Deja Vu All Over Again? | Freyne Land

Seven Days needs your financial support!

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Deja Vu All Over Again?

Posted By on Wed, Feb 7, 2007 at 5:23 PM

Gay marriage supporters gathered at lunch hour Wednesday outside Montpelier’s City Hall where they announced legislation will be introduced providing full marriage rights for same-sex couples, something, they noted, our neighbors to the south in Massachusetts and to the north in Quebec have granted since Vermont’s controversial passage of the historic first-in-the-nation civil-unions law in 2000.

You remember civil unions?  The law Gov. Howard Dean signed behind closed-doors. No photos were available for use by rivals in his upcoming run for the White House. Or, of course, Ho-Ho could have used them to promote his equal-rights record.

Burlington Democratic State Rep. Mark Larson (at right) is the lead sponsor of 33 in the House. Larson said he has been married to his wife since they paid a visit to city hall 20 years ago.

“We’re glad civil unions have been enacted in Vermont. But we know if we went to city hall today, we still would be treated differently than our friends and neighbors who are gay and lesbian and that’s simply not right.”

Also on hand former Republican State Rep. Tom Little of Shelburne. Little chaired the House Judiciary Committee that wrote the civil union bill. He said there are two reasons to take a look at civil unions this session.

It’s important, said Little, to revisit what he called “very momentous” pieces of legislation 6-7-8 years down the line to see if they’ve performed as expected.

But the other reason for me,” said Little, “is I have come to believe over the last seven years that full access to marriage for gay and lesbian couples is the most fair effective and honest way of delivering the benefits of marriage to a class of people who’ve never had them before in Vermont. Now is the time to start that conversation,” he said, “to reingage.”

Also on hand Stan Baker, whose name was on the original lawsuit. Stan had the best line:

In 2000, Vermont decided to legally recognize same-sex couples. Now it’s time to equally recognize same-sex couples.

Yes, indeed. We have come as long way baby.

They've got a point, eh?

P.S. A few bumps in the road today. First off, I forgot my little digital camera. Readers have been so complimentary of the photos, too. They definitely add something. Sorry, guys.

And second,  by chance, I bumped into two Iraq War Vets who were under the golden dome Wednesday to visit the House Speaker. They're supporting an antiwar resolution which I haven't actually seen yet. Interviewed them for about four-five minutes on tape. Figured I get a WDEV Radio story off it. Twice, I inadvertantly called them Vietnam Vets.

Showing my age?

Then when it was over and they went in to talk to Gaye Symington, I had the displeasure of discovering the "record" button had not been depressed.

Slings and arrows...

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

One or more images has been removed from this article. For further information, contact

About The Author

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne, 1949-2009, wrote the weekly political column "Inside Track," which originated in the Vanguard Press in the mid 1980s; he brought it to Seven Days in 1995. He retired it shortly before his death in January, 2009. We all miss him.

More By This Author


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Latest in Freyne Land

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2022 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401

Advertising Policy  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Help
Website powered by Foundation