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Watch: NY Lesbian Weds Male Stranger in Gay Marriage Protest


Kitty Lambert and her longtime partner Cheryl attempted to apply for a marriage license yesterday in Buffalo, New York. When she was denied, she turned to the crowd:

"With news cameras rolling, Kitty then turned to the crowd and asked for any male who would be willing to get married to her. A gay man named Ed stepped forward and volunteered. They briefly exchanged information and presented the appropriate documents along with $40. City staff verified the information, and proceeded to give them a marriage license. Kitty’s point in approaching the City Clerk for a marriage license is that there is no religious basis for marriage, and it serves only as a legally binding contract in our society. Instead of being offered the ability to receive a license with her long-term partner, she was able to secure a license with a virtual stranger, strictly based on their gender."


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  1. wow, just wow.

    Posted by: DR | Feb 11, 2010 3:58:59 PM

  2. oh, shut up, Bill.

    Posted by: walt | Feb 11, 2010 4:30:17 PM

  3. Geez, and now that stranger has the right to make legal decisions regarding Kitty's health and may have some claim to the stuff she shares with Cheryl. I sure hope Cheryl is protecting herself legally. Kitty has just put them, as a couple, into a real legal mess. Happy Valentine's Day.

    Posted by: Gianpiero | Feb 11, 2010 4:30:24 PM

  4. This is a heartbreaking illustration of the problem but I think it assumes that our opponents would be appalled by two straight strangers marrying each other when, in fact, there's little basis that I can see to make this assumption. For our opponents, the loving nurturing aspect of a marriage is a "nice to have," not a requirement. The salient issue for them is marriage as a contract between a man and a woman; nothing more.

    Posted by: Alan | Feb 11, 2010 5:42:08 PM

  5. Patrick, you're right and wrong at the same time.

    Of course this stunt will anger conservatives. Why? Because it points out the obvious silliness of the current system, their status quo.

    Sorry. But I just don't think ignoring how stupid the system is will make it any better. Is there a long history of that?

    Posted by: Taylor Siluwe | Feb 11, 2010 6:37:19 PM

  6. I want to thank you all for your comments. I am the president of a Grassroots org called OUTspoken For Equality, here in Buffalo. This is a very small piece of what was actually filmed.
    We did this to make the point (part one, in fact, of a plan) that there is something sacred about that $40 piece of paper. But it is NOT something religious. I wish they had chosen the part where I turned to the the more than 14 other people that were there and talked about WHAT this paper could give our FAMILIES and about the protections and security we, as both couples and as families, are gravely needing.
    Gianpiero,The young man, Ed Manz, and I did not and will not marry. I am a lesbian. He has equipment I find offensive, but HE seems to be a very lovely young man.
    It is JUST a $40 piece of paper until it is signed by an officant and both myself and Ed, then FILED with the State of New York Registrar of Marriages. And that really is the point. WE GOT IT FROM THE GOVERNMENT AND IT GETS KEPT BY THE GVMT AND ENFORCED BY THE GVMT.... My Senators view of religion has NO place in the vote.
    Alan, truly, Straights do not see this as a "contract between a man and a woman". No offense, but I have been having the "let me educate you" discussion with them for 5 years now... they have NO IDEA what that piece of paper gives them.
    Until we continue to speak out and stay out, and stop thinking we can depend on someone, somewhere, to get this passed for us, we will continue to get turned away.
    "NO! BECAUSE I SAID SO!" doesn't even work on our grandkids... why have we as Gay Americans been willing to accept it?
    On February 23rd,2010 (a Tuesday) we will decend on the NY State Senate in Albany New York to tell them we are not going away and we are not happy with the way they voted... but we can get really happy about helping THEM go away and elect individuals who are willing to consider the safety and protection of our families, of our children as of equal importance to theirs.
    Bill, Do the work. Or as my dad would say...
    "Piss or get off the pot" but parking in front of a computer screen just gets you fat and frustrated. YOU have the power to change the world.
    I am just an old grandma who wants to make sure that as an American, I get the same as everyone else.... not more, not less, not different, not special. The same.
    I won't go away any time soon...I hope you will all join me. You too, Bill

    Posted by: KittyLambert | Feb 11, 2010 7:29:41 PM

  7. Bravo!!! The single most effective action I have seen to drive home the point. Kitty, you are my hero.

    Posted by: Happily Married | Feb 11, 2010 8:21:47 PM

  8. This is sublime. I love it.

    Posted by: Patrick | Feb 12, 2010 12:22:40 AM

  9. HRC ad perhaps? @ patrick: I think you miss the message. It's not mocking marriage; it's mocking the current law that allows her to marry someone she meets at the marriage license desk and not the woman she has been committed to for many years.

    Posted by: Rob | Feb 12, 2010 3:16:38 AM

  10. Getting a marriage license, isn't quite the same thing as "getting married" ... or is there more to the video?? In any case, I find it extremely moving and effective. It should be used.

    Posted by: James | Feb 12, 2010 8:48:00 AM

  11. @James: That's the point. The GLBT advocates (because there are a LOT of straight allies out there!) are fighting for the right for the paper. Opponents are willfully encouraging the errant belief that the ceremony is as important at the paper. It is not - at least from the perspective of legal rights and responsibilities.

    Posted by: Dave | Feb 12, 2010 12:25:09 PM

  12. The full version is at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4oYQvi8VZM

    Posted by: Gerard | Feb 14, 2010 9:46:37 PM

  13. A fabulous way to make the point!

    Posted by: Rhea | Feb 15, 2010 9:27:35 AM

  14. Ted Haggard would be very pleased. Oh, wait. My bad.

    Posted by: Dan Woog | Feb 16, 2010 5:23:35 PM

  15. Good way to illustrate the lack of rationality behind marriage laws, but I don't care for how she put this lowly clerk on the spot with that tearful plea. That's some Michael Moore crap, it accomplishes nothing and only serves to indulge their ego.

    They should have saved the speech for a politician, and when the politician didn't respond positively, head to the clerk's office with this random dude to get married.

    Posted by: spongekill | Feb 16, 2010 7:03:31 PM

  16. gay militants are idiots. obviously this was a setup with someone she knew.

    people aren't worried about gay marriage for religious reasons.
    gay men are perverts and would rape kids as well as confuse them.
    gay women are gender confused and would screw kids up.

    Posted by: james | Feb 19, 2010 7:56:52 PM

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