Updated 11/16/2008 01:07 PM
Thousands Protest Ban On Gay Marriage
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Thousands took to the streets of Lower Manhattan Saturday to protest California's new ban on gay marriage.
The rally at City Hall was just one of 300 events attended by a million people on Saturday, in cities including San Francisco, Chicago, Philadelphia and Boston.
The cheering crowd stretched for blocks along Broadway, as demonstrators waved rainbow-colored flags and held signs and wore buttons that said "I do."
"It's exciting, thrilling," said gay rights supporter Jason Maringola. "One of the most remarkable moments in history and our lives."
California's Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in the state, was approved by voters on November 4.
"By standing here today we send the message we will move over, through and beyond Prop 8," said Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who said she is fighting for her own rights and those of her partner.
"I think we felt like it was our duty to be here as members of the gay community, and as people who were excited to see Obama win and devastated to Prop 8 pass," said Kate Van Dam and Pam Ousley, who hope to one day legally marry.
"When it comes to civil rights, they should be based on decency and equality and not on a popular vote," said protester Kendall Bustamante.
Attendees said the fight was not just restricted to the gay community.
"I might not be homosexual, but that doesn't mean I can't fight for their right to be the same rights I have," said said same-sex marriage supporter Liz Matuno.
Massachusetts and Connecticut are the only states which allow same-sex unions.
All 30 states which have voted on the issue have gone on to put bans in place.