Occasionally, someone will ask me -- a straight, single male in my 30s and still in college -- why I care about GLBT rights. I care because it is personal for me.
I care because I want to see my aunt and her long-term partner happy. It is a travesty that they cannot have the same benefits that grandma and grandpa have enjoyed for many years.
I care because I have another aunt who likes girls better. Why does that make her a second class citizen?
I care because I have a lot of GLBT friends, including one couple who went through the commitment ceremony in New York State last year. (It was one of the most fun weddings I have ever been to.)
I care because my family, friends, and friends I have not met yet deserve the same rights as straight couples.
And after the Prop 8 ballots were counted and the results were announced, I was devastated. To use a college football analogy, it was like your favorite football team went 10-1 and the one loss was to Iowa (Penn State), or Mississippi (Florida), or Oregon State (USC). (Hee Hee. USC vs. Oregon State: Trojans vs. Beavers.)
Okay. Enough sophomoric humor. On to the point of this entry.
Those are the reasons why I pulled myself out of bed today and took the Metro ride downtown to participate in my first protest. The opponents of Prop 8 sent a message today and I am proud to say that we had our voices heard in the Nation's Capitol today.
Today was overcast, but not too cold. (Forgive me. I just moved here from Northern Pa. and I am still adjusting to the fact that it is the middle of November and I did not need a jacket.) The chants were: "What do we want? Equal Rights! When do we want them? Now!" My favorite, though was, "When we're screwed, we multiply."
Very true. I saw many allies like me on the National Mall joining the GLBT folks. After a while, we started to march to the White House. Admittedly, I dropped out when the rain started, but quite a lot of people continued on. I assume that Our Fearless Leader wasn't home as the G-20 Summit was going on across town. But it would have been funny to see the look on his face when the unexpected guests showed up.
Just one more thing before we get to the pictures. We didn't have any Fundie counter-protesters. On one hand, their glaring absence did serve to keep the atmosphere positive. On the other hand, I didn't have a chance to have fun at someone else's expense and not feel bad about it. Ah well. Here's the pictures:
Share this one all you like. I think it is sends a powerful message to our members of Congress:
The first poster reads, "I helped elect the first black president and all I got was this lousy marriage ban."
And just a few more:
Thanks for protesting today everyone. I had a great time, but we need to keep fighting.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.