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Video: Five Activists Arrested in NYC Marriage Equality Protest

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Five activists from the group Queer Rising were arrested this afternoon following several protests demanding marriage equality.

Dqgc Writes the group, in a press release:

Balloons carrying a large sign calling on New Yorkers put pressure on their government to demand marriage equality are now floating just under the Grand Central Station’s landmark ceiling, and five people have been arrested for blocking rush-hour traffic just outside Governor Cuomo's Manhattan office, at East 41 Street and 3rd Avenue. The Queer Rising members unfurled a 75-foot banner that reads, “Marriage Equality NOW! Call Cuomo: 518-474-8390!!!”

Five members of Queer Rising members handcuffed and chained themselves in the middle of the street and refused to leave the demonstration. Those arrested were: Natasha Dillon (26, lesbian activist); Kevin Donohue (51, gay Jewish activist); Melissa Kleckner (31, straight ally); Ali Lozano (20, lesbian student activist); Robert Moore (30, gay Mormon activist).

Qr2 “My religious beliefs require that I stand up for the underdog - even when that underdog is me,” said Donohue. “Marriage rights go way beyond the wedding and encompass everything from custody rights to hospital visitation rights to pension and inheritance rights; in short, the protective legal framework straight families take for granted. Inequality under law is unjust, and now is the time we must end it.”

Drag Queen Weddings for Equality organized a separate event at Grand Central Station, a drag wedding in which approximately ten drag queens officiated and enacted a wedding, educating commuters about the need for marriage equality and inviting them to march in solidarity to the governor's office.

Watch Lozano's arrest, AFTER THE JUMP...

Last week, New York magazine reported:

"According to Marriage Equality New York head Ron Zacchi, Governor Cuomo has told state LGBT leaders he expects a vote on a marriage-equality bill in the State Senate in 'six to eight weeks, or maybe sooner.' Even though the math doesn't look good for such a bill's passage (advocates would need to swing a small number of Republicans, all of whom voted against the bill last time), Cuomo is fresh off strong-arming the state legislature into a budget deal, and he still has sky-high popularity strengthening his hand."

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Comments

  1. Isn't protesting Cuomo aiming at the wrong target? I also don't see how the religious beliefs of a couple protesters are especially relevant, even with the Jewish guy explaining his reasoning. Seems to me his being gay is more important than his being Jewish in this case.

    Posted by: Paul R | Apr 4, 2011 7:47:04 PM


  2. I hate the term "Queer"! I am not queer!

    Posted by: TJ | Apr 4, 2011 8:12:08 PM


  3. Good for those passionate enough to take to the streets and have the guts and courage to stand up for our rights & respect. We have FAR too many weak, cowardly, vile closet cases who hide in their closets because they are too fearful to face this world being themselves. Instead, closet cases not only hurt themselves by playing a daily role of someone whom they are not, they also don't see the impact they can have on future generations and society by being themselves. Closet cases just want to sit on the side lines waiting to use all the progress OTHERS were courageous enough to create for them. Truth hurts- and that's the truth.

    Posted by: IonMusic | Apr 4, 2011 9:49:14 PM


  4. Perhaps if more gay people had the back bone to stand up for their values and their rights, we'd have attained full equality by now. I agree with the poster above, gays who are indifferent about our cause and our mission are weak. But one must realize that those self hating gays really have no identity, they simply float this planet being anyone the majority of folks want them to be. That's how weakness works. You follow the leader. I applaud these brave activists.

    Posted by: Dynex | Apr 4, 2011 10:23:13 PM


  5. How "courageous" is it to harass the people who are most likely to support you? They should be holding up traffic out in Long Island or somewhere, rather than that hot bed of homophobia, Manhattan. Or could they just not be bothered to take the train?

    Posted by: PeteS | Apr 5, 2011 5:00:48 AM


  6. What's the point of making life for workers in Manhattan trying to go home, etc. difficult going to help with this issue? I don't object to some form of protest, but do it in a way that doesn't inconvenience or piss off people you're trying to win over. I've said this before, I'll say it again: the most striking demonstrations I've seen involved anti-war Quakers standing quietly in a row with signs outside a subway station. They weren't blocking anyone, yelling and being obnoxious, etc., but everybody noticed them, and I think most respected them.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Apr 5, 2011 7:12:16 AM


  7. Just last week, I tweeted that it was time to take action, and not just sit on our butts and wait for Equality to show up. To hell with worrying about pissing people off, get their ATTENTION! We need to be heard. Good for Queer Rising. Wish I could have been there.

    Posted by: SONNIE | Apr 5, 2011 9:07:03 AM


  8. @ TJ: you're not queer? well I am. Maybe you're not aware that "Queer Studies" is the title given to university curricula formerly called "Gay Studies."

    Think of it this way: "queer" is a statistical term just like "deviant." It signifies departure from statistical norms. It does not have to be seen as a negative descriptor. That's why I love that queer persons have appropriated the term and taken the wind out of the way it has historically been used by haters.

    So my suggestion is to stop thinking about "queer" the way haters do. Be proud to be different, to be deviant, to be queer. Mind you, it's just my suggestion.

    Best,
    Danny

    Posted by: Danny | Apr 5, 2011 9:44:57 AM


  9. My suggestion to you, Danny, is to stop using the same language that haters use to vilify LGBT folk. Stop giving hetero-bigots cover for their bigotry! And you're dead wrong: "Deviant" and "queer" are not and never will be synonyms for the word "different". They are synonyms for "abnormal." If your objective is to portray us as freaks, at least be honest about it!

    You are the latest in a long line of traitors to your own kind. You spin pseudo-intellectual lies that encourage Gay people to wrap themselves in the trappings of hatred and ignorance; you try to fool us into thinking such self-destructiveness is a means to liberation! Shame on you!

    "Queer Studies" is a disgrace that perpetuates the notion of gender-neutral human beings as exotic, kinky sex misfits, just as you're doing. It should be banned from the classroom! As for Queer Rising, these silly-ass, attention-hungry strategies that group keeps trotting out hurt the cause of equality far more than they help. They are nothing but excuses to dress up in drag and act out in public; isn't there already enough of that kind of immature behavior at Pride events?

    Would QR and Drag Queen Weddings stage ridicule and contempt-inspiring actions like this in the heart of Red State America? I seriously doubt it; they'd be too scared to try it! Only in the relative safety of liberal bastions like New York City do they dare to stage their Cage Aux Folles foolishness; but liberals can become hostile to self-indulgent excess, too, and they will.

    In the final analysis, groups that encourage thinking of Gay couples as "queers" belong with the enemies of Gay Rights. It's not true equality they're after, just a nicer version of the discriminatory status quo. They're tools of the oppressor who aren't doing our movement a damn bit of good!

    Posted by: Stuffed Animal | Apr 5, 2011 1:55:50 PM


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