I did this walk 8 years ago. At that time it was Proposition 22. I was single. I walked with my friend Pam. Since that time we have found husbands, and are each raising two daughters. That proposition passed in 2000 with over 61% of the vote in California. It was a resounding affirmation of the importance and validity of marriage. We thought... that was that.
Then this year - four arrogant judges ruled over three - declaring that the will of the people was worth zilch. I couldn't believe this was happening in a country founded on freedom. Founded because our English ancestors were escaping religious persecution - forced to believe in something they didn't. Eerily... it's as if we are turning into a country that our founders were fleeing. Just check out this article from NPR about how religious freedom is no longer safe.
(That article makes me think of those crazy women who get pregnant to keep a boyfriend, or a cheating husband... honestly... why are they so desperate? It's not like there aren't other boys)
The walk was fun. Weird to say that huh? Despite feeling vulnerable, it was a natural high for me. It reminded me of why I loved doing new business contacts when I was at tech trade shows. I am looking forward to walking again. I walked with a group of folks that are fun, engaging, intelligent and hopeful. Carrie our leader, David and Erin, and Rose. These are all people I genuinely respect.
I will admit that the first door we approached, my tummy fluttered. I was nervous because the biased media can seem so loud, so overpowering that I feel like I'm a lone voice in the wilderness. I was nervous because - I am not homophobic, and I didn't want whoever we met at the door to feel offended or hurt. Likewise, I didn't want to be hurt either. I genuinely like my friends who are gay - they are no different than my other friends, except that they choose to live a different lifestyle. I have no problems with equal rights - in California, I'm proud to say - homosexuals have equal rights under the law. My problem is with the process - going through the back door in the legal system, hijacking our democratic system...and forcing people to condone/advocate a lifestyle through litigious means.
I find that when people respond to honest discussion about touchy topics with an inflammatory label - these are people who aren't willing to listen, or have a sincere search for truth. Those kind of people are antagonistic, and want to shut down opposing opinions. That's sad to me. What are they afraid of? If you are sure in your position - talk...
We met many who were not familiar with the proposition. As a result there were many undecided voters. We also had a few definite no votes. We also had many yes votes. I had began that walk feeling nervous, and a little gloomy at our prospects... but after that morning of walking, and finding out where people stood ... I felt my shoulders lighten - it seemed brighter. In fact, my first definite Yes of the day... made me want to jump up, and kick my heels in the air... I settled for a victory raise of my arms... I didn't want to embarrass my fellow walkers. hehe
Here's the deal... no matter what happens - I am proud of myself. I'm proud that when asked, I did something. I'm proud that I am taking a stand - a definite one. I'm proud that the choice to stand up and be counted 8 years ago - is still something I agree with, and that I am willing to stand up and be counted again. I'm proud that I am doing what I can. There's nothing worse than people who piss and moan about one thing or other about the government, or their life - and do nothing about it. What is the point of always talking about something and not doing anything about it. Inaction drives me bonkers. If you feel like you are on one side or another of an issue and you do nothing... that is a vote for the other side... whatever that may be.
Course... I prefer you to vote YES on Proposition 8 - 8 is a lucky number... here I am talking the talk... walking the walk and hoping...