Marriage Equality arrived in California as of 5:01 PM yesterday, June 16, 2008. Historical civil ceremonies are going on up and down the state, with happy couples exchanging simple vows to share their lives and take care of each other.
Sinister forces, some from within the state, most from outside, are backing a ballot initiative to have Californians vote to take the right of marriage away from those who just received it. Of course, those of us who understand that human rights cannot be withdrawn once bestowed-- once the basic humanity of someone is recognized, it cannot be un-recognized-- are fighting tooth and nail to defeat these religious nutjob jerks.
And gays and lesbians are now rushing to beat that November 4 deadline and get married, just in case.
My fiancé called me at work.
I couldn't pick up the phone, as I was helping a colleague in my office. But I called him back as soon as I could.
"'A' asked me if we're going to do it," he said after our usual greetings.
'A' is the niece of my fiancé's late partner of over 20 years (who was exposed to Agent Orange in Vietnam and died of a rare form of lower-GI cancer seen in other exposees), and she's very supportive of us.
"Well, we've said we would, we've promised we would for four years now," I noted.
"But maybe we should go ahead and get all legal NOW, you know, before November and all that."
[Background: We've been together since New Year's Day 2003, and we've been discussing having some kind of commitment ceremony since early 2004 at least. I only came out to my family a year and a half ago, mainly to let my dying sister meet my fiancé before she passed away. My mom has warmed up to the whole situation, but me marrying is still a bit foreign to her. We're going to do it regardless, but we're also remodeling our respective homes in hopes of selling them and combining our households under one bigger, more stylish roof (hey, we ARE gay, after all!).]
"Well,... OK. Why not?"
"We can go make it all legal now and have the big party LATER."
"Sure," I replied, while a recent remark of his played in my mind:
Don't make me remodel this house AND plan a wedding, I'll go insane!
We're relatively young and 100% healthy. We are financially secure. We have our lives ahead of us.
And seriously-- I never really thought this day would arrive in my lifetime. I never thought the simple act we're going to undertake COULD occur in my lifetime. And we may only have a brief window of time to do it.
We're going to get married. We joked about getting Kathy Griffin to officiate, but we're racing against the Fundamentalist Hordes of Scum. No time to get cute.
I'm not fishing for congratulations. THIS IS IMPORTANT.
The fight is now completely personal, and THE RIGHTWING PIGS WILL NOT WIN. Donate to these organizations, if you can:
Please send good thoughts our way. Maybe all the good vibes will defeat the fundies. And maybe-- just maybe-- Federal recognition will follow in short order. Please please please PLEASE.
If you're gay or lesbian and want to come and get married-- hell, even if you're straight!-- come play in our big, beautiful, welcoming state! Let's show 'em how it's done!