Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas Morning.

Christmas was everything I'd ever dreamed and more. First there was the Christmas cookies left out for Santa (his reindeer, you will note, nibbled a bit at the carrot).
The magic glow of Christmas lights twinkled on the packages and it was hard to go to sleep in anticipation of the next morning. And what's better than seeing the children pass one another gifts and sharing?Except for, maybe, a Santa Baby, keeping her little hat on THE ENTIRE MORNING.Later, Claire read to us from her new book from Grandmother and Grandfather, while everyone else worked on keeping Auntie Farrah warm.Miss Claire and I got matching stockings- WHAT a suprise!
Can anything top a bike for Christmas? Maybe...if it's a CHRISTMAS PUPPY! (A PUPPY- can you believe that?!?!)And I truly loved my Christmas gift- a portrait of Rudolph. I believe the medium used was what the experts refer to as "Magic Marker."
And then comes Grandma with her freshly baked orange rolls and Christmas cocoa with REAL whipped cream for breakfast- getting diabeties has never been so delightful!This just made my day. Clarie keeps a journal about her baby sister. It reads: "It's Camille's first Christmas! She got a baby puppy and clothes and a snowman picture from Claire."Now this girl knows how to do a Christmas dinner. Why bother with clothes if you're just going to get pudding pie on them anyway?I think this photo sums up our Christmas morning perfectly:

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas, Morning.

Throughout college I spent Christmas working a Tree Farm and finding out I'm allergic to pine (embarrassing, I know) and shuffling around to various friend's houses. As I've gotten older and moved around more, it's been harder on my pride factor to attend a friend's family for a few days and not feel like an imposition (as great as those families have been to have me- a 30something houseguest in a full house of virtual strangers seems a bit much). So the last few years I've spent Christmas at the beach and usually entertain other locals or out-of-towners with nowhere to go with the Ultimate Traditional Christmasfest wherever it is I'm living. Last year we made a real, live (not anymore) goose and everything. I even put some real potatoes in with my favourite potato pearls! Fancy. I know.

This year, one of my best friends from college called and invited me to her house for their traditional Mexican Christmas Eve dinner- but we realized I wouldn't be done with work in time to see the kids perform their traditional Nativity Scene (I've never actually seen one of these!) or her oldest child's newest puppet show OR get to hear them sing carols.
Work is ruining my life.
So last night we decided I would just get in late- help put the kids to bed- and then sleep over so I could experience a real Christmas morning. And by "real," I mean, the-kind-of-Christmas-morning-were-kids-wake-up-and-run-screaming-into-the-living-room-to-rip-apart-everything-left-under-the-tree. I cannot even express how excited I am to finally get to experience that. I truly believe I have waited my entire life to experience a Real Christmas like that. (I'm getting a bit teary in just thinking about it.)

As an only child from a rather humble background, we never really did presents. I might get a used game of magnets or something equally sad. When I lived with my grandparents, we were allowed to open stockings as early as we liked, but (as with everything else indoors) we were to handle ourselves at the utmost of decorum. Meaning, everyone in the house was to get dressed, be prepared for the day, sit down for breakfast and patiently wait for the other cousins to arrive. Then, one by one, we would open our one gift from Santa. Usually a used book from grampa's astounding collection from the barn, or sometimes we'd get really lucky with a group gift, like a new sled for us to share or a teddy bear.

Knowing this, my friend hesitated, warning, "I kind of thought about this- and I thought, 'I'm not sure how Farrah's going to handle Christmas morning'..."
"Do the kids wake up at 6 and freak out and just tear everything apart?"
"Well...we do try to encourage a little bit of order- to go slowly so the rest of us can wake up and adjust and take pictures, but...yeah. That's kind of what it's like."
"And we still have to get some things done, like put together Claire's bike and assemble the racetrack for Colin..."
"O my gosh! Claire's getting a BIKE for CHRISTMAS!?!?" (See what I mean? A BIKE and a RACE CAR TRACK!?!? ALREADY assembled!?!? Under the tree!??! Now THIS is a Real Christmas!)
"Yeah, so, you can help us do all that when they all go to bed-"
Nothing could make me more excited. In fact, I honestly believe that I might be the one with the hardest time going to bed and the I might even be the first one to wake up, I'm anticipating Christmas morning so much.

In preparation for my first Real Christmas morning, I went to bed at 10:30pm last night, so I could be ready for what a 6 am wake up on the couch with several children would be like. I got up and prayed that I would have a Christ-centered Christmas; that I would remain focused on the Savior and His work and my relationship with Him. A few minutes later, I opened the curtain to meet this:

It took my breath away. I haven't seen a sunrise like this in quite some time- probably months. To be so caught up in work and change and daily routines and all those little things that easily absorb your day, it's easy to miss out on the grandeur the Lord provides us every day. Every day, we have reminders that the Lord is present in our lives. We just need to open our curtains and stop long enough and remember to notice.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Holidays- Heyyy!

I realize this may not make up for an extended absence, but I want you to know, Friendship IS the most important thing this holiday season.

Monday, November 24, 2008

New Anthem:

Of course, I thought the lyrics were, "I got talent, I got wit," but...whatever.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Weekend in Vegas.

Because it's my birthday.
And nothing says class like a weekend in Vegas.
I practically reek of maturity.
  • It looks like I'll be heading to Vegas Wed morning to get in some one on one with my Vegas family- those of you with families, I mean, before friends get in and just want me to swill hard alcohol and party till the breaka-breaka-dawn.
  • I will stay with Keller's family for Wednesday and Thursday night and then (to reduce foot traffic) stay with CropStarr Friday and Saturday.
  • JonWayne and Co are looking into 2 for 1 tickets for LOVE, Mystere and any other free/discounted tickets to Cirque de Soliel shows.
  • Lindsey is looking into free/cheap spas, but any suggestions are welcome.
  • I met a professional VIP coordinator last night and apparently now we are not paying for anything anywhere we want to go. So. Happy Birthday to ALL of us.
  • Carpoolers from California- We have people leaving Thursday night from LA and Friday night from Huntington Beach. Can you send me a quick roll call to let me know what times you'd prefer and if you'll need a place to stay? Returning to California- we have people who want to leave Vegas for home Saturday night and Sunday morning. Reply to all to roll call it to know who you can ride back with.
Anyone who can't make it, I'd still love to see you at my place: November 23 Sunday night 8pm. Bring your favourite ice-cream or ice-cream addition (fruit, cookie dough, granola, brownies) and we'll make home-made Cold Stone. Everyone's welcome. Our pool patio is huge and there are lots of lounge chairs on deck for lounging. Call me for the address.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Truly. I am.
It's been a long time coming, but, girl, you know it's true.
We're taking a long lunch today to be together in the dark. Just he and me.
And I couldn't be happier about it.
Let me know if you want to join us.
Century City AMC.
Text me.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Like I said- I'm not trying to change anyone's mind. I'm just trying to make sure we have a greater understanding of each other's motivations.

Either way.
Get out and let your voice be heard.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Polygamy and Gay Marriage-

I didn't say that "because they are black they are facing these challenges." I just gave one relevent example of a community hit particularly hard by this issue as noted lately in press. Again, of course I don't think all black men are irresponsible.
As for generalizations - if we are to be intelligent at a macro (societal) level, we all must make generalizations to inform public policy. We'd be ignoring facts and intelligence if we didn't. An example - people in Mississippi tend to be more overweight than people in Colorado; what can we learn from this to address obesity in this country? It doesn't mean we're saying all Mississippans are fat. Or, gay Americans smoke cigarettes more often than their straight counterparts, a generalization we've been able to build massive and directed campaigns against smoking on. There's no hate there.
If we incite hate or *unfair treatment* based on generalizations, that's when it *can be* bad. I think that's where you and others can make good, sound counterpoints to me. There's no foul in the generalizations themselves - you disagree with my conclusions. And that's fine and that's your right and how we all get more clarity about each other's viewpoints.
An example when *unfair treatment* based on generalization is *good* in my opinion: A man wants to marry two women. He has beautiful, loving relationships with each. This happens today - I've heard stories on NPR where actors in these relationships (woman, woman, man) talk about how wonderful it is, how steeped in love it is. And yet, we say no. Why do we say no? I mean, many past and current cultures have/do condone this exact thing. Because even though three well-developed, great examples of people could pull this off and make it work, in *general* we know this to be bad for women and bad for our society - that most cannot pull this off. Right?
(Please - nobody say I'm equating polygamy to a gay relationship - I'm *not* - this is purely an *overt* example to illustrate a point.)
Nate in particular, and everybody else, it's obvious that being friends of Bradley and participating one way or another on this thread that you all have beautiful motivations and good hearts. It has been stimulating to talk with you all.

I absolutely disagree with you Jordy about using race, gender, or sexual-orientation generalizations to dictate public policy. You may say that there's no foul in the generalizations themselves, but you're using those very same generalizations to justify certain public policy, and your position on Proposition 8. That's not fair. It's one thing to use data about certain segments of the population to form awareness campaigns aimed at those very segments, but by the logic that you're using to justify your position on Proposition 8, then all black people should be denied the right to marry as well. If there's a higher incidence of irresponsible parenting in the black community, then should divorce be illegal for black people? Or, should they really be denied the right to marry? Of course not. And, I'm assuming that you would think that's preposterous as well. In other words, why should all gay people be denied the right to marry just because there's a higher incidence of failed relationships in that community? By denying those rights, we're not getting to the root of the problem -- failed relationships. We don't need to punish everyone of a certain group, just because some individuals in that group don't exhibit what's "best" for the entire group. If that doesn't make sense, I'm not too sure how I can present my argument more clearly.
In terms of polygamy, it was banned in society because it is the currently held belief among the majority of Americans that it's not good for ALL of society. Trans fats aren't just banned in fat communities in Mississippi. And, they're not just bad for fat people. They're bad for ALL people. If smoking is banned in public places, they're not going to only ban smoking in gay public places just because there's a higher incidence of smoking in the gay community, they're going to ban smoking in ALL public places because it's bad for ALL communities. Do you get it? The root of the problem is smoking and addiction, or consumption of trans fats. Polygamy wasn't banned in only the Mormon community, just because there may be a higher incidence of polygamous relationships among people of that religion. That would be making an unfair generalization about that religion and letting that generalization dictate public policy. Polygamy was banned because right now a majority of the people believe that it's not beneficial to society as a whole, and everyone is denied that right. If people feel that their rights to a polygamous relationship are being denied of them while at the same time public opinion changes about the nature and consequences of a polygamous relationship, then we should reexamine the public policy that's been put in place. I'm not advocating polygamy, nor am I saying that it should necessarily be legalized, but if we're ignoring the collective morality of society, and using generalizations to create laws, or deny certain rights, then we've failed as a society to include the critical values of any legal system, which are impartiality, neutrality, certainty, equality, openness, flexibility, and growth:


I'm sorry Farrah, but did you not read anything I mentioned in my e-mail?
You're being manipulated and lied to. This has NOTHING to do with your faith or your tolerance and acceptance of gays. If Proposition 8 is defeated, your church, your religion, your marriage and your life will not change AT ALL. In fact, the constitution will not change at all either. The "What is Prop 8" website that you included a link to is full of misinformation and lies. It says that churches may be sued over their tax-exempt status if they refuse to allow same-sex marriages. Think VERY carefully about how well crafted and deceptive that statement is. Sure, churches MAY be sued, but that doesn't mean that the law suit will be settled in favor of the plaintiff. In other words, same-sex couples are welcome to try to sue churches for discrimination, but religious freedom will prevent those couples from winning their cases. Once again, the crux of your reasoning for voting Yes on Proposition 8 is based on lies and misinformation. If logic and truth don't matter to you, then we're not even going to be able to have this discussion.

Karn and Nathan, my friends, you have depicted me as racist and sexist among other things. Those of you whom know me (Karn!) know that there is not a spec of me that is either of those - never has been and never will be. Nathan, you prescribe straw man arguments to me that I never even made and are preposterous. Do not embellish my points and put words into my mouth - take my points for what they are or ask for clarification. Karn - your lecture to me about the need to accept difference? Your accusation that I think gay men are perverts! How insanely innaccurate...and you know me! If I'm *that* guy you describe, it's amazing we've been close friends for so long.
Ladies and gentlemen, there is not a *single* observation I made in my e-mail that you won't find observed in mainstream media, on NPR, on public tv, in Newsweek. Nathan, among the biggest insults or condescensions I've possibly ever received is your lesson on Blacks when you tell me, "it has nothing to do with the fact they are Black." It's sickening how you claim to have gotten that from me. I made no such claim and anybody who reads what I said will see that. In fact what I said isn't even my original statement! Black leaders speak of this issue in our communities. Columnists speak about it. Obama has given speeches related to this, and praise him for that!
I abhor racism and sexism and evil. I am passionate about making our society good. These are my opinions. Disagree with my conclusions, please. But do not publicly hang me under false accusations.
Nathan, consistent with your responses up until this one, there are some interesting points you make in your reply to me (in between the false accusations) that I'll give some thought to. Thanks for those. Also Nathan, I think you assume that I'm straight in your "this won't affect my marriage." Not so. And I know other gay men who also want to keep marriage as traditionally defined for similar reasons as mine - i.e. even some gay men are for 8.

I will say it once again -- you've been lied to and mislead. Freedom of religion will not be affected. The government will not be allowed to alter "God's law". That's why in this country we have separation between Church and State. "God's law" has been interpreted and perceived in so many different ways by so many different religions that it would be not only be an impossibly huge task, but it would be fundamentally wrong for government to even begin to get involved. By saying that "God's law was here before our laws of the land" is essentially saying that God's law trumps state and government laws. Are you sure you're willing to stand by that statement? As I said, God's law has an infinite number of versions, yet you're clearly combining Church and State and stating that your God's laws overpower all other laws. You say that you're not judgmental, but I'd suggest that you be extremely careful about assuming that your savior, your God, and your religious views are superior to any or all others. I'm sure you'll agree that no single religion should dictate the law of the land. Therefore, no single religion, or group of religions, should be given a monopoly on the concept of marriage, the institution of marriage, or the word "marriage". By definition, "marriage" is NOT religious, and separate-but-equal institutions are wrong. That's what this all boils down to...

I don't think you're racist or sexist, but you admitted yourself that your statements are generalizations about race and gender, and you're clearly using those very generalizations to justify your position on Proposition 8. The "straw man" arguments that you claim that I prescribe to you were simply provided as counterpoints to seemingly one-sided arguments that you presented -- that's why I made those types of statements and posed those questions at all -- to highlight the nature of the perspective that you were presenting. Sorry if you felt that I was putting words in your mouth. Hopefully it's apparent to everyone else that I wasn't.
The observations you made may in fact be accurate, but once again, they are generalizations, and in my opinion shouldn't be used to inform public policy. Hopefully that was clear and the point was emphasized by the counter-examples I provided. Obama has given speeches about how the black community is suffering from the absence of fathers, and I commend him for that as well. I'm not denying that it's an issue. What I'm saying is that it's not because they're black that they're facing these challenges. It's because in those segments of society, among other things, responsibility for one's actions is not being encouraged. They just happen to be black segments of society. Just because all the irresponsible men in those communities are black doesn't mean that all black men are irresponsible. Get it? That's all I was trying to say. We have to be careful about racially, or sexually profiling people. I'm not saying that you're advocating that we do. I'm just saying that by using race/gender/sexual-orientation generalizations to inform public policy, we run the risk of that happening...
Sorry if it seemed like I was making false accusations. And, I honestly don't care if you're straight or gay. I was simply trying to provide a more balanced perspective and challenge your perceptions. :)

Acknowledging Sin is NOT "Discrimination."

Favourite point EVER:
"separate but equal" is wrong, immoral, and unjust, no matter how you try to rationalize it. Just because odds are stacked against a certain group doesn't mean that they should be denied certain rights. As I said before, by that flawed logic, the same rights should then be denied to ALL couples that the odds are stacked against. Nobody is saying that anyone HAS to get married. It's simply an option, for those that believe that they're ready to enter into a committed, legally-recognized relationship.

I completely agree. That's why it's so difficult when I consider Prop 8 is about marriage- I completely agree with you. I would hope any logical person would see that. What worries me is that Freedom of Religion- to allow churches to practice their faith without the goverment redefining "sin" as "discrimination." To those of us who are people of faith, "sin" is not necessarily something to be feared- just as homosexuality is not something to be feared. But while we are not to fear or discriminate because of sin, does that mean we say that sin is no longer valid in a church? If there is no sin, there is no repentance and if there is no repentance there is no need of a Savior. But there is sin, and there is redemption. By failing to acknowledge the one, we diminish the power of the other.

My other concern is the Freedom of Speech- that suddenly to SAY "homosexuality is a sin" from the pulpit becomes hate speech or denying to acknowledge a union which defies the sacred institution of marriage becomes discrimination, well- in my view, God's law was here before our laws of the land. I'm not about to throw a tantrum just because my church won't allow me to marry within it's sacred temple if I have chosen not to keep the commandmants. But should Prop 8 fail, legally, the government would have the right to alter God's law. I do so love your comments. I wish I had more of them. All of you. Thank you for putting forth such thoughtful and articulate comments. I may repost them on my blog to share. Would that be okay with you? I'd like people to hear more than just my side:


Aligning Ourselves in Peace.

Wow.I am so super in love with you guys.

I so appreciate having a thoughtful, sincere and articulate conversation about an issue which most people discard with intolerant, impassioned remarks, with now real concern for mutual understanding or respect. I'm only sad I was out all day and missed the conversation as it happened! To those of you who contributed, I appreciate your respectfulness and tolerance for a different point of view. It's important to me that my friends and loved ones on the opposing side understand why I would vote Yes on something that appears to be advocated mostly by religious zealots or extreme conservatives. And I would hate to think that- on any level- anyone might believe that I would ever remotely desire to discriminate or demean another human being.

I'm extremely uncomfortable with most of the arguments advocating Prop 8. I neither fear nor feel threatened by the increase of understanding and advocacy laws for gay unions. In fact, I am a proponent of such education. I think educating children is the best way to begin an accepting and understanding atmosphere for the future. I also feel that it needs to be recognized that there is a great deal of intolerance and cruelty toward those who are religious, conservative, or supportive of traditional marriage and family. Rather than feeling threatened or fearing one another, I think the best thing to do in such a difficult argument is to remove emotions and consider the legal consequences if Proposition 8 does not pass.

The major points on this Prop 8 website were what truly resonated with me. That is- politically, legally and financially- there are negative consequences if Prop 8 fails which will discriminate and legally create religious intolerance within our country.

To those of you who suggest I am intolerant, discriminatory or ignorant; you don't know me. Those who do know me, know that I support, love and respect others- even when they live by standards different from my own. I wrote about my own expectations within my religious institution and remind you that even I - a faithful and active Mormon- would be denied marriage in the sacred temple if I chose not to live according to the spiritual laws and doctrines of our faith. I don't consider this discrimination. It is my choice to live worthily to enter the House of the Lord or to not. To those of you who are not religious, suggesting that "sin" suddenly means one is looked upon as "less than" and therefore discriminated against or looked down upon or unwelcome in a church, is simply misguided. I wouldn't go to church if that's how I felt, either! (In fact, it was Christ who said, "They who are whole need not a physician," (Matthew 9:12) According to my faith, if we did not all sin, there would be no need for a Savior and therefore, no Christianity. We all sin; so to look down on another is ridiculous- the most we can do is love and accept one another and allow the Lord to make us whole.) Since this is becoming largely recognized as a political stand the Mormon faith has become affiliated with, as a faithful Mormon in good standing, I would like to be one to stand up and say that not everyone (and in fact the majority) advocating this proposition are not doing it to be discriminatory, nor to inflict fear or homophobia into the world. Personally, I've have had trouble aligning myself with a side which touts points I find to be completely irrelevant and even officious (what's so wrong about teaching children about gay marriage? Of COURSE gay unions are to be respected as traditional marriage!) However, when I hear my church leaders speak about this issue, their advocacy of traditional marriage as a union between a man and a woman to create families comes from a place of such love and kindness and acceptance...It's just painful for me to think anyone could think I would vote yes for any other reason than to uphold the standards of my faith and protect the freedom of religion and free speech.

So far, most intolerant comments I've heard come not from the advocates of Prop 8, but from those who persecute people of faith. I know my friends who may disagree with my vote couldn't possibly think I would desire to put them in a position of defensiveness or discriminate against them- I simply ask that we understand that maybe each side may require a little more tolerance and a little more understanding.

I'm not trying to change anyone's vote. I'm just trying to make mine understood by those whom I love.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


To be quite frank, and I'd like to convey this with genuine respect for you as a person, and not come across as insulting in any way, but most of your arguments and justifications don't carry much weight. I understand that you've admitted to making generalizations, but since you made the statements to begin with, I feel an obligation to comment. Ok, here goes... :)
If men and women are so "fundamentally different", then why should there be an institution of marriage at all? I mean, as you said, ALL men obviously only want sex and have no coupling or familial instincts whatsoever, right? Do you really think that the men that do enter into a marriage only do so because they were forced into it, against their will? And, are you including yourself when you're talking about writing on walls of bathroom stalls? What about the women that can't curb their husband's sexual desires? What about the women whose sexual desires overpower those of their husband's? We can't start using faulty logic and passing judgment on individuals solely based on their gender or sex-drive. I'm sure you'll agree that not all men are pigs, and that not all women are angels... :)
I agree, monogamous couples are probably better for families, and children. In that case, should married couples be required to apply for a license to have children, or be required to stay together for the sake of the children or society's sake? would that mean that divorce should then be outlawed? In my opinion, that's going a little too far. It restricts our freedoms and allows government to get too entrenched in our personal lives and decisions... The black community is facing challenges due to the absence of fathers not because they're black, but because the fathers aren't taking responsibility for their actions. It has NOTHING to do with the fact that they're black. we need to get to the root of the problem and not try to pass judgement based on race or use flawed deductive reasoning.
In terms of straight couples having better "success" than gay couples, it may in fact be statistically accurate, but is that any reason to deny the right of marriage to a gay couple that DOES exhibit monogamy and commitment and wants to have a family? By your logic, we should also deny marriage to young, drunk college students that decide to get hitched in Vegas on a whim -- and all other relationships that are statistically destined to fail (i.e. celebrities)... We have to be careful not to use unsound deduction and pass judgement on whether or not a relationship or marriage will last. That becomes very risky and intrusive... The rights should be afforded to those that wish to exercise them. It's as simple as that. And in terms of a man and a woman, or a man and a man, it would be sexist to assume that one couple would last longer -- it depends on so many other factors besides gender. what i would put money on though is that the man and the man couple would have a lot more sex... ha! :)
Sure, men and women each offer unique things to children, but it's not our place to say that moms should teach children how to sew and cook, and that dads need to teach children how to throw a baseball and fish. Once again, it's sexist to make those types of assumptions. I'm sure that most gay couples with children make a concerted effort to expose their children to as many different types of familial relationships and roll models as possible -- whether they be men or women, straight or gay. A lot of single heterosexual mothers and fathers do the same, if they have time... And, with regard to Freud, I don't even know where to begin with that. It's a little off topic, but over the past several decades, Freudian psychology has dramatically affected American, mostly for the worse. If you're interested in seeing how pervasive and devastating Freudian psychology has been, and how it's been used by those in power to control the masses, check out the following fascinating BBC documentary series, "The Century of The Self":
Yes, admittedly so, you've made generalizations about gay and straight couples, and about men and women, but I think you're still not realizing that "separate but equal" is wrong, immoral, and unjust, no matter how you try to rationalize it. Just because odds are stacked against a certain group doesn't mean that they should be denied certain rights. As I said before, by that flawed logic, the same rights should then be denied to ALL couples that the odds are stacked against. Nobody is saying that anyone HAS to get married. It's simply an option, for those that believe that they're ready to enter into a committed, legally-recognized relationship. We don't live in a country where arranged marriages are the norm -- hopefully people get married because they want to, not because they have to. Once again, do you believe that my identical twin brother's relationship should be recognized by society under one institution, but my relationship be recognized under a separate, but "equal" institution? No, because that implies that the circumstances and quality of my relationship are different from that of my brother's. I'm sorry, but I'm not going to drink from a different water fountain, even if that water flows through the exact same pipes...
What are you so afraid of, honestly? Gay marriage won't affect your marriage, or ability to marry in the slightest. In fact, gay couples put an extreme amount of thought and planning into having a family (they have to, because they can't just "accidentally" get pregnant like straight couples can). Therefore, I'd be willing to say that gay couples could in fact provide more of an inspiration, and serve as societal models for how to plan ahead for taking on the serious responsibilities of having a family. But, it's NOT because they're gay that this could be the case. It's because emphasizing the importance of monogamy and commitment, planning ahead for having a family, exposing children to adult male and female role models, understanding the consequences of a divorce, and taking responsibility for one's actions are the RIGHT THINGS TO DO -- gay or straight, black or white, male or female... Right? :)
Peace and Love,

After reading your arguments about gay men, Jordy, I felt speechless. I know whatever I say will not change your mind. However, I do need to say my peace because I know some on this list personally. It's easy for me to explain your motivation but your comments are extremely hurtful - to me and my friends.
After reading everything over and over, to me, your entire argument is based on the idea that gay people are different, perverted, and they are not to be treated equally.
Personally, I think the real issue here is fear - the fear of those that are gay. We need to get beyond our fears and stop fearing those that are different.
Being different inspires me. Yes, I wasn't born in the US. Yes, I look different. Yes, I have a different life style than most of you - heck I am hardly in the US these days. Yes, today I still face discrimination wherever I go. Yes, I have had people come up to me asking me to go back to my home country. But If prop 8 passes this year, I still know in my heart that we will keep on fighting and it's only a matter of time. Change is coming. To me, I don't want the next generation to be afraid of being who they are, beaten up because they are different, getting kicked out of the house because they are gay. I have had my shares of trying to help those kids. Enough is enough! I want my kids - your kids, to be treated equally, regardless of whether they are black, white, brown, yellow, gay, fat or ugly.
Anyhow, at the end of the day, Marriage is a commitment. Love is something that is a long hard road. If you don't want gay marriage, don't get married with a person of the same sex.
Yes, we can to justice and equality…


Saturday, November 1, 2008

Facts and Faith-

To all who are reading or contributing to this thread - I just want to say I've rarely seen such eloquent, respectful and factual discussions over such a heated topic before - on e-mail no less. This is truly great, a class act, and we are all doing our part in bringing about clarity. As for me, I fully own my belief that gay couples should be treated with respect and dignity and should have equal legal rights - nobody can minimize that for me. At the same time, I admit both Leslie and Nathan have valid points. Am I saying equal rights or unequal? I can't have it both ways.

Let me ask this: Given that gay couples in Cali already have the same legal rights as straight couples do, isn't the crux of this conflict about the symbolism of marriage? That seemingly tiny but in reality defining (or redefining) moment in our society?I believe most proponents of gay marriage see this redefinition as an unprecedented proclamation that it is no better for members of a society to marry those of the opposite sex than it is the same sex. Either way is identical, equal; there is zero difference.

I believe most opponents of gay marriage say no - as a society, gay and straight marriage is actually not equal. Straight marriage is better for society than is gay marriage.I submit that it boils down to that difference. And it is in that context that it makes sense for me to say - disagree as you will - that gay couples deserve legal rights, respect, rights to adoption, encouragement of monogamy, and similar but that we should and must also keep opposite-sex marriage as special with its unique designation; marriage.

If I were going only by compassion, and Kira gave a compelling argument for compassion among other things - I would say yes, gay couples who have fought for equality and acceptance should be granted it. But I must also consider society and how we influence it with our laws and thus our values.

A quick defense of straight marriage as better for society and deserving of a unique designation. I do not think any honest person can disagree with the answers to the below questions, though I can understand the disagreement with the conclusion:
- Are men and women fundamentally different? It is so obvious the answer is yes, by so many measures. Just as it relates to sex, look at a men's restroom wall virus a women's? Look at porn use by men versus women, romance novels read by men versus women.
- Are monogamous couples better for families and thus for society than broken couples?Yes. Children can suffer tremendously from broken households where mother and father aren't present. The Black community, for example, is facing horrific challenges due to the absence of fathers.
- Do straight couples have better success rates than gay couples?Yes, absolutely. Among the reasons is surely societal pressure on gay men, but much of it also goes to my first point - men are more sexual than women. Women tend to hold relationships together and balance men's sex drive. Seriously, honestly: A woman and a man; a man and a man - which do you put your money on lasting?
- Do men and women each offer unique and important things to children?Of course. Freud and so many others acknowledge children's development processes, male and female, as being shaped by both men and women.

All of the above is *general.* The fact that straight couples can be horrible parents, gay couples can be amazing parents, that there are so many unwanted children who need homes; all of this and other reasons are why I support gay civil unions and equal legal rights. But the odds are stacked more in favor of straight couples than gay couples to create solid families. And solid families are the foundation of society. Thus, the importance to society for keeping same-sex marriage as its special designation. I appreciate you listening and granting my viewpoints respect on this forum.

Thanks, everyone.

Power and Fear-

Power does not always corrupt. Fear corrupts…mostly the fear of a loss of power over others. Enslave no one. Vote No on 8.

i'd also like to applaud farrah for speaking out about her beliefs, to what is no doubt a largely hostile audience. i didn't feel like her arguments were terribly clear to me (maybe because i can't get past the idea that someone can really love a person and still want them to be denied the right to do what makes them happy) but i do find it admirable that she took the opportunity to open the issue up for discussion. was is voltaire who said he may not agree with what you said, but he'd defend to the death your right to say it? yeah, me, too.
i listened to a radio discussion on the topic the other day. it was on the local npr affiliate, kqed, and it was a debate between the pro and con sides for prop 8. the speaker in favor of proposition 8 (a gentleman from an organization called catholics for the common good) brought up similar issues to the ones farrah addressed - namely the fear that people would have their right to be haters abridged (freedom of speech), and he also addressed the concern of churches being forced to perform ceremonies for gay couples who might get their gayness inside the pristine religious houses (freedom of religion.) icky!
the woman who spoke against proposition 8, kate kendell (executive director of the national center for lesbian rights and member of the executive committee of the "no on 8" campaign) said, on the air, that if anyone was aware of such a lawsuit being brought against a church, her organization would represent the aggrieved church in the lawsuit, because that is NOT what the law provides for, nor is it what we are in store for if prop 8 passes. if a spokesperson for the anti-8 campaign was willing to offer her obviously gay-centered legal firm's help to any church that experienced reverse discrimination as a result of prop 8 being defeated, i find it hard to imagine that this is a real issue. it seems like a classic bait and switch, where one part of an issue is highlighted so no one pays attention to another, less savory, more sticky part.
by trying to reframe this proposition as a religious freedom issue or a freedom of speech issue, people who are juggling faith and the reality of living in a modern world are allowed to make decisions they can justify, rather than admitting they just believe that gay people, while often nice and lovely people, are also wrong and their lifestyles are morally reprehensible. love them at parties, doing my hair, on tv, but not in my church or my afterlife! in the modern world, where being gay is certainly more acceptable than it has been in previous times, it isn't possible to run a campaign with the message "i'm so sorry, but you're an abomination and god is going to punish you!" so we get the more snappy and "sexy" idea of free speech and freedom of religion and the super vague idea of protecting "traditional family values." (what are those, exactly? overworked alcoholic dads who are absent from their children's lives? moms who define their worth by the success of their children, while having no interests or passions of their own? how does adoption factor into that? what about a few families living together in the same house? is it only 2 opposite sex parents with some kids? does the tradition include being a happy household, or is that negotiable? traditions change. why can't we change our idea of a traditional family to mean a household filled with people who love and respect each other?)
no one is trying to keep religious people from tsking over the eternal damnation of people who "choose" to be gay. and, all snarkiness aside, i can really understand how hard it would be to reconcile a religion that clearly tells you what to think about a class of people with your own experiences of those people. i fully respect religious faith as a valid and important foundation for some people to make their decisions from. i find blindly following a religion that runs contrary to your own feelings (love gays but hate their gayness because god told me to) to be difficult to swallow and morally icky TO ME, but i don't disdain anyone for making decisions based on what their faith leads them to.
but the defeat of this proposition isn't going to force anyone to do anything they don't want to do, aside from allowing a large group of people do something that makes them happy, and will hurt NO ONE. if two consenting adults want to get married, it's not really any of your business, anymore than it's my business what you do in your church. if i don't like it, i can stay away, and so can you. truly, it doesn't matter how lovely the separate types of union are - it doesn't matter how many rights they afford to gay couples in their domestic partnership or how much people try to play up that it's just as good. what matters is that you're saying "THIS union is only for us, not you." if it's so great, how about we abolish marriage altogether and have EVERYONE get awesome, fair, just-as-good civil unions?
abridging the rights of people for less hateful reasons than the other guy still results in the same thing. you are literally taking rights away that have already been given. that has never happened before. you're not preventing something that might happen, you're saying "yeah, that thing you really wanted, and fought really hard for, for a long time, and then finally got? oh, yeah, you can't have that anymore." imagine trying to defend doing the same thing to a person of another race. or someone who is disabled.
i would like to applaud nathan for his diplomacy and strongly encourage anyone concerned about freedom of speech and/or religion issues to check the website he included ( because it addresses point for point every concern you guys brought up. it's a shame that this thing might pass because people are being fed false information and aren't clear on the facts.

Friday, October 31, 2008

"Seperate but Equal" Bigots-

Once again, I will ask -- Since when does religion have a monopoly on marriage? If you believe that the government, and society, should recognize a gay couple's union as "equal", then why create a separate institution? Separate but equal does not work, and it's wrong, no matter how you try to justify it. Did we not learn our lesson from when we tried to create separate but equal institutions when it came to race? It's ironic that the very people that are denying gays the right to marry are actually the ones doing WAY more harm to the "institution" of marriage. If marriage isn't extended to gay couples, a separate institution and label will be created, and there's no way that it will only be accessible to gays. Because right now, straight couples can form a domestic partnership, and I'm sure a lot of straight, non-religious couples will want to be "unioned" (or whatever they end up calling it besides "marriage"), because it's basically "marriage" minus the religious connotations. Sounds fantastic! :) I know my atheist, straight, identical twin brother would love to get "unioned" to his wife some day. :) So, you see, by not including gays, the institution of marriage will be fragmented and splintered. Maybe that's the way it should be? Because you know that even if there is a separate institution created, we're all still going to call it "marriage" anyway. Ha! :)

Again with the double-speak and convoluted logic. You can’t have it both ways as in “feel equal rights should be granted to same-sex couples” but unwilling to “redefine marriage”. If don’t believe gay people have the civil right to marry, you do not support equal rights. But keep on patting yourselves on the back for not being like those “bigots who support prop 8 out of hatred towards gays”. Seems like you keep throwing in a lot of that to make yourselves feel better about your vote.

And, in Farrah's defense, I don't think her logic is convoluted at all. It would actually be a valid concern in my opinion -- if it weren't COMPLETELY based on lies and misinformation.

Thanks for your response below. It’s an interesting POV, and I disagree with you completely for reasons similar to what Nathan laid out, but I’m proud of you for standing up for yourself. If Prop 8 passes, it will be a devastating blow to the overall gay rights movement nationally, and I don’t see how religious institutions are currently affected by the gay marriage law in effect in California. Gays will always be different from heteros, but the semantic insinuation that gay ‘marriage’ vs. ‘domestic partnerships’ or ‘civil unions’ will help normalize gays in the eyes of straights. California enacting gay marriage is a small step forward in providing gays equal rights, as it puts pressure on other states to provide similar rights to gays (or in some cases limit the rights to gays in states that have already altered their state constitutions limiting marriage to be between a man and a woman), and puts pressure on the federal government to consider doing the same at some point.

I could go on and on, but I plead with you to reconsider your stance. If Prop 8 passes, I, Bradley Matthews, won’t have the right to get married in California…so throw an old friend a bone.

Perhaps convoluted logic is not the correct term. But it seems to me that there is some twisting around of who is really being discriminated against. And justifications to separate out what Farrah and Jordy see as the Good Prop 8 Yessers from the Bad. (!!!!) However, a Yes on Prop 8 is a Yes on Prop 8, regardless of how one comes to that conclusion. The “I accept gay people but…..” argument doesn’t make the Yes vote bottom line inequality go down any better in my opinion. It will amend the California State Constitution in a way that will be very difficult to change. And it will continue to further divide us on our differences rather than recognize how we are all a blend of similarities and differences.
Thank you Nathan for providing facts.

I have some good news for you. You don't need to worry any longer, because you've been completely mislead and lied to -- common nefarious acts of the Yes on 8 campaign. I can understand your concern about freedom of religion, but nowhere does it say that religions will possibly face lawsuits if they decide to discriminate against gays. If you can find any documentation or proof to the contrary, PLEASE share it with the group. Since you won't be able to find any, you might want to post a link to this website on your blog -- it dispels all the myths about Proposition 8:

Fiction: Churches could lose their tax-exemption status.
Fact: Nothing in Prop 8 would force churches to do anything. In fact, the court decision regarding marriage specifically says “no religion will be required to change its religious policies or practices with regard to same-sex couples, and no religious officiant will be required to solemnize a marriage in contravention of his or her religious beliefs.”

Religions have, and will always have the right to discriminate and deny marrying anyone they want, including homosexual couples, without them increasing their risk of being sued. Yep, you've been lied to, and it's so unfortunate that you believed it because it's obvious that you're a really smart girl, but I'm concerned that people less intellectually gifted will fall victim to the lies even more easily. But, as they say, the truth will set you free...

Seriously think about it... Does it really make sense that the state would deny religions the right to discriminate? That would mean that two Catholics could sue a Mormon church for deciding to not marry them. Really??? Marriage and religion are not married. Since when does religion have a monopoly on marriage? I'll repeat myself -- Since when does religion have a monopoly on marriage? Two atheists can get married, and be legally recognized by the government as a married couple, right? I'm sure their marriage wouldn't hold up in most churches... but does that really matter? No, because it holds up in court. Like atheist couples, a gay couple simply wouldn't go to a church that doesn't recognize their marriage. In fact, they probably wouldn't go to a church at all. Imagine that -- marriage without a church! :)

Also, consider this: My identical twin brother is straight and I'm gay. We were raised by the same parents and have identical DNA. Why should I be denied the same rights that he's afforded?

With all due respect Farrah, if in fact you are an ardent supporter of gay rights, or civil rights in general, you should seriously reconsider your position because you've been straight-up lied to. And you wouldn't want a lie to be the reason you voted in favor of discrimination, would you?


The First Response-

I for one applaud Farrah for having the courage to state her opinion among a group I assume mostly disagrees with her, and furthermore to back her opinion with a well thought-out and compassionate argument. I did not find Farrah's argument convoluted at all, even though I've not personally validated them. There is even precedent mentioned in Canada and Boston to add strength to her argument, which any of us could look up.

As with intellectual discussion, nobody on here has to agree with Farrah. What we should strive for is clarity on where we disagree through respectful and elevated discourse such as this. This is democracy.

I support prop 8 as well. But I will add that I fully support same-sex couples who seal their relationships and make them sacred and monogomous as married straight couples do. I fully support equal legal rights, including adoption. California, fortunately, already grants domestic partner registration and it absolutely should. (For those who know me, you know I may someday make use of domestic partnership registration myself.) But I do stop short of redefining marriage.

I understand Bradley and others being scared shitless by this. For those bigots who support prop 8 out of hatred towards gays, I have nothing but hate right back at them. I hope it makes it a little less scary to know that a majority of people in this country (according to past polls I've seen) feel equal rights should be granted to same-sex couples, i.e. these people are not coming from a place of hate. They are just unwilling for various reasons, like Farrah and me, to redefine marriage.


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Introduction to Group:

Recently a dear friend of mine emailed a plea to his closest friends and family, begging for us to vote NO on Prop 8. In response, I emailed what you read the other day on my reasons for advocating Prop 8 (Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech). From my response came a discussion I found enlightening, thought-provoking and genuinely constructive in nature. I asked the group if it would be alright to share their comments.
Please feel free to add constructive and thoughtful, factual comments as we elaborate this discussion and grow in respect and understanding for one another.

Nephi and Prop 8.

I'm sure your mind has been as occupied as mine lately, what with every corner we turn having a request to become more informed, more active, more supportive of the passing of Proposition 8. Many of us feel conflicted and even measures of guilt if we don't whole-heartedly and enthusiastically support the passing of Proposition 8. I hope to ease any feelings of undesired dissent. Even though this topic has been weighing so heavily on your mind, ultimately it shows how seriously you are taking the Lord's counsel and how deeply you are considering the words of our prophet and what they mean to you and how that those words DO affect your life. If we were not meant to falter and if we were not meant to struggle, we would never have the opportunity to understand the Atonement or allow Christ to have any true significance in our life.

For those who like to say they have experienced these personal schisms before and have concluded they are beyond hope of harmony between their personal life and spirituality, let's be realistic here; to suppose you have already received every witness of your faith and every answer the Spirit offers would be to suppose your ability for spiritual growth stops before we even graduated college. Doubtful. Without trials and without this inner conflict, we would have no idea how strong we truly are because we would not have the opportunity to be tested to our limits, and without that test, there is no way of defeating evil or coming out winning on the other side. There really would be no goal and no point to anything. Ever. Furthermore, it is the extent of that test and struggle through conflict that we are shown our strengths; more than that (if we truly believe that we will not be tested beyond our abilities to overcome that test) it proves not just our faith in God, but the amount of faith that God has in US. If it is true that we are never given a burden greater than what we can bear, that means the Lord only allows us to struggle with issues that ultimately are meant to be our strength. When we are given a trial, it is only because we have become strong enough to succeed against it, which proves the amount of faith God has in our ability for success. And somehow, knowing that and having that perspective, can change the way we approach conflict.

Many of us may have close friends whom we fear may be offended or may not understand the position our church leaders have asked us to take. What I've come to accept about my friendships with people who don't share my faith or my belief system is that they respect me because they care about me, regardless of what they may understand of my faith. I imagine that is because they know how much I love and respect and care for them and their well-being and happiness. While we may not agree on most things, we remain friends (and share an even deeper and closer a bond) because of those times where, despite our differences, we choose to continue loving and respecting one another- regardless of our personal feelings or actions. We recognize that we don't have to be the same in order to love and appreciate each other. It's that level of acceptance- mutual tolerance and acceptance- that proves our friendship is valuable and real.

You know how they say you're supposed to pray for answers and THEN read? Tonight I read 1st Nephi. And it blew. My. Mind. Nephi is commanded to do something that he feels is immoral, that makes no sense, and is completely contrary to what he believes or even wants to do. The struggle he has- the way it's written- it is totally fascinating (1 Nephi 4:1-3). As for dealing with the potential conflicts of today and any other day, Nephi admits, "I was led by the Spirit, not knowing beforehand the things which I should do." (1 Nephi 4:6) Which really is the only way we can succeed- if we can manage to keep the Spirit with us at all times, we will have the power to call upon it to know what to do at the time when we need to do it (or say whatever it is the Lord needs us to say and that our friends need to hear). The Spirit is what ensures that our message will be understood, even if our words might be weak. And let's face it- some of us have more of a difficult time with words than others. Thankfully, it is the Spirit that can speak directly to all souls, that the intention of our message will be understood and accepted.

Verses 10-15 display the true struggle and inner conflict Nephi has, admitting that- in response to the command to kill Laban- "I said in my heart; Never at any time have I shed the blood of man. And I shrunk and would that I might not slay him." And I SHRUNK. Nephi himself, a faithful and obedient, visionary man "SHRUNK" at the idea of doing something the Lord commanded in a situation he did not fully understand, one which he knew directly countered one of the Ten Commandments. And the verses continue to determine that, not only is this something commanded of the Lord, but that he prepared the situation and chose someone who lived by the Spirit to do it- I imagine because only someone truly living by the Spirit would really receive such a command. Later, we even see how fickle his own brothers are (1 Nephi 7:9-12), and the reason WHY the Spirit "ceaseth soon to strive with them; for behold, they have rejected the prophets" and by actively choosing to reject the words of the prophets (for what I thought were rather understandable reasons- minus seeing angels and having experiences where the prophet has proven to be right), Laman and Lemuel weren't even able to receive understanding of these commandments because they chose not to live in a way that would allow the Spirit to be in their lives.

And it is not simply something encountered among the young. I love Sariah's experience from her perspective; here she is in the desert, having abandoned her home and beautiful, prospering city of Jerusalem, to wander based on faith in her husband, the prophet, and now her husband has endangered her children in a reckless and deathly mission- and for what? Simply because they were commanded? She doesn't even see the purpose or importance of the task, so why should she be expected to be supportive of the mission to retrieve plates, of all things? She's abandoned EVERYTHING, is sent to wander the wilderness in her age and now THIS?!?! Geez! But when they return, she comes full circle and understands- a confirmation of her husband and son's faith AFTER the task is complete and AFTER they're home safely and then she rejoices and understands the purpose of the mission (1 Nephi 5:8). I don't think this moment should be trivialized. Her reaction is totally understandable. There are times where we won't be happy or understand the purpose or point of an act of faith until AFTER the fact. That doesn't make the rejoicing any less, but it does make enduring the task significantly more painful.

Now for the modern day application of these verses. Over the years my experiences have eventually proven to me that I do have a testimony of God's prophets. My faith has shown that I do honestly and truly trust in their words, knowing their counsel is given in love, kindness, acceptance and wisdom. Why would I allow one thing to suddenly cause me doubt, when already I know where I stand on my faith in the prophet? I truly feel that this is my opportunity to make a choice that is not based on my own understanding or will, but that is God's, and the idea of being able to do that- knowing it has nothing to do with myself or my own personal, political beliefs- makes me very, very eager to find the big payoff that will be in the growth of my testimony and in proving that I really can be faithful in a way I never trusted myself to be. How many times do we have the opportunity to exercise true faith? A faith that is based off of what we know already to be true. No predetermined result or foreseeable reason of our own, but an act of faith based purely in what we know of God and His called prophets. A faith that has been proven in the past to be true, with an opportunity to act on our own accord based off of prior knowledge and understanding of sacred testimony; not with a man-made based political outcome. We do not need to justify our apologize for our actions when they are based in honesty, integrity and faith. It is faith that we have in the Lord that He will direct our paths to do the right thing. Regardless of our own lack of vision.

This was originally written in August. Now, in retrospect, I am grateful to have continued striving to move forward to understand BOTH sides of Prop 8. Two months later, I find myself feeling strongly about this issue for reasons I would have not fortold then. Just a reminder; line upon line, precept upon precept- when we excercise a mustard seed of faith in moving forward and ask for the Spirit to keep our hearts and minds clear and prepared for further revelation. Live worthily and prepare that you might receive it.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Like a Dead Horse-

When I first heard of Proposition 8, I was deeply offended and shocked that not everyone viewed this clearly as a human rights issue. If you were to ask my opinion of the definition of marriage; marriage in this country is a joke. With a growing 50% divorce rate and most people not even bothering to be wed before moving in or having children, marriage has become a societal JOKE. Additionally, with the rampant report and unreported incidents and habitual forms of physical, mental and spiritual abuse within the home, abandonment and abuse of children and spouses, the definition of FAMILY seems to have become nothing more than a traditional philosophy more than an actual, respected practice within the United States. At this point in our county's history, if ANYONE desires to commit themselves to fidelity, financial responsibility and family to another, I am all for it. It's great to know there are still people who WANT to take responsibility for one another.

I have prayed, fasted and spent many hours wrestling with the concept of supporting Prop 8. In my desire to understand the proponent's side, I even attended meetings to discuss the Proposition and in attempts to be helpful and prepare the proponents for concerns and sensitivities the opposing side might have, I ended up being personally attacked and scorned. Even though I had already said that- for my own personal reasons- I was choosing to support the campaign! But because I was sensitive to certain phrases or points that I felt expressed fear or ignorance, I became the enemy among my own constituents! I left feeling sick that I would actually CHOOSE to align myself with those who supported the Proposition that would hold such ignorant and insensitive perspectives. But I pressed on with the knowledge that certain individuals, as offensive as I might find their views, were just trying to do what they felt was right.

Personally, I'm not threatened by same-sex unions. As I told one of my best friends who is homosexual, I WANT my children to know him- I want my children to recognize him as part of my family. And certainly, when he finds someone he wants to commit the rest of his life to, I will absolutely support him. I have a great love for my friends, several of whom are gay, and I am delighted when they find someone who loves and believes and trusts in them enough to want to form a commitment and form a family together.

So why am I voting for Proposition 8?

My support of commitment and gay marriage aside, the implications of what Proposition 8 will do to affect Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech is what concerns me. There are much deeper issues present than the ones which are easily and simplistically conveyed through the various emotionally charged propaganda from both sides on TV. The fact is, Prop 8 does not ask to take away any of the rights gay couples have to commitment; unfortunately (as we saw in the 60s and 70s Housing Discrimination Act) the failure to follow up and prosecute those not upholding the laws and rights of gay unions are what's holding us back. Until we have lawyers and individuals tenacious enough to demand that their existing rights be enforced, there will be discrimination. However, concerning Prop 8, those rights ARE there.

As for my opinions on Human Rights, when an individuals rights seemingly come in conflict with Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech, I'm going to have to rule with the latter two. Let me give an example: I am Mormon. It is my goal to be married in the sacred temple. However, merely a desire to be married in the House of God is not enough; I must abide by certain laws of the church and if I choose not to live according to those doctrines (the Word of Wisdom, sexual purity and morality, the Law of Tithe, etc.), I should not expect nor demand to enter the sacred ordinance of marriage in the temple. As a practicing Mormon in good standing with the church, I accept this as my choice to live in accordance with God's laws in order to be found worthy to enter the sacred temple. However, should Prop 8 fail and a homosexual couple approach the temple and request a marriage ceremony and they are refused- all of a sudden, that denial can be LEGALLY interpreted as discrimination and the entire worldwide church can be sued. The same will go for other churches whose doctrines denote that homosexuality is a sin and not in accordance with their spiritual laws; should the church deny the right of marriage to those who (under the SPIRITUAL law) are found unworthy, they can legally be held for discrimination practice and will be forced to either change the doctrine of their church, or close their doors. No matter that there are plenty of other denominations who DO support and perform gay marriages; if Prop 8 fails and you approach a church which does not condone homosexual practice, that church will be forced to conform to a government law over their spiritual laws and the church has now become subject to the government. Separation of church and state is typically considered a safety for the churches to not dictate government law, but what are we suggesting if we allow the government to create new doctrines for the church contrary to their beliefs? Furthermore, churches and non-profits who do not condone homosexual practice or marriage would legally be liable to lose their tax-exempt status if they choose not to modify their spiritual laws to the laws of government. Churches, adoption agencies and private schools in Boston and Canada have already chosen to close their doors, rather than alter their fundamental spiritual doctrine of recognizing marriage as a sacred union between a man and a woman.

Likewise, while I fully expect to educate and introduce my own children to my homosexual couple friends and do not fear nor find offense on this discussion in their classroom, I do not think that forcing private or religious educational institutions to teach something outside of their practice or doctrine is acceptable for the government to dictate. Nor do I think those private/religious institutions should be expected to either/or the situation; either teach homosexual practice in the classroom or be found guilty of discrimination and close your doors. If people CHOOSE to have their children in a private school, they have the right to dictate what is taught there- be it creationism or marriage between a man and a woman only. If you don't like the idea of that, don't send your kid to a private Catholic school. Furthermore, should Prop 8 fail and parents, teachers or religious institutions uphold standards of traditional family values (as in marriage between a man and a woman), they can legally be found guilty of performing hate speech and speaking up for traditional family values suddenly becomes a hate crime.

While I am very much an advocate for equal rights, human rights and civil rights, I am also very aware that our actions all have consequences. And that when human rights have the potential to discriminate and persecute Religious Freedom and Freedom of Speech- two primary principles our country was founded for- I must say; there is a better way. Let's increase the awareness and enforce the laws of civil unions we currently have and hold our government to the promises that were made to protect homosexual couples from discrimination NOW, without persecuting those who have traditional values and who are not discriminating, but living according to their eternal spiritual laws.

And on this note, let me be clear: If you are a proponent of Proposition 8 for ANY OTHER REASON than because you want to stand up for Religious Freedom and tolerance for traditional family values, if your stake in this is to persecute the homosexual community or to throw fear or hate into our churches, schools or community, PLEASE; DO NOT ALIGN YOURSELF WITH ME. I would rather stand alone in my declaration to support Proposition 8, than to have the support of those who are doing this for evil, ignorant or discriminatory reasons. Please. If you support Proposition 8, I ask that you do it with love and the understanding that this is to uphold traditional family values, not persecution of those who are different from you. Likewise for those who do not support Proposition 8, we need to prevent the persecution of traditional family values and increase our love and tolerance for those who may uphold values different from our own with the understanding that they are simply trying to live their standards in accordance with their own values. That neither of us is a threat to the other, but that we all deserve a little more understanding and a little more kindness.

Please, I ask that you forward this to your friends, family, re-post this article as much as you like. I'm not saying everyone needs to agree; I'm just asking that we try a little better to accept and understand one another. Please remember to vote November 4th.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Positive Growth Theory.

When you finally get everything you want and everything you need and more than what you expected-
Will you be prepared to accept it?

So many times we are all waiting for the next big thing. The next big move. The home improvements we've been daydreaming over. A better job that makes you happy. The relationship that will be the end-all-be-all of relationships. So what happens when we finally get it...and we still don't feel right? Are you prepared to accept the gifts that have been given you? Do you believe that it's possible you really could be so blessed? Do you recognize that you deserve good things in your life when so much of it is spent in pursuing it?

I hope that you can. I hope that you do see your worth and that you value the things and the people that you have for what they are to you right now. Seeking the bigger better deal may inspire progression, but it may also prevent you from accepting and investing in what you already may have and allowing for that investment to grow.

Somehow, I'm not talking about economics.

Monday, October 13, 2008

When it's Over-

Do you fight?
Or let it go?

I've always believed that if someone you love is willing to walk away from you, the best thing to do is shut the door and never look back. Because if someone doesn't respect and honour you for who you are once they actually know you, they don't deserve your time or affections.
Are there mitigating circumstances?
Have you ever broken up with someone, thinking, "But if..." and wished that they'd come back? Or wanted to revoke your own judgement?
I'm as cold and empty as a soulless robot, so I was hoping someone from the peanut gallery might have some words of wisdom to contribute.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


If you're not kissing,
you are just friends.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Gettin' Busy-

What do all these videos have in common?

The producer is amazing and pretty much the best part of my day. He could also be a big reason why I don't have much time to write. But I swear. I will do better.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I really fell of the old wagon, didn't I?
To the six of you who still read- sorry to disappoint. For multiple reasons which will momentarily remain undisclosed.
For now, I pose a single question:
How many of you are emotional basketcases because you're on the pill?
I feel like I'm losing my mind.
All of a sudden I'm emotional, teary, sentimental and I feel obsessive over minute interpersonal interactions. I eat like crazy (as in, from the level of "horse" to "genuine oinker. Possibly a hippo"). This all makes me feel as if I'm mildly insane. Suddenly I'm clingy, needy and vulnerable.
Is it just the hormone pills talking?
They even out after a few months, but, boy-o-boy.
Apparently it took a pill to make me feel like a natural woman.
My sincere condolences to women who are inherently full of this much estrogen. I don't even know how you begin to cope. Share your wisdom. Please.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


China better watch it's back.
The Republican ticket. shudder.
Homeless working in luxury suiting.

Sorry to be so cryptic. I'm super-low on time. Being homeless and battling China is taking up all my time lately. But I'm here. And I've got lots to say. Some of it you may actually want to hear about.
Thanks for hanging in with me- I lost my phone to the ocean waters, so why don't you tell me 3 things that will get me to call you about as soon as I get my replacement?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


I need your input.
Here are my current options:
1) Move into a dirty shoebox 2 bed/1 bath apartment a little further South than I'd like to be, but that has great closets and a huge bedroom with a teeny livingroom/dining/kitchen area and it's only $750, OR
2) Stay in the darling apartment I am in for another month, help out with rent for my friend who's letting me stay here while she's out of town for the next month and hope and pray that I find a job that will afford me another place to live and find an adequate roommate by the end of next month (this costs $850 plus $50 a month for storage), OR
3) Move temporarily into the cheap place, get settled and hold out for a good roommate and good job indefinitely.
There are a lot of people who will be moving next month (so I hear) and I did find quite a few nice, spacious apartments with double masters for $900 each...So far, most people have said to hold out for a great job to know what area I should live in, but I suspect that- even if the job is in Downtown, I will still want to live in Santa Monica/The West Side.
I don't know.
Where do I go from here?

Monday, August 11, 2008

Touch Me.

I understand that most people who send mass emails, holiday texts, and fwds are usually annoying with good intentions. Primarily, the intention is purely to make contact and remind you that you're on their mind. Second to that is the message itself. I do what I can to have patience with these methods, and I am appreciative of the message itself (if it's in regards to something relevant, like a friend's birthday party or upcoming event they want me to attend). E-Communication has become little more than mass-communication, but the intention is the same: it's making contact.

What baffles me is that e-communication rarely achieves the desired effect. Do you ever feel special when you get a mass text? Email? Posting on your Facebook/MySpace wall? Maybe a fleeting moment...but what happens on Friday night, when you're ready to go out? Or Sunday morning, when you're ready to talk about your weekend? Who is really there for you? What kind of difference does it make when one of your 400 MySpace friends actually picks up the phone to ask the simple question: "How are you?"

The reality is that a simple question in person has the power to pull you in from a distant e-friendship to a real, live relationship.

In a world full of mass activities with the chaos of strangers or near-friends, clubs with hundreds of sweaty bodies, too loud and crowded to hear a name, and nightly opportunities for dessert-parties, game nights, and FHEs, how much more does it mean when someone takes the time to reach out and spend five minutes- FIVE MINUTES- hearing your opinion on the latest film, or asking about your latest adventure.

And then, when we move into the realm of relationships, how much more meaningful has it become to be with someone who won't simply text you goodnight, but will actually make their way over to your house to give you a proper send-off to sleep (or maybe wear you out a little so sleep comes a bit better). Time after time I hear stories of confusion or complaint because someone texted someone and didn't hear back or the ball got dropped somewhere along the e-line and one knows where they stand or what they should do. Dear man-reader, I am going to give you a tip: Women LOVE real contact. They salivate for it. And particularly at a time when our world is inundated with e-messages, the man who takes the time to make a phone call, cross the room, or look us in the eye for longer than 5 minutes is considered a higher class of being. By demonstrating real effort to make real contact, you are, essentially, a Real Man.

For all the fantasies that are out there, every woman would rather have a real man to hold over one who is merely dropping by a, "Whatz up 2nite?" weak-@$$ text.

Friday, August 8, 2008

I love you.

How can it be so easy to feel and so hard to say? I'd like to know who's fault it is so I have someone to blame.
This band is fantastic.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Stomach Contents.

I ran around all day and here are the stomach contents:
7am- no time for breakfast.
12pm- on the way to job interview3pm- no time to stop for lunch. Random twinkie on counter.6pm- running back and forth- best to at least eat SOMETHING rather than self-cannibalize. It wasn't even as good as it looks (and it looks bad). Plus, I ate it in the car, so most of it ended up on my white button down "interview" shirt.

8pm- hanging with a friend- random twinkie on counter. x2. A few leftover chips and a couple pieces of candy left over from a party.
10pm- a perfect way to end the night. I did end up in Pasadena first, but that seems typical when I'm looking for a concert in Silverlake. Go figgure. I don't drink alcohol, so here's what was left at the bar-12midnight. Too late to eat anything reasonable. Tomorrow will just have to be a better day.