U.S. Census 2000 estimates there are roughly 240,000 Pennsylvania families — about 5 percent of the state’s 4.8 million households — made up of unmarried couples. Many of these were grandfathered in as common-law marriages before a new state law abolished this marital arrangement last year. Among them are widowed seniors who never formalized their marital bonds, and who might have no redress if the proposed amendment negates every form of marital arrangement but traditional matrimony.
Seniors’ “property, pension and Social Security are possibly at risk because they’re survivor benefits,” explains Karen Buck, executive director of the Philadelphia-based SeniorLAW Center, a statewide advocacy group that objects to the amendment
We can only try to convince the moderate Republicans that this bill is going to negatively many of their constituents. And protect no one's marriage.
I know the homophobes don’t care about whether gays and lesbians have the same rights as the rest of us. Discrimination against anyone different is a grand American tradition. But here’s what they should try to understand: There’s nothing to “protect.” Legal gay marriage will have absolutely no effect on hetero marriage.
You still don’t have to mix with the homos. You can still look down your noses at them ’cause “it just ain’t natural.” (’Course there are millions of them on the earth, you know. God sure must have screwed up a bunch of times.)
Stay tuned for an update on the marriage amendment passage through the Pennsylvania Republican Caucus.