ExtendLove.org to Give Out Free Roses on Valentine's Day

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Valentine's Day sucks if you're single, but New Yorkers are being shown a little extra love this year. ExtendLove.org will be giving out roses at Union Square on Valentine's Day to demonstrate that love should be extended to everyone. ExtendLove.org is launching a new website that tracks and consolidates information on state legislation affecting same-sex marriage and relationship recognition.

Valentine's Day sucks if you're single, but New Yorkers are being shown a little extra love this year. ExtendLove.org will be giving out roses at Union Square on Valentine's Day to demonstrate that love should be extended to everyone. ExtendLove.org is a new website that tracks and consolidates information on state legislation affecting same-sex marriage and relationship recognition.

"On a holiday that celebrates love and relationships, many Americans are reminded that their committed relationships aren't legally recognized, their love dismissed," explained ExtendLove founder Steven Mattson Hayhurst. "Giving out roses on Valentine's Day is a symbolic gesture of extending love to everyone, because the recognition of same-sex couples' love should be extended."

To engage politicians, ExtendLove.org sent roses to presidential candidates with letters urging them to support marriage equality. The website also allows visitors to send roses with personalized letters to their legislators.

"Marriage equality continues to be a controversial topic in contemporary political dialogue. By sending roses, we focus the discussion on the core issue: love," explained Hayhurst. "We hope to flood legislators' offices with roses this year."

"Using roses to convey our message is a bit ironic, however," said Hayhurst. "The rose--an unmistakable symbol of love--is the national flower, yet in the U.S. only one state recognizes same-sex marriages and six others have laws affording full spousal rights to same-sex couples in civil unions or domestic partnerships."

Event Details:

  • 7:30 PM
  • Thursday, February 14, 2008
  • Union Square, southwest corner

Marriage and Relationship Recognition Laws:

  • Only Massachusetts issues marriage licenses to same-sex marriages, which began May 17, 2004.
  • Six states--Vermont (2001), Connecticut (2005), California (2006), New Hampshire (2008), New Jersey (2007), and Oregon (pending court decision)--have laws securing the equivalent of state-level spousal rights to same-sex couples in civil unions or domestic partnerships.
  • Three states--Hawaii (1997), Maine (2004), Washington (2007)--and the District of Columbia (2002) have laws providing partial spousal rights to same-sex couples.

The rose as the national flower:
*In 1986 Reagan signed legislation to make the rose the national flower of the USA. Title 36, Chapter 10, Section 187 United States Code.

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Steven Hayhurst
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