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Today, June 12, Is Loving Day. June 12, 2008

Posted by littlebangtheory in Politics and Society.
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No, not like “free loving” day.

Like Loving v. Virginia day, wherein we celebrate the marriage anniversary of Richard Loving, a white man, to his beloved Mildred, a black woman, in Washington, D.C. in 1958. Their subsequent return to their native Virginia resulted in their arrest on the felony charge of “miscegenation” under that state’s Racial Integrity Act. They were convicted, but their prison sentences were suspended for twenty-five years, contingent on their permanent exile from the Good Commonwealth of Virginia.

In 1967 the Supreme Court found the Racial Integrity Act to be unconstitutional, effectively legalizing interracial marriages.

During that time period, politicians, pundits and people of Bad Heart carried on at great lengths about how such a marriage was an abomination in God’s eyes, was antithetical to the very fabric of what made America great, and would surely precipitate the total destruction of the institutions of marriage and family.

Aren’t we glad that such small-minded bigotry has vanished from the American landscape, replaced by a generally held belief that two loving adults ought to be free to wed, and to live with the same blessings and responsibilities of other Americans?

Unless you’re in love with a person of the same gender, that is.

Today, that same small-minded bigotry and its accompanying Chicken-Little logic is applied to LGBT people in most of these United States. Same Sex Marriage, we are told by strident, sweating homophobes, will destroy the Integrity of Marriage and portend the End of America As We Know It. The arguments and the hysterical rhetoric are the same now as they were in the 1960s; only the victims of this dehumanizing idiocy have changed.

And the outcome of this struggle between decency and respect and compassion on one hand, Christ-like compassion for those who care to notice, and bigotry and fear and disenfranchisement on the other hand, must have the same result:

Caring, committed couples of all sexual orientations must be free to marry the person they love, to commit to a lifetime of shared joys and responsibilities, to access any and all of the benefits and obligations which accrue to others who can currently marry.

These people are our friends and neighbors, our co-workers, our family, human beings with minds and hearts and dreams and desires. They’re as fully human as you and me, equal in God’s eyes, and deserving of equality in our eyes.

LGBT rights are human rights, and as such, it is our obligation as Americans to protect and defend them against the tyranny and exclusion and denial of those who would legislate their bigotry.

In the wake of the recent California Supreme Court decision clearing the way for same-sex marriages, the bigots are mobilizing with a major media campaign to convince California voters to amend that State’s Constitution in November to permanently prohibit same sex marriage.

We ought not to let that happen.

We must not let that happen.

I’ve heard many of you say as much; now it’s time to stand up for change, to do what’s right rather than what’s easy, to act instead of just talking. We have a window of opportunity to end the disenfranchisement of one in ten Americans, the exclusion of a large minority of us from the American Dream, to rise to meet one of the greatest challenges of our time, to welcome all our children into the fold of our Humanity.

The people of California are hearing the fear mongering of the bigots loud and clear; we must answer them with The Truth.

Please visit Human Rights Campaign’s website today and give what you can to support this effort; there’s presently a chance to have your contribution matched by a generous supporter, but only in the next few days.

This is an opportunity for you, and you, and you and me to make a real difference in the fabric of American life, without having to wait for our politicians to grow spines. WE can make this happen, NOW.

Shortly before her death in May of this year, Mildred Loving made a strong statement in support of equal marriage rights for all, regardless of sexual orientation; I’ll bet she’d expect us to do the same.

Please join me in this.

Please.

Namaste.

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Comments»

1. The Pagan Sphinx - June 13, 2008

Your comparison to interracial marriage is so perfect, as this is our biggest human rights challenge in the U.S. since the civil rights movement.

And yet few people I know care to embrace this fight. At least in any real, tangible way; in any way that really matters.

I support HRC and receive all their mailings, so even though the page you link to matches contributions, there is a link somewhere on their website which allows your contribution to go directly to the campaign in California, where it is most needed. I have not sent my “direct to CA” donation yet, but when I do, I’ll send you the link.

Just as many whites worked alongside blacks to end racial discrimination, “straights” have to work alongside gays to promote marriage equality and equal rights.

I think you should consider sending your post as a letter to the editor of The Greenfield Recorder. It’s so excellent. Thank you again and again.

I know you will not mind if I link to it, so I shall.

Namaste, my friend
Gina

2. The Pagan Sphinx - June 13, 2008

Here is the link to Equality California, where your contribution can go directly to the struggle there.

http://www.eqca.org/site/pp.asp?c=kuLRJ9MRKrH&b=4026385

If this anti-equality bill passes, that’s it folks. No equal marriage for Californians, ever. Keeping marriage equality intact in CA means an incentive for other states to follow their success.

The pain that discrimination is causing our brothers and sisters of the GLBT community is a wound deep and painful and very real.

Let’s not turn our backs on this…

3. littlebangtheory - June 13, 2008

Thanks, Gina. I may have to do a little something additional through the direct link.

And the “Letter to the Editor” suggestion is excellent, though I’ll have to edit the post massively (both for length and for style) to get it into the Greenfield Distorter in a coherent form.

Thanks for your passion on this issue.

4. FranIAm - June 13, 2008

This is a great post. I happened to randomly select a podcast on my iPod yesterday and it was from the POV of two evangelicals about LGBT issues.

One of them- although far to the right, was a man actually seemingly interested in conversation about the matter. Not great but hopeful.

The other was a woman. A lesbian. A lesbian evangelical – and she is also a theologian and biblical scholar. Her words fill people of faith like me – straight yes, but so committed to my LGBT friends who also are people of faith.

All this long ramble is to say is that she brought up the Loving case and I said to no one in particular, after all I was walking alone in a deserted place… It is Loving Day today!!

May there be love.

Without justice and freedom, there is NO such thing.

5. sherry - June 13, 2008

yes!

6. DCup - June 13, 2008

Well done, C.R.

I will never understand until divorce is outlawed how anyone can make the scurrilous argument that two people of same gender being allowed to marry hurts hetero marriages.

I’m bi and I’ve done plenty of damage to my marriage over the years, but it wasn’t because I took up with women!

7. distributorcap - June 14, 2008

it seems americans need something or someone to hate

blacks, socialists, commies, feminists, and the last group – gays.
marriage equality would mean one less reason to hate — so the fundies and zealots on the right hang on and fight on

but they are being worn down — because more and more people realize their kind of hate is desttroying the fabric of this country

great post

8. littlebangtheory - June 14, 2008

Thanks, Folks.

My personal connection to this issue makes me want to beg all of you to ACT ON THIS immediately; “As goes California, so goes The Union.”

We have to stop this ballot initiative, or same-sex marriage on a Federal level will be next to impossible.

9. Elder Progeny - June 14, 2008

I contributed my own, meager bit. After all, if this anti-marriage initiative isn’t stopped in November, the wedding we’re having in June of 2009 won’t mean a legal thing. I am trying not to be discouraged.

Thanks for writing this; it was beautifully written, and an excellent comparison. Loving v. Virginia is one of the strongest precedents we have in this struggle, and it’s important to remember the sentiment of the country in 1967 when the SCOTUS ruled in favor of the Lovings and legalized interracial marriages in every state. At that time it wasn’t just Virginia who had those racist laws- they were present in many states. What would have happened if the measures were put up to vote? I suppose we don’t really know, but it’s clear looking back on it that there was massive public support for these racist laws. Just as there was support for keeping slavery intact; after all, wasn’t slavery part of the “very fabric of our society” as well, at one point? Moreso than marriage, actually… and look where we are now.

It’s amazing to me that people can’t draw these parallels in their own heads. However, all that means is that we have to draw them ourselves and hope they listen. HRC, Equality California, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, etc are doing that valuable work. That’s what our contributions go towards. Equality CA has a very cute section where same sex couples planning to marry in CA can set up a wedding gift registry that donates money to keep their marriages legal in CA. 🙂

There will always be those people who firmly disagree with my right to get married. Whatever, they can dislike it and disagree all they want… on their own time. And in their own houses and churches and with their own friends. But they sure as HELL are not going to be doing it in MY Constitution- not if I have anything to say about it.

10. littlebangtheory - June 14, 2008

Gurrrl, you so do have something to say about it, as do I. And so do the nice folks who come here on anything like a regular basis.

We can and MUST stop the ballot initiative in California, and I believe we will.

I’m looking forward to June, my little friend. 🙂

11. liberality - June 15, 2008

Excellent post and nice blog you have here. You left a comment on mine so I thought I’d mosey on over to visit. There are several gay couples who live in this area and my step sister is a lesbian, still not married to the woman she has lived with for over 20 years, so I know plenty of people who would like to be married and yet are unable to according to the law in this state. People need to realize that this is a civil rights issue.


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