The Yanks Are Coming:Marriage USA

Delaware State Highway One: pic by Doug Kerr. As you can tell, Delaware has some fascinating landmarks. This isn’t one of them.


Stuck in my head, dormant since childhood,  is an earworm, planted back in 1959 by velvet-voiced (i.e. terminally soporific) crooner Perry Como.


Oh, what did Della wear boy,
What did Della wear?
What did Della wear boy,
What did Della wear?

She wore a bran’ new jersey,
She wore a bran’ new jersey,
She wore a bran’ new jersey,
That’s what she did wear.

One, two, three, four!


It rose in my mind like a zombie from it’s grave when I read that Delaware and New Jersey were on the road to marriage equality, along with Oregon, Minnesota, Illinois, and Nevada. Listen at your own risk: it will haunt you for life. Believe me, I know.



Delaware. Delaware approved same-sex civil unions last year. Now the House of Representatives approved a bill Tuesday legalizing same-sex marriage 23-18 vote. It now goes to the Senate, and from there to Governor Jack Markell. He supports it.

New Jersey. The legislature will try to override Governor Chris Christie’s veto of a year ago. But there aren’t enough supporters yet, and the governor is pushing for a referendum on the issue.

Oh, where as Ore gone, boy,
Where has Ore gone?

Oregon. Governor John Kitzhaber supports the push for a proposed constitutional amendment on the 2014 ballot that would reverse the 2004 ban on gay marriage.

She sipped a mina-soda,
She sipped a mina-soda,
She sipped a mina-soda,
That’s what she did sip.

Un, deux, trois, quatre!

Minnesota. Legislation has cleared committees in both the House and Senate. It’s now up the elected  members to pass the bills.

Illinois. The Senate approved gay marriage legislation on Valentine’s Day the House can’t yet muster a majority. Governor Pat Quinn is a supporter.

Nevada. In many ways the most interesting state to start down this road. Anyone for a Vegas wedding, with Elvis impersonator? Senate Joint Resolution 13, which would abolish the heterosexual definition of marriage that’s been in the Nevada Constitution since 2002, passed the Senate and is expected to pass the Assembly as well. It must be passed by legislators this year and again in 2015, before it can go to a referendum in 2016.

It’s states like Nevada, where the state constitution has been amended to ban marriage equality, that change will be most difficult, because constitutional changes must garner significant majorities – typically two-thirds – in legislatures, and also pass a public vote.

But the wagons are rolling. The Yanks are coming!

About the author

Veteran gay writer and speaker, Doug was one of the founders of the UKs pioneering GLBTI newspaper Gay News (1972) , and of the second, Gay Week, and is a former Features Editor of Him International. He presented news and current affairs on JOY 94.9 FM Melbourne for more than ten years. "Doug is revered, feared and reviled in equal quantities, at times dividing people with his journalistic wrath. Yet there is no doubt this grandpa-esque bear keeps everyone abreast of anything and everything LGBT across the globe." (Daniel Witthaus, "Beyond Priscilla", Clouds of Magellan, Melbourne, 2014)