badness, life

It’s past time we had a chat

Marriage equality is an inevitability, regardless of what’s happening in Russia right now (why are they hosting the Olympics again?).  But at least progress is happening in California.

Still, I’ve never had a logical, productive discussion about marriage equality with someone from the opposite camp, and feel as though my experience of this social phenomenon is diminished as a result.  Even if we disagree, I’d like to hear an intelligent dissenting opinion, if one exists.  So I went to the Protect Marriage website and submitted the following:

I have yet to have a productive discussion regarding marriage equality with someone who believes, as your group does, that marriage should be defined as between a man and a woman. Instead of having pointless Facebook discussions (that typically consist of someone quoting religious texts as a justification for secular law, or end with someone leaving the conversation in a huff) I figured the best thing to do would be to contact a group of people who have a clear idea of why they believe what they believe, and are capable of having a logical, productive discussion on the topic.

With that in mind, I’ve gone through the “Who We Are” page on your website, and am unclear on a few claims there.

Your website says that “children are most likely to thrive when raised by the father and mother who brought them into this world.”
-How did you come to this conclusion?
-Are adoptive parents (of any gender) therefore inferior?

Your organization claims to want “to protect and preserve traditional marriage…”
-How far back are you extending the word ‘traditional?’ 50 years? 100 years? 1,000 years?

Your website says that our government has “protected marriage to ensure that it exists to conceive and nurture healthy children that will sustain civilization,” and that “procreation is intrinsically connected to marriage.”
-Should the infertile (of any gender) receive the same government protections?
-Are relationships between couples who choose not to procreate inferior in any way?

When you say that children “sustain civilization,” I’m not sure I understand what you mean.
-Do you mean that they maintain the status quo, or that they maintain the same morals and laws that they inherited?

How will same-sex marriage “further [weaken] the societal norm that men should take responsibility for the children they beget”? How did you come to this conclusion?

How will same-sex marriage “corrode marital norms of permanence, monogamy, and fidelity”? How did you come to this conclusion?

Your website quotes Judge Stephen Johnson Field: “marriage is the foundation of family and society, without which there would be neither civilization nor progress.” This statement was made in 1888, eight years before he voted to uphold racial segregation.
-Do you contend that this man’s opinions on social norms (125 years later) are still relevant?
-Please define what you believe he meant by “progress.”

How does an opposite-sex couple’s ability to procreate make their marriage superior to one (made up of any gender combination) that cannot, especially if members of an opposite-sex couple choose not make use of their ability to procreate?

I look forward to hearing back from you.

I’ll post here if they respond.  I’m expecting total radio silence, but remain optimistic.

Meanwhile, here’s how I feel about people who think marriage equality will degrade the current (horrendous) rate of successful marriages between straight couples:

divorce, the silent killer of a full 50% of straight marriages

divorce, the silent killer of a full 50% of straight marriages


badness, work

Grow some ovaries, ladies

I’m in charge of social media in my office, and occasionally get tips from less technologically adept coworkers that I try to implement without letting my eye twitch too much.

For example, today, when I posted an article about how our university is attempting to make gay athletes feel more welcome, Hollywood Coworker told me to “tread very lightly when you post LGBT stuff” because the parents who visit our page are not all as “advanced” as we are on the topic.

my immediate non-verbal response

my immediate non-verbal response

I could tell she assumed this would turn into a disagreement (as her suggestions about what to do with social media often do), so I used my most soothing voice, and said something like, “Well, we can’t cater to every opinion, and even if we could, our job is to inform them about the university. This is happening right now. It’s a fact.”  Her hands came up in a ‘don’t get me started’ fashion, because we both strongly support the LGBT community, so she thought I was preaching to the choir. But I wasn’t, because the topic wasn’t about the LGBT community, it was about deciding whether or not we would do our jobs right, or be cowards.  She honestly believes that I should watch what I post about the LGBT community, especially anything demonstrating support of said community. Why? Because it might offend some parents. As if our job is to:
1) Cater to bigots
2) Lie by omission about university policies
3) Neglect to inform the other parents for fear of offending a few
4) Any of the a-fucking-bove.

This is an amazing university. I’m proud to have gone here, and delighted to be working here. So I’m left wondering: What does Hollywood Coworker think our social media is there for, if not to inform our constituency? If there’s a bombing on campus, we’d post about that too because our job is information distribution, not whatever-makes-you-comfortable distribution.  Remember that newspaper that published an article about the first gay marriage in a small community, and caught all kinds of grief for it?  The owner of that paper wrote a great reply to all the negative feedback: “The job of a community newspaper is not pretending something didn’t take place or ignoring it because it will upset people.”

This bothered me quite a bit, so I mentioned to Little Mole Boss that I had published this article, and she winced.  I asked why she had that reaction, and she said that some parents are prejudiced.  So I asked, “So should we not inform parents because some people might be offended?”
Little Mole Boss: “No, let’s just see what the reaction is.”
me: “Ok… I just want to make sure we’re not avoiding posting stuff because some people don’t like it.  We’re not posting opinions, these are facts.  Our page doesn’t have an LGBT agenda…”
“I know, of course of course…”
“So what’s our policy on this?”
“We don’t have one.”
“I guess if it’s already up, it’s up.  Let’s just see what the reaction is.”
“Ok, sounds good.”

really?  REALLY?

frustrated kitty is frustrated

So there’s some work to be done in the “do the right thing without being a big fucking baby about it” department.

So I’ll keep working on it.

badness, goodness

America is not impressed

If Obama hadn’t won, we wouldn’t have this picture.  Isn’t that reason enough?

you voted romney? hmmm. that’s too bad.

I’m kidding.  Gay rights, people, amirite?

I’m still jazzed about Obama winning a second term in office.  Maybe the right word is relieved.  I’m very relieved that Obama won over the latest Republican maniac, Romney.  What a loon.  I was frightened to think what Romney might take away from women in this country.  My right to have an abortion (a terrible last resort, but a necessary option that shouldn’t be decided upon by men), having birth control covered by health insurance (do they want us to have unwanted children?), funding for Planned Parenthood (cancer screenings and sex education for all?  Yes please).  As a woman, I worried.

As a straight white person, I worried for my friends, for people I’ve never met.  I thought to myself the other day, “I don’t have that many gay friends…”  Then I started counting them.  Oh yeah, that person.  Oh yeah, I forgot about her, and her too.  Oh yeah, I have a ton of them, and I love them all.  Let’s not even get started on immigration.  The vitriol Romney could barely conceal when he talked about “illegals” was scary.  Don’t get me wrong, if you’re here illegally, shame on you, pay some taxes already.  But you can’t tell people desperate to escape a violent country to have a better chance for their kids that they should just fuck off, cus too bad you weren’t lucky enough to be born here, so GTFO.  As a straight white citizen, I worried.

There was a lot on the line this November.  I’m relieved America made the smart choice.  We were unimpressed, and in the end, disapproving of any other candidate (see above photo).

touched by his noodly appendage

Here’s what I can’t figure out: Why is the Republican party walking backwards?  What are they so afraid of?  In particular, why all the misinformation about rape?  Don’t they have wives, daughters, sisters?  Haven’t they thought about what kinds of options they would want the women in their lives to have if something awful like rape happened to one of them?  I have to conclude that they must keep the concept of rape in a hypothetical, airtight box which is what makes it so easy for them to take a purely hypothetical stance on abortion that demands that even a woman who is raped take the pregnancy to term.  It’s insane.  I feel like I’m taking crazy pills.

Thank FSM that Obama won the election. Where would we be without him?  I loathe to imagine a Romney/Ryan America.  Scares the shit outta me.

goodness, life

My old friend

I just found out another friend of mine from way back in the day (elementary school this time) is a big, fat lesbian.  I also found out she just got married (like two days ago).  The first thing that occurred to me was what a shitty friend I am not to have noticed that not only is she a lesbian, she’s also been dating someone seriously enough to marry her.  God I suck.

But good for them!  So exciting.  I wrote on her Facebook wall congratulating her, and letting her know how happy I was for her.  Then I started feeling all misty-eyed about Obama winning his second term, all the women taking office, all the gay rights measures that passed (4 for 4 ain’t too shabby), and I went a little overkill on the well-wishing.  I messaged her partner (now wife) to congratulate her, and to deliver a poorly veiled threat of violence if she messed with my old friend.

Hey Danielle,

I knew Charlene back in grade school, and though we’ve basically lost touch aside from being Fb friends, I wanted to let you know how happy I am for you both, and congratulate you on your wedding.

She and I sang in a choir together in our teens; I remember her being very kind, and sharp as a tack. She also struck me as a bit fragile. All the kids in school knew it had to be tough being the new kid whose father was the new pastor. And I remember James [her little brother] getting into trouble here and there. I realized during one of the fleeting moments of clarity I experienced in my early teens that she had a lot on her plate, but she handled it like a champ.

Please treat her well. She is, and will always be, my friend. Even if we haven’t spoken in years, I’ll still break your knees if you hurt her. Just kidding. But not really 🙂:)

Yes, I cried a little, sitting on the floor in my friend’s apartment while Obama was declared winner of the election.  But this really brought home what was at stake.  My old friend.  I am so happy for you.

happy tears in Minnesota over the smallest of victories: being told that your kind of love should not, after all, be outlawed


Human rights: a new anthem

I probably cry more at work nowadays than anywhere else, since it’s there that I read articles about the state of the world, and find videos like this.

Upworthy is right: equality just found a new anthem.

But now what?  What can I do?  Watching a video, clicking ‘like’ is not enough.  What now?  What do I do now?

goodness, humor

Still str8 against H8

This collection of pro-gay marriage protest signs made me smile today.  Nothing like a sense of humor to invigorate your cause.

My personal favorites:


"get back in the car, honey."

finally, irrefutable evidence

badness, family, goodness, life

Baby steps

BossyBear, you are so bossy.

I read this article today about a kid who stood up to his dad on behalf of his younger brother, who wasn’t being manly enough for his dad’s taste.  So awesome.  Color me impressed.

I wonder if I was that kind of kid.  I don’t remember being particularly heroic, but I do recall not putting up with bullies.  I remember hearing (and saying), “What’s your problem?!”  The whole situation usually dissolved before any physical contact ensued.

The point is, it’s tough for kids to stand up to others, especially adults, because they don’t know where they stand on most stuff, and they assume adults are right until told otherwise.

badness, life

Then my heart broke

I found this video today of some completely average-looking people asking for marriage licenses in North Carolina.  They all get calmly rejected because they’re gay.  Then they cry.  Then I cry.  Then my heart breaks.

I don’t understand the problem people have with gay marriage.  I just don’t get it.  I’ve never heard an argument against gay marriage made calmly that didn’t evoke a Judeo-Christian belief system.  We don’t all have to be religious to be American.  To be American is to be a member of a diverse group of citizens.  At what point do some get rights others do not simply because they’re different?  It just doesn’t make any sense.

badness, goodness, life


I don’t often post my political views since I know what they are, and this is meant to be a journal of sorts to help me remember my life as it is today.  I guess I just assume I’ll always feel the way I do about important issues.  Then again, I used to be anti-death penalty.  So I suppose things change.

New York legalized same-sex marriage recently, and people are pretty excited about it.  California must be next.  We’re so close.  The opposition seems hateful, afraid, and for the most part, incapable of logically explaining why they believe the gay community shouldn’t be able to marry.

supporters brought umbrellas to shield the couples waiting in line at city hall from protesters with "god hates fags" signs

Then again, there are stories like these where Jerry Sanders, the conservative Republican mayor of San Diego, held a press conference to explain his about-face on the issue of same-sex marriage, and broke down in front of reporters as he talked about gay family and coworkers from whom he could no longer withhold the privilege of marriage.

The day after the election that put Obama into office, the second headline on the front page predicted Proposition 8 to pass.  Devastated and incredulous, I read the headline through the plastic door of a newspaper stand on the sidewalk, and wept openly.  Later that day, while sitting at my desk at Real Estate Job, I got a text from a number I didn’t recognize asking me (and others) to meet at Santa Monica Blvd. and San Vicente to protest.  By 9pm, we had blocked off traffic along Santa Monica, and began marching east.

that traffic wasn't going anywhere

I walked alone in the crowd, chatting with random protesters and snapping photos.  I overheard two lesbians in front of me releasing their frustration: “It’s all the straight people who voted against us.  I bet there aren’t even any straight people here.”  I had to speak up: “I’m straight!” I yelled.  A small radius of people around me let out a cheer as the two women turned to see who had shouted with a mixture of bemusement and shock.  They hugged me and thanked me, but could not forgive the straight community for butting into their personal lives.  I couldn’t really blame them.  They were right.

At some point during the protest, the police asked us to stay out of the street.  Most of us listened, a couple were arrested (and loudly supported) as they shouted “Gay, straight, black, white, marriage is a civil right!”  I was so impressed by the police.  They were very patient, and gentle with the people they arrested.  They clearly just wanted us to get our protest done without any problems or violence.

This story posted yesterday on BBC News about two women who got married in New York is just fantastic.  Yeah, I cried a little.  They’re just so happy.