(Proudly cross-posted at C4O Democrats)
In case you didn’t know, my birthday is today. Yay. When I was little, I’d always be excited about a day full of celebration, gifts, and sheer bliss. Now, I just notice myself getting older… And hopefully a little wiser with each passing year.
I guess one reason why I haven’t been excited about my birthday is that I have far too much on my mind to be caught up in any self-celebration. I have personal and family issues to deal with. I have to think about how President Obama’s economic recovery package will affect my family and how to take advantage of that. Oh yes, and there’s that other issue… The issue of my own civil rights.
Yes, that’s right. The oral arguments for the Prop H8 lawsuits are this Thursday, just two days after my birthday. Strange timing, isn’t it? Can it be a good sign of what’s to come? I hope so. But whatever happens in court, we need to be ready to keep working.
If the court upholds H8, we can’t just walk away in sorrow. We must work our hardest to win back our civil rights. The vote last November was close, so all we need to do is gain 4% to literally reverse the results and win 52% for marriage equality in California. And with all the new enthusiasm building up in the LGBT rights movement, I know we can channel all this good energy into a winning campaign.
But of course, I’m personally hoping that the California Supreme Court pays attention to what our side’s lawyers say and finds that Prop H8 truly is unfair, unconstitutional, and a dangerous precedent that could undo all the advances made in civil rights for LGBT people, ethnic minorities, religious minorities, disabled people, and women if allowed to stand. And while there isn’t direct precedent in the court overturning this exact type of initiative, they have in the past overturned other “constitutional amendments” that they’ve found to be in direct contradiction of the state constitution’s guarantee of equal rights for all. So really, we’re not hopeless this week.
But again, we need to be prepared to keep going regardless of how the court decides. If the justices punt this issue back to the voters, we need to make our large minority for equal marriage rights into a real voting majority. If they decide to undo the damage of H8, we need to reassure people that this is the proper role of the judiciary, to ensure that our highest expression of the will of the people, the constitution, is being protected.
So please, if you can, support the good people working hard to protect our constitutional rights. Please support Courage Campaign and their brand new Equality Hub that’s here to help us organize for equal rights, as well as groups like Equality California that are working hard in the courtroom, in the capitol, and on the streets to fight for our rights in California. And on the national level, please support groups like NCLR and ACLU that are in the courts and on the ground across the nation to defend and protect our constitutional rights.
Yeah, yeah, my birthday is tomorrow. If you’d like to help me celebrate my big day, please do so by supporting the cause of equality for all. And even if you don’t give a damn about my birthday, please support the cause nonetheless because it’s the right thing to do.
We can’t allow any of our citizens to be treated as “second-class” simply because of who they are. No matter their race, gender (including gender identity), religion, or sexual orientation, all our citizens should be treated equally under the law. So please help us take a major step in this direction by making victory happen in California… And making my birthday extra happy this year. Thanks.