Tuesday, May 26, 2009

" ... and it breaks my heart"

With all the division in this country the California Supreme Court has today managed to create one more divide.

18,000 couples who were married in the brief shining moment between the legalization of gay marriage and the vile vote for Prop 8 will remain married BUT ...

The California Supreme Court upheld Prop 8.

Imagine explaining to your child that his friend's parents are married but you are not and you're not allowed to.

The decision just came down a few moments ago but I have already heard some talking head from some "Christian" group belching forth about how the court had no choice but to uphold the "overwhelming" voice of the people.

Asshat - it was 52%. Get your head out of your - uh - hat - and do some 3rd grade math.

And I wonder what the vote would truly have been had the measure been clear. How many didn't get that in order to support gay marriage you had to say No to Prop 8? As a nation we're not exactly famous for our reading the fine print skills. Plus there were reports that elderly and English as a Second Language voters were intentionally misled. I experienced this phenomenon first hand during the Presidential campaign when I sat in a synagogue and listened to a rabbi tell the mostly elderly worshippers that Barack Obama was a "Muslim" who would do "all he can to undermine the safety of Israel" and "compromise the safety of Jews in America".

So says the word of God?

How many were frightened by the lies spread by groups like the Mormon Church, The Roman Catholic Church, The Knights of Columbus and all those loving, caring, giving "values" oriented groups that pop up during elections like pimples on a teenager.

I can't believe this is where we still sit as a nation. As allegedly free and equal people. It is shameful and hateful, ignorant and unconstitutional.

The Courage Campaign has plans to air an ad to keep the word out. You can read more about it HERE

HRC has tons of information about the next steps and about the state of equality throughout the nation.

I had no plans to post today but this travesty demands the light of day.

I remain firm in my belief that not one of us is equal unless we are all equal. No one's rights are guaranteed unless everyone's rights are guaranteed.

It's not over ...

my post title comes from the song in this VIDEO

56 comments:

Nessa said...

It amazes me that this is happening in CA.

Reb said...

Amen, Sister!

Ivanhoe said...

I too was saddend by the news. Who should pass it if not California? Sigh...

Jay said...

The courts decision was not unexpected, but still sad.

The good news is that under Cali's system, this ballot measure can be overturned by another ballot measure. So it's not over.

Thom said...

I don't even know what to say right now. It's been defeated in so many places so many times. I don't know who to blame the fear on this on any longer. However, this is one of the biggest reasons I have a hard time with religion. Aren't we all human and deserve all rights afforded us? The small mindedness and bigotry in this country disgusts me on this issue. I keep track of how our legislators vote on issues like this and believe me I write them and don't vote for them. Thank you for posting such a wonderful post :)

Rob Inukshuk said...

Another sad day for good people and a good day for genuinely BAD people.

I'm glad I live in Canada where our commitment, made the UK, is recognised - of course the US was not an option for us undesirables!

Queen-Size funny bone said...

one step forward and two steps back. It is unbelievable.

Thom said...

I just saw a poll on CNN that says that now 45% approve of same sex marriage while 54% do not. The numbers are growing however too slowly but this issue is making progress. If we could only get do something to the fucktards that say no I would be one happy camper.

Dianne said...

nessa - I know, I believe a lot of that has to do with the strength of the "religious" community from nearby states who saw this as a perfect place for their antics

reb - thanks sister!

ivanhoe - NY is beginning to have some interesting and ugly discussions
nation for marriage or whatever they're called - the group that used Miss CA - has been running really ugly ads here - shocks me, we're normally spared that level of stupid since they figure why spend the $$ in a place where they can't win - now they're everywhere

jay - I've been reading some about whether it should be a 2010 ballot item or a 2012

thom - you're welcome
the reasons are so complex - it's an exhausting battle
I'm skeptical of polls, depends how and what was asked and who was asked and what other questions were included
I've been in market research for years and it's a very delicate science
the bottom line for me is that I don't care who "thinks" or "feels" it's right or wrong - it is not their decision to make, what's next? asking the KKK if they think black people have too many rights

rob - what a shame! imagine that!! the US not being an option for 2 good, hard working, loving people - shameful!!
I'd love for you guys to be my neighbors :)

queen size funny - unbelievable it is!

bobbie said...

Isn't it sad - and shameful - that so many perpetrators of these lies are so often those who are leaders of religious congregations? Ah, but they are human too, aren't they. Even so, I fail to see how they dare to spread such lies and still call themselves representatives of God himself.

Linda said...

I just have to keep wondering what it is that people are so afraid of? Is marriage such a great thing that only people of the opposite sex should participate in it? Oh yeah, heterosexuals have done a bang-up job of keeping marriage sacred, haven't they? NOT!

Who are we as people to deny something like this of other people? Shame on the Catholics, shame on the Mormons, shame on the Reformed Christians, shame on all of those who think they know better and are better. And shame on the government for not righting a straight forward and direct proposition without trying to trip people up when they read it.

No doubt God is shaking his head yet again and wondering where he went wrong ...

CrystalChick said...

I heard this on the news tonight and felt so sad.
But like you said... it's not over.
One day we will ALL be treated equally.

Travis said...

I think that as long as people allow themselves to be ruled by fear, then these things will continue to happen.

We need to stop being afraid, and convince others that there is nothing to fear from difference and diversity.

The Peach Tart said...

I too was disappointed today about the prop 8 decision. As the mother of a lesbian daughter I long for equality for her. I wrote a recent blog post about A Mother's Plea for Gay Marriage and have had such an outpouring of support. Hopefully, it's just a matter of time before things change.

Linda Reeder said...

This is definately a set back for civil rights. Just like the civil rights struggle in the 60's, this one will have to be mounted on a federal level. We can't have states deciding who they get to descriminate against.

Matt-Man said...

I happen to think that the court made the correct decision. Sorry, Di. I don't give a rat's ass if gay people marry each other, but I have a problem with courts overturning legally voted upon constitutional amendments.

And had the court said, screw the vote, and said gays can marry in spite of the vote, that is exactly what they would be doing. Cheers Di!!

~Just me again~ said...

Its all so sad, my G/f and I married Jan 3/07. Legal up here, not down there. It's always that frikkin red tape. Now we have to go through the b.s. of getting her up here via immigration. It never ends.

Sylvia K said...

It is sad, it's disgusting and it makes me angry and frustrated! I feel so helpless to do anything other than bitch and moan!

Thom said...

It is exhausting and I wish I had the answer. I'm sure plenty of people do feel the same. I think one thing that Travis said about us liviing in fear is so true. Perhaps putting that question to the mass about the KKK would make them think the correct way. Dianne for President I say :) Night

the walking man said...

Dianne...even if the CA supreme court had overturned prop 8 you weren't ready to stop speaking out for them without rights were you? Ergo the battle still goes on in 45 states of the union.

Dianne said...

bobbie - mentioning god became a weapon during the Bush years and it is clearly still in the arsenal

linda - I will find and post some links to faith groups that support equal rights - I should have done that in this post but I was pissed off and threw it together
I do know there are people out there not twisting the word of God - I need to give their voice some light
Personally I could care less about marriage, never worked for me, I never got the child support the court awarded, never got protection and just fended for myself - you're right about straight marriage LOL
what I care about is equal rights

crystal chick - as walking man is saying, there will always be a struggle for some group

travis - maybe if I understood the fear, I just don't get it - how can a happily married (or unhappily) couple possibly affect anyone else
my neighbors are dragging up their kids, they're so much chaos and lunacy around them, the little ones look dirty and hungry, the older ones are always sullen or in trouble - but they're straight so they're just white trash
down the road is a gay couple raising adopted children with special needs - people can't stop talking trash about them
in what world does that make sense?
this is all rehetorical Trav - I know you get it :)

Dianne said...

peach tart - thanks for the visit
I'm glad you got support, you should :)
I have seen some ugliness in blogland re. this issue and gay people in general and, silly me, I was shocked - until I realized it's the same people who walk the planet

linda r - I agree and this is an area where Obama disappoints me, he has never been very vocal about gay rights - Biden recently sounded like a total redneck about it - and to think there are those who think we now have a liberal leaning government!

matt-man - if I remember my history correctly it took the courts to get rid of the ban on multi-racial marriages
as Linda R said - I think some things don't belong on a state level, are we one fucking country or not
when I think of what some groups in my own state could come up with and then convince enough people to vote on it I shudder - and hell I allegedly live in a progressive state
I was run off the the road and almost killed when I was 18 because I was in South Carolina and I was white and my husband was black - when the police arrived they asked ME if I was OK and then when they saw my husband they tried to say he was driving drunk
the incident was never investigated, they said there was no evidence - guess we made all the skid marks in the dirt ourselves - we fell over an embankment and then hit reverse and did it again and then drove away and came back - yeah that must have been what happened
I had to call a lawyer in NY to deal with state and local police, I was afraid of them
Prop 8 should have never been on the ballot

just me again - I'm so sorry for all the grief you go through
and to think the US doesn't have enough resources to deal with terrorists but they sure can keep gay people under check

sylvia - check what your local elected officials are doing - as Thom said above
if they're not supporting the things you believe in then tell them
a lot of us here in NY and NJ have been making a big noise about this issue and others - especially since the elections are coming up in 2010
here in NJ there's a real nut case running for governor - he's right out of Bush's playbook so we're all getting ready for a big ass fight ;)

thom - I think moderates have to come out - pardon the pun
and that takes awareness and education - I know I talk to my neighbors about this issue just as I did about Obama and I do my best to tone down my frustration and it works sometimes - and good lord! we have to keep the churches out of government!!

walking man - that is true
and then the other battles as well - healthcare, children's rights, elder care, campaign reform
OY! Mark ;)

Matt-Man said...

That's true Dianne, but courts in the cases of interracial marriage overturned stautes, not Constitutional Amendments passed by voters. There's a big difference. Cheers!!

Dianne said...

matt-man - you're such a show off! ;)

Akelamalu said...

not one of us is equal unless we are all equal. No one's rights are guaranteed unless everyone's rights are guaranteed.I so agree with you on this Dianne.

Lu' said...

I thought the vote sucked and was a HUGE step backwards. Thankfully they didn't reverse those marriages that had already taken place. To have done that would have been a disgrace, a further disgrace. I am woman married to a man, apparently that matters? and wish my friends Bob and Ken could get married. Ha like that will ever happen in Pennsylvania. Don't they realize that they have made it legal to discriminate against someone!!! Damn I thought we civilized folk were against discrimination.

Bond said...

I do find it strange that this happened in CA, where you tend to believe that the population is more liberal. I guess, big state...large liberal pockets, but more pockets of conservative thought.

Is it correct? NO. But if we could get a Domestic Partnership agreement in place and have that contain the rights of a marriage, I think it is a compromise that should work for all.

Jeni said...

As always, when you pick up a cause and blog on it, you do it full speed ahead, Katie, damn the torpedos and all that stuff. And trust me, that's just one of the many reasons I love reading your blog because you speak your mind! Boy, do you ever. But please, keep on doing that too because sooner or later -hopefully sooner -perhaps others will pick up on your mantras and more will follow suit. Safety in numbers maybe?
Anyway, great post and I agree wholeheartedly that there is no earthly reason I can discern as to how gays who are married are a sacrilege, something that will rip apart society as we know it. Yadda yadda. For that matter, perhaps society as we know it needs a bit of a good shredding -well, at the very least, a decent combing out anyway.
Peace!

Raven said...

It really is sad that we have come so far and yet still remain stuck in some places. Still, I think the nation has truly moved and I understand that they are going to put it on the ballot again soon. I don't think it will pass again and maybe on some level it's better that the vote to overturn it will come from the voice of the people (and I believe that it will) and not as a court ruling.

I have to say that I really don't get what it is that people feel is treatened by letting gay people be married. It's so ugly and irrational... as I guess all bigotry and hatred are.

Dianne said...

akelamalu - thanks, it seems like such a simple premise to me but somehow it goes over the head of so many people
I guess it requires THEIR rights being at risk - much like it took our "middle class" going broke and being foreclosed on before many of them saw the plight of the poor - a situation that was always there
I keep reading how we ran from puritan thought and class systems when this country was formed yet we we are - puritan thought and the rich Republicans and the corporations creating class systems
isn't life grand1 ;)

lu' - my state, NJ - and definitely your state PA are in such danger of being taken over by - I don't know what to call them!! I just see it everywhere
gun shows and clubs
evangelical churches popping up in every out of business storefront
and now - with the governor race beginning I see so much ugliness - and stupidity and backwards thinking

bond - I don't see why people should be asked to compromise on their rights
would you want your marriage to Nancy to be a different ceremony and be called something other than what it is - what has been universally accepted - if someone tried to do that to you I'd speak up
let's call all marriages "domestic partnerships" - or " dynamic duos" - it's more than just the legality, it is the acceptance and the validation and the equality
having lived first with the discrimination Nana suffered and then as part of a bi-racial marriage I know that what we call things matters, how we are presented to the world matters
I see no reason for the USA to compromise on equality - I could have sworn that was against our ideals

jeni - "a good combing out" !!! I love that
you have a wonderful way with the turn of a phrase

raven - I agree that it's better coming as a vote of the people - Matt-Man has a point about the courts overturning the vote of the people
I just have far too many questions about the way this got on the ballot to begin with, the power of the "people" who got it there, and the tactics used to get a marginal win

Deborah Godin said...

I like what Bill Maher said recently (I'm paraphrasing) - that religion has done more to alienate us and justify slaughter than bring us together in peace.

Sparkling Red said...

Ugh. It's sad to see a regression like this.

Even my own step-dad (at least at election time) bought into the rumours being circulated that Obama was secretly a Muslim. I talked to him and asked him to consider that it might not be true, and gave him some good reasons why. He listened and took my arguments into consideration. So, there you go. If we have to change the world one person at a time, I've made a small start.

Sleepypete said...

Heinlein had a good one when discussing politics in The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress. The bit of that was them talking about setting up a constitution, with Prof's idea being to have 2 Houses :

1st House - makes laws. To pass one, it needs 66% of the votes.
2nd House - removes laws. To remove a law, it would need 33% of the vote.

50% saying yes, 50% saying no just means the popular vote hasn't a clue, there's no firm point in either direction.

It does help though if you can trust the people in charge - I get the feeling that if a "None Of The Above" party ran at the next GB election, they'd get 90% of the vote. (Well - if the indoctrinated blinkered people thought a bit more ...)

maryt/theteach said...

Dianne, it's a damn shame that they upheld Prop 8! I agree with you 100% that if one of us is not equal NONE of us are equal!! :(

Hilary said...

People fear whatever makes them uncomfortable. People are uncomfortable with what they deem different. Education can serve to make folks understand. Until then.. people will be fearful, and pass erroneous information along to their kids and to others. It takes a decent government to get that in motion by allowing - by encouraging understanding and acceptance. I believe it will happen. It's a transitional time but you'll get there, as we have. Don't lose heart.

Bob-kat said...

My reaction was simple: I was appalled. How can people not see that this is just wrong?

Hugs to you. "Cause I know you care and I know you have a lot of crap going on.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

I couldn't agree more....It is SHAMEFUL that the California Supreme Court upheld this Propostion.
And as to confusion over what it all meant?? OY! As long as I have beem voting---Since 1952--there have ALWAYS been Propositions that are unclear. YES means NO! And NO means YES! WHY????
Why do they want to confuse people when they write these things...???? I will NEVER undedrstand it except to think that THEY ACTUALLY DO want us to be confused!!!
But, besides that....The Media Blast of TV ADS FOR Prop 8 here in California were frightening in the Volume and Content. And who paid for this? The Morman Church plus some other churches....
This Is Not Over, by any means...And, though it may take some more years....I believe we all WILL have Equal Rights under the law.
I have never understood the arguments put out by those people who are against Gay Marriage. The Bible says....blah blah blah. Wel, the Bible was written by men and re-written and translated by men...The Word Of God?? I Don't Think So...And Who'd God would that be??

I am truly ashamed of my state. But, I do believe this will change. Prejudice in ALL forms must go---but it never will be gone until it is no longer in someone's heart.

meno said...

It's a sad world when Iowa is more tolerant than California.

Shame on them.

Dianne said...

deborah - I pretty much have the same feeling
it never ceases to amaze me how people use God as their own personal weapon

sparkling - one person at a time is good - it's impressive that your Dad reconsidered

pete - indoctrinated, blinkered people - I share a country with a horde of them
I'm pretty disgusted with the 2 parties we have here - the Republicans are either criminals or accessories after the fact
the Dems haven't had a good set of balls in years
and Obama is getting on my last nerve with his let's all join hands and sing We Are the World - fuck 'em - investigate them and lock them up
I'm pretty much back to being as angry as I was pre-election

mary - and NY and NJ are dragging their feet -

hilary - you are a gentle, good soul - and a smart, calm person
we don't value that much here
this isn't the only issue - they're going to get away with invading Iraq, with torture and the healthcare system is going to be forever based on nothing but greed - and that's just this week - and it's a short week!

bob-kat - it's the 60s in me
I keep thinking - by the sheer force of my will ...
hugs to you too lady

oldold lady of the hills - there have been increasing ads here in NJ as the discussion grows to leagalize gay marriage and the proof mounts that civil unions are not good enough
that god awful group - nation for marriage - are polluting the air like the loons that they are

Dianne said...

meno - and even sadder that it's not just legal nationwide!

Frank Baron said...

The sooner we realize that we're all sailors on the same, small ship circling through space, the better.

There's no "them." There's only "us."

katherine. said...

I skimmed thru most of the other comments...and wanted to add a couple points.

first...you have been a stalwart supporter and celebrator of President Obama. I have the highest degree of respect for the man as well. He has stated he supports marriage to be between a man and woman only. And when you speak out about this "travesty" you do not mention him?

Second
the voters in California voted against same sex marriage in 2000 with 60-some percent of the vote. THAT vote was overturned by the courts...and it was the court which specifically detailed how any subsequent ballot measure must be structured.

When the voters supported that measure (prop 8) the court couldn't very well overturn it...THEY pretty much dictated it.

If people found the wording complicated it was probably because it was the wording required by the law to change our state constitution. This sort of thing can't be written for an elementary school level reader. Nor should it be. People better start learning to read the fine print. This is the Untied Stats of America...not American Idol.

I do not believe there was any intentional campaign to confuse elderly or ESL voters. None at all. My folks are in their 70's and are pretty damn savvy on this issue as are all of their friends.

I'm not sure how much time you have spent in California, but we have a significantly high mexican population almost 50%. (by the way...they WANT to be called mexican...they do NOT like latino...and they do not like hispanic)

While in California the mexican population (and african american for that matter) is predominantly democrat and prolabor...they do not vote along democratic party lines on the social issues of abortion and gay marriage. This has nothing to do with not understanding the wording...or any strong arm tactics. They are not stupid. They are not uneducated. They are not confused or misled. It is what they believe

I found it ironic that after Prop 8 passed the angry mobs protested at small white (mostly mormon) churches and not at the southern baptist black churches in south central los angeles or the mexican catholic congregations who actively campaigned for prop 8.

On a personal note...I'm getting a bit weary of the finger pointing at Christians. I am about as born again as they come. I have stood up with two women friends (as their witness) when they were married. My step sister and her partner are one of the 18,000 marriages that remain legal. My very fundamental friends support the rights of gay and lesbian couples. And we are all Christians. Holy Roller, Bible Thumping, Jesus freak Christians.

Dianne said...

frank - I guess there will always be a cause to mutiny :(

katherine - thanks for the visit and added info and perspective
I did mention Obama - and Biden - in my comments, and I have discussed my disappointment in Obama on this (and other) issues many times here. I tend to be wordy to begin with and since Obama wasn't the central character here I didn't include him in the post
thank you for the extra historical info re. Prop 8. and I did say that I felt we were not a fine print reading people. I agree about our AI culture
As for the trickery - I mentioned it to a friend in CA after I witnessed what happened at the synagogue and was told it was happening in CA as well - both with Obama and with Prop 8.
I saw coverage of protests at all sorts of churches as well as much tension and heated debate between African American religious leaders and gay rights activists. I don't think this issue needs racial tensions thrown into the mix - it is not that they are black or Mexican, it is that they are following the dictates of their church.
I'm not trying to attack true Christian people. I AM attacking groups that use God and the Bible for their political agendas and who stir up hatred and trouble. I mentioned the Mormon Church and the Roman Catholic Church and the KofC because my research showed that they spent the most amount of money on negative ads - equating homosexuality with pedophilia was one of the most vile and that was liniked directly back to those 3 groups.
I'm not going to lie or backtrack about my feelings re. organized religion. I think it hurts far more than heals society. And I think religious leaders have NO place in government. I could care less what "my" Pope says about anything - he is irrelevant and should not have the power bestowed upon him by people who have been tricked into believing they'll go to hell if they don't hate the same things/people he does.
As for Holy roller, bible thumping, Jesus freak labels - I didn't use any of those - you did.
My feeling about the Bible is that it is a wonderful piece of ancient literature - written and re-written by humans - men actually - and used by some people to diminish and judge others.

Daryl said...

Just so wrong and confusing .. if you are married its okay, if you arent you cant .. that is just stupid and IMO as a New Yorker is another reason to let SOUTHERN California fall off the map ..

Natalie said...

CA voted on an amendment to deny rights to its citizens, it sure has hell can vote again to restore those rights. It's up to all of us to make sure that even the most ignorant and hateful among us are exposed to the truth - love isn't scary and there are no consequences to their own faith or their own marriages to allow everyone to get married.

Did you read Rob Thomas's piece on Huffpost? A part of his argument was that if the so-called Christians feel that gay marriage is invalidated because it doesn't adhere to their religious ideals, do they feel the same way about Muslim marriages? Hindi? Jewish? It's a fine line and their arguments have NO justification in our civilized society whatsoever.

I really think part of the problem was that the measure was on a huge ballot. I shudder to think of all the uniformed people voting for president who misread or didn't think carefully about the consequences of their vote in the zeal for voting in this monumental presidential election. We need a do-over with more commitment to communication. Perhaps a mid-term election ballot measure, where those who really keep up with current events and are passionate about this cause (granted on both sides) will take the time to vote in this issue.

Thanks for posting this. Keep up your commitment to equality. It's going to pay off, history is on our side. It just takes time.

katherine. said...

there is no doubt that same sex marriage will be back on the ballot in California....no doubt.

It is truly not an issue of fear in california. I know of no one who is afraid of gay people or the marriage of same.

It is definitely not an issue of being ignorant. There was 24/7 coverage here for weeks prior to voting day. In all languages.

Not to mention we have a fairly high gay population...so most Californians know someone personally who falls into the demographic.

The question about how Christians feel about Muslim, Hindi, and Jewish marriages actually made me laugh...how do you think those cultures would treat a gay person...let alone an openly married gay person? Violent, public death in many cases.

Christians by the way, recognize man/woman unions is all of those cultures and many more.

Prop 8 may have been on a huge ballot....but it had far more coverage than anything else save the presidential choice.

We are not a state of stupid people who vote in an uninformed manner in our zeal over a presidential election.

when you say "we" need a do over...who are you talking about as "we"?

A mid term election under what circumstance?

More commitment to communication from who exactly?

Do you really think the california voters didn't know what they were doing?

Just because you don't personally agree with the outcome doesn't mean it wasn't handled properly. Just because you don't agree with 52% doesn't mean they were ignorant, or uninformed, or hateful, or overzealous, or didn't "really keep up with current events"

Out of curiosity...of those who are railing on the voters in California...in the states where you live...is same sex marriage the law?

If so great...come on out and work to reverse Proposition 8. Donate large sums of money to the cause.

If not, maybe you could insult and vilify your own state and not mine.

Kay said...

Exactly.

-sigh-

Tuesday was hard... I got some not so gentle boasting and gloating from some people... which made me madder than hell let me tell you.

/deep breath

It is just a matter of time, Really.

Dianne said...

daryl - that's the part that is especially hurtful - although to have "illegalized" those marriages would have been worse

natalie - perhaps the huge ballot and fervored Obamaites did have something to do with it. As I mentioned a few times, I think Obama's stand on gay rights is less than acceptable, and Biden sounds like an asshole when he talks about it
and I wonder if the fact that so many religious people came out for Obama (even with the Muslim taunts) had an effect on the vote 0 since it was so close
From what I read there is a discussion of 2010 vs. 2012 and I don't enough about that yet to have an opinion

katherine - I'm not sure who you want to argue with - me or Natalie or everyone
I can only speak for myself
I wish I could send you tapes of the coverage of CA from here. Yes I do not believe the mainstream media is fair or accurate but if I see people saying things out of the mouths on their faces I assume that's what they said - and I've seen a lot coming out of CA and people speaking for CA - and maybe that's the problem - people are speaking for CA
but the voters had to know the whole nation, hell - the world was watching so to be upset about the spotlight now is naive
I'm confused over your position on gay marriage
I can't tell if you're for or against - or are you just defending your home state? I get that although I don't think most of the comments here were attacking CA in its entirety - a few did. personally I want to live in the north one day -
and again! I mentioned NY and NJ in many of my comments above - the post couldn't cover everything - and as the vote here heats up I sure as hell will have a lot to say
CA is an huge state with a "progressive" reputation - well at one time at least, and the only state to over turn legal gay marriage
it is only natural for that to be the focus on THE day of a huge court decision.

kay - there was a bit of boasting and gloating here in NJ as well since this matter will become a hot button issue in the race for governor and there's a really loud Republican just loving this
not that Corzine did all he could - he's another Obama like wishy-washy trying to appease his church and voters by talking about civil unions and domestic partnerships

Natalie said...

Hi Katherine,

I presume you were addressing my comment even though you didn't actually address me personally. Let me clarify since I think my sentiment was misinterpreted, while at the same time trying to keep the discourse polite and respectful.

I certainly do not think CA is full of stupid people. I am a PhD physicist and even I cannot understand the wording in some of the amendments. My level of education is higher than American Idol, but I am not trained in Constitutional Law. Frankly, unlike many people, I do think there should be a "cheat sheet" that says essentially, "voting YES on prop 8 means you wish to outlaw same-sex marriage". I for one would appreciate it as I do not think people such as myself are ignorant or uninformed if they do not understand the wording of these amendments. Therefore I shudder to think there were people who didn't understand what the wording may have meant or couldn't see past their religion to think through the consequences of denying rights to someone else in a country that supposedly has a separation of church and state.

As Dianne mentioned above, I am not sure it is wise to get into the cultural or racial implications of the "Obama-Yes Prop 8-No" voting demographic. But let me just say that during the run up to the election I lived in Florida, with a similar demographic and was disappointed in their choices on our own ballot initiative concerning equal rights for domestic partnerships, either gay or "opposite".

And I don't trust TV commercials or advertising to get the details or the implications of these issues across anymore, not in the age of TiVo, hulu, iTunes, etc. What I meant by a commitment to communication was that those of us fighting hard for equal rights need to speak up in whatever ways we can. Even those of us not in CA need to blog and keep the conversation alive. The world is a smaller place than it used to be and CA is not an isolated remote island. We who believe strongly in marriage equality are not going to keep our opinions in our own states. For the record, I do not consider myself solely a citizen of one state that I have strong allegiances to. I have lived in 4 states and have seen the good and the ugly in each one, and will gladly express both. Currently, I live in a state that does not have legalized gay marriage, but does recognize same sex marriages performed in other states. Good, but not good enough, IMO.


You seem very adamant that the people who voted for prop 8 are not scared of gay people or of giving them equal marriage protection under the law. I am open to another reasonable explanation, as long as one is provided. But as far as I can see, this was a campaign undertaken by the religious right to keep religion in policy making. I have no people with people who are Christian, I do have a problem with religion in government.

I think you misunderstood the point of my question about marriages in other cultures. I don't know specifically how those cultures treat same-sex marriage, which is a moot point since I am writing only of America. My experience with the American Jewish community towards gay rights has been extremely positive and find that as a spiritual community they are very sensitive to the persecution of under-represented groups. And every Hindu I've known (which is a lot, I'm a scientist) is a staunch civil libertarian. However the fact that you said that Christians DO acknowledge man/woman marriages in other cultures proves my point for me. My point was, if Christians (who ran the campaign for prop 8) can acknowledge marriage ceremonies joining two Hindus or two Buddhists, or even two agnostics such my husband and myself - in effect a ceremony that is not in line with the bible - why can't they acknowledge a marriage performed between two men or two women?

(For the article that inspired my line of questioning, click
here)

Dianne said...

natalie - thank you for responding and for sharing even more information
My view on state vs. state is that this country has enough problems and should act like ONE nation - I think that's mentioned in some pledge somewhere.
And I too have a problem with religion in government as well as having a huge problem with the power organiized religion gained during the Bush years. A power they are desperate to keep, regardless of who it hurts.
thanks Natalie

katherine. said...

i should probably just do my own post..

To answer Natalie’s question…my previous two comments were partially in response to (a) the post, (b) Dianne’s, response to my first comment, ( c) Natalie’s original comment…and (d - k) several other comments along the way. While I could make it an argument…I’m much rather respond to some of the previous statements. You’ll probably understand that this issue is being discussed in California far more than just about anyplace else.

To answer Dianne’s question.
I fully support and celebrate my newly wed stepsister and her partner.
I served as planner, witness, photographer, and toast giver to my dear friends at their samesex wedding.
And..I never said you used the tags of holy roller, bible thumping, jesus freak…or born again.

I did. Just so there’d be no question about who I am or what I believe.

The separation of church and state was not created to prevent people from voting in keeping with their religious beliefs. Separation of church and state was established to protect the CHURCH. To keep government from mucking around in all churches of any faith as well as those who do not believe. In fact the "founding fathers" directed people to follow their religion when voting.

By the way, I assume you know that every session of Congress, The Senate, and the Supreme Court is begun with a prayer. Oh…and NASCAR as well.

While 52-ish% is not an “overwhelming” percentage …it is actually 7,001,084 people. That is quite a few (the 47-ish% was 6,401,482 for us math-geeks)

To call names…insult and vilify…these 7 million people because they do not agree with you…is to be as guilty as what some of you accuse them of.

For many this IS an issue of faith. Do you really think people should not follow what they believe just because it is not what you believe.

Are THEIR beliefs not as important as yours?

Do any of you think that YOU should dictate what these 7 million people think and how they should vote?

For the record…we here in California do provide the voters with a “cheat sheet” a simply worded explanation…along with a financial impact explanation. in addition to the complicated constitutional wording of the amendment…the actual voting pamphlet and ballot read as follows:

ELIMINATES RIGHT OF SAME–SEX COUPLES TO MARRY.
INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT.

Changes the California Constitution to eliminate the right of same-sex couples to marry in California.

Provides that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.


That is pretty straightforward, don’t you think?
(in addition the California voter information, sample ballot, and actual ballot are printed in seven languages…English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Japanese, Korean and Tagalog. Any citizen with a need for an additional translation can obtain one for free.

Maybe not where some of you live…but the cultural differences of the people in California is a very important piece of the voting in our state and not just for same-sex marriage. It is NOT about “racial tensions“ …where did that come from??? It is about CULTURAL DIVERSITY. And that includes race, religion, gender, country of origination, age…in addition to sexual orientation. Catholics, Mormons, and the Knights of Columbus have equal rights to the gay and lesbian community.

to be continued....

katherine. said...

and...continued....

The individual members of the California Supreme Court…as you may know…did not necessarily support the proposition as individuals. But they ruled that it had been properly worded….put on the ballot…and passed by the required vote count.

Trust me. That is the way you want it. It is not beyond the realm of imagination that in our life time some person (or group) would be put into power who desires to strip us of all of our rights, freedoms, and privileges. It is the process that allows us to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot and vote yea or nay that is the foundation of our great nation.

As for information. There was TV, radio, collateral, door to door, demonstrations, and commentary everywhere for BOTH sides. Pretty much equally. I contend there is as much (if not more) financial support available for the same-sex marriage advocates as for those against. They slacked when it was important in their arrogance and assumption that California was a liberal state. They assumed California voters would indeed vote Proposition 8 down and they dropped the ball. You want to point fingers at special interest groups…start there.

These 7 million people are not:
Vile, ignorant, divisive, misled, unclear, frightened, lied to, shameful, hateful, unconstitutional, uninformed, ugly, irrational, indoctrinated, blinkered, hateful, or shameful.

They did not misread or misunderstand. They were not overcome in their monumental presidential voting zeal. They are not genuinely bad people. They are not fucktards.

They voted as they truly believe. They read the small print. They knew the difference between a “yes” vote and a “no” vote.

And yeah….we are a little different out here in California. Some of you describe us as liberal, progressive. You are amazed, saddened, disbelieving, and find it strange this happened in California. Pretty much (apparently I am an exception) for the most part the people in California don’t really care what the other states think of us. We do seem to do our own thing. And personally I am damn glad I don’t have to answer to, or be dictated to by the other 49.

Dianne said...

katherine -
I will remain firm in my belief that anyone who wishes to deny another human being a right that they enjoy themselves is flawed somewhere in their heart or mind or soul
As for not caring about what the rest of the country thinks - I think all people in all states should care about what goes on everywhere
ONE nation
for all the money we spend protecting ourselves from the bogeyman across the globe it appears to me that we are indeed our own worst enemies

katherine. said...

I agree with you that no one should deny another human being a right that they enjoy themselves.

You and I enjoy voting as we believe.

Everyone should have that same right.

If this issue was to go to ONE vote..for the entire nation...it would be defeated by a much larger percentage that 52.

I believe California will reverse the current law...and provide legal same sex marriage before most of the other states.

Leendaluu said...

amen...in any denomination. If i have rights, so should everyone.

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