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KPBS Commentaries

Sanders Changes Mind: Tells the Press First; When Does City Council Find Out?

I had just started a phone interview with San Diego City Councilwoman Donna Frye about her original vote against joining the “friends of the court” brief endorsing same sex marriage, followed by her vote for the brief , when my e-mail signaled a new message.

Here it is:

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 19, 2007

What: - News Conference * Mayor Sanders TO SIGN Council Resolution on Gay Marriage Brief; Mayor to Explain Principled Stance at News Conference this Afternoon

When:

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TODAY - Wednesday, September 19, 2007

5pm

My question to Ms. Frye: “Did you know the mayor was preparing to sign the resolution, considering that this morning’s news indicated he was prepared to veto it?”

She had no idea that the mayor would sign.

“Should I be surprised at the lack of communication between the mayor and members of the City Council?” I asked.

“No,” she said. “It’s called conversation. We don't have it.” 

If she’s accurate, why isn’t the mayor communicating with the council members before he alerts the press to his upcoming actions?

Eric Alan Isaacson
September 20, 2007 at 05:08 PM
Bravo for Mayor Sanders! The right to marry is a fundamental civil right, and the Mayor is to be praised for ensuring that the City of San Diego will join other cities and counties filing a friend-of-the-court brief before the California Supreme Court. Many who opposed adding the Citys name to the brief cited "God's law," insisting that their views of religious orthodoxy must be enforced as the law of this state. Some said that Judeo-Christian traditions and values oppose the right of same-sex couples to marry. Yet Reform Judaism, the largest movement in American Judaism, strongly supports the right of same-sex couples to marry. So does the California Council of Churches. Many deeply religious people believe that whether or not their own faith traditions allow for same-sex marriages, civil marriage remains a fundamental civil right that cannot be denied in a state that honors religious freedom and the separation of church and state. And many faith traditions are coming to the view that same-sex unions are every bit as holy and sacred as is matrimony between a man and a woman. Take, for example, churches in the United Church of Christ and the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations, denominations to which North Americas oldest Protestant churches belong, including the churches of both the Pilgrims and of the Puritans. These denominations churches regularly celebrate the weddings of their committed same-sex couples. Indeed, I was in Massachusetts a few weeks ago, where the church of the Mayflower Pilgrims - - who landed at Plymouth Rock in 1620 and who celebrated the First Thanksgiving - - is a congregation that today proudly celebrates the weddings of its gay and lesbian members. So does the First Church in Boston, the original church of John Winthrop's shining "city on a hill." When the City of San Diego files its amicus brief next week, it will be in good company. Hundreds of other organizations will be filing friend-of-the-court briefs supporting the right to marry. I happen to be a member of the team of attorneys responsible for filing a friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of religious organizations and faith leaders supporting the right to marry. In the California Court of Appeal we filed on behalf of the California Council of Churches, the Union for Reform Judaism, the United Church of Christ, the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations, the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches, the Unitarian Universalist Legislative Ministry California, California Faith for Equality, and literally hundreds of churches, synagogues, sanghas, ministers, and rabbis throughout the state of California. http://www.uulmca.org/documents/Amici%20Brief3.pdf http://www.jewsformarriageequality.org/DOWNLOADS/CARCFM/Amici_Brief.pdf We will be filing a similar brief next week in the California Supreme Court. In connection with that filing, the First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego, 4190 Front Street, will be hosting an Interfaith Freedom-to-Marry Celebration, at 9:30 a.m., Wednesday, September 26. Make no mistake, right of same-sex couples is a fundamental civil right supported by people of faith here in San Diego. Peace be with you ! Eric Alan Isaacson Board President, San Diego Foundation for Change Change -----