EQMD: "When people have the facts and hear the real life stories from loving and committed couples, hearts and minds can and do change.”
Communications Manager, Equality Maryland
ANNAPOLIS, M.D., FEBRUARY 9, 2011--Senator Jim Brochin (D-42) held a press conference today where he announced that his support for marriage equality.
Statement from Equality Maryland, Morgan Meneses-Sheets, Executive Director:
“Equality Maryland is proud of Senator Brochin’s declaration of support of civil marriage for gay and lesbian couples. His recent change of heart proves that when people have the facts, and hear the real life stories from loving and committed couples, hearts and minds can and do change. We welcome Senator Brochin to the growing coalition of elected officials from both sides of the aisle who have come to understand that ensuring equal treatment under the law is good public policy. There is no substitute for equality -- and only civil marriage can confer the respect, protection and responsibility to same-sex couples in the same manner that it is conferred to opposite-sex couples."
SENATOR BROCHIN'S STATEMENT RELEASED TO THE PRESS
After an almost 8-hour hearing on Tuesday, Senator Brochin found some of the opponents’ testimony on same-sex marriage (SB 116 – Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act) to be "troubling." The Baltimore County Democrat had previously said he was against same-sex marriage, but is now reconsidering his stance.
“What I witnessed from the opponents of the bill was appalling.” Brochin said. “Witness after witness demonized homosexuals, vilified the gay community, and described gays and lesbians as pedophiles. I believe that sexual orientation is not a choice, but rather people are born one way or another The proponents of the bill were straightforward in wanting to be simply treated as everyone else, and wanted to stop being treated as second-class citizens.
Brochin added, “For me, the transition to supporting marriage has not been an easy one, but the uncertainty, fear, and second-class status that gays and lesbians have to put up with is far worse and clearly must come to an end.”
Equality Maryland is Maryland's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) civil rights group, with thousands of members across the entire state. Equality Maryland includes: a 501(c)(4) advocacy organization that lobbies in Annapolis and across the state to create equal protection under the law for LGBT Marylanders and their families; a 501(c)(3) educational foundation that works to eliminate prejudice and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity through outreach, education, research, community organizing, training and coalition building; and Equality Maryland PAC, which exists to influence elections. For more information, visit www.EqualityMaryland.org.