Vote "No" on California Proposition 8, the push to eliminate the right of same-sex couples to marry. All over Facebook pages and the blogosphere, this has become the most advocated position outside of electing Barack Obama. And considering that California holds about 1/8 of the nation's population, the laws made in this state will probably/eventually effect you whether you live here or not.
Personally, I didn't have a strong opinion against Prop 8 until recently. It had nothing to do with my opinion that gay couples should have 100% equal protection and advocacy under the law. I have always been in favor of that, without a question. I just didn't feel it was the government's place to interfere with matters of the church, which I saw marriage as.
But then my view changed. First off, I recognized that the church had long since stopped confining their laws to religious institutions, and had benefited from state and federal laws. This made it a public policy issue. And as such, it became an issue for the voters. And if we live in a state where the majority of the population wants same-sex couples to be able to consider themselves officially married (without air quotes), then that's what it should be.
Secondly, I've learned to always look at the people behind the laws. From there, you can see whose agendas are mixing with politics. In the case of "Yes on Proposition 8" it's a pretty solid base of religious leaders, conservatives and historically anti-gay rights groups. The age-old tactic of using religious rhetoric to play on prejudices and otherwise create divisions isn't a surprise, but it also shouldn't be rewarded.
The supporters of Proposition 8 talk about gay marriage as the unraveling of families, while in truth it will actually give couples more familial structure. And by attempting to withhold the title of marriage from gay couples, they are seeking to relegate them to "otherness" and "outside" status. What does that teach the next generation—the kids they're utilizing for their commercials—about tolerance?
In 1990, I co-founded a magazine called URB (urb.com) in Los Angeles. URB captures an intimate view of progressive urban sounds and landscapes in print and online. Beyond my day job, I also explore the world of politics, race and culture, photography and media (new and old). pure/ROKER is designed to be a living and shared notebook of the most discussion worthy aspects. Enrichment is encouraged. Debate and disagreement unavoidable. And dissent welcomed. As always, please leave a comment if you're inspired, subscribe to my RSS or email me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org.