Today’s letter – let’s address the actual issues in the 2010 race for California Governor

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

The race for Governor is heating up. I wish one side or the other could be trusted to actually end the gridlock in Sacramento, but that hasn’t happened.

I presume that you want a Republican to win. But with the way that the Democrats are positioning themselves, it looks like it might come down to an equality-vs-apartheid competition just like Proposition 8, and I predict that will open the door for a pro-marriage Governor to take your place.

Governor, as we learned from the 1983 film “War Games,” the only way to win this game is not to play it. The only way to disarm the Democrats on the issue of same-sex marriage is to agree that Prop 8 was a bad idea and work towards marriage equality in this state and country as fast as we can.

I hope you choose to join this fight rather than just watch it play out.

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 – Just Domestic Partnered

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

As you probably know, Disneyland City Hall issues buttons for people to wear in the park for people celebrating events such as:

– first visit
– honorary citizen
– happy birthday
– happy anniversary
– just married

Do you agree with me that they ought to have “Just Domestic Partnered” buttons too?

I’m nobody, but if you were to write to them and suggest it, they might take the issue of equivalency more seriously. Their address is:

Disneyland Guest Relations
1313 Harbor Blvd
Anaheim, CA 92803

Many thanks in advance,

Today’s letter – form letter is chilling

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

A short time ago, I wrote to you in support of the California Supreme Court’s ruling on same-sex marriage. Yesterday I received a form letter response from your office that was very nicely written, however factually inaccurate and intellectually offensive to California families, including mine.

You wrote that “Proposition 22 … stated that only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized on California,” but you choose to leave out an important detail: Proposition 22 was added to Section 308.5 of the Family Code. I have attached a copy of the Family Code; Section 308.5 has nothing to do with marriages performed in California.

Section 300 (a) (also highlighted) was actually changed by the legislature in 1977 and signed by then-governor Attorney General Jerry Brown, something the legislation was specifically designed to address, something I pointed out to you almost a year ago, and a fact that the recent Supreme Court decision mentions explicitly.

So when you write that you vetoed the legislative efforts to amend the marriage laws because of the sanctity of voter initiatives, you are not being honest. You could have signed the bills and responded to the legal challenge with the same argument about Section 308.5 and the unclear intent of the voters.

But the worst part of your response to the Supreme Court Ruling is that you will merely “abide by the rulings of the state’s highest court.” It sounds to me like you are a sore loser. I wish you would join the people in celebrating the end of government tyranny in individuals’ personal and private lives.

1. Urge that same-sex marriages commence with all due haste.
2. Prod citizens to contribute to humanitarian efforts instead of limits on marriage.
3. Ask the Republican party to remove offensive language from the party platform.
4. Say all good citizens should vote against the Constitutional Amendment to Limit Marriage.

Sincerely yours,

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,

Today’s letter – your approach to same-sex marriage is wrong

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

Yesterday you told the Los Angeles Times “I have learned a lot of things where I felt one way before I went into office, and all of a sudden you learn things are not quite this way and you change.”

One position you have not changed is your approach to same-sex marriage.

In four years, you have never once spoken out against a system where some people – like me – who pay taxes just like everybody else, but can’t get married like everybody else.

Anybody with the brains God gave geese knows having a separate set of laws for straight couples and gay couples causes harm to every Californian, every day. It pushes people in committed relationships away from the commitment of marriage and into something less. Yet you continue to oppose the legislature’s efforts to correct this domestic apartheid with one proper law.

You say “I would rather flip-flop when I see something is a wrong idea than get stuck with it and stay with it and [keep making] the same mistake.”

It’s time for you to flip-flop on your stand against the freedom to marry.

Yours,

Today’s letter – stranger things have happened

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

When people tell me that Lesbian and Gay couples will never get married in California, I tell them that “never is a long time.”

Who would have thought that two gay men could have children? Who knew that there would be gay marriages in Spain? Never did we think Larry Craig would be gay and Richard Simmons would be straight – or that the California legislature would pass a gay marriage all the way to the Governor’s desk. Who could have imagined that that we would have an openly gay bishop confirmed by a major religion – or that we would have a major Presidential candidate from a church that believes in gay marriage?

If we want all Californians to be able to fully participate in our economy and society, we need you, Governor, to tell Californians that everybody deserves the freedom to marry. That could never happen – but stranger things have.

Yours,

Today’s letter – Death to the Infidels, the sick, the poor, the young and the different

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

I think that we are all on the edge of our seats about the plight of Gillian Gibbons, the teacher who was arrested in Sudan after she let her class name a teddy bear “Mohammed.” Yesterday, 600 protesters poured out of mosques chanting “By soul, by blood, I will fight for the Prophet Mohammed” and “Kill her, kill her by firing squad.”

This seems so alien and so backwards to us, I think, because the punishment does not seem appropriate to the crime. Who would call for somebody’s death for trying to do good? Thank God this can’t happen here in America. Or can it?

Religion makes Americans do unspeakable things to each other, with the full sanction of the Government. How many people will die unnecessarily because we have blocked stem cell research for six years? How many people will get AIDS unnecessarily because we blocked needle exchange and access to condoms? How many women will die in childbirth because we blocked access to basic sex education? How many gay teens will commit suicide because we block their hope of marriage?

All these ridiculous laws cause great harm by punishing people who have done nothing wrong, in order to satisfy a few religious whiners who lack the tolerance and goodwill to respect the life and liberty of their neighbors. I’m sure we look as irrational and intolerant to outsiders as Sudan does to us.

I am proud of you for stepping up to do the right thing on many of these issues, such as supporting stem-cell research, signing AB 110 for state funding of needle exchange programs, and signing AB 629 for truthful sex education – a critical life skill.

I wish you would join the people and the legislature on one more issue: tearing down the special exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage. This unjustifiable ban costs the state money, deprives citizens of their personal liberty, and punishes committed couples for doing nothing wrong. Really, you don’t even need to sign anything – just start talking about how the punishment of Domestic Partnership does not fit the crime of Love.

Yours,

Today’s letter – the people’s behavior reflects their leader

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

I was reading “this day in history” and I believe that today’s events can teach us a lot about how to achieve life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

In 1978 Jim Jones’ cult committed mass suicide; in 1969 Kennedy’s Apollo 12 landed on the moon, and in 1863, Abraham Lincoln gave his famous Gettysburg Address celebrating the end of the civil war and “a new birth of freedom.”

These three events would not have occurred without the participation of the people involved and the work of the leaders whose vision inspired them. Whether we are reaching for the stars, freedom for all, or something more sinister, the behavior of the people is simply a reflection of the leader.

If the people of California want to reward stable relationships with the stability of marriage, or if they want to punish lesbian and gay citizens by excluding them from matrimony, the choice is theirs. Which choice they make depends on the leader.

So my pursuit of life, liberty and happiness is in your hands, Governor. Are you going to play partisan politics with my relationship, or are you going to tell the people of California that freedom means freedom for everybody? History will not remember the people’s choice, but it could remember yours.

Yours,

Today’s letter – Make government a partner in my life

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

At your inauguration four years ago today, you said “I will not rest until the people of California come to see their government as a partner in their lives, not a roadblock to their dreams.”

My dream is to get married. That makes you a roadblock.

You demonstrated at your inauguration that you are a great speaker, and in your tenure that you are a strong leader. You don’t have to override the people on the issue of same-sex marriage, but you would be less of a business-as-usual partisan obstacle to freedom if you were to use your great oratory skills to lead the people to do what is right.

I believe in my heart that the only way to “achieve the dream that is California” is to bring the same freedoms to everybody.

Yours,