Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Brody's Notes... Bill To Repeal Same-Sex Marriage Advances In New Hampshire House

By Brody Levesque | CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE -- After a 3-1 vote amending New Hampshire House bill 437, which would have banned both gay marriage and civil unions in the state completely, the House Judiciary subcommittee endorsed an altered version that while repealing the state's same-sex marriage law, instead substitutes a form of civil unions for same-sex couples and heterosexual couples. The subcommittee panel passed the bill on to the full committee recommending its passage although the full House cannot vote on the measure until 2012.
Current state law, enacted in January of 2010, allows same-sex couples to marry and in the language approved in the amended version today, preserves marriage for those couples married under it. From the time it takes effect, marriage would be available only to men and women.
The bill allows a form of civil union that has never existed in the state, open to any two persons. It also contains language that allows any business, individual, school or association to refuse to recognize civil unions, exempting them from state laws that bar discrimination on housing, employment, contracts and grants.
Rep. Gregory Sorg, R-Easton, a co-sponsor of the bill and the amendment, said gay marriage will cause harm to society over time, even if it is not evident now. 
“Some societal changes take generations to manifest themselves,” he argued.
Gay marriage proponents criticized the bill. Standing up for New Hampshire Families spokesman Tyler Deaton called the language in the bill “pernicious … It goes out of its way to employ discriminatory language.”


Trab said...

The real harm to society is the disrespect for minorities. It is bad enough to remove marriage and substitute civil unions, but allowing discrimination against those using it is really obscene.