Monday, November 10, 2008

Thoughts on the passage of Prop 8 and where to go from here

The image here should actually be, "Keep trying," but I thought this was pretty good.

Of course I was disappointed by the ratification of Proposition 8. But I have to say that I'm very disturbed and disappointed by the reaction to its passage, as understandable as it is. BECAUSE I think the protests, the marches, the things that are getting the press and publicity are not going to be effective in reversing the decision! And that's the key point, isn't it? Reversing the decision?

In my opinion, there's been reaction without organization and people taking shots at easy targets in easy ways, taking advantage of the understandable anger and hurt, but in ways that I feel won't actually make a difference. In fact, they may actually be detrimental. Why waste people's energies this way?

Instead, why not take some time to grieve, to admit people need to grieve, but also focus energy on changing people's minds. And I don't think that's going to be done by having a protest march in the Castro, for God's sake.

Why not set up stations where gay and lesbian couples can write stories of why they got married, or gay and lesbian singles can write about why getting married is important to them, take their photos, and set up a website that can be floating around for the next couple of years until the issue is re-introduced on the ballot?

Why not get a bus tour of gay and lesbian families who can travel to the inland empire and counties that voted for the proposition so people can meet each other and see that no one is being evil? Have a van go to a mall and say hello to people each and every weekend.

Part of the reason prop 8 passed, I think, was because for many folks, gay and lesbian people are strange and scary. So what did no on 8 supporters do in response? Make gay and lesbian people even more scary through images of protests on the street, blocked traffic, et cetera.

It seems to me that the goal of no on 8 supporters should be to help everyone see that gay and lesbian people are normal, friendly, kind, and just plain ordinary. It shouldn't be impossible. Because it also happens to be true.

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