Many of the readers on Bilerico know that my partner, Anthony Niedwiecki, and I were married in California this summer. I posted about the entire experience, from our initial decision to marry in California to the wedding day itself. I even blogged about our honeymoon (well, parts of it...).
That's why when I found out it was "Write to Marry Day", a national day for bloggers to join in opposing California's Proposition 8, I wanted to make sure I added my voice to the chorus.
This is a very personal fight to me. Our wedding day in California was one of the most special days in my life. It felt like the entire city was congratulating us everywhere we went. While my husband and I have been together for many years (and have our civil union from Vermont and shared a commitment ceremony with our families- the "rainbow marriage tour" as our loved ones call it), California was something special for us.
I think that living in a state like Florida, that is hostile to LGBT people on so many levels, only makes it more important to keep marriage equality in California. Since we live in a state that doesn't recognize marriage for same-sex couples, our getting married in California didn't have a direct, legal impact on our lives. We returned home to our state as the same strangers in the eyes of the law that we were before. So why did we do it?
Because it means something to us.
It gives us hope, as we fight our own fierce battle in Florida against the devastating Amendment 2 (that would not only put the ban marriage equality in the state constitution but also repeal domestic partnerships and benefits), that our community might one day be able to move forward.
Victory in California will mean more than just keeping the right to marry for our community that lives in that state. It will also give hope and inspiration for others, like me, who live in states that still have so much further to go.
A victory in California will also continue to allow people in other states, even where their marriages aren't legally recognized, to return home and become examples in their local communities. It gives couples the opportunity to show those in their lives - friends, neighbors, and colleagues - that there's nothing dangerous and scary about same-sex marriage. We are just two people in love who want to share a life together.
Let's do all we can to defeat Prop 8, as well as Prop 102 in Arizona and Amendment 2 in my home state of Florida.
We could all use a little more hope for the future...