Earlier this week, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered an emergency stay on a California District Court judge’s ruling that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional and should be overturned. As a member of the queer community, I shared the feelings of devastation, sadness and anger as expressed by LGBTQ communities everywhere.
My partner and I have been in a committed relationship for ten years and jumped at the opportunity to marry during the blip of time when it was legal in California in 2008, only to have it thrown back in our faces by voters the following November. We were devastated then too.
Back then, when we shared the news of our marriage – our political action – with family and friends, we were overwhelmed with the response of support and, quite frankly, the big need to be a part of celebrating our union and love. So, we held a big commitment celebration par-TAY the following year, and today are thrilled to be the sleep deprived mamas of baby Emiliano.
This is all to say that I believe this is an opportunity to remind ourselves that the “emergency stay” does not have legal jurisdiction over every action we take as members of the LGBTQ community. The actions we take to change policy so that all people receive the same rights and protections are vital. And, every action we take – big and small, legal and not yet legal – that demonstrates LGBTQ visibility in our communities matters too. These actions can also be what we need to sustain ourselves and keep our families strong during these uncertain political times.
So, keep on celebrating, expressing and building your love and commitment in every way! Celebrate to demonstrate!