02 March 2011

Prop 8, Continued

Yesterday, California Attorney General Kamala Harris filed a very important legal brief with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. In it, she asked that marriages for gay and lesbian couples be allowed to resume in California, immediately. (You may remember that the court had earlier put an injunction to stop all gay marriages while the case works its way through the courts).

Attorney General Harris writes in her brief:

“For 846 days, Proposition 8 has denied equality under the law to gay and lesbian couples. Each and every one of those days, same-sex couples have been denied their right to convene loved ones and friends to celebrate marriages sanctioned and protected by California law. Each one of those days, loved ones have been lost, moments have been missed, and justice has been denied.”

Americans for Equal Rights (AFER)’s website has a compelling widget: a stopwatch that is counting the days, hours, minutes and seconds since Prop 8 was ruled unconstitutional. As I write this, the clock is at 209 days, 4 hours, 31 minutes, and 53 seconds. And counting. By the time you read this, it will be at least the 210th day since that hot day last August. And still, no one can get married.

One day last week, I was walking by a church in my neighborhood, the one Mia started attending because they’re supportive of gays (unlike her old church) and noticed their signboard, listing the pastor’s name, and times of masses. Underneath was written:

“A right delayed is a right denied. -Martin Luther King, Jr.”

Based on what Mia reported of their discussions and inclusive attitude, I thought this could only be referring to gay rights, most probably Obama’s new-and-improved position on gay marriage and the Defense of Marriage Act, and it really moved me.

It turns out we’ve all been thinking the same thing this week. California, we’re all watching.

-Maura McGurk

Maura is an artist who paints about issues related to LGBTQ issues. Please visit her website at http://mauramcgurk.com to view her artwork.

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