Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Shortly after 8 AM today, Queer Rising, an organization dedicated to achieving equal civil rights for LGBTs through nonviolent direct action, engaged in an act of civil disobedience, closing down Manhattan's Sixth Avenue just one block from Times Square in a protest against the failure of the NY State Senate to pass legislation legalizing Marriage Equality for all New York citizens.

As we post this story, the police are in the process of arresting the following protesters:

Kevin Beauchamp, 48 year-old, blind gay activist, partnered for 9 years; Nora Camp, 29 year-old queer activist; Natasha Dillon, 26 year-old lesbian activist and MBA student; Frostie Flakes (aka Adam Siciliano), 24 year-old drag queen activist and nightlife performer; Jake Goodman, 31 year-old queer activist and educator; Honey LaBronx (aka Ben Strothmann), 31 year-old drag queen activist, actor, & photographer; Eugene Lovendusky, 25 year-old gay activist, educator and NYCGMC member; and Kitten Withuwip (aka Caldwell) 24 year-old drag queen activist of color and actor/comedienne

From Queer Rising's statement to the press:
"The federal government has advanced the cause of marriage equality this week, with the decision to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act," said Queer Rising founding member Natasha Dillon. "But New York State shamefully lags behind on the issue. Marriage equality was defeated in December 2009 and the measure was not included in Governor Cuomo's 2011 Executive Budget. LGBTQ New Yorkers refuse to be persecuted, second-class citizens any longer!"
This past January, Queer Rising asked the Cuomo administration to include Marriage Equality in the 2011 Executive Budget. Marriage equality is legal in states like Connecticut, Massachusetts and Washington D.C., and these places enjoy the income from such freedoms. However, New York State is losing valuable commerce and tax revenue from LGBTQ marriages happening in those neighboring states.
A new Quinnipiac University Poll shows New York State's support for same-sex marriage is at an all-time high, with 56 percent supporting and 37 percent opposed. Earlier this week, the Obama administration declared it will no longer defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, a federal law banning recognition of same-sex marriage. The time is now for New York to bring equality to its citizens!

Here is the first video protest of the protest:

We will be posting updates with additional video footage as more information becomes available.

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