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You’re Not Doing Enough

I’ve become convinced in the last few days that we – gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Californians, and our allies, are not doing nearly enough to protect our basic equality,

Make a promise - vow to vote No on 8.

Make a promise - vow to vote No on 8.

our very basic rights.

Nowhere near enough.

Yesterday a straight friend/acquaintance, a mom of a child who went to the same daycare as mine did, was inspired by the No-on-8 bumper-stickers I was making and giving out, and she made her own, MUCH MORE provocative than mine, put it on her car, and advertised it to all her friends.
(Marriage is for Fags! No on 8)

OMG, like it or not, hate it or not, if many more had her passion, I’d see a bumper sticker or 2 in my favor on the 50-min traffic-packed ride to work, for goodness’ sake!

On my way down route 880, from Berkeley to San Jose, I did see YesOn8 bumper stickers. Saw another on the way from Sac back to Berkeley. The only NoOn8’s I saw were in my own rearview mirror, on my own freakin rear window. (I did see a lawn sign by a farmhouse on a dirt road!)

I know it’s not only about bumper stickers. I don’t really like bumper stickers. I don’t want my car to look like a middle-schooler’s notebook cover. But all those $ we keep sending to our protectors don’t seem to produce anything that I end up seeing in my daily routines. So dressing up my bumper is one thing I can do, one thing you can do. For instance.

It deeply upsets me that Yeson8ers are breaking their own religious commandment not to bear false witness, telling these lies (I don’t say that lightly) about churches being forced to perform same-sex weddings. Catholic priests and Jewish rabbis et al. have never been required to perform marriages that don’t conform to their beliefs. How about Mormon clergy – are they required to perform weddings for LDS members who want to wed a non-LDS sweetheart? Yet we’ve got these energetic folks expressing public dismay coming by my house and calling us, out of the twisted goodness of their wicked hearts.

Of course it upsets me even more that my children, who my husband and I are helping to recover from the traumas they were dealt by a series of (heterosexual) parents and foster parents, are thought by YesOn8ers to be subject to abuse merely by being our children. My kids’ principal, their teachers, and so many others tell us of the growth and healing they see in these kids.

I would say about these freaks that it’s their own problem – that my children and so many of their peers are learning truths that protect them from these vicious lies – but there’s this huge effort to write us out of the constitution and thereby actually make my children less wealthy and psychologically less safeyes, that’s what will happen if this passes.

It upsets me that my civil rights, my status as a full citizen, are allowed to be put to popular vote. How will you feel about putting your civil rights out there for a popular vote? You know it’s going to happen – Prop 8 is priming that ol’ pump. We already did it to our Japanese-American neighbors right here in Berkeley. Are you an Arab who sometimes has to board a plane, In-Sha’-Allah? Did your Jewish grandparents hide in the forest while their good neighbors ravaged their homes, within the law? Remember in the 60s when a person with one black parent couldn’t legally marry someone of the other parent’s race? Remember in the 50s when a woman couldn’t get a bank loan without a husband?

Living through the last 8 Bush years, and now this presidential election, is rough enough , but you are now going to vote on whether I deserve to be a nearly full citizen. I didn’t decide to run for the office of “Valid American Citizen”. Actual Americans are supposed to believe that “all men (sic) are created equal”, though somehow I don’t get to vote back at the rest of you. At least not this time.

Finally: it deeply upsets me that we are, so many of us, the good ones, sitting here feeling weird about this onslaught without doing much.

So… what are you doing?

5 Responses

  1. hugs for that great post

  2. Yes yes and yes! I’m not doing enough! I will ask my Mormon friends what’s the deal?! I won’t avoid controversial conversations that need to happen.
    Love you and yours,

  3. DSP
    Thank you for putting into such snappy and meaningful words what is often trapped inside my fuzzy head. I do like how the number eight is also like the infinity symbol and marriage is supposed to be forever.

    I look forward to other posts. Andrew

  4. David,
    You are definitely right, most of us aren’t doing enough. I can’t do much about California law, but I can speak up in AZ and stop holding back when those tough conversations get started. I am so proud of you and Karl and I just wish somehow we could get your wonderful story in front of all of those uneducated folks who think that your marriage will impact theirs. You have all of my love and support. Mon—

  5. I think your friend is cool.

    Remember the spirit of Stonewall. If you want people to take you seriously, fight like it mattered.

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