31 December 2009
Re: Domestic Partners/Funeral Arrangements (SB 195/HB5294)
Dear Representative Ferri,
It has come to the understanding of The National Organization for Marriage - Rhode Island that the House has scheduled a vote to override the Governor's veto of SB 195 and HB 5294. NOM - Rhode Island urges you to vote to sustain this veto.
NOM - Rhode Island recognizes that the situation that befell Mr. Goldberg was indeed tragic. NOM - RI also trusts that the mistakes that led to this heartbreaking story will never be repeated.
However, the proposed legislation simply is not necessary to avoid such a repetition.
The right of any person, without regard to sexual preference or relationship to the decedent, to serve as a designated funeral-planning agent is already expressly guaranteed by Rhode Island Law 5-33.1-4. That statute only requires a simple notarized form naming an agent. By law, that agent's designation must be honored by medical examiners, funeral homes and presumably even the obituary page of The Providence Journal.
Rather than being compassionate, the legislation in question is actually an exploitation of Mr. Goldberg's tragedy by the homosexual-marriage activists in Rhode Island. Despite their claims to the contrary, these bills serve simply as "Trojan Horses" for homosexual-marriage. In California and Connecticut similar strategies were followed by the homosexual-marriage agenda in achieving court ordered decrees that those states fully recognize homosexual-marriage. Those courts found that when rights of domestic partners, under either that nomenclature or as "civil-unions," were expanded beyond the already accepted realm of State and Municipal employees and their benefit arrangements, that the State must by extension fully recognize homosexual marriage. Legal analysis to support this statement has been provided to Speaker of the House Murphy and is available from NOM - Rhode Island upon request.
As such, NOM - Rhode Island respectfully requests that you vote to sustain the Governor's veto both to avoid creating unnecessary law and to not move Rhode Island closer to recognizing homosexual-marriage.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me at [401- redacted] over the holiday weekend.
With warm regards for a Happy New Year,
Christopher C. Plante
National Organization for Marriage - Rhode Island
10 Dorrence Street, Suite 809
Providence, Rhode Island 02903