I know its been a while since I've gone psycho political in one of my posts, but I think I'm long overdue. And I think that its a particularly timely post for me as a person.
California. Good job. You sure told us. Congratulations on passing that gay marriage ban.
I can't believe it. I really can't. You know, for being held in regard (in my part of the country, at least) as the most liberal state in the union, as the place for all the pot-smoking, vegetarian, anti-cigarette smoking hippies to gather nothing annoys me more than to see Prop. 8 being upheld. Its silly. I don't understant the reasoning behind it.
Is my love for kitten any less valuable than anyones love for their heterosexual partner? If so, why? Hell, for that matter, is my love for Kitten any less valuable than the love I had for Plush? I don't think so. I think it matters more, not less. I'm happier now than I've been in years and its because I'm in love with someone who understands me, cares for me, and wants to work with me to build a happiness together. Is my life better for being with a woman instead of a man? Yeah, I think it is.
I know at one point or another in my blog I've written and said its really about the personality. I could love a man just as easily as I could love a woman. That the person and not the sex is what mattered. I want to state for the record, I was wrong about that. I tried with Plush, I really did. But you know what? It didn't work. Personality differences aside, and that certainly was the crux of our relationship problem (we weren't well matched) I want to get into bed every night next to someone and it feel right. I want it to feel natural and comfortable. And after all the time I was with him that one thing never changed. I never felt right in bed. I never felt right during sex. I never felt right looking at him undressed. It horrified me. And that's not his fault. Its not anyones fault. I just don't like men. And I think it took me a serious attempt at trying to be with one that proved to me once and for all, I'm a woman loving, hard core, can't stop thinking about her lesbian. I am. and I think there is nothing wrong with that.
That said, what I have with my Kitten now, what many of gays and lesbians and transexuals have with their partners now feels natural and healthy to them. It makes them happy. And I think that every person deserves their chance at happiness. And at love. We live in a world that is too devoid of that emotion. We live in a cruel world that doesn't feel enough, care enough, empathize enough. I think that in this world that we live in the idea that two people, regardless of who or what they are, being told that their love is wrong or unnatural or evil is plain silliness. And its thoughtless. Who'd right is it to tell anyone they aren't allowed to be happy? I don't believe that happiness is a human right. I don't. Yell at me if you will. Because of our natures as humans I don't think anyone has the right to sit back and say "Okay, make me happy. Its my right." No. Not at all. But I think you have the right to make your own happiness if you want it. And no one should stop anyone from that, so long as it harms no one else.
So here's the essential point: How is it hurting anyone? Really. Answer me these questions (and I know that I'm probably preaching to the choir here, but for arguments sake)
Does me having the right to marry damage any heterosexuals relationship? How does it hurt it? If you operate on the conservative idea that gay marriage damages heterosexual marriage somehow I want to know why. Does a strong, healthy heterosexual marraige suddenly go on the rocks because a gay couple moves in next door and marries? How strong and healthy was it really? How valuable was it if my ability to love another person somehow makes your love less valuable? And how valuable is any marriage if its allowed to be annulled or a divorce granted? So many strait couples marry and divorce without ever thinking of the priveledge they've taken for granted.
How does it harm a child to see two people of the same sex love eachother? Is it any more damaging than seeing a healthy functioning strait couple? I don't think it is. I go back to the point prior. There isn't enough love in this world. I think everyone, regardless of age should be exposed to as much love as possible. As for public displays of affection? I think kissing and hand holding in public is great. Anything more than that? I think strait and gay couples should keep it in the bedroom. There's a difference in my mind between honest, genuine affection and filth in public and everyone, regardless of orientation should be aware of that line and not cross it.
What about the couples that were already married? Their marriages are still valid. Why? What makes them better than me, now? Because they were faster? They got to the courthouse sooner? I don't understand. Why not annul their marriages too? I honestly think the truth is because the state got away with this by saying it was a legal ammendment to a state constitution without addressing the idea at all that maybe the ammendment itself violated some precedent of human right and dignity.
I want to know how my love makes me a second class citizen. I want to know why it is more important that I'm kept in my place than be allowed the simple pleasure of sharing my life with someone I love, and sharing my name with them as well. I want to be able to own a home with my partner and own property with my partner and never have to worry that she or I won't be able to take care of the other should one of us fall ill. I want to be able to visit her in the hospital and take her to the doctor and not have to sit in the waiting room wondering because I'm not her sister or her husband.
I know a lot of people will argue that if I love Kitten it shouldn't matter whether I'm married to her or not. I know that the argument will come up that if we want to share our lives together we either will or we won't. But I feel like I should be allowed the tradition of publicly expressing my love for her. I want to wear my wedding dress and walk down an aisle and meet her there and show everyone I know that I love her. And I don't want it to be a "ceremony" or a "vow exchange" I want it to be a wedding. I don't want to have to elope to a backwater hippie town that will preform the ceremony in a garden off a hotel for me in later hours. I don't want to have to drive to massachusetts or iowa (by the way, go iowa!) to get married and when I get married I want to be able to go to any state I wish to live in and have it recongnize me as Mrs. Kitten or Kitten as Mrs. Giovanni and not have to start splitting up insurance payments and IRAs and all that crap all over again just because we're both women. Its not okay.
And spare me, please, spare me th religious arguments. I don't want to hear them. Not because I don't respect any religion or its ideals or anyone's right to practice and believe what they want to. I think that's great. And its a huge (if slightly stretched, overstated and rarely honestly practiced) tenet of the country I live in. Everyone is entitled to believe whatever they want. Whatever they want. If they want to. But see, I don't agree with your religion. I don't agree that a loving god could intentionally create a human destined to go to hell with no choice in the matter. Do you want to worship that god? The one that made me a lesbian and then left me the choice to either be strait and miserable all my life or be gay and go strait to hell for being happy the way that god made me? I don't. And I don't think a god like that exists. And if you do, more power to you.
But there's a reason we are supposed to separate the church and the state. Your religion and mores should no more have a hand in the law than mine. And mine says I'm doing nothing wrong. According to my beliefs, everyone should marry whomever they like. But the christian right in my country doesn't agree with me. Alright. I respect your right to an opinion even if I don't agree with it. Lets agree to disagree and then I'll tell you what. Let's make policy based on social justice, freedom and equality. Lets make law based on what's best for everyone.
And here's the thing, California. It would be great for everyone. You need the money. You do. And if you had any sense at all you'd let me and Kitten and the millions of gays around the US come to your state and spend money in hotels and get married. I'll stay for a week or two and drop a five or six grand on a honeymoon in Disneyland or LA after dropping a minimum of $60 at the courthouse (but you know, I'd really like a fashionable wedding, so I want a botanical garden and a string quartet and all my family flying in to see me happily wed) You go ahead and raise your tourism taxes and make money off me. Take my money at the courthouse. Take the money I'll pay to change my name and my social security card and my driver's liscence and my passport to say Mrs. Kitten. Condemn me behind closed doors and use my money to fund new hghways or christian charities backed by the state. Issue all those tax returns you couldn't pay this year and keep your mouth shut. How's that for old fashioned american capitalism? Take my money and do what you will, but know this, there's big money in gay weddings.
I want someone, anyone, to tell me a non-religious, fact based, logical reason that my love is wrong. I want them to tell me to my face, with dignity, that I am a second class citizen and I don't have the same rights I had four months ago. Four months ago I was with a man. I could marry as I pleased, so long as it was a male and when I went out I didn't have to think about people marginalizing me because of whose hand I was holding. I had the right to share an insurance policy and a hospital room with my partner. Now I can't. Because the that I share my love with shares my anatomy as well. Tell me I don't deserve those rights to my face and tell me how my love is personally effecting you, and your strait marraige and your religion. Because I really don't believe it is.
I want to state this for posterity. And I want to be clear.
I am a lesbain. I am proud to be a lesbain. I am proud of my community. I am proud of my partner. I am proud to hold her hand in public and I am proud to share my life with her. Years from now I will still be gay. I will still be proud. There is nothing that any legislation can do to stop me from sharing my love with whomever I choose.
Years from now I'll say I was part of the new civil rights battle and I'll be proud about that too.
Today, though, I'm not proud of California.
Love to you all.