My sister called me this afternoon to make sure I saw these two ads for No on Prop 8. Everyone is just so freaking awesome today. I love my friends, my family, and my friends’ friends. Sigh. I hope we win this one.
My friend Tree just forwarded an email to me from a friend of hers soliciting help opposing Prop 8. The message was really special, and even though I have never met this person, her words moved me to tears. I cried tears at the compassion and actions of friends and friends of friends.
It seems that Fridays are full of emotional experiences for me. This time, however, I was not alone in the office. One of my bosses walked up and, completely unrelated, began to say how annoyed he was with the Yes on H8 ads he’s seen on TV and heard on the radio. More tears. He asked what was wrong. And through a choked voice I told him that I’d just read this awesome email. We both laughed at the coincidence.
A few choice words from the email:
“…If there’s one thing I learned in law school, it’s that America decided long ago that “separate but equal” is never equal; it’s just plain wrong. If there’s one thing I learned in divinity school, it’s that Jesus doesn’t hate, and he certainly doesn’t encourage his followers to do so. If there’s one thing I learned in elementary school, it’s that it’s not ok to do nasty things to hurt other people, particularly when they aren’t doing you any harm.
This is not about marriage. This is not about gays. This is not about religion. This is not even about California, so don’t think this doesn’t apply to you if you’re not here. This fight is about a basic principle that our country purports to be proud of: equality. This would be the first time that a constitution was amended to DENY a group equal protection under the law. It baffles me that anybody could think that’s ok.
This is the civil rights fight of our generation, and by a quirk of history, the battle lines have been drawn in California. Both sides agree that this is it: if Prop 8 fails, the war for equality is won and it’ll just be a matter of time before the country follows us (just like when California led the way for interracial marriage). If Prop 8 passes, those who seek to discriminate will be energized to continue.
I honestly believe that our grandchildren will ask us what we did during these years, just like we ask our grandparents what they did in the 50’s and 60’s. I’d like to believe I would have been sitting at those lunch counters and boycotting the bus if I’d been around then. I don’t want to wake up on November 5 wishing I’d done more when I had the chance. Please think about that before closing this message without taking action….”
My friend Tree told me that upon receiving this email, she contributed more money to the cause. And, so have I: I just donated another $100. Please don’t be left wondering on November 5th how much more you could’ve given. DONATE today.
So several of you have emailed me about something happening in California. Now, a lot of crazy stuff goes on in that state and so I may be getting this a little mixed up. Evidently they are wanting to pass a constitutional amendment to make only marriages between a man and a woman valid in California. Talk about an ignorant pot calling a gay kettle black. Somebody really should check the latest divorce rates because clearly many marriages everywhere are not valid.
Now I am an old broad. We didn’t talk about this stuff. I really don’t know why gay people want to get married. It’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Just ask Harold. But I guess if one consenting adult wants to declare their love for another, why would anyone have an issue? I do know one gay couple. Margaret’s nephew and his friend have been together for several years. They are a lovely couple and make me laugh and feel special every time I see them. A couple of years ago Texas passed one of these constitutional amendments. The place where Harold and I go to vote is actually an elementary school in the neighborhood. On that particular election day I was appalled to see all the signs that said “Marriage Should Be Between a Man and Woman Only”. As Harold drove us into the parking lot to vote, I looked out the window at those signs and realized that many parents had driven their kids to school that morning driving past those very signs. I wonder if any of them had the same reaction I did – those signs reminded me of the little signs we used to have back in the day that said “Whites Only”. Think about it.
Lady Leblanc has a good reminder of why we must keep up our efforts through election day. Reports are coming in from all over the “liberal” Bay Area of Yes on 8 folks staging demonstrations. Like this one, for example, in Oakland where the Yes folks were simulating sex between a woman and a broomstick, and chanting “USA not US-GAY!” (Click here for the Flickr set which includes several videos of hate-filled, aggravating behavior.)
We can’t give up yet. We must prevail so hatred like this is not enshrined in California’s constitution.
Comments Off on Prop 8: Need A Reminder of Why We Fight?
Democrats totaled 43.9 percent of all voters, compared to 32.3 percent for Republicans, the latter representing the lowest GOP percentage in any of the last four presidential elections, the September statistics show.
Unfortunately, there are still plenty of Democrats who are deeply religious, confused by the Prop, or just don’t like gays. My bet is that this will still be a close one.
My high school classmate Sara recently posted to our class Yahoo group that she got married to her partner of 12 years. She also implored our classmates to vote No on Prop 8. I felt compelled to write too. I haven’t ever officially come out to my classmates. The few that I kept in touch with during college and afterwards certainly know I’m gay. But that’s a small number. So, I felt it might be powerful for the class valedictorian to come out of the closet and ask them to vote No on Prop 8. Here’s my letter:
Sara: Congratulations on your marriage! It’s always such fantastic news when someone joins together with the one they love. And, thanks for bringing up this important issue.
I also feel very strongly about Prop 8. I’d like to echo Sara, and ask you all to vote NO on Proposition 8.
This proposition is not simply about marriage — It’s about discrimination. If Californian’s pass Prop 8 next week, we would literally be removing rights from a group of people and classifying them as “lesser than” straight people.
As of today, Sara has the legal right to marry the woman her heart belongs to. And someday, I hope to marry the man I love. But if Proposition 8 passes, both Sarah and I would lose that right.
I certainly understand that some churches do not accept same-sex marriage. And to be clear: those churches will never have to marry two people of the same sex. But at City Hall, the government should not discriminate or prevent two people who love each other from legally marrying each other just because they happen to be gay or lesbian.
There was a time when people of different color were not allowed to be legally married because it was deemed untraditional and unnatural. The truth of the matter is, that law was simply a means of discriminating against blacks. No one today could even imagine saying to an African American friend, “No, you can’t get married to a white person because that’s unnatural.” Why should we say such a similar thing to our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters today? It was wrong then and it’s wrong now.
I hope you’ll think about your gay family members, your gay friends, Sara, me, and anyone else you know who would have their rights stripped away if Proposition 8 passes. I encourage you to side with equality and fairness in voting NO on Prop 8.
Former U.S. Prosecutor Carol Newman, Boeing Rocket Scientist Sherry Green and Vietnam Veteran Paul Fredrix and others talk about their role in protecting the freedoms of their fellow Americans, then ask their fellow Californians to defend their freedoms by voting “NO” on Proposition 8.
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