Monday, November 17, 2008

New York's largest Spanish language newspaper backs marriage rights for same-sex couples

I might be wrong but this might be a first. Today New York's El Diario La Prensa - the Spanish-language newspaper with the second largest circulation numbers in the United States - published a strong editorial backing same-sex marriage rights for same-sex couples. This in the wake of weekend nationwide demonstrations against Proposition 8 in California and recent anti-gay statements by the reliably homophobic Reverend Ruben Diaz, Sr. (also a NYS Senator).

From the editorial:
A Stand for same-sex marriage
El Diario La Prensa, Nov. 17, 2008

Latinos have fought too hard and long for equal rights. This is why we must rally around a sector of our community that remains even more discriminated against--gays and lesbians.

Across the country this weekend, people protested against measures banning same-sex marriage. One of these bans came as a harder blow in California, where thousands of couples had married since that state’s Supreme Court had legalized same-sex marriage in the spring.

After that legal decision, Governor David Paterson announced that New York state agencies would recognize same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions.

But there are loud voices, among them State Senator Ruben Diaz, who threaten to thwart any legislation that would allow same-sex marriage in New York.

Rev. Diaz and others are supposedly not for denying rights to gays and lesbians but believe that marriage should be between a man and woman. Yet, it’s this very discriminatory position that serves to exclude lesbian and gay couples from accessing rights, benefits and treatment that heterosexuals take for granted.

This use of religious beliefs to block basic civil rights undermines the separation of church and state in this nation. The basis of that separation lies in the experience of early American colonists who had fled religious persecution elsewhere to pursue tolerance and freedom in the “new” world.

Latinos, as well as other groups, should have an honest conversation about homophobia. Discrimination, whether within or outside of our communities, on the basis of color, immigration status, gender or sexuality is just not acceptable.

Across the nation, a gay rights agenda must be representative of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) Latinos and the deeper inequities they confront. The gap between the struggle for LGBT rights and the struggles for economic and racial justice needs to be closed.
Back in October of 2005 I highlighted their strong editorial against efforts by the Vatican to purge gay priests from their rolls but this is the first time I remember the paper standing unequivocally for same-sex marriage rights.

I say: Thank you! La Opinion, which is based in Los Angeles and has the largest circulation numbers among Spanish-language news dailies in the US, did it first. It is very welcome nevertheless.

Update: Here is the Reverend's unhinged response to the EDLP editorial -

1 comment:

Unknown said...

wonderful news indeed!