New York Senator Ruben Diaz Sr. says
his divorce was wrong like gay marriage.
The 68-year-old Pentecostal minister is
the only Democrat in the Senate opposed to Governor Andrew Cuomo's
plan to make New York the sixth – and most populous – state to
legalize gay marriage.
Diaz is also the chamber's most vocal
opponent. Earlier this year, he rallied supporters in the Bronx to
demonstrate against the bill. And when his lesbian granddaughter,
who wants to marry her girlfriend, joined him on the stage, he told
the crowd he loved her.
Erica Diaz, who was booted out of the
military for violating “Don't Ask, Don't Tell,” questioned
her grandfather's love for her in an op-ed.
“My grandfather … spoke about
marriage equality on a Spanish radio station in April. He was joined
by a priest who said, 'Gay People are worthy of death.' Papa didn't
say anything. I was shattered.”
“You cannot tell someone that you
love them and stay silent when people call for their death,” she
When asked by alternative
weekly The Village Voice about his granddaughter's claims,
Diaz insisted he knew nothing.
“Who called for gay people to be
killed?” he asked the reporter during a telephone interview. “No
one called for gay people to be killed.”
After several attempts to explain that
his granddaughter had written an op-ed on the subject, Diaz bristled:
“I don't know what my granddaughter wrote!”
Diaz also said that he believed divorce
is wrong: “When I got divorced, it was wrong, but marriage is
between a man and a woman.”
“So is being divorced OK with your
“No, it is not OK,” Diaz said.
“Gay marriage is still wrong. This is what I believe.”