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Nov. 5th, 2008

I am so conflicted and emotionally exhausted.

President Elect Barack Obama. That’s… wonderful. Indescribably wonderful. When his victory was announced, I looked over at my daughter, and I couldn’t help but cry. The relief, the joy… it was overwhelming. I no longer have to live with a horrible black cloud of fear hanging over my head, terrified of what the future may hold for her under a McCain or (GOD FORBID) Palin administration.

We, as a country, have come so far. But we still fall short profoundly.

Proposition 8 passed. That didn’t just take the wind out of my sails; it was like getting punched in the stomach.

I’m too emotional over all of this to write, actually. My emotions are too tumultuous, and my anger over Prop 8 is too acute. I’ll tell ya… this threw me. I was so so SO sure that my state wouldn’t pass a law like this, one that /removed/ civil rights. I was certain that my neighbors couldn’t be duped by lies or swayed by propaganda.

I’m broken-hearted that I was wrong.

There are some glimmers of hope. Obama and Biden had both openly stated that if they were California residents they would have voted against Prop 8, so this ugliness doesn’t go all the way to the top, so to speak.

There are protest rallies going on all over the state. The protest rally in Los Angeles is still swelling in numbers five hours after it began.

Civil rights advocates, including the ACLU, are taking this back to the courts. And while attempts to overturn anti gay marriage measures have failed in the past (Alaska, Oregon), there’s always hope.

61% of voters between the ages of 18 and 29 voted against Prop 8. If worse comes to worse, it may be just a matter of patience and perseverance.

I’m still angry. The voices of hate and intolerance diminish us all. The passing of Proposition 8 cast a horrible pall on this election, and stained the glorious victory for civil rights that Obama’s election represents. I’m still angry, but I’m going to do my best to use that anger to fortify and strengthen my resolve, and I’m going to do what I can to help see that this cruel, unfair law is overturned.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 6th, 2008 07:57 am (UTC)
fucking ridiculous. The whole idea of prop.8.

I find it amazing that people of any race, creed, what have you, would be against any kind of marriage. The Pledge to spend the rest of your life with someone, till death do you part, is an amazing thing no matter what your sexual preference. Like you, I was completely flabbergasted that this was passed.
Nov. 6th, 2008 08:10 am (UTC)
Well said.
Nov. 6th, 2008 09:50 am (UTC)
(Sort-of reposting from elsewhere)

I think it's going to take more than eight years, but these hater-amendments are just the last violent gasp of a backwards and close-minded group that is going to age out of power, while younger and more accepting people age into power. Children today? Are growing up with homosexuality out in the open. It isn't something hidden and unmentionable. For the boomers, it wasn't exactly the sort of thing that the just grew up knowing about. There were no news stories about gay marriage, no talk of equal rights for homosexuals, no Ellen and other openly gay people on TV. Now? With all that? The knowledge is there, and with knowledge comes increased acceptance, rather than just fear.

This is no different than all the fuss and nonsense associated with interracial marriages, except the cycle of hate will hopefully be much shorter. [/incoherent sleepy soapbox]
Nov. 6th, 2008 03:38 pm (UTC)
This is what ran through my head when I heard that prop 8 passed. While I was dismayed and angry, I also had to consider that in a way, homophobia is largely a generational thing. Centuries ago, even people who were otherwise well-educated would have told you that blacks were innately less intelligent than whites. Now look how far we've come. I think something similar will happen with gays but, like you said, I hope it doesn't take so long that we don't see it in our lifetimes.
Nov. 6th, 2008 12:10 pm (UTC)
What happened to that whole "separation of church and state" thing? Before, the government couldn't tell a church who they could and could not marry. Now, they can. 'Splain, please, how this is constitutional?

(Which, I think is an argument that is much more easily argued at the court level than equal rights, unfortunately.)
Nov. 6th, 2008 12:30 pm (UTC)
I stole this from another LJ:

According to the office of the California Secretary of State, Prop 8 has not yet been called. They are still counting ballots... and we will not know the results until December 13th.

All media has announced a victory for Yes on 8.


Based on turnout estimates reported yesterday, we expect that there are more than 3 million and possibly as many as 4 million absentee and provisional ballots yet to be counted.

Roughly 500,000 votes separate yes from no on Prop 8 – out of 10 million votes tallied.

Today’s California Constitutional law discovery:
Any amendment to the constitution, before being submitted to a vote, is required to be reviewed by the legislature. Guess what wasn’t?

The ACLU has filed an initial writ petition this morning to block proposition 8 from altering the Constitution.

"The California Constitution itself sets out two ways to alter the document that sets the most basic rules about how state government works. Through the initiative process, voters can make relatively small changes to the constitution. But any measure that would change the underlying principles of the constitution must first be approved by the legislature before being submitted to the voters. That didn't happen with Proposition 8, and that's why it's invalid."

It's not over yet.

There's still a small glimmer of hope, and I will really pray that this ridiculous nonsense of hate just goes away.
Nov. 6th, 2008 01:27 pm (UTC)
I was very surprised to hear that Prop. 8 passed in California! I have personally never been there, but have met many people who live in different parts of the state. I always took CA, overall, as a liberal state. I think it's pretty messed up that these folks voted against Americans' civil rights.
Nov. 6th, 2008 01:52 pm (UTC)
I have never understood how people could be so hateful to something just because they don't understand it. So what if you don't like seeing gay couples. You think if you deny them the right to a fair and legal union they will just give up their gay ways and disappear? Hell no. Instead they will stay in your face, beating on yours doors begging for the right to live their lives the same way everyone else is aloud to. If you give them the same rights straight couples have, they won't be in your face, they will be merrily living their lives. Why do other people feel the need to force their beliefs and opinions onto other people so strongly that they deny them simple things that would bring other people happiness. Just like religion. People get so worked up over religion it's like a disease rather than an enjoyable enlightenment. People just don't know where their opinion stops and hate begins.
Nov. 6th, 2008 02:21 pm (UTC)
I have faith it will be overturned. It's just a matter of time, and as you say, the bigotry does *not* go all the way to the top, so that's going to help significantly.

Do not let this darken your joy for the bigger picture. Electing Obama is HUGE. Have faith :)
Nov. 6th, 2008 03:49 pm (UTC)
We're going to change this. Even if last night's rally was a small sampling, it was proof positive that this is not going to be taken lying down.

I'm with ya in the fight 110%. Let's harness that anger and ride it through to triumph!!
Nov. 6th, 2008 03:57 pm (UTC)
Prop 8
Being a bi-woman who has strong ties to the queer community, who just came home glowing from her honeymoon (with a man), seeing Prop 8 get passed was especially heart-breaking.



But Obama won. Not only won, but won with a CLEAR mandate. For the next 4 (hopefully 8) years, the news won't be dominated by a hate and fear motivated president. There's a light, hon. The phrase "President-elect Obama" makes me very very happy. Run with that for a while.
Nov. 6th, 2008 04:15 pm (UTC)
The interesting thing is the breakdown of voters who voted for it - and the key to moving forward it to understand the racial/ethnic groups who were for it and address the issue knowing the audience.
Nov. 6th, 2008 05:11 pm (UTC)
So Beth, what does intolerance smell like? Hummmm?? ; )

I too am beyond disgusted with the outcome, though living in a "red" county I was kind of expecting it. I am not discouraged though. I KNOW it will be over turned. And if it has to go to federal court, all the better. It will set a precedence for the rest of the country to follow.
Nov. 6th, 2008 05:14 pm (UTC)
Excellent post, lady!

I'm still angry enough that I'm having a hard time not lashing out and challenging the religious bigots that I know to explain how they can justify this in their heads.
Nov. 6th, 2008 07:22 pm (UTC)
Another fantastic post. Don't laugh, but I point friends to your blog (since you are so well read and politically aware) for the "cut-through-the-bullshit" posts you make. I constantly brag about how spart you are in this arena, just so you know.

Now onto prop 8. My official WTF?!?! from election night.

If any state would pass laws allowing people to have legal unions with the people they want to be with, be it the opposite sex of the same one, I thought it would be California. I've got a LOT of GLBT friends here in Seattle -- I think we are the GLBT mecca of the PNW -- and a number of them are shaking their heads. They had really hoped this would pass and be a model for other states, including Washington, to follow. I had a lovely couple that I hung out with quite a but when I first moved here move to California for two reasons, one being work related, but the other was the perception that California was more permissive, unlike Washington (Seattle may be very liberal, but the necks can get a bit red on the other side of the mountains -- Eastern WA is Republican Terrtory). I heard through a friend of a friend that they had their civil ceremony and we happy as clams. By allowing this to pass, the state has stolen away that bit of happiness that they and so many others like them have had to fight so long for.

I completely agree with you when you say it may just be patience and time we need. Our generation voted against this. WE did not pass this. I believe in my heart of hearts this will pass. And when it does, I see a lot of people living in G/L celebrating. Here in WA, we just voted to amend our county charter to extend discrimination protection to the gay community. Baby steps, yes, but a step nonetheless.

I'm off to work -- I have been off for two days -- and am looking forward to the continued celebrations of Obama's election and getting a little schadenfreude (I know I spelled it wrong) out of watching the Republicans toss a certain "I-thought-Africa-was-a-country" person under the proverbial bus.
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )