21 September 2011

Pro Bono!

Question of the Day: How is this legal phrase relevant right now in our LGBTQ-loving, pop-culture-soaked little blogosphere?

Answers (yes, I’m going to give you two!):

  1. I’m Pro Bono, and I know you are too, because I’m supporting Chaz on Dancing With The Stars, which premiered Monday.
  2. The same day, in a court of law--not the court of public opinion that is DWTS--another chapter unfolded in the Prop 8 trial: a judge said that the long-suppressed tapes of the trial must be unsealed and released to the public.

Do you know what this means? For one thing, I will be watching DWTS as long as Chaz (or Cher) continues to make an appearance.

And, as far as Prop 8 goes, also big news. The right wing has been fighting to keep what happened at the trial a secret for about two years. The trial was originally supposed to be televised, but the defendants (the anti-gay marriage folks) fought to prevent that from happening. They went all the way to the Supreme Court to prevent Americans from seeing what happened at that trial, and unfortunately, the Court agreed with them. A digital recording was made but suppressed. Although transcripts of the trial have been available in written form (and are the basis for a Broadway production by Dustin Lance Black called 8), the public has not been able to see our justice system at work on this issue.

I’ve read the transcripts, and what they don’t want anyone to see is that they had no compelling arguments for trying to prevent gay marriage. Their only argument is bigotry. Their witnesses (and they hardly called any) were laughable fools.

They don’t want regular folks to see that, because then they might sympathize with the couples who took the stand and talked about how meaningful their gay partnerships were, and how they wanted nothing more than full marriage with their significant other. These people raised kids together, attended to sickbeds and deathbeds together. They sound reasonable. They sound like everyone else.

So hooray for Chaz, and hooray for Judge Ware for unsealing the Prop 8 trial recording. Here is to no more suppressing, no more repressing. Here is to letting the truth be told. Thank you to Chaz and Judge Ware for leading the way today.

This girl is feeling so Pro Bono that she’s going to do a victory dance.

-Maura McGurk

Maura makes artwork about issues related to the LGBT/queer/gay experience, especially gay bullying. Take a stand against gay bullying by checking out her work, liking it on Facebook, or commenting on her blog.

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