Saturday, December 20, 2008

Attorney General Jerry Brown on CNN

The Attorney General, whose job is to protect state laws, has declared that the Supreme Court should void Prop 8. (Read Article)

He will appear on CNN to defend his position Sunday, December 21st, 4pm ET/1pm PST.

In the meantime:

Sen. Barbara Boxer on Prop 8 and Rick Warren

The posted an exclusive letter from Sen. Barbara Boxer that addresses both Prop 8 and Rick Warren.

Saying that her "views on marriage equality have evolved over time," she now believes "in order for full equality to exist for all of our people, you cannot have different standards when it comes to making the lifelong commitment to honor and love."

Calling the controversy over Prop 8 and its campaign "understandable," she goes on to say "[it] was not fought on the basis of the court case. It was sadly focused on false issues surrounding education in the schools, which had nothing to do with Proposition 8."

As for Rick Warren: "It is also unfortunate and perplexing that religious leaders such as Pastor Warren. . . chose to make extremely hurtful statements in support of Proposition 8. The struggle over marriage equality doesn't involve the church -- it involves civil law. The religious community can make its own determination about which marriages to perform."

Friday, December 19, 2008

Rick Warren's Response to the Controversy

UPDATE: My Two Cents on Rick Warren

UPDATE: As I stated below in my opinion piece, I felt strongly that we as a community ask Rick Warren to attend a forum to respectfully debate our differing opinions. Thankfully, the Courage Campaign has done just that, and they're asking the community to sign on the invitation to send to Rick Warren. Amazingly, Rev. Eric Lee, President of the Southern Christian Leadership (founded by MLK), is a supporter of gay marriage as well as the organization. So add your signatures to the invitation by going here. Be sure to pass this on!


Since Obama announced that Rick Warren would be doing the invocation at his inauguration, I've been flooded with phone calls and emails about how we should react. In some cases, I was flat out asked what I think we should do as a community. There just isn't an easy answer to these questions.

After mulling it over, I decided to try and figure out what it is we're reacting to - Rick Warren's stance on Prop 8, or how he's used the pulpit and the Bible as a weapon? Many of us know people who voted Yes on Prop 8, and we've had lively yet respectful discussions with them. I don't think anyone of us would take anyone's right away to vote in a free, democratic country, or to express what they believe. Yet when it comes to Rick Warren, I believe we're reacting to his offensive words and how he uses the Bible and his religion against us. It's not about his opposition to same-sex marriage, it's about his blatant disrespect of us.


So how do we respond? Protest his church? Bite back? Lose faith in the change that Obama has promised? I believe signing the petition that Equality California is sending to Obama, showing the President-Elect the numbers that disagree with his choice, is effective to a point. I believe contacting Obama's teams and the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies and voicing our opinions is effective to a point. So what do I think is most effective? In the spirit of Harvey Milk, reach out to Rick Warren's church, ask them to send representatives to an open forum where we can all respectfully discuss the issues that we disagree on. Or volunteer in the church's good-will efforts and outreaches to their community. Join them in their services. Involve ourselves with them.

BUT THE MESSAGE TO THEM NEEDS TO BE CLEAR. We're not confronting them on their stance about same-sex marriage or LGBT rights. We're confronting them on their use of religion as a weapon to further bigotry and discrimination. Two can respectfully disagree. But in this case, one forgot the respect.

Actions speak louder than words, and I whole-heartedly support direction action. But that's just one tool of many to create the bridge we must cross in order to legalize same-sex marriage. Without engaging our opponents directly, respectfully, and peacefully, and showing them our faces and those they directly affect, we're going to remain a faceless, angry mob, and that will only motivate them more to squash us.

Build bridges. Rise above. Show your face. ACT. And do it all with the respect that we don't always receive. Otherwise, will we be no better than they?

Should We Be Angrier at Obama or Warren?

UPDATE: Though I'm still mulling the editorial over, I want to add that Obama's pick for the benediction (not the invocation) is Rev. Joseph Lowery, co-founder, along with Martin Luther King, Jr., of the Southern Christian Leadership, and has been outspoken in his support for gay marriage. This should not be overlooked while we decide how we feel and then react about Obama and his choice over Warren. Read USA Today.
If you're angrier at the latter, you're not alone. Read this editorial from titled, "The Problem for Gays with Rick Warren - and Obama".

One of the more scathing quotes:

"Obama has proven himself repeatedly to be a very tolerant, very rational-sounding sort of bigot. He is far too careful and measured a man to say anything about body parts fitting together or marriage being reserved for the non-pedophilic, but all the same, he opposes equality for gay people when it comes to the basic recognition of their relationships."

I'm still mulling this over. What are your thoughts?

Also, check out the poll on's home page. It asks, "Is Rick Warren a good choice to give the invocation at Obama's inauguration?" Right now, only 51% say no.

Two Protests Being Planned at Rick Warren's Church

To avoid confusion, I wanted to post that two protests (that I'm aware of) are being planned at Rick Warren's church. Both can be found on the calendar at the bottom of the blog.

The first is being organized by Gays United Network for this Sunday, December 21st. Check out the event details on Facebook here.

The second, organized by All Or Not At All will be held January 18th, and you can find details on Facebook.

If you know more in regards to events surrounding the Rick Warren controversy, please contact me at and I will be happy to add it to the calendar.

Statewide Canvassing to Repeal Prop 8

On March 15, 2009, Gays United Network is "hosting a statewide canvassing day where we go out into outlying communities--especially those that voted for Prop 8--to collect signatures for a Petition drive on behalf of the Courage Campaign to restore the integrity to our Constitution and dignity to our Community by putting our own Constitutional amendment on the ballot in 2010."

They call for us to show our faces and have direct contact with those who have opposed us, to educate them on who we are, and to dispel any falsehoods that they may have against us. This is true grassroots. Door to door, person by person outreach. Changing the individuals mind to impact overall change.

To find out more, visit Gays United Network Facebook Event. Time to take some action.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

CNN's Inauguration Dust Up over Rick Warren

UPDATE: More information.

Rick Warren's endorsement of Prop 8:

I think many of us agree that the issue here is not that Rick Warren is against same-sex marriage, but his using the pulpit, the Bible and his religion as weapons. So want to do something about it?

Gays UN is calling for a call-in protest. They give specific instructions on how to contact the Obama team through the phone or through email, or the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies. See their event instructions here on Facebook.

You can also join a peaceful protest outside of Rick Warren's church on January 18th, hosted by All Or Not At All. See details on Facebook here or on the events calendar on the bottom of this blog.

Sign EQCA's petition to President-elect Obama. Ask him to immediately rescind this despicable invitation:

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Put Your Money (per se) Where Your Mouth Is

UPDATE: This survey is closing on Friday, December 19th, at midnight, PST. It's your last chance to get your voice heard!

Have you griped (like me) about how the No on 8 campaign was run? Do you feel like no one is listening to what you have to say? Feel like the community has been ignored?

Well, it's time to be heard. Take a moment to fill out this survey from Marriage Equality USA, a grassroots organization that's been fighting for marriage rights since 1998. It's asking YOU, a member of the LGBT community or the straight community, for your input on the No on 8 campaign. But not just that. They want to know what you think we should do next.

It's a bit long but essential. Stop griping and do it.

Poll: Connecticut Voters Support Same-Sex Marriage


A new poll shows that a majority of registered voters in Connecticut support same-sex marriage, which the state's supreme court legalized in October. According to a Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday, 52% of voters support the ruling, 39% oppose it, and 9% are undecided, Newsday reports.

A stronger majority -- 61% -- oppose banning same-sex marriage via a state constitutional amendment, the paper reports. Marriage-equality foes had hoped voters would approve a constitutional convention so state legislators could discuss the matter, but the proposal failed at the ballot box on Election Day.

The poll surveyed 1,445 registered voters between December 11-15 and includes a margin of error of 2.6 percentage points.

Newsweek's Religious Debate

Last week, Newsweek printed an amazing pro same-sex article titled "Gay Marriage: Our Mutual Joy" which stirred up a lot of reactions, for and against.

In response to the large amounts of reaction, Newsweek decided it was only right to have two biblical scholars debate the topic, showing both sides of the argument. Bill Wylie-Kellerman, a United Methodist serving as pastor at St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Detroit and for same-sex marriage, and Dr. Barrett Duke, vice president for public policy and research at the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, an agency of the Southern Baptist Convention, against same-sex marriage, engage each other in an email debate.

You can read their exchange on Newsweek, "The Good Book and Gay Marriage".

It doesn't stop there - the comments from readers on-line spark a lively debate among them, including yours truly. It's important to voice our opinions, to let them know that we are many. For those who don't participate in the Christian religion, we will never truly agree to base our government's rule on the Bible and not the Constitution, so for us, this debate is rather moot (sort of). For those who are Christian homosexuals, please speak up even more. We need you. It's time to build bridges.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Atlanta, GA Protest

This past weekend, a "moving protest" was staged in Atlanta, GA, organized by activist Jeff Schade, who sent me this account of events:

"Basically our protest was a 'moving protest' and we had people crossing the street when the light changed (which prevented some people from turning making our protest a bit of a traffic disruption and forced people to see our signs etc). We had a steady stream of honks from traffic and people were generally supportive (thought there were several drivers who flicked us off or one who got irate and started swearing (he appeared to be but his wife rolled up the window) -- two of the protesters responded by blowing him kisses and wishing him a Merry Christmas.

All in all it was very peaceful, the cops were very supportive and though we did a great job organizing and keeping people peaceful and there were no major incidents. We hope to have future events in this vein in the near future."

Here's local coverage of the protest:

Artists Joining the Fight

More and more, artists and writers from all walks of artistic philosophy and perspectives, are joining forces against such injustices as Prop 8. Using their collective power for good, they have begun to fight back, donating their services to grassroots groups that, in the true spirit of grassroots, have no money.

One such artists' group, the Uncompany was recently highlighted in the Advocate. Though their scope goes beyond LGBT issues, they plan on completely tackling the repeal of Prop 8 in February.

Another group, focused on kicking out Prop 8, has popped up on Facebook, called Art Against H8, and every artist who posts in the group consents that anyone can use their artwork for non-commercial purposes. More of their artwork can be found on their Flickr site.

So are you going to a rally? Marching down a street and need a sign? Doing a grassroots ad or viral campaign? Need art? Look no further. You've got creative power at your fingertips.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Got Milk?

The Real Gay Agenda

Activist couple, Lynne and Gail, have put together a list of items they feel make up the Gay Agenda.

Equality on Campus Day

Students for Equality, who hosted the student walk-out earlier this month, is now organizing a peaceful protest and fundraiser for students to wear the same pro-LGBT t-shirt the same day, to show their support for same-sex marriage.

Posted is their press-release with details. This is a great opportunity for artists and creative thinkers alike since they're holding a competition for the t-shirt design. Here are the essential dates:
  • 12/05/08 - Start working on your t-shirt designs!
  • 12/21/08 - Deadline for submitting your design. Send them to
  • 12/22/08 - Visit Students for Equality and start voting on your favorite design.
  • 12/31/08 - Deadline for voting.
  • 1/1/09 - Start ordering your t-shirts!
  • 1/1/09 - 1/26/09 - Help out by becoming part of the street team. Promote the event on your blogs, through Facebook, MySpace, passing out fliers, etc.