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  • Thursday, May 26, 2005


    Senfronia Thompson

    My admiration for Molly Ivins is great. A recent column she wrote was about a speech by Senfronia Thompson in the Texas Legislature. Ms. Thompson, a black woman and a veteran of three decades in the Texas Lege, spoke against adding an anti-gay marriage measure into the state constitution. Here's a quote but read the whole thing. Ms. Thompson obviously has a remarkable ability for scathing oratory when it suits her.

    "Let's look at what this amendment does not do: It does not give one Texas citizen meaningful tax relief. It does not reform or fully fund our education system. It does not restore one child to CHIP [Children's Health Insurance Program] who was cut from health insurance last session. It does not put one dime into raising Texas' Third World access to health care. It does not do one thing to care for or protect one elderly person or one child in this state. In fact, it does not even do anything to protect one marriage.

    "Members, this bill is about hate and fear and discrimination... When I was a small girl, white folks used to talk about 'protecting the institution of marriage' as well. What they meant was if people of my color tried to marry people of Mr. Chisum's color, you'd often find the people of my color hanging from a tree... Fifty years ago, white folks thought interracial marriages were 'a threat to the institution of marriage.'

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