We're In This Together

ImageAs I write this, #SCOTUS, has just handed a great big gift for Pride to the LGBT community.  I watched the MSNBC Big Gay interview between out, on-air host, and San Francisco Pride Grand Marshall, Thomas Roberts, and the couples of the Prop 8 case as they received a congratulatory phone call from #POTUS on the iPhone of Executive Director, Human Rights Campaign, Chad Griffin.  This is what continuous news coverage gives you, a network coo as it is unfolding.  You can’t invent television like that.
What followed was a lot of excitement and tears with lots of celebratory kissing, or was that just at my house?  Then about 2 hours in, people started asking the question, what does that mean for me?  Now that I live predominantly in the Bay Area, it means a lot.  For my friends in the military and former military and their spouses, it means a lot.  For the people in the 37 states where gay marriage is not yet legal, it still means a lot.
It also means that there is still a lot to be done.
What the Supreme Court decision really did was say that it was up to the citizens of the states to decide.  It said, if a state doesn’t want to they don’t have to allow persons of the same gender to marry.  It also said, if a state says that they are married then the Federal government can’t pass laws saying that they are not.
As a friend said to me this afternoon, it doesn’t change anything for us in CO. I told him to move.  He said no.  I told him to go get married in another state.  He said the Feds will only recognize you as married in the state you are living.  I think that there is going to be a great deal of debate about that.  The point is, he was elated and then immediately deflated.
I understood his point.  What I think the real conversation here is about our responsibilities as citizens.  The state government is responsible for so much of our lives as residents.  So, by making the states responsible, it means the citizens will be forced to get involved in real public debate.  By the court saying, you figure it out, it is refusing to be the parent and tell us what to do.  The states must work it out themselves.
I can hear people all ready to tell me why this is still not enough and that they want the Federal government to be responsible for more.  I say, I don’t agree.  I feel that the citizens of a state ought to be held responsible to each other.  The state needs to govern the how of people’s day to day lives.  They need to hold each other accountable.  So, I agree that things need to change in these other states.  I also believe that it is the citizens of the states that are responsible for changing it.
It means that we have to work together to change the things that effect our lives.  It means that we have to be held responsible to and for one another.  It means that people have to admit to themselves that it is completely unfair to prevent their friends and neighbors from receiving the same rights that they hold so dear.  So that means, get involved.  If you have money and no time, give money.  If you have time and no money, volunteer.  Lend your light for the journey, my friends.  This is our future, let’s meet the challenge together.

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