Kate Kendell


February 2005 marked the one-year anniversary of what has been dubbed the Winter of Love. It has been impossible for me not to ruminate a bit on what was happening in San Francisco a year ago. There have been many moments when I have been very pleased that the National Center for Lesbian Rights is based in San Francisco. One of those moments was February 6, 2004 when I got a call from Mayor Gavin Newsom's Chief of Staff informing me that on the following Monday morning the mayor was going to begin issuing marriage licenses to lesbian and gay couples in San Francisco. I would like to say that I was immediately ecstatic and supportive, but I was very concerned about the ramifications of the Mayor's action- particularly for our colleagues in Massachusetts who were then dealing with the fallout from the recent Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling. My colleagues in Massachusetts and across the country shared my reservations and concerns, but many were also enamored with the idea. And to the legal and political activists in Massachusetts, the idea held great allure. Finally, that state would not be the lone front on which the right to marry was being contested.

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