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posted: 12/7/2013 4:40 AM

Same-sex marriage hardly 'oppressive'

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Same-sex marriage hardly 'oppressive'

In a Nov. 22 letter to the editor, Walt Sivertsen of Grayslake criticized Illinois lawmakers after they "jumped on the bandwagon" of same-sex marriage. A decision, he claims, that will infringe upon the freedom of those who don't support the "sin" of homosexuality.

Sivertsen implores us to look to Massachusetts to see the "oppressive society" that same-sex marriage has created.

I took it upon myself to research our friends in the Northeast because Sivertsen failed to provide adequate statistics to back up his claims. What I found was a September 2013 survey from Public Policy Polling which indicates that 85 percent of Massachusetts residents say that gay marriage has either had a positive effect or no effect on their lives. This is a pretty surprising statistic for such an "oppressive" society, and maybe that's because gay marriage isn't all that bad.

Marriage equality is not a radical, fringe idea held only by a small percentage of Americans. Like it or not, gay couples are earning the same legal protections as their heterosexual counterparts.

Opponents of same-sex marriage love to throw around the idea of "redefining" marriage as an institution but had we not "redefined" marriage in 1967, marriage would still only be for people of the same race. Had we not redefined the right to vote, women wouldn't be welcome at our polls.

It's not redefinition -- it's progress. And without progress we wouldn't be where we are today.

The world is changing-- Illinois is changing -- and If you don't want to change with it then you're more than welcome to stay behind on the wrong side of history.

Christine Pallon

Glen Ellyn

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