October 29th is Write to Marry Day.*

I grew up in California, well, mostly.  I left California for college and never really went back aside from a couple of summers.  I met and fell in love with a wonderful person who was tied to the East Coast, and was blessed enough that law and society not only permitted me to love and live with this person, but actively encouraged me to signify my commitment to him, and him to me, by marriage, upheld by the state, and granted benefits in accordance thereto.

If we are going to grant benefits to couples, be it health insurance or pension beneficiaries, tax cuts, etc., then those benefits should be available to any couple willing to sign a marriage certificate.  The idea that the state would uphold one type of relationship over another is inherently unfair and the idea of ‘civil unions’ is another way to say that people who fall in love with the same sex should be treated differently, which any person familiar with the evils of separate but equal should understand is NOT equal.  

My favorite uncle lives in California has been in a loving partnership for over 20 years.  He and my uncle-by-love have thought about getting married, but are waiting to see what happens with Prop 8 for fear that the marriages that have been performed since earlier this year for same sex couples might be invalidated.  If you saw these two, you would see the funniest, sweetest couple, with all the same ‘i’ve known you forever’ inside jokes and affection as any other couple you’ve known and loved.  Through my uncle-by-love I have gotten to know a whole other side of my favorite uncle, one he never shared with the family when my grandparents were alive. 

While I haven’t been eligible to vote in California since 1991, I hope that anyone eligible will vote NO on Proposition 8 and allow same sex couples in California to marry and, I hope, spark further marriage equality throughout the states.

When I was pregnant with my second son, my California uncles came to visit and took me out to dinner.  My uncle-by-love, who knew we were expecting a second boy, teased me, “you know it [gayness] is genetic . . .”  My reply, “well, at least then I have a shot at being mother of the bride.”  We all dissolved in laughter, but I was not wholly joking.  I fervently hope that my sons, should they want to get married, can marry whomever they choose, regardless of sex or gender.

Vote No on 8.

 

*ok, I’m a little early, but better that then late.

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