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.