When marriage equality was passed in New York state last year, it was greeted by supporters and the public alike as a miracle. Considering the violent opposition that exists to marriage equality here and across the country, and the fact that a vote on the matter failed in the legislature in 2009, it was hard to see its passage in 2011 as nothing less than magical.
But nothing is that simple.
In fact, the battle for marriage equality in New York and across the country has a been a highly coordinated and very well-financed effort by a vast array of supporters. It includes gay right activists, celebrities, billionaires, politicians, and any number of "movers and shakers." Even straight people and Republicans have been involved, making the alliances and "strange bedfellows" of the effort even more diverse. They came together, used their power and influence, engaged the public to generate support, outwitted their reactionary opposition, and won.
Here's how it happened.