Gay Marriage: Our Generation’s Civil Rights Issue

The push for marriage equality can take a major step forward this year. By Brett Mandel

Each spring, I join with observers around the world to retell an ancient tale and pose a number of questions.  (No, it’s not the story of the Flyers Stanley Cup drought and the questions about finding a cup-winning goalie.)  We tell the story of the biblical exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and read the Passover Haggadah—wondering why this night is different from all other night and singing songs and prayers of gratitude.

The lessons we learn and relearn each year are much on my mind as we approach the coming Primary Election.

Each year, I attend two Passover Seders, the ritual meals that stage the retelling of the story.  With my in-laws, we read and chant the text from start to finish in Hebrew over hours of reading and noshing.  It is incredibly moving to participate just as countless multitudes have done over generations.  My Hebrew is not so strong, so I also appreciate my other Seder, where I join with my family in reading a condensed and mostly English version of the Hagaddah.  We read a Hagaddah first published in 1958 which weaves the story of the Israeli exodus into a tale of the merits of democracy and the promise of America.  It is preachy and campy, but meaningful in the way it captures the post-war enthusiasm that liberty and justice might just triumph.

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