The PA ‘Marriage Protection Amendment’ (otherwise known as HB 2381), will likely be voted on in the PA House this week. As usual, if you live in Pennsylvania, we beg you to call your representatives ASAP and give them an earful about this piece of unnecessary, noxious legislation.
I wonder what ‘Marriage Protection’ supporters see in their mind’s eye when they propose this kind of legislation.
Are they thinking of real people, or are they thinking about an election year? Do they imagine people like Andy Mahoney?
This is Andy’s story…
In July of 2004, Virginia passed something comparable to the PA Marriage Protection Act. The amendment basically nullified any will, deed, or contract between same-sex individuals. It made my partner and I realize that our assets weren’t protected. We had worked our whole lives and saved and contributed, and then all of the sudden we could lose everything. We could be left with nothing other than legal bills and a lot of pain…we felt that just wasn’t right. So we made the difficult decision to leave Virginia because we wanted to protect each other if something happened to the other person. It was a tough choice…I had a very profitable and successful clinical practice in Virginia, and all of our friends were there.
We moved to Pittsburgh last March, and are still getting adjusted. I am building up a practice again, and we really like this city. And then this amendment comes along. It’s almost like, “Is this really happening again?” We thought we would be safe in Pennsylvania.
People like Andy may have hostile family members that could try to override the desires of LGBT couples with regards to their wills and estates–or hospital visitation rights. The Marriage Protection Amendment would give the aggressive party a legal leg to stand on in Pennsylvania, even potentially invalidating local laws protecting LGBT rights.
We owe it to people like Andy, and to ourselves, to keep Pennsylvania safe for LGBT families.
Lisa in Pittsburgh