Heroine Alert: Diane Savino, NY State Senator

Out of yesterday's NY state gay marriage setback has emerged a new icon: Sen. Diane Savino, whose brilliant, off-the-cuff speech in favor of same-sex marriage has made her an overnight internet star. Just watch this. (Savino for President 2016!)


Some choice quotes:

"I'm over the age of 40 and that's all you're going to get from me, but I have never been able to maintain a relationship of the length or the quality that Tom and Lewis have."

"Turn on the television. We have a wedding channel on cable TV devoted to the behavior of people on the way to the altar. They spend billions of dollars, behave in the most appalling way, all in an effort to be princess for a day. You don't have cable television? Put on network TV. We're giving away husbands on a game show. You can watch The Bachelor, where thirty desperate women will compete to marry a 40-year-old man who has never been able to maintain a decent relationship in his life."

"That's what we've done to marriage in America, where young women are socialized from the time they're five years old to think of being nothing but a bride. They plan every day what they'll wear, how they'll look, the invitations, the whole bit, they don't spend five minutes thinking about what it means to be a wife. People stand up there before god and man even in Senator Diaz's church, they swear to love honor and obey, they don't mean a word of it. So if there's anything wrong with the sanctity of marriage in America, it comes from those of us who have the privilege and the right and have abused it for decades."

A former labor activist, Savino was elected in 2004 and serves Staten Island and parts of Brooklyn. But now that this speech has put her on the national radar, who knows how far she can go?

"We Have Nothing to Fear from Love and Commitment" [The Awl]
Senator Diane Savino's NY State Senate Bio



I think the important part of that speech is the same thing I say to religious conservatives in my life. If your church does not support gay marriage the church does not have to perform them. This is a legal issue. My parent's incredibly conservative pastor said the same thing. He said he will not perform gay marriages but if the state decides they are legal so be it.