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Slapped 5 Million Times

Nice shiner!
Nice shiner? Thanks, neighbor!

Too dramatic?

How to give a hint of the way it feels to be slapped by 5,668,960 people?
Just over 1 of every 2 people I pass on the street, in stores, malls, restaurants, just over 50% of these people actually voiced their opinion:
  • that the stream of heterosexual parents and foster parents who maltreated my children, to the point of losing them, are more deserving of the basics of citizenship than are the adoptive parents who are helping these children heal?
  • that should I die first, my husband does not deserve my social security check, but the money I paid in, all these years, should go to subsidize the golden years of people who neither know him, support him, nor love him?
  • that I deserve to have paid the extra $20,000 in federal and state taxes since being hired by my current employer, compared to a straight co-worker sitting next to me, because I could have kept it if only I’d pretended to love some woman and tricked her into marrying me nonetheless?
  • that in this case and in this country, someone else’s religion should dictate laws limiting my wealth and well-being?
  • that all men are created equal except for homosexuals?
Just over 1 of every 2 people I pass on the street… and I should keep my head up, my spine straight. I should get out of bed and walk among them. I have little choice.
A request – how about you join me in showing how it feels to live in a land where the minority must fear the majority’s whim.

Too dramatic?
The awkward self-indulgence of painting my face (or yours) is minor, I assure you, compared to the grievances above. There’s something deeply wrong in being slammed and showing no sign – or being allowed the luxury of going to church on Sunday, feeling that you’ve hurt no-one last Tuesday. I just don’t know how I can walk out there showing no wound when I and my family have been so deeply hurt.

To those of you who spoke up for me, even once, I thank you deeply.
(Kristen, you even registered just to vote for my equality.)
-To those of you who think that Barack Obama believes that I deserve equal rights despite his stating that I don’t, to keep from killing his chances at victory, you owe me thanks big-time. The victors in this election, myself included, sold me out. My family’s well-being was the price for your victory.
-To those Californians who did nothing to help me, you can go to hell for a while.
-To those Californians who mistakenly voted yes for want of having paid attention, you can go to hell and stay there.
To those non-Californians who sent their money and lies to my state to inspire fear and hatred instead of strength and goodness, you are my hell.

13 Responses

  1. Sounds like you need a body guard. That looks really bad. I agree that laws are created by religion and that there are people out there who do not pay attention when they vote. Just remember the trials and tribulations that people like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. went through, and that things are on there way to changing. I don’t believe your elected president has sold you out (unless I read that wrong), he has only been president-elect for a week and a weekend. I believe things in this country are changing and that one day people, regardless of sexuality, will share those ever coveted words in the decleration o independance.

  2. Thank you David for so eloquently saying what I have been feeling for nearly a week – why I just don’t feel like crying from joy and dancing in the street because we elected BaRockStar and now everything’s going to be OK. As long as the government has the role of cop for stupid people’s tiny little limited version of god (the white guy who sits in a throne on a cloud and wears an american flag pin on his lapel or maybe now that we have all evolved so much it’s a mixed race guy), I have some serious issues with it and with the stupid people and while I’m at it, with that god.

  3. Davey, please tell me you didn’t literally get a black eye. But I agree this whole debacle is a black eye on the state of California just as it was in Oregon a few years ago when court-sanctioned marriages were made illegal by a similar measure. I am absolutely dismayed.
    For years my thinking has been that the State should ONLY issue and recognize “civil unions” for any couple – gay or straight (and maybe this right should be extended to polygamous unions as well, as long as all parties enter at their own will. After all we have ways to divvy up civil benefits to serially married straight couples.). Everyone’s own precious definitions of marriage would be preserved, when a token “marriage” license could only be issued by a church, and each church should define marriage as they see fit.
    Does my idea work or am I missing something important?

  4. my dearest david,

    you have been on my mind so much lately. i am sure my own outrage and frustration in no way compares to yours. i have been telling my students (did you know i teach high school now?) that i would not have been able to marry my own husband 50 years ago if the laws had been left up to poplular opionion. i hope it gives them something to think about as i try not to preach in the classroom. i hope they grow up to be more loving of their neighbor than their own parents.

  5. Hi Posney,

    That’s such an acurate visual articulation of how I felt last week. Bruised. I was, am so elated about Obama’s election and yet bruised by fellow Californians. But I do have hope, my mom, my father-in-law, my uncle (all senior citizens) voted no-on 8. Once again, we as a group holding, embodlying, deep contradictions. Sitting with it. Love to you.

  6. Hi David,

    The ongoing protests and the lawsuits are important. I was thinking about more practical stuff that can be done:

    Should citizens who are not granted full right pay full taxes? I do not think you should. In California there seems to be 5,668,960 people and their families willing to pick up the tab for you. Can a proposition be writen for next election including this?

    I am willing to have my marriage being anulled (even though I want to stay married) or withdrawing all my savings from my bank in solidarity with your cause. Can this be organized? Are 5,173,113 people and their families who voted NO, willing to join in a protest? Can other avenues which represent a cost to the federal government and the financial system be organized and proposed?

    I am willing to do so much more than talking to people or using your stickers in my car to honor and protect your family (I should not need to do this!!). I think all who voted NO should be willing to jump in that bus and take that seat. And it has to work, is it not what we have just learned?



  7. Thanks for saying what I’ve been feeling. The day after Prop 8 passed I had trouble leaving the house to go to work. How could I sit on a train full of people who voted to deny me civil rights? I wanted to wear an armband like Jews were forced to do in Nazi Germany. I wanted people to see what they did to me when they voted me into second-class citizenship and that history has shown us it’s never right when classes of people are categorically denied their civil rights. We have to keep up the protests. It’s not about gay rights. It’s about civil rights and this should matter to EVERYBODY.

  8. I wish there was one advert against prop 8, actually focused on same-sex relationship and originally tried to touch the hearts of people! Most adverts I got to see on TV were beating around the bush/ coy/ preachy/ indignant about how “it” is “wrong” and “unnecessary”, while not even being clear about what is the “it” they were referring to, most of the times. Unlike the chickens, that managed to speak for themselves much better and more importantly had a better chance!…If haven’t yet managed to drive you mad, I am beginning to wonder how fair is direct democracy: do people really know what’s best for them and the society, even if it is they who elect the lawmakers in the first place? Does the fact that they have the power to elect really mean they can “make” laws?

  9. An excerpt from friend Holly:

    I was so sickened the day after election when I heard some jurist/lawyer types comparing this to the Brown v Board of Education. The courts are supposed to protect the rights of the minority. Why the hell did we ever vote on this initiative anyway?

    If there had been an intiative after Brown v Board, of course, we would have continued to have segregated schools.

    But 50 years later we know how wrong that is that it isn’t even a question in anyone’s minds. I know that’s how it will be eventually on marriage, I justh hope it doesn’t take 50 years, or even 5 years, to get it sorted out.

  10. Hi Dave,
    I’m glad I read to the end to see that you still have talent as an artist.

    As great as I think it is that so many people got out to vote, I think if you don’t have a clue what’s going on, you should stay home. If you don’t have an opinion on an issue, don’t vote on it. Would voting no on this proposition have hurt or cost people anything? I’m sure many of the people who say you’re immoral for being gay don’t know how many of their co-workers, neighbors, friends, relatives, and just people they count on every day are gay and fighting to have the same rights they have.

    Also, religion shouldn’t have anything to do with human and civil rights, but I think too many people are blind followers. Too many Americans are sheep. If my clergyman tells me that gay marraige is wrong, I have to listen to him. I’ll go to hell if I go against the church.

    Anyway, I’m glad you don’t really have a black eye.
    Stay cool,

  11. Wow! What an absolutely accurate picture (worth 1000 words!) but please tell me that’s not new?

    Now, to add to add my blog: I, too, felt no joy in Mudville after the election. Try as I might to think the White House will bring change, I thin I will continue to find more change in my couch cushions! And, that said, our president’s JOB is to protect our constitutional rights. Our state government’s job is to protect our state constitutional rights. And this election they did a CRAPPY job.

    So, WHY were they all re-elected? Where IS our anger? Where IS our democracy? We scratch our heads at why this issue is even on the ballot. We get angry that it passed. We kick. We scream. Then we also vote back in the very people that did not stand up for us to protect our rights.

    So, I ask myself, Self? What do I do now? I just got “married” under the old school constitution but my license reads “Groom” and “Bride”. Do I get that changed? Does that show solidarity? Do I annul and re-marry in a county that uses the “right terms”? How long do I keep the NO on 8 sign in my yard? How many times do I glare at my neighbors who take pride in the Yes on 8 stickers still plastered to their windows? Do I want to share in their world of fear and hate and seek revenge? Do I find love in my heart and try to spread it around? Does that feel fluffy or is that the most important thing I can do?

    And right now, I don’t know what to do. All I do know is that love WILL win. We have come so far from “traditional” marriage in which I am considered property of the same worth as a few goats or cows. All I do know is that I cannot just throw up my hands and say “did the best I could”. All I do know is that I cannot let fear breed hate.

    Love WILL win, posnie! Just you keeping holding hands and spreading love! (And, maybe buy a steak for that eye?)

    I love you lots and just know we ARE fighting up in our little republicanvilles in northern california!

  12. fantastic! beautiful! powerful! insane… when the big one goes down, you can all move in with us up in the mtns and we’ll happily take care of each other, OFF THE GRID! we love you and keep it coming! please give a HUGE HUGE hug to my Zetroc buddy~

  13. […] Along with marriage come many financial benefits, such as the option to file your income taxes jointly.  As and example, for Steve and I, we will pay a Fag Tax of approximately $5000 this year because we cannot file jointly, despite being legally married.  The fag tax doesn’t hit all homosexuals, but we will be hit especially hard.  There are a long list of other benefits that heterosexual couples take for granted, but I am a second class citizen because I can’t access them.  Some of our best friends, Karl and David, have 2 children, and they will be hit especially hard by this situation. Please take a look at some of the families that your church has taken this opportunity to smack in the face (and, BTW, that is make-up): https://strikefour.wordpress.com/2008/11/10/slapped-5-million-times/ […]

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