I don't mean to beat a dead horse (is that the worst expression or what?)...but ....
I did something I've never done before on Saturday.
I stood out in the rain holding a sign on the street corner. It was a busy street corner because it was near Target and Costco and those are very important stores in my life and the lives of others.
Now, you are probably wondering what this sign said.
And what would coerce me to leave my three children and husband on a Saturday for?
And how did my hair do in the rain (well, it did very poorly to answer you, but fortunately I hadn't done it that day and took it as a small miracle that my hair doing efforts weren't in vain)
Well, The particular sign I was holding said, "Prop 8 = religious freedom". And I am all about religious freedom. That is why this beautiful country was founded. But other signs around me said "Yes on 8" "Prop 8 = parental rights" "Prop 8 = less government" "Prop 8 = free speech"
Go check out the link of the right if you want to know what prop 8 because I am not going to go into it that much.
Here is the backstory: My friend Julie (a beautiful red-head who talked me into my first and only triathlon last year...that girl could talk me into anything) called at 9:45 a.m. and said, "Quick, we are trying to get 50 people at the corner of...(insert very busy intersection) to hold Prop 8 signs" Well, at first I was like, "uhhhh...". And then I was like, "Yeah". And then I felt all good and warm inside and knew that this was right for me to do. Don't you love that feeling? And so I went. I did apply some makeup first and kissed my family good bye. And called a few more people to rope them in as well. A sign holding party if you will.
So I showed up. And nobody was there. So I'm speed dialing that cute Julie and she said she is coming. And so I did what any resourceful mother would do. I pulled out my red marker and my 1/4 piece of white posterboard and started making a sign. It said, "Yes on 8 " and then I added, "I love gay people". Because that is true.
So to further the story, some ladies passed me in my car, and they saw me drawing my homemade sign and pointed. Turns out they were there to hold signs too. So we bonded. Strangers. Ready to work and probably get flipped off. (I did get called a douche bag (hopefully my children don't read this) once, but mostly it was very positive).
I found Julie. And others came. The sign guy brought real signs. And so I used both. and then we got poured on. And I really wished I had an umbrella or a hat. I had to ditch my homemade sign after that because it was dirty. And we got lots of honks (honks are good in case you are wondering. honks when you are holding signs mean you support, not like the honks I get on the freeway).
So what did I do for two hours? I held that sign and smiled. It was really fun. And felt like I was contributing to my little piece of America. I imagined that if I ever run for office, will they have photos of my sign holding like they do of 60s protestors and flag burners? Maybe. And debated with my friends who were also holding signs and made me defend my argument for yes on prop 8 ("Don't give me a religious answer...give me some logic").
But mostly I wished to convey in my smile that I am not a hater. I don't hate anyone. I wish everyone happiness and love. California has equal rights for all couples even if prop 8 passes. I think that is right. Some of the most wonderful, lovely and talented people I know are gay. This one couple when I apartment managed were the kindest neighbors who were the few (of my tenants) who treated me so nice. My friends who happen to be gay have influenced me and enriched my life. You can still have gay friends and love them and want to protect the definition of marriage. I am. Or is it I do? (Jason correct my grammar please!) But I also am a firm believer in that we are not all the same. And you can't change the definition of something because it doesn't fit you. Jason and I don't have a domestic partnership or a union...we are married. And we can bring children into the world (I know nobody likes that argument, but that is true and there is a responsiblity with that). Remember I am a stay at home mother and regard it as my 'profession' if you will.
But let me tell you about the Mormons. We are a misunderstood bunch. The whole non-Christian polygamist charade is old and ignorant. One thing about us that is true (okay, most of you already know this because you are mormon so humor me) is we are not complacent. We are sign holders. I read in the LA Times that 40 percent of the 65 million dollars (It was 31 million for the yes portion at that time...the 65 million is combined yes and no totals) is estimated to be from the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons or LDS). Congrats to the Catholics and Jews and other churches for also rallying other funds (those are the dominating religions in my area). Because marriage between a man and a woman is sacred to us. Fundamental to our doctrine. The reason we get married in temples is so that we can be married forever and not just til death do us part. Forever. Which means I will hold up a sign in the rain on a Saturday. And have a sign in my yard and on my car and donate money.
Amongst my friends the thing we are most sad about is that Prop 8 supporters are being portrayed as discriminating hate crazies. That is not true. Because I am one of them.
Okay, this is already way too long and my girls are now awake and need me, but there's something to think about.
please excuse the less than flattering picture of myself, but this required documentation
addition: Since I wrote this a few minutes ago, my sign was stolen from my front yard. How is that for free speech?