On Wednesday at midnight, when legal same-sex marriage goes into effect in Minnesota, we should start the celebration of us doing our part to help save the democracy called the United States.
It was just over a year ago that a small group of Minnesotans decided to fight extreme odds by opposing two proposed constitutional amendments. The first was a Jim Crow law with lipstick on it called voter ID. The second was a constitutional amendment to virtually eliminate any opportunity for Minnesotans of the same sex to ever be married.
Both constitutional amendments were brought forward by people of fundamentalist religious groups seeking to control how all of us practice our religion in our homes and places of worship. The book, “His Excellency: George Washington,” stated that our first president felt the biggest threat to the new democracy was fundamentalist religious groups. That being said, nobody wants to restrict their right to practice their religion in their homes and places of worship. The moment that happens is a threat to how the United States was formed and on what it is based.
A Duluth psychiatrist I know works with young people questioning their sexuality. He told me every time these young people saw a “vote no” sign, in opposition to the amendment against same-sex marriage, they saw there was one more person out there who believed in them.
I believe Minnesota’s demonstration of support has saved lives at a time when suicide is epidemic among our youth. I also believe the number of children thrown out of their homes and becoming homeless just because they told their parents they were gay can now go down