04 August 2010

Propped Up

Today is a good day.

Today, Judge Walker in California made his ruling on Proposition 8, and the news is good for our camp.  Prop 8 has officially been overturned!  Who knows how long it will last, but let's enjoy the reprieve while we have it. 

I really admire him for what he said about it:

"Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights to gay men and lesbians. The evidence shows conclusively that Proposition 8 enacts, without reason, a private moral view that same-sex couples are inferior to opposite-sex couples."
Morals are wonderful to have.  As one nation under God, I think morals founded this country and have guided us through history.  But like so many other things in this world, morality is subject to personal opinion, and opinions differ far too often.  That's why we have checks and balances, and judicial review.  I am personally grateful that the morals of Judge Walker guided him to the decision he made.  I'm glad that he sees civil rights as more important than segregation and double standards.

I pray for good people in government.  I am grateful for the religious freedom people have to go to church and cultivate morals and standards.  I pray that churches of all faiths teach the same compassion and love for mankind that our Savior has for each and every one of us.

And tonight, I pray with gratitude for good men like Judge Walker.

I'm sure there are many who are disappointed by today's ruling.  To those people, I say this:

Look into my eyes and tell me I'm not equal.  Stand next to me and tell me I do not have the right to marry the person I love.  Tell me I'm not the same as you, that I'm not good enough, that you deserve to have the privileges that I don't.  Tell me that my love is irrelevant compared to yours.  If you were here, if you knew me, if you had to say that to my familiar face, I don't think you could.

I am a person.  I am a daughter.  I am a sister.  I am an aunt.  I am a friend.  I am an employee.  I am a student.  I am not a nameless, faceless, ominous threat.  I am real, and so is my love, and my desire to one day marry the person I love.  The fact that the person I love is a girl should be the only thing that is irrelevant.

Step outside of your own shoes. Stop thinking about how the country is going to hell in a hand basket. Stop worrying that your children will be corrupted because two men or two women can marry. I promise you, that is not the case. If your children have questions, it's your job to answer them.  But no one can verbally persuade someone to be gay or not gay.  My parents can't talk me out of it.  They can't talk my sisters into it.  It's up to you to teach, and I hope when you do, you teach love instead of hate.

Love conquers hate, and that's what is propping me up tonight.


Anonymous said...

I just wanted to let you know I agree that this country was founded on morals and it has lead to wonderful things, and I agree that freedom and equality are so important but it needs to be understood that just because someone feels that homosexuality is wrong doesn't mean that they feel hatred or teach hate.

Just because a religion teaches that a homosexual lifestyle is wrong that doesn't mean that our leaders are teaching us to hate those who are involved in that lifestyle.

Because of the great freedom of religion in this country different religions have the right to teach what they are inspired to teach to their members; they don't have to agree to a lifestyle in order to still be a religion filled with and led by good people. They don't have to agree with you and you don't have to agree with them and that's ok. I do wish, however that you would recognize that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints does not have to support your lifestyle, whether you feel you were created this way by Heavenly Father or not, the LDS Church does not owe the homosexual community an apology for teaching something that they have been inspired to teach. If you disagree and say that they have not been inspired then they do not owe an apology for teaching something they feel like teaching.

People who disagree with homosexuality are not bad people, just as you and other homosexuals are not bad people. There are so many emotions that are wrapped up in this topic and it is not my intent to cause anger or frustration. I just wanted to make it clear to you that I disagree with you, but I love you. I have known you for a long time and I know what hardships you have been through and you are an amazing person because of how strong you are. I know that you are a special daughter of Heavenly Father and I know that He loves you.

I hope I have not caused offense and, again, it is not my goal to hurt you. I have read your blog for a long time and I just wanted you to know how I feel.

drakames said...

No offense taken, I promise, and I thank you for your comment.

You're right, there are a lot of emotions involved here and it is clearly an emotional topic for me.

I think that religions can teach and practice whatever they want. That is the freedom of religion that this country enjoys. I think though that there should be clear boundaries between religion and government. The government grants religious sects the freedom to practice what they see fit. Religions should do the same.

The overturning of Prop 8 doesn't mean that Catholics have to start marrying same-sex couples, or that LDS bishops have to start issuing temple recommends to same-sex couples wishing to be married. It means that a same-sex couple can be legally married in the eyes of the law, and receive the benefits that married couples get to enjoy. Separation of church and state is, I believe, a very good thing.

Perhaps "hate" was too strong a word. And yet, there is not too much distance between intolerance and hatred. I am not a threat to your family. I am not here to disentigrate the moral thread of society. If I am granted the right to marry, it won't change the fact that Johnny and Susie can still get married, in the temple if they so choose and are worthy to do so. So why am I a threat?

If there is any threat to the family here, it is in telling religious followers that same-sex marriage is a threat to the family. In too many sad cases, that is the very justification used to tear a family apart.

Like you, I hope I have not caused offense. I would welcome any response you might have.