I am not, generally, a particularly political person.
I'm a registered Democrat, and tend to define myself as a liberal, but really? I'm pretty moderate. I have always had a peculiar ability to see and respect all sides of an issue. Maybe it's genetic, since both of my grandfathers were judges. Or maybe I'm just wishy-washy, and basically hate to argue.
I've done volunteer work for various candidates over the years, and have been known to slap on a bumper sticker or hammer in a yard sign. But...that's about it.
But during the 2008 election, I took up a cause.
I not only took up a cause, I started an organization, created a website and sent out newsletters.
On the ballot in California during that election was something called Proposition 8. In early 2008, the California Supreme Court had issued a ruling giving gay and lesbian couples a constitutional right to equality under the state marriage laws. Proposition 8 was intended to overturn the Supreme Court ruling, and actually change the California State Constitution to state that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid and recognized in California. In other words, voting "Yes" on Proposition 8 would have made gay marriage in California illegal again. A "No" vote meant that you were FOR gay marriage. I know. It confused everyone.
I am in favor of gay marriage. And as the campaign heated up, I quickly noticed that all of the "No on Prop 8" ads were filled with super-liberal celebrities. I felt that this was preaching to the choir. In order for Proposition 8 to be defeated, I believed that moderate Californians needed to be convinced. The "Yes on 8" campaign promoted themselves as the side of wholesome, family values, and the "No on 8" campaign as a bunch of liberal, anti-family, anti-children sinners.
And so, California Mothers for Marriage was born. It was meant to put a friendly, wholesome face to the No on Prop 8 campaign. To quote my own press release - "Please join us in protecting the rights and defending the freedom of our children by voting NO on Proposition 8. Our nation was founded on the principle that all people should be treated equally. We believe that it's time to stand up and take action to protect this principle for our children and their generation. Regardless of how anyone feels about same-sex marriage, no one should be singled out for unfair treatment under the laws of our state."
My dear old friend David created a website for me, and I set to work. I recruited members, I sent out newsletters, I started a Facebook page. By the time of the election, we had several hundred members.
Please indulge me a bit of my own propaganda...
Proponents of Proposition 8 claim they are protecting California's children. We find this offensive and manipulative and we question their intention and motives. Are the supporters of Proposition 8 really trying to protect marriage? Or are they simply trying to take away the civil rights of a group of people whose lifestyle they don't understand? We don't agree that marriage between two people of the same sex somehow diminishes the institution of marriage between a man and a woman. Why would anyone determine the value of their own marriage based on who else has taken vows? On the contrary, we believe that recognizing same-sex marriage strengthens the sanctity of marriage by making it available to all who are willing to make a lifetime commitment to love each other .
As mothers, we love all of our children equally, and want them all to have equal rights and an equal opportunity for happiness. We hope that by taking a stand we can show our children the difference between right and wrong. That human rights need to be fought for and protected. We hope that they will be able to look back on our fight with pride and respect, the same way we look back on our mothers' fight for civil rights and our grandmothers' fight for suffrage.
People kept asking me why on earth I became so passionate about this issue. I'm not gay. I don't have a sibling/child/parent who is gay. I do have many gay friends. But why did this issue touch me so deeply?
I have defined my reasoning as the "Horton Hears a Who Syndrome".
Jude is not easily frightened by movies/books. He is absolutely fine with watching violence or scary/intense situations. Aside from the occasional "Voldemort's in the closet" dreams, he wasn't scared or freaked out by any of the Harry Potter stuff. What makes Jude lose it is what I have come to define as "issues of social justice".
When Jude was 4, I took him to see "Horton Hears a Who". Toward the end of the movie, there's a scene when the mean kangaroo and her minions have tied up Horton, and are trying to make him drop the clover on which he claims the Who's are living into a vat of boiling oil, or some such thing. At this point in the movie, Jude started sobbing uncontrollably. The child couldn't be consoled. On and on he cried. He cried through the rest of the movie, all the way to the car, and all the way home. He kept saying over and over "But Mama, they were so mean to Horton, he just was what he was. He didn't do anything wrong! They just don't understand him!"
And that, in a nutshell, is the way I feel about gay marriage. They just are what they are. They haven't done anything wrong. People just don't understand them. And for someone to be unable to marry the person they love just because some people don't understand them absolutely breaks my heart.
So I guess I truly am a "bleeding heart" liberal. If it touches my heart, it's got me. I don't so much vote over issues like the debt ceiling, the size of government or tax breaks for the wealthy. But if somebody's mean to somebody - I'm gonna try to do something about it.
Of course, anybody who keeps up with this kind of stuff knows that my cause did NOT win. Proposition 8 was voted into effect, and same-sex marriage is no longer legal in California. I was heartbroken. But far less heartbroken than I would have been if I had done nothing, and failed to take a stand. At some point over the next few years, California will, no doubt, once again try to make gay marriage legal, and I will, no doubt, once again take up the cause.
Please EVERYBODY check out all the spinners who stepped up on their soapboxes and spoke out for something they believe in!
Patty at Pancakes Gone Awry
Peg at Square Peg in a Round Hole
Aimee at Aimee Writes
Jan at Jan's Sushi Bar
Sarah at 32 Flavors
Kendra at Life in the Slow Lane
Vandy J at The Testosterone Three and Me
Jan at Jan's Sushi Bar - AGAIN on FRIDAY!! (Jan has much to say!)
Michele Renee at Must Be a Full Moon - NEw on FRIDAY!!
Ginny Marie at Lemon Drop Pie - New on FRIDAY!!
Claire at incognitus scriptor - NEW, NEW, NEW!!
NEXT WEEK on The Spin Cycle...
The Perfect Job
It's January. The start of a new year, and the perfect time to set some work goals. So I'm thinking we should try going all "The Secret" and think about that perfect job that has somehow eluded us thusfar. Maybe if we think on it hard enough we will achieve perfect by December!
What job do you believe would fulfill your every dream? Want to be your own boss? Start your own company? Work from home? Travel? Or maybe it's a dream job for your spouse? Or your kid?
Maybe you had the perfect job and lost it. Yikes. Maybe your friend has the perfect job and you'd like to snag it from them.
Or maybe you already have to perfect job and want to tell us all about it.
And btw, SAHM is a job. Just saying.
It doesn't have to be practical or reasonable. Reach for the unattainable! Astronaut? Rock Star? Generalissimo of your own small country? Why not?
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