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It's time for full access in NYS

Last month, the state Assembly approved a measure that would legalize same-sex marriages. The bill passed easily, with six Republicans voting in favor of the measure.

Included in these Republicans was Teresa Sayward (R-Willsboro), who freely discussed her openly gay son on the Assembly floor prior to the vote.

Over the next few weeks, the bill could see the state Senate floor, assuming that the necessary votes are in order to allow its passage.

Since 2007, the state has recognized gay marriages issued in other states, and if passed, New York would be the sixth state to adopt such a measure.

The issue of gay marriage has become one of the most divisive issues of our time. It pits staunch conservatives who often reference tradition and biblical passages against progressives and moderates who view the issue as a civil rights necessity.

Why shouldn't homosexuals be entitled to equal protection and access under the law?

The conservative argument perplexes me a bit. They argue that marriage is an ancient institution defined as the union between man and women.

This argument assumes that the binding social contract of marriage hasn't changed since the time of Jesus and here is where they are incorrect.

No longer do we swap our virgin daughters for a couple goats or a military alliance. Over much of the last 2,000 years, marriage was more of a system of forming political alliances, where the woman was simply a resource to be traded or sold - she was payment.

Throughout the last century, the very conception of marriage has changed drastically.

Women have gained access to cultural capital in Western nations and with this capital came the access to an opinion. Women have a say in who they marry and here is where the concept of marriage has changed.

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