Launch Party: Winning Marriage by Marc Solomon

Last night I attended the Kansas City launch party for Marc Solomon’s new book Winning Marriage: The Inside Story of How Same-Sex Couples Took on the Politicians and Pundits – and Won. Missouri State Senator Jolie Justus spoke first and introduced Solomon. Solomon is currently the National Campaign Director of Freedom to Marry, an organization that campaigns for same-sex couples to have the right to marry in the United States.

I just got the book last night so I haven’t read it yet but I’m really looking forward to reading it soon. Solomon said that it’s about all the advocacy and behind the scenes battles that it took to go from zero states allowing same-sex marriage in 2003 to where the movement to gain marriage rights for all same-sex couples stands today. (See the end of this post for the publisher’s description of the book.)

My biggest take-way from his talk was this: He said that before 2003, most  people said that legal same-sex marriage in the whole country was impossible and that now only ten years later, most people see legal same-sex marriage for all states as inevitable. He cautioned to avoid thinking of something as either impossible or inevitable. If it’s impossible, what’s the point of working to change it? If it’s inevitable, then it’s okay to stop working because it will happen no matter what.  We need to keep working to push the momentum in the movement forward and not get complacent now that it seems that same-sex marriage rights are coming quickly to more and more states.

Publisher’s Description of Winning Marriage:

Ten years ago no state allowed same-sex couples to marry, support for gay marriage nationwide hovered around 30 percent, and politicians everywhere thought of it as the third rail of American politics—draw near at your peril. Today, same-sex couples can marry in seventeen states, polls consistently show majority support, and nearly three-quarters of Americans believe legalization is inevitable.

In Winning Marriage Marc Solomon, a veteran leader in the movement for marriage equality, gives the reader a seat at the strategy-setting and decision-making table in the campaign to win and protect the freedom to marry. With depth and grace he reveals the inner workings of the advocacy movement that has championed and protected advances won in legislative, court, and electoral battles over the decade since the landmark Massachusetts ruling guaranteeing marriage for same-sex couples for the first time.

From the gritty battles in the state legislatures of Massachusetts and New York to the devastating loss at the ballot box in California in 2008 and subsequent ballot wins in 2012 to the joyous victories of securing President Obama’s support and prevailing in the Supreme Court, Marc Solomon has been at the center of one of the great civil and human rights movements of our time. Winning Marriage recounts the struggle with some of the world’s most powerful forces—the Catholic hierarchy, the religious right, and cynical ultraconservative political operatives—and the movement’s eventual triumph.

  • rhapsodyinbooks

    Sounds like a really good book. It continues to amaze me how fast social change has taken place on this issue!