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Why Marriage Matters: America, Equality, and Gay People's Right to Marry (Paperback)

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"At its core, the freedom-to-marry movement is about the same thing every civil rights struggle has been about: taking seriously our country's promise to be a nation its citizens can make better, its promise to be a place where people don't have to give up their differences or hide them in order to be treated equally."

Why Marriage Matters offers a compelling, intelligently reasoned discussion of a question at the forefront of our national consciousness. It is the work of one of the most influential attorneys in America, who has dedicated his life to the protection of individuals' rights and our Constitution's commitment to equal justice under the law. Above all, it is a clear, straightforward book that brings into sharp focus the very human significance of the right to marry in America -- not just for some couples, but for all.

Why is the word marriage so important? Will marriage for same-sex couples hurt the "sanctity" of the institution? How can people of different faiths reconcile their beliefs with the idea of marriage for same-sex couples? How will allowing gay couples to marry affect children?

In this quietly powerful volume, the most authoritative and fairly articulated book on the subject, Wolfson demonstrates why the right to marry is important -- indeed necessary -- for all couples and for America's promise of equality.

About the Author


Evan Wolfson is Executive Director of Freedom to Marry, the gay and non-gay partnership working to win marriage equality nationwide. Before founding Freedom to Marry, Wolfson served as marriage project director for Lambda Legal Defense & Education Fund, was co-counsel in the historic Hawaii marriage case, Baehr v. Miike, and participated in numerous gay rights and HIV/AIDS cases. Between his studies at Yale College and Harvard Law School, Wolfson spent two years with the Peace Corps in West Africa and then worked as a state prosecutor and special counsel in the Iran/Contra investigation. Citing his national leadership on marriage equality and his appearance before the U.S. Supreme Court in Boy Scouts of America v. James Dale, the National Law Journal in 2000 named Wolfson one of "the 100 most influential lawyers in America." In 2004, he was named one of the "Time 100," Time magazine's list of "The 100 most influential people in the world."

Praise for Why Marriage Matters: America, Equality, and Gay People's Right to Marry…


Newsday a concise, logical primer...well worth reading...a book that supporters of gay marriage could give to friends and relatives who are undecided on the issue (or only mildly opposed)

Out Magazine Each chapter is an excellent and sensible essay responding to common questions same-sex couples get asked. Order a pile...and start handing them out to family, colleagues, and friends.

Gay City News Anybody interested in engaging in the current policy debates can find the information and arguments they will need in this compact, well-organized book that is both easy and pleasant to read.

Portland (OR) Mercury August 5, 2004 ...concise and efficient arguments...Thanks to this book, I now feel capable of having productive discussions about equal marriage.

The Oregonian August 1, 2004 ...this is one useful book. Armed with Wolfson's arguments, you could sell anyone with an IQ over room temperature on the wisdom and humanity of marriage equality.

Library Journal To his credit, the author addresses head-on religious objections to gay marriage....Well written and evenhanded....Recommended.

Publishers Weekly ...refreshing, smart, thorough, and easy to follow.

Kirkus Reviews ...thoughtful, reasonable, and eminently worthy.

"Seasoned Authors, Reasoned Arguments" - marriage books by Andrew Sullivan and Evan Wolfson, Bay Window ...accessible to the layperson on both technical and emotional levels.

Product Details ISBN-10: 0743264592
ISBN-13: 9780743264594
Published: Simon & Schuster, 05/24/2005
Pages: 256
Language: English