of decades of hard work by the Empire State Pride Agenda and others, but there is still more that needs to be done:

  • In New York State, we need to ensure that no legislator who voted in favor of marriage loses their seat because of that vote. Nationwide, the other side cannot claim one victory unseating a legislator merely for their marriage vote. We won’t allow that to change.

  • Same-sex couples can only get married in six states and the District of Columbia. The Defense of Marriage Act still exists on the federal level, but a bill to repeal it faced a historic debate in Congress just yesterday. We will do our part to guarantee New York provides momentum for the country.

  • Transgender New Yorkers can be fired from their jobs or kicked out of their homes just because of how they express their gender identity. This is wrong and we need a statewide transgender civil rights bill.

With fond wishes on your special day,

-- The Empire State Pride Agenda team

PS - The Marriage Equality Act goes into effect this Sunday, July 24. However, because that is a Sunday, many town and city clerk’s offices may be closed, or have special rules for the occasion. In New York State there is a 24-hour waiting period after a license is issued before a marriage can be solemnized at a wedding. Some jurisdictions will provide judges on hand to waive this requirement. Please check with your local clerk’s office. We also have more information and FAQs on our website, and will be updating it as more details come in.

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