I never once took a side on Proposition 8 in California, or the other similar amendments in other states. Why? Because I’m not a citizen of those states, and because of that, I don’t feel comfortable influencing their elections. I figure if I don’t like foreigners influencing US elections all the time, I shouldn’t influence Californians, Arizonans, Floridians, or any other state on any other issue they want to bring up for their citizens to vote on.
Now that the vote’s over, I’m still not going to take sides. Honestly, I don’t really know where I stand, simply because I don’t know enough about all the legal implications of either side to really make up my mind yet on the whole gay marriage thing. But, I do want to say something.
Guys, just stop with the threats and violence already!
The whole point of democracy is that people have the right to vote on issues that are important to them. Those issues are then decided on by the majority. Even if you don’t like the way the majority decides, that’s just tough beans, because hey, that’s democracy. Just look at the presidential election – I sure as hell didn’t like the outcome, but am I about to go burn down Obama supporters’ houses or places of worship? Am I about to threaten violence to anyone who dares have an Obama sign in their front yard? Hell no! Because that’s democracy – sometimes you win, sometimes you don’t. Deal with it! That’s called being an adult. That’s called being an American!
Of course, I’m well within my right to continue to disagree with the majority. As do all of you who are angry about the way your elections on the gay marriage amendments turned out. By all means, continue the discussion, try to prove your point. But do not try to prove your point through violence. We must rely on ideas, not threats! If you continue these violent outbursts and refuse to acknowledge the democratic results of this election, you’re only further damaging your cause. You say you’re fighting hatred & bigotry, yet you’re showing hatred, bigotry – and worse – violence? What sense does that make? Who, pray tell, are you going to win over with tactics such as these? You’re only alienating those you wish to convince, further damaging your cause, AND not to mention, damaging our democratic process.
So, I implore you, grow up! Deal with it! Move on! Keep fighting what you believe to be the good fight, but do it decently, within the law, and with respect for the democratic process and will of the people. Above all else, we must not lose respect for the will of the people, we must not lose respect for the democratic process. On more than one occasion now in California, the people have consistently voted against gay marriage, yet their votes are continually repudiated by a court wishing to legislate from the bench. Don’t you realize this is such a dangerous proposition?! This undermines our democracy! This undermines the people’s right to run their own government! This undermines everything we believe in; that whole “We the people” thing, that’s what you’re attacking right now. So stop it! Accept this vote, let the will of the people stand, even if you don’t like it. Then continue your right to exercise your freedom of speech, try to win people over to your side through words and example, not through violence and intimidation. Because that’s simply not the democratic way, and it sure as hell isn’t the American way.
Stop the violence! Stop the bigotry & hatred, or you’re never going to stop the bigotry & hatred that you claim to be fighting. Lead by example, then maybe you’ll get somewhere.
To those who are being targeted and had violence threatened against them for their votes, do not let them discourage you! Do not bend to their thuggery and intimidation. I know it must be hard, I know it must be terrible. In fact, I have several friends in California who are in the thick of it right now. One of my close friends lives near to the Mormon Temple in Los Angeles. He has witnessed the protests up close and personal, and has seen close friends attacked by the throngs of protesters. I know this can be terrifying and disheartening, but do not lose hope and do not lose heart. You had your right to vote however you chose. The minute you’re frightening out of what you believe in is the minute we lose our democracy. By all means, engage in discussions with those of differing opinions. Learn from them, learn about their point of view, think carefully about all sides of these important issues. But you cannot let such horrific tactics sway your resolve. That’s not America. Or at least, it shouldn’t be.
Stay strong and know that there are people out here in the rest of the country who are standing with you. Not necessarily because we agree with how you voted, but because we believe in your right to vote, your right to determine the direction of your government. You exercised that right and are being attacked for it. Shame on those who are attacking you, shame on their ignorance, hatred, and violent natures. Convictions must win out over intimidation; democracy must triumph over chaos. It absolutely must. If you bend to their threats, if you let fear sway your heart, we will surely be lost.