Yesterday I was so excited to read about Governor Huntsman's stance on the whole Common Grounds initiative. I honestly never voted for the guy because of his views on school vouchers and such, so this has completely changed my view of him. For all the courage people tell Scott and I that we have, it is nothing compared to our Governor taking a stance on this. Amazing!
Meanwhile, I get an email last night sent to a list I am on for Utah Republican Women, asking us to spread the word about a gathering at the capitol today to voice disapproval of Governor Huntsman's statement:
Family Coalition Sets News Conference
in Response to Governor's Support of Gay Unions
Salt Lake City, Utah, February 10, 2009. Members of the Utah Legislature and leaders of Utah’s Pro-Family groups have formed the "Utah Coalition for Traditional Families" have scheduled a news conference on Wednesday, February 11, 2009, at 1:30 p.m. in the House Building located on the west side of the Utah State Capitol Plaza. This event is in response to Governor Huntsman’s remarks in support of the “Common Ground Initiative,” a group of bills that advocate for the homosexual lifestyle and undermine the legal status of Traditional Marriage in Utah.
Utah legislators, legal experts, and pro-family groups will respond to the announcement by Governor’s spokeswoman, Lisa Roskelley, that Governor Huntsman "supports civil unions” and that he “backs Equality Utah’s Common Ground Initiative . . ,” legislation that would provide special rights to those who identify themselves as homosexual.
The Coalition issued this collective statement: "We are disappointed that the Governor would join with Equality Utah and the majority of Democrats in the legislature in a position which is in opposition to the majority of Utahns, most of the Utah legislature, and his Republican Party."
The Coalition cites the Republican governor's opposition to his party's own platform which says 'We call for a constitutional amendment that fully protects marriage as a union of a man and a woman, so judges cannot make other arrangements equivalent to it.”
All citizens who wish to let Governor Huntsman know of their views on his position are urged to attend this news conference.
Oh, I was so ticked off! I wrote an email back to the sender in response and carbon copied it to my state senator and representative. This just goes to show that it is not a great idea for me to respond to things immediately when I am hot under the collar:
Dear "Utah Coalition for Traditional Families",
Please do some research before you advertise this hateful response to Governor Huntsman.
My husband is an active Mormon and also happens to be gay. The fact that he could be fired with no legal consequences of discrimination for his sexual orientation infuriates me.
I have been an active participant in the republican party for many years, held caucuses at my home, put up yard signs, etc. This kind of behavior from the republican party is childish and ridiculous, and I no longer wish to be associated with it.
Get to know just how this affects people, me an active LDS straight woman who has done nothing wrong, and my husband who has chosen to live a lifestyle that aligns with the teachings of the LDS church, and yet we both live in fear of job security and our church membership because we have chosen to take a stance on gay issues like this one.
This bill in the legislature will NOT hurt the traditional family, will NOT lead to gay marriage in Utah. It is about basic civil rights for people who are born differently than you, that are some of the sweetest people I have ever met.
Get your head out of the sand and learn something. Walk in MY shoes for a while.
And praise Governor Huntsman for his willingness to take a stand in the midst of this ridiculous Utah/LDS culture of ours.
Just my 2 cents. I am SOOO done supporting the Republican party.
This morning when I woke up, I was still ticked off. I was trying to get it off my mind before leaving for work and was discussing it with Scott. For some reason the Spongebob Movie came to mind. Why does it feel like a lot of these church-going people are going around with buckets on their heads, bowing down and chanting "All Hail Plankton!" "Save traditional families." (Scott and I chuckled at that thought, and as you know, laughter is always the best medicine.)
The common grounds initiative has NOTHING to do with their precious marriage between a man and a woman. What about MY traditional marriage and family that are affected by the fact that my husband can be discriminated against when it comes to employment? Does that mean nothing?!
This thought kind of reminded me of Abelard's thoughtful post relating this whole thing to Hitler--an amazing and scary parallel that I had never thought of before.
As I was mulling it all over in my head on my way to school this morning, another movie quote entered my head, this time from my favorite movie Mary Poppins. It goes something like this: "Sometimes, by no fault of his own, your father cannot see past the end of his nose." By the end of the movie, the father comes around, and Mary Poppins has been oh-so patient with him. I want to be like Mary Poppins, patiently expressing my view and patiently waiting for the day that these people will also be able to see past the ends of their noses and realize what they have done. Will it actually happen? I hope so!
God bless me with patience, with a heart full of mercy and forgiveness during the time that it takes to get to that point!