Monday, March 31, 2008

Today's letter - Jesus was not about 'social order'

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Today on the radio I heard about “Black Liberation Theology.” The logic goes like this: Jesus was a rabble-rouser. He kept telling people that they should not listen to the rabbinical power players, but rather listen to God. This upset the power players so much they executed him for what we would today call political crimes.

But through his life and death, He gave us liberty not just over the tyranny of death, but also over the tyranny of Old Testament laws and oppressive Roman rule. We reach heaven not through punishing people, but by liberating them. From The Good Samaritan to The Sermon on the Mount, God’s message is clear: we are to love God with all our heart, soul, body and mind, and to love our neighbor as ourselves. That what Dr. Martin Luther King, Bishop Desmond Tutu and even Jeremiah Wright are trying to tell us, and not a bad foundation.

Now as a gay dad, I’m just trying to be the best husband, father and Christian that I can. That seems to disturb a lot of people. But what Liberation Theology shows us is God wants us to love and accept people no matter how much they disturb us. Whether the gays will or won’t go to heaven is unclear, but whether the oppressors or the oppressed will go to heaven is crystal clear.

Putting your veto on AB 43, the Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act, was an easy thing for you to do, but if there is any truth to Liberation Theology, it was not the right thing to do. After all, I may be a rabble-rouser myself, but I am still your neighbor.

Yours,

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Today's letter - history remembers the liberators, not the oppressors

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

History remembers the agents of change. History – for example – remembers Lincoln who freed the slaves. It does not remember the guy before Lincoln who fought for slavery. It remembers Reagan who tore down the Berlin wall. Not so much the guy before him. It remembers Susan B. Anthony who got women to vote, not whomever (Liddy Dole?) who opposed it.

How do you think history is going to remember you, Governor? Do you think you’ll be on a coin or a stamp for vetoing AB 43, the 2007 bill that would have let me and my same-sex domestic partner finally get married? Or do you think that it will be the next person, the one who finally replaces you and banishes that apartheid who will be immortalized?

It is not too late for you to work toward freedom to marry for all Californians instead of simply – and insignificantly – against it. I wish you would support the freedom to marry.

Yours,

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Today's letter - I'm a lover, not a fighter

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

As a foreign-born citizen, I’m sure you take an interest with how people come to this country.

On Friday, U.S. Marine Cpl. Mario Ramos-Villalta who earned a Purple Heart during one of his two tours serving with the U.S. Marines in Afghanistan, finally received American citizenship barely a week after CNN told his story.

The same Department of Citizenship and Immigration Services routinely denies citizenship applications to the partners of gay Americans.

It really says something about America when we let in people who fight for us but not the people who love us. It’s kind of hard to say that we’re a peace-loving nation, isn’t it?

Yours,

Friday, March 28, 2008

Today's letter - people who are unhappy with fairness

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

I was astonished to learn that even the opponents of equality believe “domestic partnership” and marriage are in fact the same things.

Kentucky State Senator Vernie McGaha introduced legislation that would bar state agencies and schools from providing health insurance for the domestic partners of their employees, even when fully paid for by the beneficiaries. Sen. McGaha said that he was concerned about the erosion of the sanctity of marriage by the provision of domestic-partner benefits.

That the bill was defeated in committee was no surprise. State Senator Ernesto Scorsone explained "I think most Kentuckians believe if you are able to pay for the insurance, you ought to be able to buy it."

What shocked me was that six of the fifteen committee members voted for the legislation, apparently considering simple domestic partnership benefits to be an offensive intrusion by the gays into the world of marriage. These people will not be happy until I am exterminated.

Governor, it is time to choose between encouraging marriage and encouraging intolerance. The voters of this state are on the verge of changing our Constitution to block people like me from forming partnerships. Whether this comes out nine to six or six to nine depends on your support. I wish you would tell the people that you support the freedom to marry.

Yours,

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Today's letter - now they're calling marriages "mutual commitments"

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Salt Lake City was not happy with the terms “civil union” or “domestic partnership” so they created a new term, “mutual commitment.”

The guidelines for receiving a “mutual commitment” license are the same as the previous “domestic partnership.” Both members must be over 18 and in some type of committed relationship in which they are responsible for one another's welfare, including financial interdependence, and share a primary household in Salt Lake City.

In my book, no matter what you call it, “two people in a committed relationship with financial interdependence and the same bed” is “marriage.” How much time, energy and humanity have we squandered by trying to “protect marriage” just by changing its name?

Please, I wish you would end this ridiculous ‘naming game’ and support the freedom for all Californians to choose for themselves what they want to call their relationship.

Yours,

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Today's letter - let the candidates wed

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

After the news hit that Barack Obama is a distant cousin of Brad Pitt, and Hillary Rodham Clinton is related to Pitt's girlfriend, Angelina Jolie, I was reminded of what Brad Pitt told Esquire Magazine in September, 2006: that he and Angelina would not get married until gay and lesbians were able to get married.

As a relative of a Kennedy, I believe that you have an obligation to fulfill: to marry Barack to Hillary and all Americans to liberty, by simply supporting the freedom to marry.

Yours,

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Today's letter - Poland deserves better

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

The more I look closely at what leaders say about same-sex marriage, the more I see that they are responsible for the character of their people.

I have written to you before about great leaders like Bishop Tutu and Prime Minister Zaparto who use words to unite their people. And then there is Poland’s leader, Mr. Kaczynski, who showed a video clip of two New Yorkers getting married, saying that “the lack of an exact definition of marriage as a union of man and woman could challenge the moral order commonly accepted in Poland.”

The people Mr. Kaczynski used as poster children for moral decay without their knowledge or permission were two New Yorkers who were as mystified as I am as to why the leader of Poland would consider them a national threat.

“I'm a happily married man. I have a good life,” one of them said, “For us it was a moment of love. Here was a political leader turning that around.”

Back here in California, for all of the time I spend studying what leaders say about same-sex marriage, I still don’t understand why you repeatedly tell the people that it is somehow OK to turn our moments of love into something reprehensible or disgusting. I wish you would tell the people of California that there is nothing wrong with same-sex marriage; there is everything wrong with banning it.

Yours,

Monday, March 24, 2008

Today's letter - sticks and stones do break bones

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

A couple of weeks ago, Oklahoma Representative Sally Kern was caught comparing lesbian and gay citizens to cancer and calling them “worse than terrorists.”

It would have been nice if this very personal attack against my beliefs and my family had been met by public admonishment by her party and her state. Instead, it was answered by a teenager named Tucker:

"On April 19, 1995, in Oklahoma City a terrorist detonated a bomb that killed my mother and 167 others. ... That terrorist was neither a homosexual or was he involved in Islam. ... Your harsh words and misguided beliefs brought me to tears, because you told me that my mother's killer was a better person than a group of people that are seeking safety and tolerance for themselves.

“Let me tell you the result of your words in my school. Every openly gay and suspected gay in the school were having to walk together Monday for protection. They looked scared. They've already experienced enough hate and now your words gave other students even more motivation to sneer at them and call them names…. I seriously think before this week ends that some kids here will be going home bruised and bloody because of what you said.

“I wish you could've met my mom. Maybe she could've guided you in how a real Christian should be acting and speaking.”

Governor, you have not said the evil things that Sally Kern has. But you have also done nothing to undo them either. You continue to tolerate anti-gay messaging in your Republican party, your Catholic church and within your own administration. You continue to call same-sex couples who aspire to marriage as somehow less worthy of human dignity than yourself.

I am truly disappointed in you both as a governor and as a human being.

Yours,

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Today's letter - nature lays an egg

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Happy Easter, Governor.

Opponents of same-sex marriage have pointed to nature to say same-sex relationships are not natural. Well, in addition to penguins, orangutans and humans, we have observed roosters choosing to couple with same-sex partners.

Julius and Big Daddy came to Los Angeles’ A Dog's Life rescue organization last year as a couple, and continued to eschew "normative chicken social conventions" by choosing each other as companions.

Their temporary caretakers were able to find them a permanent home in Alabama where they will be able to continue to enjoy each other’s company through the rest of their days.

In the human world, we take companionship to a higher level through marriage, a mutual legal and social framework that ties two people together. Nature doesn’t discriminate between same-sex and heterosexual couples, and I wish you would not either. Stop meddling with nature and let same-sex couples choose marriage like everybody else.

Yours,

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Today's letter - celebrate diversity

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) presented several awards for the portrayal of lesbian and gay people in the media during their 19th annual Media Awards in New York last week.

The award for television news magazines was shared by Barbara Walters and “60 Minutes” for “My Secret Self: A Story of Transgender Children” and “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” about the United States military’s policy on gay and lesbian service members, respectively.

A movie I wrote to you about last year, “For the Bible Tells Me So,” was named outstanding documentary, joining The New York Times, GQ magazine, CNN.com and the television series “Boston Legal” in receiving honors.

Why would people who deserve such meaningful and poignant coverage in the mainstream media, not deserve the freedom to make the commitment of marriage?

I wish you would realize that there is nothing wrong with gay marriage, but there is everything wrong in blocking two adults who love each other from making the commitment of marriage.

Yours,

Friday, March 21, 2008

Today's letter - teen sex out of wedlock

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

As a parent I was disgusted with the latest CDC study that revealed that one in four teenage girls are infected with at least one sexually transmitted disease.

It seems strange that the more obsessed we are with blocking gay marriage, the more teenagers are having sex out of wedlock. Maybe it is time for a change of course?

I wish you would advocate marriage as a way to encourage monogamy, instead of using it as a weapon to punish California’s lesbian and gay citizens for wanting to make the commitment of marriage.

You don’t protect our children by “protecting marriage.” You protect them by giving their parents the tools they need to be good parents. Please give us the freedom to marry.

Yours,

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Today's letter - Mission Accomplished

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Yesterday, on the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, President Bush issued a statement that “Removing Saddam Hussein from power was the right decision and this is a fight America can and must win.”

Whether or not we will ever ‘win’ in Iraq, the fact remains that the President and his administration lied to us to get us to support a war against the wrong country and the wrong dictator by promising a victory that was swift and decisive against weapons of mass destruction and the mastermind of 9/11.

But this is not the first time that the administration lied to us. In February 2004 – barely a week after my same-sex marriage – Bush declared war on my family, saying “the union of a man and a woman is the most enduring human institution, honored and encouraged in all cultures and by every religious faith.”

Who will be the next victim of this administration’s political aspirations?

Governor, please keep the lies in Washington – not in California. There is nothing wrong with gay marriage, but there is everything wrong with using your fellow Americans for your own political gain.

Yours,

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Today's letter - Jesse Kern and Mother Sally

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

After I heard Oklahoma Representative Sally Kern’s attack on lesbian and gay people – the one where she said they were “worse than terrorists” and “a cancer” that had to be eliminated – I was only disappointed to learn that her adult son Jesse, although currently “celibate,” was quite inarguably gay.

Unfortunately, poor Jesse Kern was not the Michael Stipe or Dan Savage kind of open and proud kind of gay, but the evil back-closet Ted Haggart / Larry Craig kind of gay, based on reports that he was twice cited for making inappropriate advances to other men in the library toilets at Oklahoma Baptist University.

Parents in this situation tend to go either way: they can go the way of Mary Cheney, Cher and San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders to embrace their children by creating a world where they can live and be happy, or they can go the way of Sally Kern, Sonny Bono and Pete Knight, removing the options of marriage and family leaving only “celibacy” or suicide.

Which one do you think winds up being best for the parents, kids and society?

I wish you would tell the people of this state that there is nothing wrong with gay marriage, because it will take somebody like you to undo the damage that Sally Kern has done to us all, parents and kids alike.

Yours,

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Today's letter - Tom Ford is having kids

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Fashion designer Tom Ford announced that he would be joining the growing ranks of lesbian and gay parents by having a kid in 2008. He told a magazine that "I've always wanted kids. I don't want to get to be 75 years old and just have made a lot of dresses, done some houses."

Tom Ford has been with his partner, photographer Richard Buckley, for more than 20 years, and this is clearly not a decision that has been made lightly. But since gender is no longer an impediment to having children, why is it still an impediment to marriage?

It is wonderful that we live in a country where people like Brad Pitt, Heath Ledger and Tom Ford can intentionally have their kids out of wedlock, but I believe it would be a better world if people who want to make the commitment of marriage had the freedom to do that.

Yours,

Monday, March 17, 2008

Today's letter - silly laws harm real people

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

I just read about Synchronized Swimming sensation Kenyon Smith of the Santa Clara Aquamaids. A man in a women’s sport, his ability to advance is hampered not by his ability, but by his gender: college scholarships and Olympic Games both bar his participation.

I am a gay dad, and as such I have to be both father and mother to my two young kids. I empathize with Mr. Smith not because the rules limit our options, but because we both weather the attacks by people who assume that we are less capable or less talented simply because of our gender.

The people who say men can’t be nurses and women can’t be pilots keep telling me that I can’t be a mother. But I know and you know that nurturing and caring for your kids isn’t something that depends on your gender – it depends on your love.

There is a law that is holding me back from being an excellent parent, the special law that prevents my kids from having two parents who are married. You vetoed two attempts to fix this law, and now the Opponents of Equality are trying to get a Constitutional Amendment to reinforce the silly law.

Please help me educate the public that a man can be both a father and – when he has to – a mother too. Please support the freedom to marry for us and all Californians.

Yours,

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Today's letter - don't just wash your hands

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

In Church today we heard the Gospel of the Passion of Christ according to Matthew. In it, the Governor asks the people what prisoner they would like to free, thinking they would release Jesus (who had done nothing wrong). However, the chief priests had persuaded the people to ask for Barab’bas and destroy Jesus, who threatened their credibility. Pilate – despite his conscience and even the pleas of his wife – heeds the cries of the people, washes his hands and proceeds to crucify Jesus.

History repeats itself. These days, the Opponents of Equality are working overtime to convince the people to specially exclude same-sex couples from marriage, not for doing anything wrong, but because they have built their careers by defiling homosexuals. Legitimate Christian families like mine prove them wrong – and that could be costly to their credibility.

“So, when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying ‘’I am innocent of this man’s blood.’’”

Governor Schwarzenegger, are you going to stand by while today’s so-called leaders crucify my family? Or are you going to do something to help people who have done nothing wrong to fully participate in our economy and society?

I wish you would support the freedom to marry, because it is the right thing to do.

Yours,

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Today's letter - Ides of November

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

The Ides of March must make politicians nervous. This was the day in 44 BC that Julius Caesar was stabbed to death by a group of Roman senators who believed Caesar intended to take over the Republic and turn it into a monarchy. The murderers justified themselves saying they were merely protecting the Republic but everybody knows they were merely protecting their own political aspirations.

Nowadays, the group using the rhetoric of protection claims they are “protecting” marriage. Randy Thomasson and the Campaign for Children and Families claim that same-sex marriage is the biggest threat to home and country, and we must exterminate homosexuals to protect our Democracy.

Of course, you can see through these Liberatores Governor. Marriage is not threatened – only political power. Their campaign is driven by political aspirations to knock out the Democrats. When they have accomplished that, who do you think they are going to turn to, Mr. Moderate Republican? Do you really think there room in their family for a foreigner who resists attempts to merge Church and State? Indeed, while today the back they are sticking a knife into is mine, tomorrow the back will be yours.

You have done a lot for the equality of all Californians, but you stopped short of supporting gay marriage. We could really use your help with the upcoming ballot initiative driving voters to the polls. Please tell the people that it is time to stop “protecting marriage” and start improving it. The back you save may be your own.

Yours,

Friday, March 14, 2008

Today's letter - greek letters

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

The digits of today’s date, 3.14, make the beginning of the famous number Pi (p). This Greek letter represents the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its radius.

Another interesting Greek letter is lambda (l). This letter is used in chemistry to represent a catalyst, physics to represent wavelength, and society to represent lesbian and gay people.

Some also say it represents the Greek island Lesbos where we get the term Lesbian, and in a shield pattern used by the Spartan army, which encouraged homosexuality to boost troop morale.

Next week, same-sex marriage comes to the place that gave us the letters p and l. An Athens couple will be married by the mayor of the Kessariani quarter where the marriage laws do not specifically exclude same-sex couples. This action will culminate a circuitous battle for marriage equality, at least for this lesbian pair, bringing the letter l full-circle, back to its roots.

I wish Californian’s same-sex couples could enjoy as much freedom as they do in the birthplace of Democracy. Please become a catalyst for change and bring us full circle to our foundation: that all of us – regardless of wavelength - are created equal, with the same rights to liberty, justice and the pursuit of happiness.

Yours,

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Today's letter - go forth and sin no more

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

The Vatican got a lot of press lately when Archbishop Gianfranco Girotti released an updated list of modern evils. The list includes genetic modification, carrying out experiments on humans, polluting the environment, causing social injustice, hoarding wealth, and taking drugs.

I’m a ‘back to basics’ kind of guy so I decided to look up sin in the Catechism of the Catholic Church on www.vatican.va. Right there, at the top of Part Three, Section One, Chapter One, Article 8, Part II, paragraph 1849 is the Roman Catholic Church’s official definition of sin:

“Sin is an offense against reason, truth, and right conscience; it is failure in genuine love for God and neighbor caused by a perverse attachment to certain goods.”

Now I’m not as much of an expert on sin as Archbishop Girotti, however it seems to me that trying to block two people from getting married is a sin by every measure – and a mortal sin when it is done in full knowledge of the harm that this groundless exclusion causes to people such as me, my partner, kids and parents.

I’ve been told that homosexuality is a sin, but I find it hard to believe people who are so attached to protecting ‘traditional marriage’ that they forget all reason, truth and conscience. A good neighbor would never do something like that to me. So I will stick to the basic definition of sin, and live in conscience that I am not the one making baby Jesus cry.

Yours,

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Today's letter - oust the intolerant, not the needy

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

I bring to you a story of righteousness winning out. In 2006 the then-Bishop of San Joaquin, John-David Schofield, based on a slim majority of support from his parishioners, led his whole diocese out of the Episcopal Church in opposition to the consecration of women and homosexuals by the US division of the Anglican Church.

Yesterday the Episcopal House of Bishops officially deposed Schofield, blocking him from performing religious duties as an Episcopal and removing his title.

It is so wonderful to finally see a Church that kicks out the intolerant for their intolerance rather than kicking out the parishioners because of their gender, age or sexual orientation.

I wish you would do the same thing with the Republican party. Then your party could grow like the Episcopals instead of shrinking like the Catholics.

Yours,

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Today's letter - Plant an Appleseed

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Today we celebrate “Johnny Appleseed” day. John Chapman was among the American settlers who were captivated by the movement west across the continent, and headed west planting apple trees along the way. He rarely accepted money and often donated any money he received. He wasn’t worried about his legacy, he just wanted to leave every place he visited a little better than he found it.

As Governor, would you consider leaving California a little better than you found it by helping me and my fiancée finally get married? We would thank you, our children would thank you, and fair-minded Californians would thank you.

All you have to do is plant the seed of marriage equality in the minds of the people you meet. It is time to stop ‘protecting marriage’ and start improving it instead.

Yours,

Monday, March 10, 2008

Today's letter - Elliot Spitzer can wed, why can't I?

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

New York Governor Elliot Spitzer was just caught using a prostitute. He will probably have to step down as Governor, but he and his spouse will have the option of preserving or dissolving their marriage as they see fit. The government does not intervene in this most personal and intimate decision, even with alleged adultery.

I have never used a prostitute, but the government still punishes me and my partner by removing our ability to choose marriage, just because we are a same-sex couple.

Where is the justice in that?

Yours,

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Today's letter - Spanish Prime Minister triumphs despite tolerance

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

I wrote to you before about the prime minister of Spain, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero and his courage in bringing same-sex marriage to Spain. You will be happy to know that, despite an all-out effort by the Roman Catholic Church, Zapatero was decisively reelected to a second term today.

How did he do it? Here’s what he said in his acceptance speech:

"The Spanish people have spoken clearly and decided to start a new era, I will govern with a firm but open hand . . . I will govern for all, but do so thinking most of all of those in need." – March 9 2008

Here are some other quotes showing that his firm but open hand has a long history:

I will never understand those who proclaim love as the foundation of life, while denying so radically protection, understanding and affection to our neighbors, our friends, our relatives, our colleagues. What kind of love is this that excludes those who experience their sexuality in a different way? - May 11, 2005

It is time to bring to an end, once and for all, the intolerable discrimination still suffered by many Spaniards exclusively by virtue of their sexual preferences. Homosexuals and transsexuals deserve the same public consideration as heterosexuals and have the right to live freely the life that they themselves have chosen. - April 15, 2004

Governor, I wish I could be so happy with your political future. A firm and open hand only works when it is open to the people and closed to the Opponents of Equality. Don’t we deserve as much freedom from you as Zapatero brought Spain? Please don’t stop your support for California’s lesbian and gay people before you support their freedom to marry.

Yours,

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Today's letter - why Republicans hate the gays

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Oklahoma State Representative Sally Kern was secretly videotaped kvetching about The Gays at a Republican party meeting.

“I honestly think it's the biggest threat our nation has, even more so than terrorism or Islam. ... The homosexual agenda is a very real threat to the sacred institution of marriage and the traditional family unit … If you have cancer in your little toe, do you just say that I'm going to forget about it since the rest of you is fine? It spreads! This stuff is deadly and it is spreading. It will destroy our young people and it will destroy this nation.”

Since then, Ms. Kern has been busy defending her comments while lashing out at her lesbian and gay neighbors both for trying to blocking her speech and for releasing the video on YouTube.

“They want to silence anyone who does not approve their lifestyle. They want their freedom but don't want those who disagree to have their freedom.”

Now I could say a bunch of lofty stuff about “with freedom comes responsibility” and “I may not agree with you but I will defend with my life your ability to say it.” But the issue here is not one of freedom to hate – the Boy Scouts proved that’s already in our Constitution – but the freedom to love. Can our democracy overcome the false teachings of Ms. Kern and extend the freedom to marry to all her people?

It can, Governor, with your help.

Yours,

Friday, March 7, 2008

Today's letter - let the men marry

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Yesterday I proposed that you recognize the boundaries of the old-testament admonishment against homosexuality by letting lesbian couples get married. But the bible actually says men are superior:

"But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." 1 Corinthians 11:3

"But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence." 1 Timothy 2:12

So gay male couples are naturally superior to couples where a woman is involved. Why would you want to discourage – through banning marriage – these more perfect unions?

So why not let gay male couples wed? That wouldn’t tread on these religious decrees, but it would get us half-way closer to bringing the freedom to marry to everybody who wants it.

Yours,

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Today's letter - let the women wed

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

The people who are upset because I want to get married keep pointing to the Bible as justification for their intolerance.

"Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination." Leviticus 18:22

So why not let lesbian couples wed? That wouldn’t tread on these religious decrees, but it would get us half-way closer to bringing the freedom to marry to everybody who wants it.

Yours,

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Today's letter - Samantha gets it, why don't you?

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

It looks like the upcoming Sex in the City movie will feature a wedding or two. Will Carrie Bradshaw finally marry Big, or will her gay gal pal Stanford Blatch manage to find love even before Carrie?

Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda and Samantha do not seem to be the kind of people who would be anything but thrilled if Stanford finally tied the knot. Why would Californians be any different?

I wish you would support the freedom to marry for us out here in California, so people like Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda and Samantha – or Stanford, Anthony and Big – are not blocked by a tradition of bigotry from marrying the love of their lives.

Yours,

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Today's letter - short slippery slope

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

Just to be clear, polygamist men are allowed to marry and file joint taxes, although only with one wife at a time. Right?

Why do polygamists have more rights than I do as a committed man in a domestic partnership relationship?

Yours,

Monday, March 3, 2008

Today's letter - social security short of world-class

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

On December 10, 1948 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. That document raises the issue of social security and the responsibilities of the state in caring for its people.

Article 22.

Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality.

Article 25.

(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.

(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

So the irony of being stuck in this silly limbo between marriage and singlehood is that, without marriage, my partner and I cannot pool our social security benefits from the state. Both of us have worked hard and contributed dutifully to this fund, Now, while we are compelled to contribute, we are banned from receiving, for the state considers us “legal strangers.”

This is bad for us and for our kids; it is not going to change until somebody like you stands up and leads the people to what is right. If you don’t, it will only get worse. And that is a travesty that goes beyond our national borders.

Yours,

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Today's letter - United Nations calls for equal pay for equal work

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

On December 10, 1948 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article 23 part (2) says:

(2) Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.

As a gay dad who is on my same-sex domestic partner’s health insurance, I can tell you that there is a wee discrepancy between my treatment and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. If we were married, my health insurance premiums would be deducted pre-tax. Because your administration will not let us marry, my health insurance premiums are considered to be a taxable benefit.

That means my fiancée is making less take-home pay than his counterparts simply because of his gender. That’s unfair not just here in the USA, but throughout the world.

There is no substitute for marriage; I wish you would help your fellow Republicans and the people of this state understand that, so that we can all have the same freedom, the freedom to marry.

Yours,

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Today's letter - United Nations speaks to marriage

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger -

On December 10, 1948 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article 16 deals with marriage.

(1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.

(2) Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.

(3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.

Clearly, marriage is fundamental to family throughout the world. Why not in California?

My intended spouse and I want to get married. The only barrier is your administration, which has compelled us into a domestic partnership instead. I wish you would explain to the people of California that marriage is different than domestic partnership, and that all committed couples should have the freedom to marry. If you can’t do it for your conscience, do it for world peace.

Yours,

Recent Letters