Friday, May 23, 2008
I'm proud of the California Supreme Court for overturning the ban on gay marriages on May 15, 2008. It's about time. When I see the images of committed couples -- especially older couples -- hugging and crying because they finally will have the rights the rest of us have had all along, I want to sing, cheer, yell, and dance my support.
Look, for example, at Del Martin, 83, and Phyllis Lyon, 79, who had been together for 51 years when they were married in San Francisco on Feb. 12, 2004, a marriage later declared invalid. Now they can remarry. So can Ellen Pontac and Shelly Bailes, who have been together for 34 years, and Mason Bowling, 61, and Patrick Fitzgerald, 58, together 30 years.
This is, finally, true separation of church and state. Religions are still free to take whatever stand they wish. According to the ruling, "no religion will be required to change its religious policies or practices with regard to same-sex couples, and no religious officiant will be required to solemnize a marriage in contravention of his or her religious beliefs." This is a civil matter. A matter of civil rights.
Two people fall in love, create a life together, stay in love, perhaps raise family together, and get old still loving each other. This, to me, is "family values" at its best.
I would love to hear from gay and lesbian couples over 50 who would like to share their stories and their comments. Please either post comments here or email me if you prefer.