"He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
WARNING: EXTREME CYNICISM AHEAD -
An observation on the occasion that sparked this debate is that the Gay Rights folks spent big bucks to elect legislatures to pass this bill. It was defeated by a comfortable margin. If you wish to be really cynical then you start to think - what if it had passed? Then the NY Senators who did not just get re-elected with nice contributions would probably lose potential future contributions based on this issue. So . . . the ones who took the money vote yes, some others vote yes to show their support for future gay rights contributions and votes, and the ones that still have 5 years to re-election help defeat it so they can milk it in the future too.
Back to name calling now . . .
So perhaps it is overly cynical (and I believe it is) but it could be realistic too.