Target: Illinois House of Representatives and Senate
Goal: To make marriage equality in Illinois a reality
Following the election, several states have decided to pass laws allowing marriage equality. Despite having legalized civil unions, the state of Illinois has yet to pass laws that approve the legalization of same-sex marriage. Legalizing civil unions between same-sex couples is a good start towards equality but it still does not grant these couples the rights and satisfaction of a federally-recognized marriage.
The LGBT community in Illinois is continuously fighting for equality, particularly equality in marriage. Although Illinois has recently made civil unions between same-sex couples legal, members of the LGBT community still feel that they are being denied a basic human right. Those who are in a loving relationship are permitted to marry if they are in a opposite-sex relationship while those who are in a same-sex relationship are only limited to a civil union. Civil union legally permits a same-sex couple to have the same rights and responsibilities as opposite-sex couples, but it still falls short of a federally-recognized marriage; those in a civil union are technically not in a union of marriage and therefore cannot bear the title of a married couple.
Some members of the LGBT community feel that the message being sent is that “people don’t respect same-gender relationships the same way that they respect opposite-gender relationships.” This is neither right nor fair. While it can be argued that a civil union between a same-sex couple is sufficient, a civil union only deals with the formalities of a relationship. A civil union deals with the legal matters of a relationship while a federally-recognized marriage deals with the love between a couple as well as the legal matters of a relationship.
If equality is to be achieved, action needs to be taken to achieve it. Sign the petition below to urge the state of Illinois to grant the right of marriage to same-sex couples.
Dear Illinois House of Representatives and Senate,
I would like to start off by commending your decision to legalize civil unions between same-sex couples. While this a large achievement for the LGBT community, it is still important to note that a civil union does not equate to a federally-recognized marriage. Some members of the LGBT community feel that they are being discriminated against because they are still being denied the right to legally marry the person they love.
Although it is true that a civil union grants the same rights and responsibilities to same-sex couples as it does to opposite-sex couples, there is still something missing from civil unions. In a sense, civil unions are making the relationship between a same-sex couple impersonal; a civil union is generally based on legal matters between a couple rather than the love between a couple.
I am urging you to fully extend equality to same-sex couples. Please take the action to grant individuals the right to marry the person they love; give same-sex couples the right to obtain a federally-recognized marriage.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: dannipenguin via Flickr