Monday, June 1, 2009

My Letter to The Jewish Press - Oppose Gay Marriage Bill

The same-gender marriage bill that overwhelmingly passed the New York State Assembly and is within several votes of passing in the state Senate will negatively impact all religious people.

Orthodox marriage counselors will have to counsel same-gender couples or risk losing their licenses. Ditto for accountants, tax lawyers, family doctors, synagogue social halls, wedding establishments, caterers - the list goes on endlessly.

Public advertisements, including government-sponsored billboards, etc., will inevitably feature same gender couples and children as the typical family in order to acclimate society to accept the new state-imposed norm.

Our children (especially millions of worshippers of all faiths who attend public school) will be indoctrinated that their parents, grandparents and religious leaders who oppose and reject these relationships are bigots.

Twenty-seven years ago, Rav Moshe Feinstein, zt"l, wrote with regard to a simple "gay rights" city ordinance: "Everyone who heeds my words should fill the city hall chambers in protest and do all in their power to defeat that legislation."

Today, the threat of marriage is far more dangerous spiritually and legally, yet our Orthodox organizations have not called us to arms. They should speedily coalesce and send out letters with talking points to every synagogue in New York State and have rabbis and congregants approach their state senators with the information that this legislation will destroy our religious way of life.

We must reluctantly tell them that our communities will oppose elected officials who are actively destroying our religious way of life and, if necessary, combine forces with other religious groups who share our concerns.


If our organizations and our leadership act with alacrity and follow Rav Feinstein's example of activism (he personally wrote each commissioner in Dade County in 1978 to overturn a "gay" ordinance), we will merit Divine Providence and win.

Rabbi Yehuda Levin
Brooklyn, NY

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