Free at last… to marry

At long last, The Vermont Freedom to Marry volunteers and staff are out of jobs, but happily so! As of Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2009 Vermonters are now legally able to marry any person of their choice; same-sex or otherwise. Finally, everyone is free to tie the knot for better or worse, till death due them part!It’s truly a great time to be a resident of Vermont — a state that’s proven it’s unafraid to stand up for equality and not back down with resistance from nay sayers (and uncooperative governors). Staying true to its liberally lush roots and kind, caring, socially responsible citizens, Vermont moves forward once again.

This progression gives hope to communities far and wide, and will instill in our youth a healthy perspective of equality from an early age. We live in a chaotic world, and humanity needs more lovers, not fighters. All love is beautiful, and it’s important that this be recognized far and wide. Let’s hope that the actions of Vermonters encourage national and worldwide progression in the plight for human equality.

Six months ago, I volunteered at The Vermont Freedom to Marry (VFTM) headquarters in Burlington. I folded a couple hundred letters and stuffed them in envelopes. We were doing one of many mailings to contact businesses across Vermont who openly support gay marriage. It was then that I really witnessed selflessness.

One of the major players in the coordination of VFTM said to me “Let’s hope by the end of the summer we’ll all be out of work.” We were chatting about volunteer opportunities and full time positions at an organization funded solely on grants and donations. What she meant, of course, was that she truly hoped the problem of marriage equality would be solved in Vermont before the end of the summer. To hear this was truly inspiring — her job would be finished when gay Vermonters were given the right to marry; a situation she seemed hopeful for, despite the possibility of individual setbacks.

Gay or straight, each of us should be thankful for the courageous and committed leaders, volunteers, businesses, communities and humanitarians who have fought and continue to fight for equal rights for everyone. We need to thank the people who never back down in the fight for what is right: Equal rights for all! Thank you Vermont, for encouraging the quality of life we all deserve!

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