I want to publicly thank the state legislators and the governor for standing up for equal rights for all Mainers when they passed the gay marriage bill. I realize that this is a challenging issue for some people, and it is to their credit that legislators viewed the issue as a matter of equal civil rights, not religion. The law, reflecting constitutional guarantees, is simply a matter of providing the many legal benefits of marriage to all Maine families.
This law ensures the civil rights of those who love differently than others, and also explicitly protects the freedom of religions to pursue the marriage practices of their choosing.We should all practice tolerance toward each other.
The new law will protect the civil liberties and religious freedom of all, and I urge voters to uphold it if it comes to a referendum vote.
Susan Hayward, Lewiston

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