home | search | your stars | faQs | astrologers | consultants | gift books | research | articles | links | copyright | donate | email | me
QUEER STARS > | actors | artists | fashion/designers | filmmakers | politicians | singers/musicians | sportspeople | thinkers | ETC

Vermont Civil-Unions Bill

Chart for the Signing of the Bill by the Governor of Vermont

"I believe that because until every human being is treated with dignity, because they are a human being, and not because they belong in some category, then every American and every Vermonter is poorer because of that. This bill enriches not just the very small percentage of gay and lesbian Vermonters who take advantage of this partnership and get the rights that the court has determined that they are due. I believe this bill enriches all of us, as we look with new eyes at a group of people who have been outcasts for many, many generations." -- Gov. Howard Dean, Rutland Herald 27 April 2000
astro-chart for signing of the civil unions bill in vermont

DATA: 26 April 2000, 13:30 EDT (1:30 PM), Montpelier, VT, USA (44n16 72w35). RR: B. Sy Scholfield [copyright] quotes "Dean signs civil-unions bill into law." Rutland Herald (on~line edition 27 April 2000), in which reporter Diane Derby quotes Governor Howard B. Dean: "'At about 1:30 this afternoon [on the 26th] with my staff I signed the civil unions bill.'"
FEATURES: PERSONALIZED : Aquarius NEPTUNE (conjunct Moon, square Sun), Aquarius URANUS (on Descendant), Taurus JUPITER-SATURN-MARS (on MC). PATTERNS: KITE (GRAND TRINE: Ascendant - Pluto / Chiron - Mercury / Venus + Uranus / Descendant); BOOMERANG (YOD: Uranus sextile Mercury / Venus, all quincunx 2nd House cusp, boomerang to 8th House cusp); BOOMERANG (YOD: Mars sextile Moon's Node, both quincunx 5th House cusp, boomerang to 11th House cusp); T-SQUARE (Uranus opposite Ascendant, both square Saturn / Part of Fortune / Mars). SHAPE: LOCO~MOTIVE (Pluto in Sagittarius in 4th House leads). CHINESE SIGN: Metal Dragon. MUTUAL RECEPTION: VENUS & MARS.

First Partnership Page
(First Gay Marriage)

text © 2000, 2011
Sy Scholfield

"On December 20, 1999 the Vermont Supreme Court ruled in Baker v. Vermont that same-sex couples are “entitled under Chapter I, Article 7, of the Vermont Constitution to obtain the same benefits and protections afforded by Vermont law to married opposite-sex couples”. The Court did not rule on whether Vermont was required to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but suggested that the legislature could enact a parallel licensing scheme affording the same substantial benefits as marriage to same-sex couples. After very contentious debate, the legislature followed the Court’s suggestion and passed H.B. 847, which was signed on April 26, 2000 by Governor Howard Dean. The law went into effect on July 1, 2000. Vermont thus became the third U.S. state (after Hawaii and California) to offer legal status to same-sex couples, and the first to offer a civil union status encompassing the same legal rights and responsibilities of marriage." "Same-sex marriage in Vermont" @ Wikipedia

This landmark bill sees the first state in the largest democracy in the Western world legislate certain legal rights for same sex couples. The Vermont Bill entitles gays and lesbians to the legal rights and benefits of marriage, through licences called "civil unions" for same-gender couples that mirror heterosexual marriages. And it’s about time!

How are gay and lesbian relationships specifically represented in the chart?

Prominent Uranus
Uranus –the Queer planet-- moves through its own sign Aquarius (or should that be “Aqueerius”?!) for a period of about 7 years in a recurring cycle about every 84 years. During such periods the campaign for gay and lesbian rights should move in leaps and bounds. As we are also approaching the Age of Aquarius, The Civil Unions Bill has arrived as an expression of the energies of Uranus as it moves through Aquarius this time. Not surprisingly, in the chart for the signing of the Bill, Uranus is not only found in its own sign but also in the Libra decanate of Aquarius (20-30 degrees) which is associated with love partnerships. The latter effect is tripled because the queer planet also rules the 7th House which is traditionally the domain of marriage and relationships, AND it is placed on the Descendant or 7th House cusp itself. As such, it is said to be "angular," meaning that its effects will be more prominent than those of other planets in the chart. Moreover, Uranus is also the common planet in several patterns: a Yod/Boomerang, a Kite, and a T-Square.

The Yod / Boomerang Pattern
While queer Uranus is positioned on the 7th House cusp of relationships and marriage, it also sextiles Venus, the planet of love, which is placed on the cusp of the 9th House of freedom and expansion. The energies of these two planets fuse and flow easily through this aspect. Hence, the relative ease with which the Bill was passed into law. However, these planets both quincunx the Virgoan 2nd House cusp to form a Yod, which boomerangs back to the Uranus/Venus midpoint on the Piscean 8th House cusp. The axis between the Yod pointer and the Boomerang point generally indicates difficulties, but positive resolution for those willing to meet the challenges ahead. There are no planets on these points, respectively placed on the 2nd and 8th cusps, so we look to the rulers of these Houses. The Second House refers to value systems and personal finances. The 8th House refers to sexuality, joint finances and inheritances. Obviously, property and inheritance rights will be important issues associated with the Bill.

Here, Pisces is placed on the 8th House cusp, and Neptune, its ruler is the only planet in aspect to the Moon and Sun. . .

Neptune and the Luminaries
Neptune is the planet associated with spirituality, while the Moon and Sun respectively represent females and males. Apart from their inter-aspects, these planets are all otherwise unaspected in the chart. Here, we have the positions of the planets for the moment when the first State in the world's largest democracy granted same sex marriage rights but there is no aspect between Uranus and the luminaries. Understandably therefore, the Bill clearly has its limitations placed on gays and lesbians. As Gov. Dean pointed out, the bill creates a parallel set of legal rights, benefits and obligations for gays and lesbians who enter into civil unions, but explicitly defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. However, Uranus is very prominent (as explained above) and it disposits the close conjunction of the Moon and Neptune because they are in Aquarius (and the Aquarian decanate of Aquarius for that matter). As we have seen, Uranus also sextiles Venus. Venus itself disposits the Sun because it is in Taurus. Both luminaries are therefore indirectly influenced by Uranian energies, so limited domestic partnerships for same sex couples has been allowed. But this is not just about nearly "equal rights" for gays and lesbians – the Civil Unions Bill may be noted in history as an important step in the campaign for spiritual unions between people of the same sex. This is accounted for by the isolated contacts between Neptune and the luminaries.

The Kite
With Uranus linked by aspects to the planets in the Grand Trine Pattern (Ascendant – Chiron – Venus), a Kite is formed. The Grand Trine allows a free flow of energies. The Ascendant represents the “face” and the “personality” of the subject of the chart. Because the Ascendant is in Leo which is associated with masculinity, and the chart is for a legislative Bill, many will see the beginning of Civil Unions for gays and lesbians in America through its effects on the masculinity of the nation. Chiron, “the Healer,” and Venus, “the Lover,” are involved in the Grand Trine so this Bill should bring about a lot of healing for both same sex lovers and masculinist heterosexual males. The Kite is an auspicious pattern. As Uranus is added to the Grand Trine to form the Kite, it indicates the surprising ease with which the Bill passed into law and with which the healing process between queers and straights in America may take another step. By the same token, the Kite also reminds us that activists should be vigilant in their campaigns to bring about more change. The Kite flies freely but can get caught up in the trees if people don’t maintain the direction of its course. Especially during major winds of change.

How does this chart indicate recognition of same sex marriages through the laws of the State?

The Uranus – Ascendant – Mars T-Square
The opposition between Uranus and the Ascendant forms part of a T-Square to Mars, as well as the backbone of the Kite. The aspect of Uranus-on-Descendant opposite Ascendant indicates clearly the challenges ahead for those who wish to bring queer Uranian marriages to the forefront of American (and Western) consciousness. Venus and Chiron add wings to this backbone forming a Kite that should keep this campaign progressing. However, the T-Square to Mars is a more challenging apect…

The government can be pictured through the Tenth House. Here, Mars in Taurus and the Tenth House cusp it conjuncts, are ruled by Venus in Aries. This is an extremely good arrangement because these planets are in semi-sextile (30 degrees) and said to be in "mutual reception;" the latter term meaning that each planet appears in the Sign ruled by the other. Mars represents warrior power, assertiveness and militancy and Venus stands for love, peace and harmony. They are respectively placed in Taurus and Aries so the effect of Mars is softened and that of Venus is strengthened. This configures the culmination of an important phase of gay and lesbian activism for the state recognition of queer love rights. As David Elliot, a spokesperson for the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, has said, "Our committed, loving [lesbian and gay] relationships deserve recognition by the state." The placement of Mars (assertion) in Taurus (of love) on the zenith (recognition by the state) indicates that there has been a long struggle for the recognition of same sex marriage by the governments of the USA. This Mars also leads the Loco~motive distribution of the planets around the chart so this struggle should continue to be assertive but peaceful.

What about future campaigns for same sex marriage and property rights in the USA?

Mars – Moon’s North Node – 5th Cusp – 11th Cusp Boomerang
The continuation of the campaign for recognition of lesbian and gay marriages by American states and countries beyond Vermont, should progress through peaceful and tenacious campaigning because Mars in Taurus on the MC sextiles the North Node of the Moon in Cancer on the 12th House cusp. The Moon's North Node indicates the future while Cancer is associated with the mood of the general public. However, Mars and the Moon's Node also form a Yod with the Sagittarian 5th House cusp, indicating that there may be tense differences among the public about what the bill means for "gay families." And a Boomerang pattern is formed with the 11th House cusp that coincides with the Uranus discovery degree of 25° Aquarius. Clearly, different sides of American politics are polarized on the issue, but because the Uranus discovery degree is so involved queer issues will keep arising until they are resolved.

Why will this Bill bring about healing?

As ruler of the 5th House cusp, Jupiter (freedom) in the 9th House (of the legal system) quincunxes and disposits the conjunction of Pluto (sexual) and Chiron (healing) which forms the tail of the Loco~motive distribution of planets around the chart. This indicates that Jupiter-propelled 5th House matters (of freedom to legally form gay families) will be the end focus of debates about the Bill. And these debates will be spurred on by issues combining (homo and hetero)sexuality (Pluto) and healing (Chiron). This is not only about the healing brought to gays and lesbians through legal recognition of their loving sexual partnerships but about the treatment of homophobia (which is an illness) amongst much of the heterosexual population of America (and the rest of the world). The healing in private of these sexuality issues is significant because apart from the quincunx to Jupiter and the wide sextile with Neptune, health-conscious Chiron is the only planet that aspects hidden-away Pluto, and this aspect is in the form of a close conjunction. As Gov. Dean said after the signing of the Bill,

Certainly this is the most intense public discourse I think that we’ve seen in this state. And I think, starting today, and the reason I chose to sign this bill in private, is because the healing process now begins. I choose to sign this bill because I fundamentally believe it’s the right thing to do, and I also fundamentally believe that in the long run it’s the right thing to do for the state of Vermont and the united States of America. . . There is much to celebrate about this bill. Those celebrations, as the subject matter of this bill, will be private. They will be celebrated by couples and their families, by people making commitments to each other. (Healing)


Associated Press. “Healing Begins Now, Dean Says After Signing Bill.” Rutland Herald (online edition) 27 April 2000.

Derby, Diane. ”Dean Signs Civil-Unions Bill Into Law.” Rutland Herald (online edition) 27 April 2000.

Schmaler, Tracy, and Frederick Bever. “Law Praised, Attacked Around Nation.” Rutland Herald (online edition) 27 April 2000.