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Stars speak out
against the federal marriage amendment

Stars speak out
against the federal marriage amendment

Alabama’s Colorful History Is Even Brighter

Forty-two artists speak out for their gay fans and against President Bush's push to write discrimination into the U.S. Constitution

Are gay men and lesbians the only ones who think President Bush's Federal Marriage Amendment to forever ban same-sex marriage is an outrage? Not at all. For The Advocate's annual Music Issue, we asked nongay stars in all genres of music to send us their opinions on same-sex matrimony and the FMA. We were overwhelmed by the friendship and support we received. Forty-two artists contacted us--opera superstars, vital young pop divas, reigning rockers, and at least one bad boy who's reconsidered his own homophobia over the years. So many artists cared to say so much that we've had to confine their remarks to brief excerpts in these pages. And another thing: Buy their records. "President Bush's idea to amend the Constitution of the United States so as to ban gay and lesbian marriage...is an obvious and sensational election-year prank.... It is completely inappropriate for the federal government to wade into an issue that is so deeply embedded in both religious practice and states' rights. Furthermore, as the old saying goes, the horse is out of the barn. Even if such an amendment were passed, in today's world it is likely to be as effective as Prohibition was." Midori, Grammy-nominated violinist "It is unthinkable and sad that an amendment to the Constitution is planned that would deny gay and lesbian Americans the right to marry, now or ever.... The Constitution is one of the great documents in history, and it would be shameful if it were diminished by such a plan." Legendary couple Sir Andre Previn, pianist and composer, and Anne-Sophie Mutter, violinist "Let me state that I'm not gay and I am a faithful Christian, but I feel that by throwing the Bible around and targeting the gay and lesbian population, we as a country are doing the opposite of what we are supposed to be learning from the Bible." Willa Ford, pop singer "When any two people love one another and are committed to one another, they should be allowed to marry. It's a shame that our president is such a narrow-minded person. He needs to be out in November." Cyndi Lauper, singer and songwriter "I believe that marriage should be recognized as a publicly acknowledged legal contract by the states as the formal union of two individuals who care deeply for each other and wish to share their lives with each other. The validity of such a union should not be determined based on sexual orientation any more than it is determined by race or religious preference. The proposal that such a union would be made illegal by a constitutional amendment goes against the freedom our Constitution protects and will not enable us to enter into the kind of dialogue which has produced so much positive societal change in the past." Renee Fleming, soprano superstar "I'm married for 21 years, and I believe in a happy marriage, and I believe everyone is entitled to one. My children feel the same way, and my daughter was telling me to be sure that I voiced my opposition to the amendment.... I think [Bush] is courting the votes of the religious right, and that seems to be a big part of his basic power." Kris Kristofferson, Grammy- and Golden Globe-winning actor and singer-songwriter "America's Constitution is about equal rights for all and the freedom to pursue happiness. We believe wholeheartedly in that vision. There should be no place in our Constitution for negative amendments, such as the one Bush proposes, which will put discrimination into that sacred document." The B-52's, featuring vocalists Fred Schneider (who is openly gay) and Kate Pierson "In '92 George Bush misjudged the American people, and his obsession with family values cost him the reelection. I hope gay marriage will do the same thing for George W." Susan Ottaviano of Book of Love "As a Canadian, I proudly tell my children that as of now they can marry whomever they choose and love whomever they love.... And I can tell my American friends that our country hasn't disappeared into the ocean; nor have we all turned into pillars of salt. The most disturbing thing about Bush's antigay amendment is that he and his posse have obviously decided that the best way for them to win an election...is with the politics of exclusion, xenophobia, and hate. It is the world's responsibility to tell him that it's unacceptable." Steven Page of Barenaked Ladies "The Bush administration's constant attack on individual liberties has to be stopped.... There is already enough shame in this country about our past; let's not act in a shameful way for our future." Andre Watts, Grammy-winning classical pianist

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