A sign at the Sacramento rally tonight - the one year anniversary of Prop 8 taking our rights away: This fight is SO not over! How true.
I do not believe that rights should ever be put through a popular vote. Rights are not granted by popular vote (except for chickens here in CA). Rights are granted legislatively and/or judicially, but not through a popularity contest. It infuriates me that this could even be allowed in a country that was built on and prides itself on 'freedom'.
That said, the only way we are going to get equality right now is at the ballot box, so we must continue to fight this war until we are in a position to win it, and permanently, through our lawmakers or our justices. I'm pissed about Maine, it brought back so many bad memories of Prop 8. I'm angry, heartbroken, dejected, and a host of other emotions. I'm not even sure that I want to continue fighting - at least at this very moment. That will change of course, I'm an activist at heart.
So, will we succeed? How can we succeed? A very important lesson is here for us to learn, if we are willing. The same people that ran the Yes on 8 campaign here in California - Schubert and Flint - ran the Yes on 1 in Maine. Same lies, same scare tactics, same deceitful messages and methods. Same success (slightly more successful, actually). How did they do it? That's what we must learn.
Organized religion is very organized and very powerful, even within individual sects. When these people come together over one cause, it is a power that is going to be very difficult to fight and win. We must learn how to be organized like them. How to be united over one cause, cease our infighting and complaining and self-victimizing. We must join together, get organized as a unit and spread out. We must all become involved, because I guarantee you, they are all involved. In their churches, homes, schools and neighborhoods.
Most importantly, we must come out of our closets, live proudly and demand equality. No more asking, no more Mr./Ms. Nice Gay, no more treading lightly and trying not to hurt feelings. Sure, we can do this in a compassionate way and we must, but we must tell our stories and how discrimination hurts not only us, but our children and our families and our friends and in the end, them too. We must learn to reframe our messages so that they can understand our message. We need to refuse to be on the defense, but instead take the offense which in turn may put them on the defense. A good offense would work wonders for us.
Organize, unite, spread out and become active, reframe, initiate dialogue and most of all come out of our closets and LIVE. Live out and proud and let them get to know the real us. No more hiding, no more asking, no more excuses.
"Struggle is a never ending process. Freedom is never really won, you earn it and win it in every generation."
Coretta Scott King