A monumental moment in the National Gay Rights Movement is in serious negotiations, as New York legislative leaders vote on a pivotal gay marriage bill before the end of this week.
New York state is one vote shy from becoming the sixth and largest state to legalize gay marriage. A recent Siena poll reported that 58 percent of New Yorkers support same-sex marriage. If the bill passes, same-sex couples would be allowed to marry in New York later this summer.
A gay marriage bill had swiftly been approved last week, by the predominately Democrat Assembly, but a re-vote was necessary because of the undecided senators’ protection concerns for religious groups.
Throughout the week public figures have weighed in on gay rights and the legalization of same sex marriage, both from those who have spoken out in support and have rallied against it.
Among the most vocal of the opposed, are New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan and former NFL player David Tyree, urging “political leaders all over our nation to reject same-sex marriage and to stand up for traditional marriage.”
Outside of the public realm, several congregations have gotten together in support for gay marriage, gathering throughout New York and rallying for marriage equality.
President Obama has publicly endorsed civil unions but not marriages for same sex couples. He has stated that same sex couples should receive equal protection under the law, but it is best left to the specific state to determine gay marriage laws.
We stopped by the barbershop to see how New Yorkers felt about this bill and what they believe will result if this bill is passed and gay marriage becomes legal.