Archives for posts with tag: Proposition 8

gaySCOTUS

By now everyone and their mom knows all about the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act and to close discussion on Proposition 8 yesterday.*

This is a HUGE victory for LGBTQ rights and for the American people as a whole. I’m proud of the five Supreme Courts justices (that would be Justices Kennedy, Bader Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan if you were keeping track) for helping move our country forward.

And then there are the naysayers. Take Republican Representative Tim Huelskamp of Kansas, who has already issued a promise to file a constitutional amendment later this week to restore DOMA. Really Timmy? The Republican party is clearly suffering from some intense fragmentation, as I mentioned in a blog post earlier this year.  How do they expect to win votes from the LGBTQ community without a cohesive message? With so many members defending their antiquated views of bigotry and others suddenly changing their views and rushing to support gay rights, I can’t say that I’m impressed.

In other awesome news: on Tuesday night, the Texas Senate brought a bill to the floor that sought to close almost all abortion clinics in the state and disallow abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Senator Wendy Davis single-handedly performed an thirteen hour filibuster that stopped the bill in its path – until Republican Senators shut her down just minutes before the close of the special session by arguing that her discussion of mandatory ultrasounds was off-topic. They had to get a vote in before midnight. But that wasn’t about to happen, because over 400 protesters were there to pick up where Senator Davis left off. They made such a ruckus that the vote on the bill wasn’t recorded until 12:03am, meaning that it didn’t pass into law.

Unfortunately that fight’s not over. Texas Governor Rick Perry has called another special session to begin on Monday, and it’s likely that Democrats won’t be able to stop the bill a second time. Perry is determined to pass the bill , and to prove it he said some ridiculously offensive things at a press conference today:

“…even the woman who filibustered the Senate the other day was born into difficult circumstances. She was the daughter of a single woman, she was a teenage mother herself. She managed to eventually graduate from Harvard Law School and serve in the Texas senate. It is just unfortunate that she hasn’t learned from her own example that every life must be given a chance to realize its full potential and that every life matters.”

Wow. To politicians like Perry and Huelskamp, I can only say:

Please remember that this is 2013. Please remember that people are people even if they are not white, straight, rich men. Please resign from public office.

Oh, and more thing: You can’t bring us down. We’re going to keep fighting your bigotry, your sexism and your hatred. And we are going to win.

* DOMA is a federal law that defines marriage as only being between a man and a woman – thus denying federal benefits to all same-sex partners. Proposition 8 is the California state ban on gay marriage.

DOMA Project rally this weekend in NYC

This weekend I saw a beautiful couple speak at a DOMA Project rally in New York City. The love between the two men speaking was palpable. Everyone in the crowd embraced and cheered. We couldn’t take our eyes off of these individuals who – despite being openly committed to one another and deeply in love – are not allowed the same marriage rights as heterosexual people such as myself.

Not only can they not legally marry in most states, but they also do not have the ability to receive/transfer US citizenship through marriage simply because they have chosen a same-sex partner. One of the men was US-born; the other, South American. Laws like DOMA keep these men from being able to raise a family in America. They are destructive TO marriage – not in defense of it.

Today and tomorrow the Supreme Court is discussing both DOMA and the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8 ban on gay marriage.

Charles Cooper, the lawyer defending Prop 8, has already received intense questioning from many of the Supreme Court justices today, including potential swing-voter Justice Anthony Kennedy.

Tomorrow will tell us more – and by the end of this week, we will know where the highest court in our nation stands on these fundamental human rights issues.

I chose today to begin writing about the things that matter most to me. I think they will matter to some of you out there as well. Two of these issues are marriage equality and immigration reform, one reason why I’ve made this photo my first post.

Visit The DOMA Project at http://www.domaproject.org/ to learn more about what can be done to fight the exile and deportation of bi-national gay and lesbian couples due to DOMA and the troubled American immigration system.