Today’s letter – the only fair and legal thing to do is to stop all marriages, and do to yourself what you would do to others

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

What should we do in the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling on Prop 8?

You may recall that this amendment to our Constitution says that same-sex couples cannot get married in California. It does not say heterosexual couples cannot get domestic partnered in California.

The Constitution says that all people must be subject to the same laws. I think there is only one fair way to handle this: stop all marriages in California. Existing marriages will be converted to Domestic Partnerships for same-sex and opposite couples alike.

Then instead of having three laws for people, we will only have one. Government will be smaller and save money. Michael Steele will not have to worry about small businesses spending money on benefits to married people. Randy Thomasson would not have to worry about churches performing marriages.

If you really believed in equality and freedom, you would stop inequality and apartheid.

Sincerely,

Today’s letter – Maine is now a Free State

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

Maine Governor John Baldacci signed a bill yesterday ending the state’s special exclusion of same-sex couples from their society and economy, stating simply:

I have come to believe that this is a question of fairness and of equal protection under the law, and that a civil union is not equal to civil marriage.

I hope you get a chance to congratulate your fellow Governor Baldacci for this courageous and righteous act.

Sincerely,

Today’s letter – 158 year-old tradition of tolerance

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

I’ve written to you before about the struggle I’ve been having with explaining the special ban on same-sex marriages to my kids, and especially how the Opponents of Equality come to California to throw money, time and mindshare at preventing certain people they have never met, who cause absolutely no harm, from making the fundamental decision of who they marry.

What does one say? “There are some people who hate your daddies so much that they come from across the country to keep them from getting married?” Or perhaps “There are some people who don’t want to share. Remember what we learned about sharing?” Clearly, neither truth would be responsible parenting.

After a 158 year tradition of liberty and tolerance ensconced in the California Constitution, it sure would be a shame to lose that all in a heated moment of intolerance.

Dan Hawes, an organizer with the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, explains “There is a real sense of hope and possibility here because of the upcoming Supreme Court ruling. The fact that [hard-won freedom] could be taken away in five months is really painful for people who want to marry.”

Please, for my kids and all Californians, give us some moral guidance. Explain to the people that the only right thing to do is to uphold our Constitution that says that nobody should be picked out and treated differently because of what they think or what they believe. That is a tradition of neighborly love, not neighborly hate. That is something I can explain to my kids.

Yours,

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,

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,

Today’s letter – let Oscar wed too

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

At last night’s Academy Awards, the Best Short Documentary went to a film called “Freeheld” about the struggle that a New Jersey police Lieutenant faced as she tried to include her partner in her pension while she also battled cancer. Had her partner been a different gender, it would have been automatic; instead it was anything but.

I know that you intend for Domestic Partnership to provide same-sex couples with all of the time-tested social and legal features of marriage. The truth is that Domestic Partnership fails miserably at bringing even basic parity to California’s gay partnerships.

When Director Cynthia Wade tells three million people that “It was Lt. Laurel Hester’s dying wish that her fight against discrimination would make a difference for all the same-sex couples across the country,” she is telling three million people that leaders like you are the problem; that people like you, for all your best intentions, are merely obstacles to individual liberty until you support the freedom for all of us to decide for ourselves who we marry.

Yours,

Today’s letter – I heart Huckabee for President

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

As a conservative Christian gay Republican dad, I would love Mike Huckabee to be the Republican nominee for President. In fact, on Super Tuesday, he’s going to get my vote.

Everybody knows that he is unelectable, so his nomination is my best chance at getting somebody in the White House who respects my faith, my family and my individual freedom to make my own decisions about who I marry.

So, Governor, please support Mike Huckabee for President so we can get somebody with compassion, tolerance and talent into the White House.

Yours,

Today’s letter – Fair taxation is hard work

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

When my same-sex domestic partner and I got Domestic Partnered, we had to reconstruct a sharing of our property like we would get automatically through marriage. We transferred our property into a joint trust, expecting Proposition 13 to keep our taxes frozen like it is supposed to do for families.

However, our county assessor saw things differently. Apparently because domestic partners are specially excluded from marriage, he believes they should also be specially excluded from the protections of Proposition 13. He quadrupled our property taxes.

I read today that this case has finally wound its way through the courts, and same-sex couples ARE protected by Proposition 13.

This is good news for us – we can start the paperwork today to get back some of the extra money we had to pay in taxes – but I really wish we didn’t have to take every little thing such as this to court when we could simply access the time-tested stability of marriage.

You could cut out a lot of waste in government and help families like mine reach our full potential if you would only support free choice in marriage. Please tell Californians that everybody deserves the freedom to marry.

Yours,

Today’s letter – How do they know it’s Christmas without Family?

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

I hope you got everything you wanted for Christmas.

My Christmas was magical: my husband and I opened presents with our 9 ½ month old kids, including a book that we put together chronicling their first year on Earth. Our parents came over and we enjoyed each others company through a wonderful family dinner. Life has been bountiful, and we were blessed to be able to celebrate that together.

My Christmas bliss was disturbed by the recognition that so many people are celebrating without family. Children whose parents have disowned them because they are gay; parents who have lost children through gay-related suicide; marriages broken because they were formed for the wrong reasons; and even siblings who were turned away because they were unwilling to accept their kin for who they are.

I really don’t know how you can enjoy your holidays knowing that domestic apartheid will flourish as long as you advocate civil unions for some and marriage for others. Please start working now so by next Christmas we can all enjoy the gifts of liberty and freedom.

Yours,