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No on Prop 8

NoonProp8

I am not a particularly political person, and have never before used this blog as a platform from which to expound my views on matters other than hedonistic ones, but let's just say this issue is a teensy bit important to me. You see, thanks to recent changes in California law, I was finally able to marry my fiancé of 15 years, and that was a very good thing indeed. Literally dozens of our coupled friends have done the same in the past few weeks. And gee, it would be great if others could continue doing so after November 4.

Proposition 8 is a particularly hateful ballot initiative that would amend the California constitution to eliminate the now-given right for same-sex couples to marry. That's right. A constitutional amendment to discriminate against a specific segment of the population. Fun!

Of course the fundies are all over this shit, whining and moaning to "protect traditional marriage," whatever that means. Cuz you know, upstanding citizens like Britney Spears and Elizabeth Taylor and John McCain have unimpeachable records when it comes to marriage. Heck, even my father, heaven rest his soul, married four times. I'm pretty sure this falls outside the parameters of "traditional," but somehow the Mormons didn't get their panties in a twist about it. 

No, this is different, because the Bible, which was obviously written by God himself on the universe's first IBM Selectric, supposedly had a few things to say about homosexuality. Sure, those same words have been mutated through a few millennia of translation across multiple languages, but whatev. 

A favorite supporting verse in Leviticus says "men shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind, that's an abomination." So, by that logic, we should amend the constitution only to ban marriage between men; lesbian marriages are perfectly OK according to the bible. Look it up! And anyway, if they want men to stop having sex with each other, shouldn't marriage be the solution?

Pro-8 ads have also been pulling the old pearl-clutching "Won't someone think of the children???" trope, saying that schools will be teaching grade-schoolers about gay marriage. Aside from the fact that, according to the State Superintendent of Schools, that's a lie, here's what I think: Good! Teach children the virtues of equality. This is about human rights, not sexuality.

I am far from alone on this position. My work buddy Kristy, herself newly affianced (to a man, but I'll let that slide), admonishes:

If you think the scary gays should have one set of rules and the straight folks should have another, I will remind you that "separate but equal…is inherently unequal." Seriously. I am not even making that up.

Her friend Beth has her own extremely articulate plea, debunking the arguments:

Marriage Between a Man and a Woman is “Traditional.” You know what else is traditional? Slavery. Also? Subservient women,
racial separatism, spousal abuse, peeing outdoors, and sitting in the
dark once the sun goes down. Happily, along with tradition, there’s
also progress, both in technical inventions and in societal
understanding and conventions.

Lesbian comedienne Heather Gold wants you to save her marriage:

There's nothing in the law
that forces any religion to recognize my marriage. I'm Jewish, and you
don't need to share my beliefs. I don't need to share yours. But we
need to share the same Constitution. Seriously, we have so many bigger
problems in California we could be spending our time solving together.
Recession anyone? I am married right now. Is it hurting you or your marriage?

Melissa Ford at BlogHer (where I work) chimes in as well:

Frankly, this vote in California scares me.

Because once you start down that slippery slope of saying a group
isn't protected under the Constitution, it opens the door for other
groups to be discriminated against. And people have fought too long and
too hard to have equal rights given to all citizens in America to move
backwards towards restricting rights.

Mombian has organized a blog event to get the word out, urging bloggers to speak out against Prop 8 on or by October 29. I'm just doing my part here. [Update: As of 7:30 October 30, there are 413 posts on the list. Yay!!]

So if you are registered to vote in the State of California, please vote No on Prop 8. Vote for equality. Vote for civil rights. Vote to keep the government out of all our bedrooms. Vote because we shouldn't have to do this in the first place. And vote so my mother's new business, A Little to the Left, selling greeting cards to friends and family of gays and lesbians, can flourish.

(You hear that, Republicans? I am promoting small business and reduction of governmental involvement. Think about it.)

  • I committed a crime yesterday. I removed the stack of yes on 8 fliers from the rack at the rec center and buried them in the “icky” garbage in the women’s restroom.

  • I joined up, though I’d already posted on my blog a few days ago: http://www.thomwatson.com/2008/10/help-defeat-prop-8-its-personal.html

  • Oh, dear Sean. I am voting no, count on me.
    BUT:
    “comedienne”??
    “but I’ll let that slide”??
    C’mon, dude. If it’s equality you’re looking for, dish some out yourself.

  • Shoot. I hope we’re not enemies now.

  • CL: Right on sistah! Fight the power.
    Thom: Thanks for adding to the collective voice!
    CC: Duly chastized … and of course we’re not enemies.

  • Mom

    No one is more in your corner than I am, Sean. And thanks for the plug for my business. My cards are not just greeting cards. I am making a political statement with them. I am trying to show people that same-sex marriage is not only acceptable, but normal. And that it is something we should all embrace and celebrate. The day you and DPaul got married was one of the happiest days of my life. It was wonderful to see you both so happy and to be legally recognized as a married couple.

  • Oh, yay.
    And! Your mom is ossum.

  • Wow, your mom rocks!
    Standing in solidarity with you from down in Florida, fighting our own brand of hate.

  • EB

    I mean I don’t get what the hullabaloo is about. I mean it’s clear. Child molesters and murderers should be allowed to marry (while in prison mind you) but gays of course shouldn’t be able to. Duh! Also, since marriage is for procreation purposes… you know we’re all gearing up for Prop 9…. no marriage for the infertile heteros. I mean we have GOT to protect traditional marriage! Fall in line homo!

  • CC and Deb: Yes, my mom is awesome. I’ll keep her a little longer.
    EB: Ma’am yes ma’am!

  • BRILLIANT!! Well said!!!! You need to spread this message like wild-fire the next few days – make a video or something and put it on YouTube. We did one for a client, recently to help veto a bill in California & it helped!

  • Aimee

    Do you mind if I repost on MySpace, giving you credit of course? Your post is so well written, personal, and with great viewpoint/quotes. 8 is truly is unbelievable and most troubling.

  • What a fantastic post! I now live in Oregon but was born and grew up mostly in San Francisco and Marin. I wish I could vote no on this with you all! It is infinitely ridiculous as well as evil (if one can allow the two words to cohabit) that anyone cares so much about who is able to marry and who is not and would strive to prevent people who love each other from being publicly recognized for their partnership and receive the same benefits that everyone else does.
    Didn’t it used to be illegal for inter-racial couples to marry too?
    I love what Beth has to say about it.

  • Chez US: Oh I am so not camera-ready. 🙂
    Aimee: Of course! Spread the word. So I don’t have to go on camera.
    Angelina: Damn right — check this video out: http://tinyurl.com/5dpuoc

  • Tea

    Amen.
    I’ve remained a Calif voter so I could fight this one. Such a no-brainer. It’s about rights and discrimination, everyone needs to be equal (even if you and DPaul are a cut above:-)

  • Such a well written post. Your description of ‘normal’ marriages really hits the nail on the head: marriage is about love and commitment..and the fundamental rights of ALL human beings!

  • Miriah Truluck

    I am straight and my roommate Kerry is not. When I think about my future I think about getting married but Kerry always just looks sad and says that will never happen for me…you know if California and England (who still has a Queen for christs sake) have passed laws in favor of everyone getting an equal chance to marry then I think it may come down to NC sooner or later, maybe before K has to relocate to Cali! I hope that it gets voted down and everyone can keep their rights so maybe others will be afforded the same rights!!!

  • Charles Hendricks

    you know….I’ve noticed that most people that believe that homosexuality is normal also think its okay to kill human babies, save whales and they believe that they evolved from monkeys. On that thought if evolution where a fact then how could homosexuality have survived? In reality we where created by a loving God who we have decided to turn our backs on and go our own way, if you think you were born with these tendencies then you are buying into a lie. Be an individual and make some choices based on facts not on what other fools feed you, and please stop quoting the Bible and bending it to say what you want, you mislead people by doing that, try reading the whole thing in context first. Since you quoted Leviticus 18:22 try reading Romans 1:18-32. so heres a thought….try taking all the same sex married “couples” to there own little community and not introduce any heterosexual “activity” for say sixty or so years and see how well you do, oh and no artificial insemination or adoption either folks!!!! If it wasn’t for heterosexual marriage you wouldn’t be here!!

  • OK, let’s break this down.
    No, I don’t personally want to kill babies. Or any living thing. But nor do I feel that it is my place to tell another person what to do with her body.
    Yes, I think it’s OK to save whales. Is that wrong? Or do they deserve to die for some biblical reason?
    Yes, I think humanity evolved from apes, as all life forms evolved from others. This is established scientifically, and if you do not believe in evolution, you have your head very deep in the sand.
    Homosexuality is not unique to humans. It has been observed in many species and may exist in all for all we know; we just cannot see what every creature is doing at all times. It is part of the tapestry of variation of life, along with skin, hair and eye color, or left-handedness, or height.
    And for your little experiment, let’s try another: Let’s take all the heterosexuals who are incapable of reproduction, such as seniors or the infertile, or choose not to reproduce and put them in a colony. Since they are also doomed to extinction, I guess we should forbid them from marrying. Try passing that law.
    I have no desire to forbid heterosexual marriage; I am only interested in the expansion of human rights, not the reduction. Anytime rights are taken away, society takes a step backwards. I prefer to move forward.

  • I just have to add a comment to Charles Hendricks…
    Umm…even if you put all of “them” into a community, they will in NO WAY disappear, as more of “them” are born every day!
    You can no more pick your sexuality than you can choose your skin color.

  • in theknow

    Charles Hendricks from new york. we know where u live and who u are.u r a fake