We Do!: American Leaders Who Believe in Marriage Equality

We Do!: American Leaders Who Believe in Marriage Equality

by Madeleine M. Kunin
     
 

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Included in the 2014 Over the Rainbow list

"Baumgardner and Kunin have compiled the writings and public pronouncements of public officials and other figures on the issue of marriage equality...This book will serve as a resource for what was said about the struggle for marriage equality."
--New York Journal of Books

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Overview

Included in the 2014 Over the Rainbow list

"Baumgardner and Kunin have compiled the writings and public pronouncements of public officials and other figures on the issue of marriage equality...This book will serve as a resource for what was said about the struggle for marriage equality."
--New York Journal of Books

"We Do...triumphantly chronicles this recent chapter of this country's history. This volume demonstrates, through speeches, interviews, and commentary, the encouraging story of American acceptance of gay marriage and the roles that politicians--gay and straight--have played in that history."
--Philadelphia Tribune

"A remarkably upbeat little slab of work detailing the politicians out there who are good-hearted, decent and basically worth knowing about."
--Metro Times Blog (Detroit)

"We Do!…compiles speeches, interviews and commentary from 1977 through 2013, in which an array of political leaders…voice their unconditional support for the queer citizens of the US in their quest for same-sex marriage rights."
--The Bay Area Reporter Online

"With the announcement late last week by Attorney General Holder, gay marriage equality took another major step forward in the U.S. A recent book on the subject highlights to path politicians have taken from Harvey Milk of San Francisco in 1977 until now, to advance the cause of marriage equality. In the words of co-author Jennifer Baumgardner, 'this is a deeply radical book.'"
--Sun News Miami

"We Do! is a powerful look at the long battle for marriage equality in America. As Vermont’s governor, Madeleine Kunin was a leader on gay rights years before it was fashionable and years before our state became the first in the country to allow civil unions and, later, gay marriage without a court order. The struggle for gay rights in Vermont was very difficult, divisive, and acrimonious. If you talk to young people today about gay rights or gay marriage, they ask, What was the big deal? Madeleine and Jennifer Baumgardner remind us what a big deal it was and how important it is."
--United States Senator Bernie Sanders

"Madeleine Kunin argues that empowering women to succeed at home and at work is both good economics and good social policy. She presents a convincing road map for how we achieve that vision, and calls on all of us to be part of a brighter future."
--President Bill Clinton

"In her role as author and activist, Jennifer Baumgardner has permanently changed the way people think about feminism...and will shape the next hundred years of politics and culture."
--The Commonwealth Club of California, hailing Baumgardner as one of Six Visionaries for the Twenty-First Century

"The gay marriage movement, like all civil rights movements, began with individuals telling the truth about who they are to a world that doesn't accept them. It ends with an entire generation of young people who reject blatant civil rights discrimination...We Do! triumphantly chronicles this recent chapter."
--New Pages

Remember when gay marriage was the easiest way to inflame an otherwise mild electorate? This volume demonstrates, through speeches, interviews, and commentary, the encouraging story of American acceptance of gay marriage and the roles that politicians--gay and straight--have played in that history.

This movement began with individuals telling the truth about who they are to a world that doesn't accept them. From Supervisor Harvey Milk articulating in 1978 why gay people in all fields must be out and visible; to Governor Andrew Cuomo blinking back tears as he discussed his pride in making gay marriage a reality in New York in 2011; to President Obama's unprecedented support and the courage of many other American politicians—We Do! triumphantly chronicles this recent chapter of our history.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
09/16/2013
In this slight book, activist and journalist Baumgardner (Look Both Ways: Bisexual Politics) and former Vermont Governor Kunin (The New Feminist Agenda) attempt to contextualize the struggle for marriage equality by assembling a collection of famous speeches, interviews, and quotes. The book succeeds mainly as nostalgia mixed with a portrait of political waffling, though there are occasional moments of inspiration. Vermont State Representative Bill Lippert’s testimony before the Vermont House is as moving today as it was in 2000, when it helped pave the way for the nation’s first civil unions. Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s blunt words at a 2012 press conference (“It’s ridiculous and offensive that we’re still having this debate”) remain ovation worthy. But the inclusion of Andrew Sullivan’s oft-reprinted “Here Comes the Groom” feels like filler, and the “evolution” of attitudes expressed by John Kerry, Barack Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, and others feel just as poll-driven today as when they were first uttered. With the Defense of Marriage Act recently overturned by the Supreme Court, a book tracing the movement towards marriage equality would undoubtedly be valuable, but unfortunately, this collection provides little in the way of new insight. (Nov.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781617752018
Publisher:
Akashic Books
Publication date:
09/23/2013
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
224
File size:
1 MB

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Madeleine M. Kunin was the first woman governor of Vermont, and served as the Deputy Secretary of Education and Ambassador to Switzerland under President Bill Clinton. She is the author of Living a Political Life, Pearls, Politics and Power, and The New Feminist Agenda. Currently a Marsh Scholar Professor-at-Large at the University of Vermont, Madeleine lectures on history and women's studies. She also serves as president of the board of the Institute for Sustainable Communities (ISC), a nongovernmental organization that she founded in 1991. She lives in Burlington, Vermont.

Jennifer Baumgardner is the producer/creator of the award-winning film I Had an Abortion (distributed by Women Make Movies), the t-shirt project of that same name, and a book about women's experiences of abortion called Abortion&Life (Akashic Books, 2008). Her book, Look Both Ways: Bisexual Politics (FSG, 2007), was a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award. She coauthored Manifesta and Grassroots, both best-selling Third Wave classics. Jennifer writes regularly for women's magazines like Glamour, Elle, Allure, Redbook, and Real Simple, as well as more political outlets such as the Nation, the New York Times, Harper's and NPR's All Things Considered. She was writer in residence at the New School, Eugene Lang College, where she taught writing and journalism for several years and was editor of The Feminist Classics series at Farrar, Straus&Giroux, which introduces early women's liberation hits such as The Dialectic of Sex and Memoirs of an Ex Prom Queen to a new generation. She recently released a collection of essays called F’em!: Goo Goo, Gaga, and Some Thoughts on Balls (Seal Press) and just completed a documentary called It Was Rape. As the cofounder and owner of Soapbox Inc., a feminist speaker's bureau, Jennifer created (with Amy Richards) Feminist Camp--a one-week immersion program that brings feminists from across the country to NYC to learn from leading activists and each other. She has won numerous awards for her activism, is widely course-adopted, and had keynoted at more than 250 colleges and universities in the last decade. Originally from Fargo, North Dakota, Jennifer lives in New York with her husband and two sons.

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