Archive for ‘marriage’

June 7th, 2008

Today’s letter – doing his duty for eighteen years

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

I would like to point out a saint in your midst.

For 18 years, Contra Costa County Clerk-Recorder and State Clerks Association President Stephen Weir has been in charge of the county’s office that hands out marriage licenses, even though he has been unable to get a license himself because the love of his life happens to be a man.

On June 17th, Weir and his fiancée John Hemm will approach the counter Weir runs to get a license for themselves; shortly after that, they will go to exchange vows in the conference room that Weir himself had converted into a wedding chapel – but could never use.

Weir says “I’ve waited all of this time to be able to walk into my own office and stand in line and pay $85 to buy a license and have a ceremony. It’s a big deal.”

Governor, is there an award that we can give Stephen Weir for patiently doing his duty all these years while his “customers” would, every day, receive something he could not? What do you give somebody who did his job, even though knew that limiting love based on people’s gender or religion was wrong?

When you hear stories of clerk-recorders from other counties who won’t issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples despite the Supreme Court ruling (and basic human decency,) you realize how, truly, Stephen Weir is a citizen among citizens and a saint among saints.

Sincerely,

Today’s stamp: “Jury Duty”

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May 28th, 2008

Today’s letter – everybody knows that it is time

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

A Field Poll of 1,052 registered California voters asked “Do you approve or disapprove of California allowing homosexuals to marry members of their own sex?” and for the first time since 1977 – when California’s law was changed to ban the unions – a majority answered that yes, they do support same-sex marriage.

As my Aunt wrote after she saw our story in the Chicago Tribune, “It’s about time.” The Wall Street Journal described it on their May 24 Opinion page, “Court Allows Gay Marriage: Tyranny or Its End?” And my Mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa said “It’s time for us to bring every American out of the shadows and into the light, and this decision does that here in California.

Personally, I’m hoping to marry my fiancée of eleven years in a couple of weeks, and my friends, family and church are on the edge of their seats.

Please, Governor, keep supporting the freedom to marry in our great state. Keep fighting against the amendment. And most of all, please do whatever you can to make sure marriages start as soon as possible and continue after November.

Yours,

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May 11th, 2008

Today’s letter – Brothers and Sisters celebrate real relationships

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

On the season finale of the hit series Brothers and Sisters, a major character, Kevin, married his boyfriend Scotty in a high-profile (but not legally binding) ceremony.

Executive producer Monica Breen explains “Kevin deserves a stable relationship in the same way that Kitty, Sarah and all the others deserve it. He will be facing many questions in his life — but now he has someone to share that with.”

Hurrah.

Governor, all Californians deserve to have a stable relationship, and the only way that is possible is through access to the time-tested tradition of marriage. Please continue your support of the Constitution and its mantra, that no Californian should be specially excluded from our economy and society because of who they are or what they believe. Please support the freedom to marry.

Yours,

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May 10th, 2008

Today’s letter – those who deny freedom deserve it not for their daughters

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

The President who said that gay Americans are not worthy of marriage had his daughter married off today. I wonder if Henry Hager asked Mr. Bush for permission to marry his daughter? That would be very traditional, and the Bushes seem to be weirdly into what they think is ‘traditional.’

The only thing more daunting than asking the President of the United States for permission to marry might be asking the State Supreme Court for permission to marry. But that is exactly what five couples did after you vetoed their nuptials, and in the next couple of weeks we will get the court’s answer.

It is a shame that adults in this country have to ask other people for permission to marry the person that they love. It is a worse shame that somebody – anybody – would deny it. I feel badly going around you to get this permission, when you ought to be the first to offer it. But it ultimately makes me feel special, because not many people get to ask the Supreme Court for permission to wed.

Yours,

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March 27th, 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,

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March 21st, 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,

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March 1st, 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,

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February 15th, 2008

Today’s letter – be my Valentine

[I put this on a NASCAR Valentine’s Day card with car number 9 and a picture of Kasey Kahne. Or it might be Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards or Jamie McMurray, I’m not sure, they didn’t put names on the cards.]

TO: Governor Schwarzenegger

You would be my Valentine if you let me wed!!!

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