Words of Hope from a Middle-Aged Queer

By Guest Blogger Shaker Faith

Yesterday I woke up at 3:45 a.m. I had pre-packed my car with boxes of snacks and water for my volunteers, a box of donuts for the poll workers and some extra rain gear because of course, the one day I have to be outside during the day is the one day a year it rains in Los Angeles.

I spent the day 150 feet (just to be safe) in front of a polling place reminding people to vote NO on California Proposition 8. I was only threatened by 5 or 6 out of thousands of voters that came through that polling place. All of them were men who aggressively did not want me to be there. Most people were supportive though and a few people asked me, "Is anyone even voting YES?".

Saturday, I performed a wedding of two beautiful and thoughtful men who have been through and survived an extremely life-threatening bout of cancer and have an 11 month old son who they adore.

Throughout the last two months, I have fretted about the passage of Prop 8 and despite attempting to dig trenches with my teaspoon, I had an inkling that the measure would pass and discrimination would be written into my state's constitution, so I did a little advance research. Here's what I came up with.

1. Nowhere in the proposition language, nor in the language of the amendment does it retroactively revoke the marriages that have already taken place.

2. California Attorney General Jerry Brown confirms this.

3. We now have three classes in California:
a. Opposite sex couples who are allowed to marry
b. Same sex couples who are married
c. Same sex couples who cannot get married.

This is utterly unconstitutional (not that it wasn't before) and will have to go to the Supreme Court of California before going to SCOTUS. I am not a prognosticator and yet, I believe we will prevail. Despite the sheer intolerance and ignorance of 53% of Californians, I believe this pain will lead to rights for more of us than ever.

I have hope.

EDITED TO ADD: EQCA has indicated that this cannot be reviewed by the U.S. Supreme Court -- however, the California Supreme Court can review this amendment, and no doubt will.

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