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,

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,

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,