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 – 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,

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,