Minnesota GOP legislator makes passionate speech in support of marriage equality

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36 Responses to “Minnesota GOP legislator makes passionate speech in support of marriage equality”

  1. Anonymous says:

    “That the desires of the majority of the people are often for injustice and inhumanity against the minority, is demonstrated by every page of the history of the whole world”

    - John Adams

  2. JoshuaZ says:

    I was able to watch this fine until he got to the point about how years from now his kids and grandkids would ask him which side he was on. Then I just lost it. And now I’m crying.

  3. rebdav says:

    Asking for legalization of marriage is like demanding legalization of breathing, sleeping, or most appropriately praying.
    Marriage is a symbolic religious construct that has nothing to do with a secular government or reasonable regulation and hearkens back to colonial times when there was a national religion and a monarchy.
    From what I understand the whole licensing of marriage was initiated by the states just to keep pure white girls from marrying black boys, it is now also a minor income stream and a way to document peoples lives since we illegally give incentive to this religion based incorporation of two people.
    Licensing and regulation of marriage should always have been illegal under the establishment clause of the first amendment to the US constitution.
    Deregulate all marriage, it is the Republican thing to do.

  4. Gulliver says:

    Deregulate all marriage, it is the Republican thing to do.

    Hear, hear!

    What galls me is that government thinks it has ANY legitimate right whatsoever to limit things like who a person can have by their hospital bed.

    I can think of exactly one legitimate aspect of family that the State has any legitimate vested interest in favoring and that is families that are raising children, whether those children and their biological offspring or adopted. That should be the beginning and the end.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for standing up for love

  6. Hanglyman says:

    Wonderful to hear this from a politician at all, let alone a Republican. I only wish this were the start of a shift back towards sanity. There are some values that all political parties should share, if they claim to represent this country, and equal rights for all is one of them. This is such a basic, fundamental part of what our country is SUPPOSED to be about that there’s really no room for debate. If you think gays should be treated as second-class citizens, you’re not anti-Democrat or anti-Republican, you’re anti-American. Unfortunately, we’ve degraded so far that anyone who shows any hint of compassion, humanity or doing the right thing is treated as a hero by us and as a traitor by their fellow politicians.

  7. Anonymous says:

    There are two things called marriage: http://2tcm.org/ and this conflation is the only reason we’re still talking about this.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is wrong. There is one thing called marriage, and different groups have different ideas about it. We use the term marriage, not civil union, for Greek and Roman couples before there was a Christian church. This church adopted them from the state authority and made their own rules about it, but it is the same concept even when these vary, just as marriage in Texas and Missouri are the same thing despite any particular laws.

      What is more, ou can be sure that most people against gay marriage would be just as unhappy to grant equal rights to heterosexual and homosexual civil unions. This is an issue of what equality is allowed to people, and trying to re-define your way out of it will not help.

    • Fair point, anon. I look forward to the day that I get to vote on whether or not the state should recognize straight people’s marriages. Except, somehow, I doubt that is ever going to happen.

    • Anonymous says:

      There are also some churches who don’t restrict their definition of marriage to the”union of a man and a woman before God,” as your linked site defines it, so the government is already in the business of telling some religions that their definition of marriage is invalid.

    • g0d5m15t4k3 says:

      Thanks for sharing this link: http://2tcm.org/

      It is quite true.
      I’m glad the US would recognize my interracial marriage if I wanted to marry my boyfriend but I know it hasn’t always been this way. It had to be fought for. In a way, its one of the things holding us back. I don’t see the reason to get married if it isn’t available to everyone including my lesbian sister. The whole “sanctity of marriage” doesn’t apply to me. I don’t want to participate in something that isn’t fairly granted to everyone.

    • swankgd says:

      Is that kind of semantic nitpicking justification for denying people rights?

      I happen to agree that the government shouldn’t be in the business of religious marriage one way or the other. But the reality is that the English language HAS conflated religious marriage with the social contract, and as such, all citizens should have equal access to the social contract, linguistics should NOT be a barrier.

    • Gulliver says:

      @ Anon #1

      You hit the nail on the head. The notion that a government has any just right to limit the consenting behavior of adults is the essence of tyranny. This idea that the State needs to get out of the marriage business and limit itself to civil unions has been around for a while, but maybe its finally gaining some steam.

      I’ll close by joining Maggie and others in extending my compliments to the gentlemen that stood up for liberty. Republicans and Democrats could use more like them.

  8. mn_camera says:

    Thank you, Rep. Kriesel. You are an exemplar of courage.

  9. benher says:

    Thanks for posting this Maggie! It’s nice to remember reasons why Minnesota was such a great place to live.

  10. tyger11 says:

    Technically, if it existed, I think it would be a “Hell Nay” button.

  11. MayorAwesome says:

    I was a friend of Andrew. He was a good man, kind and generous.

  12. hobomike says:

    Good speech. Thanks for posting.

    Mr. Kriesel is correct that he is on the side of right. And all the numbnuts who waste our time promoting and debating smokescreen issues such as this ought to sit through a semester of Constitutional law. It may take 10 years, but this law and all others like it (like our Prop 8) will be nullified for violating the Constitution—14th and prob 5th.

  13. imag says:

    Thank you Rep Kriesel indeed. Being an American is about standing up for the freedoms of others, not just ourselves or our group. I am moved to the point where I don’t even know what to say.

    But please fix the contribution link on your website – I have a feeling you can get your reelection campaign a nice bump from this.

  14. SFDex says:

    This gentleman’s comments assure me that it really is only a matter of time until equality is available for everyone. I just hope it’s sooner than later.

    Thank you for posting this video. It reaffirms my faith in my fellow human.

  15. Hugh says:

    Rep. Kriesel is of course ethically in the right. He may also be part of a rising tide. The U.S. seems to finally be drifting into majority support for gay marriage, and Republican politicians and funders are part of that movement.

    http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/20/gay-marriage-opponents-now-in-minority/

    Minnesota may or may not be lagging on that trend, but the state will presumably come around in time. Here’s hoping.

  16. pyrotmaniac says:

    first, thank you boing boing for posting this. Maggie, really, thanks it made me tear up.
    Here’s why. I thought I was the only Vet out there that cared. I was sickened by others that I served with for their view on Don’t ask don’t tell, or the LBGT community in general. Truly sickened. But theres a catch I’m a straight guy, from a red state. I thought I was the only one. I’ve been to Iraq and Afgahistan and lost friends in both places. As I listened to the congressman speaking it brought back a flood of emotions that I really cant describe.

    Second, thank you Mr. Kresel, Your a stand up guy. I’m proud of what your doing and am truly grateful to you for what your doing. The hard right is just that, I always told my joe’s when you do the right thing sometimes you have to do it by yourself. Sir your not by yourself.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are NOT the only one. I happen to be married to a guy like you…retired after 22 yrs in the USAF Security Forces, we live in a red state, and he also was very anti DADT (in his career field he lost quite a few female troops) and is very pro gay marriage.

      You are not alone. Promise.

  17. Sekino says:

    “It made me think about this issue and say, ‘you know what, what would I do without my wife?’ She makes me happy. Life is hard. We’re in a really tough time in our nation’s history. Happiness is so hard to find for people. So they find it. They find someone who makes them happy. And we want to say, ‘Oh, you can be together. You can love that person. But you can’t marry them.’ That’s wrong. That’s wrong, and I disagree with it.”

    Oh, the humanity :)

    Here’s a man who decided to cut right through blind partisanship to show basic human empathy.

    Courage is a simple, beautiful thing…

  18. Anonymous says:

    A valiant effort, sir. Too bad they didn’t listen.

    The Republican party has been looking for a nominee for 2012. It’d probably split the independent vote and pull some Democrats if he ran, but if you like his speech, do you think he’d be a good candidate?

    • pauldavis says:

      Alas, I don’t believe that he’s old enough to run.

      I wrote to him. I suspect we disagree on many matters, possibly quite vehemently and fundamentally. But bravo for standing up for the right of all people to love whoever they choose and to have that love and committment recognized by our states and by the federal government. Bravo Representative Kriesel!

  19. Anonymous says:

    Weird. I thought that they were for smaller government.
    BTW- I volunteer to have the religious rights of my (straight) marriage revoked. I’m not using them.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Marriages are civil contracts offered by the state. The 14th Amendment says “equal protection under the law”(amongst other things). What is so difficult about this that people can’t connect the dots?

  21. Ipo says:

    It’s not that remarkable to have a reasonable view on an equal rights issue. I am in no way taken by this mans “bravery”.
    What blows me away is how he can be a repugnican at all.
    What made him choose to be active in a party that is against workers rights, that cares to bankrupt the US of A so rich people can get richer, that cares to engage in foreign wars that are neither beneficial to America’s population nor the foreign populations, …
    What I see is a man that is seemingly consistently on the wrong side of history, who was on the right side just on this one issue.
    I’m afraid that his career in the GOP won’t be successful any longer. They will not forget that he stabbed them in the back.
    Doesn’t he know that this kind of liberal, humane thinking is INOKIYAR?

    • teapot says:

      I am in no way taken by this mans “bravery”.

      I’m afraid that his career in the GOP won’t be successful any longer. They will not forget that he stabbed them in the back.
      Doesn’t he know that this kind of liberal, humane thinking is INOKIYAR?

      That’s where the bravery comes in. It can be political suicide to contradict your party’s values, yet he went for it because he knows it is right.

      What blows me away is how he can be a repugnican at all.
      What made him choose to be active in a party that is against workers rights, that cares to bankrupt the US of A so rich people can get richer, that cares to engage in foreign wars that are neither beneficial to America’s population nor the foreign populations, …What I see is a man that is seemingly consistently on the wrong side of history, who was on the right side just on this one issue.

      Choose an apropriate venue for your vitriol, dude. Finally someone in the GOP is standing up for what is right and you use that opportunity to rail on them. So silly.

      If you have seen my comment record you will know that I generally agree with you, but I question the value of making a fight out of this. If there is one way to radicalise people it is to not give credit where credit is due. Any moderate republican who reads your comment is now less likely to engage in serious political discussion with those who oppose their views.

      On topic: we need more peeps like this in politics. I just don’t understand why we give so much power to religion. Religious people believe in absolute idiocy, yet we let them shape the law? I just wish time had a fast forward button, because I can’t wait for another 50 years when people will be saying “Can you believe that people used to waste their lives believing this shit?”.

      • jere7my says:

        Religious people believe in absolute idiocy, yet we let them shape the law?

        Er…hey, teapot? I think you’re calling the kettle black when you ask ipo to tone down the rhetoric. Practice what you preach: “Choose an apropriate venue for your vitriol, dude. Finally someone [religious] is standing up for what is right and you use that opportunity to rail on them. So silly. [...] Any moderate [Christian] who reads your comment is now less likely to engage in serious political discussion with those who oppose their views.”

        • teapot says:

          I understand the hipocracy of my statement, but this is most def an apropriate venue for my vitriol. Why do same-sex couples not have the same rights as heterosexuals? Because of religion. Gasbagging about partisan left/right issues has nothing to do with the topic at hand.

          Any moderate [Christian] who reads your comment is now less likely to engage in serious political discussion with those who oppose their views.

          If you are going to rephrase my comment to supposedly prove your point then at least replace all the apropriate words.

          “Any moderate [Christian] who reads your comment is now less likely to engage in serious [religious] discussion with those who oppose their views.”

          Religion and serious discussion are as contradictory as you can get. They can keep their cute little fairytales to themselves and stop infringing on the human rights of living, breating people.

          Religious people’s conversation with homosexuals:
          “My imaginary friend in the sky thinks that your life is a sin”
          “You think your imaginary friend created me. So either god doesn’t mind who I love because god can make no mistakes, or god fucked up and put a bunch of immoral people on the earth to poison the world… which would make it a pretty crappy ‘divine’ creator.”

          I personally don’t care what anyone believes, but I will level untold ammounts of vitriol towards religion until it gets the fuck out of trying to dictate the discourse of mainstream values. They are a minority. A noisy, pompous (and usually poorly dressed) minority.

          • jramboz says:

            ‘Religious people’s conversation with homosexuals:
            “My imaginary friend in the sky thinks that your life is a sin”
            “You think your imaginary friend created me. So either god doesn’t mind who I love because god can make no mistakes, or god fucked up and put a bunch of immoral people on the earth to poison the world… which would make it a pretty crappy ‘divine’ creator.”‘

            This is a gross oversimplification. By the same logic, you could conclude that God also condones pedophiles, mass murderers, and violent psychotics. After all they were “made that way.”

            I also think your argument that religion the sole reason for discrimination against non-straight people is flawed. I haven’t done the research, but I’d be willing to bet a wooden nickel that mistreatment of gay and transgender people is not limited to Abrahamic (or even monotheistic) cultures, both historically and in the modern world. I also highly doubt that you’d find that every non-religious person in America right now is pro-gay rights either.

            I suspect that the causes of this kind of mistrust, fear, and discrimination run much deeper in the human psyche than most would have us believe. I’d much rather spend energy on trying to bring those reasons to light and examine them than waste that energy on scapegoating.

          • jere7my says:

            I understand the hipocracy of my statement

            Then don’t make it.

            Religious people’s conversation with homosexuals:

            Your bigoted, reductive little statement ignores the fact that the guy you’re praising in this post is himself a Christian — or at least he prays as a Christian. If you want lpo to acknowledge that the Republicans lpo hates are sometimes okay people, how about you acknowledging that the Christians you hate are sometimes okay people too? They’re the same damn guy, in this case.

            There are plenty of religious people who are strongly in favor of LGBT rights, including marriage. It’s been causing a major rift in the Episcopalian church for the past few years, for instance.

            They are a minority. A noisy, pompous (and usually poorly dressed) minority.

            Gee, thanks. I happen to like my kilt.

      • Gulliver says:

        On topic: we need more peeps like this in politics. I just don’t understand why we give so much power to religion. Religious people believe in absolute idiocy, yet we let them shape the law? I just wish time had a fast forward button, because I can’t wait for another 50 years when people will be saying “Can you believe that people used to waste their lives believing this shit?”.

        Uh, I think you’d be sorely disappointed if you got your wish. Religion doesn’t not seem to be going anywhere. In fact, if the religious craziness started to vanish, I’d start wondering what they were up to having gotten so quiet.

        I have no objection to religious folks using their beliefs to choose their political positions, as long as they can justify it on irreligious grounds. For instance, if they’re against murder because they think their deity told them not to murder, that’s fine by me because murder is a violation of personal liberty. But if they’re for stoning non-heterosexual individuals because Gabriel wiped out a couple of towns for it in their myths, they can do that over my dead body because that would also be a violation of personal liberty. I’m generally uninterested in convincing others to share my motives. I merely ask that their motives not lead them to expand their own liberties at the expense of others’ liberties.

    • toyg says:

      I’m afraid that his career in the GOP won’t be successful any longer. They will not forget that he stabbed them in the back.

      Somebody is being naive here.
      I have no doubt that Mr. Kriesel cares deeply about this issue. However, I wouldn’t assume that, just because he made a good speech, he couldn’t have somehow cleared it first with his party leadership. Chances are he had this sort of dialogue with his whip: “You guys are sure you got the votes?” “It’s locked down.” “So you don’t need me, right?” “Sure John, do as you please… as long as you’re with us on that other law next week, of course.”

      Most representatives get a certain amount of “free” votes, usually on hot-topics for them or their constituency. Modern whips are smart enough to let the pressure off every once in a while. Besides, all large political organizations have some space for “moderates” on specific issues; you never know, they might end up being useful should winds change very quickly.

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