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Legalize gay marriage in New York state

Last month, Gov. David Patterson proposed legislation that would allow same−sex marriage and many of us in Queens cheered. All New York families deserve to be treated equally under the law. Same−sex couples and their families deserve the 1,324 rights and protections that come with a New York marriage license.

I support marriage equality in New York not because I want to change the definition of marriage or because I do not take marriage seriously. I believe in marriage as a commitment to share life’s joys and sorrows with the person he or she loves most. It pains me that my friends in the LGBT community are deprived of this recognition under the law.

Marriage is valuable because it creates stable, committed relationships, provides a means to share economic resources and nurtures the individuals, couple as a whole and children who benefit from the love and protection marriage provides.

Good marriages benefit the entire community, and when viewed from this perspective, I see no difference in marriages between a man and a woman, two men or two women.

All people have the right to lead lives that express love and commitment, and this demands marriage equality for all New Yorkers. I hope my representative in the state Senate supports the marriage equality bill and will assist in bringing the bill to the Senate floor as soon as we have the votes.

Costa Constantinides

Astoria

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