Thursday, May 29, 2008

Here Come The Brides...and the Grooms: California Supreme Court Overturns Gay Marriage Ban

Well, that crazy, liberal California Supreme Court is at it again, and they've decided to overturn the ban on gay marriage. Flipped the ban on banns, they did. And I am completely A-O.K. with that.

"But you're Catholic!" you may say. Yep, and I think women should be priests and that priests should marry, too, but that's another blog for another day.

"But you're straight!" you might add. Yep, guilty as charged. Been mistaken as a lesbian half my life because I'm still a tomboy, and wear little to no makeup, but, what can I say? Guys do it for me. Always have.

"Aaaahhh, but you're a bleeding heart liberal! It all makes sense now!" you might conclude. Well, true enough, but it's not what makes me such a proponent of gay marriage.

So, what is it then? What makes me so pro-gay marriage? Well, cliche as it sounds, some of my best friends are gay. In fact, my very best friends are gay. I was there when they came out, and I was there when their relationships began. My oldest, dearest friends in the world are gay, and are living examples of what marriage is all about.

Let me rephrase that, because Thom will sic the Gay Mafia on me if I don't explain: While we are old friends, Steve and Thom are not old, nor are their wonderful hubbies, Mark and Frank (respectively). They are not, I repeat, not old. But we've all been friends a very long time. Since the days when punk rock was cool, and Prince was dirty, we have been friends. In fact, Steve and I have been family since we were four. We've been through my hip record store years, Thom's beauty school days when we were human guinea pigs for his lesson of the week (when your hairdresser says, "It'll blend," run for cover!), and Steve's crazy video store days. We drove Steve's bug, Thom's yellow Ford Fiesta (told you he was gay!), my '69 Dodge Monaco that could seat twenty comfortably and my little mod white scooter. We listened to the Violent Femmes, B-52s and danced and drooled over the same boys every week at The Odyssey dance club off Wilshire. And as we grew up with each other, Steve walked me down the aisle at The Hubby's and my wedding, and Thom walked my Mom and my Nana down the aisle. Later, Tweenie was the darling of Thom and Frank's commitment ceremony reception. They are my kids' godfathers (the priest was a "don't ask, don't tell" kinda guy). And here we are, all these years later, still going strong - going on our "Girlfriends' Weekends," along with Renee and Kathy, spending a weekend a year drinking, catching up and running amuck, with the spouses at home with the kids and pets. They're still my kids' favorite uncles and we love them bunches. We're all still friends, still family.

But in all the nearly 18 years The Hubby and I have been legally married, it has never seemed right that Thom and Frank, and Steve and Mark, haven't had the same right to legalize their relationships. Along with my parents (married 46 years this October), these guys are the people who taught me what marriage is about. The Boys have been through the same sorts of good times and bad with their partners as I have, as every married couple has. They've been there for each other through richer and poorer. And with their rings, have pledged their love and fidelity with the same devotion, the same love as have The Hubby and myself. They still remain betrothed, if not legally wed, to their spouses, as I do to mine.

We know, Steve and Thom and I, as do millions of other Americans, what it means to be committed to someone for the long haul. Like other couples, we truly get that marriage is about not killing your partner for the damn socks he always leaves behind the bathroom door. And we know that trying to pay off the credit cards and figuring out who is the one that's good at doing the bills is all part and parcel. We know marriage is finding a way to make sure your family has health insurance, or dental coverage, or finding a way that his or your parents' needs are met. It's about being so mad at your spouse that you want to kill them, (and knowing it'd be considered justifiable homicide...), but still, you persevere. The Boys have taught me, through their words and actions, that marriage is about forgiveness: both granting it and asking for it. And marriage means finding a way through life together, no matter how difficult the going gets. It's knowing there will always be someone who knows you inside and out, your strengths and your faults, and still loves you despite it all. That's what marriage is all about.

The Boys and their unions have become part of who we all are. They're a part of our "big family," as Tweenie and Little Man say. Their commitment, their devotion, their perseverance and their love is every bit as legitimate and as real as that The Hubby and I share. We have recognized their marriage as legitimate for as long as it has existed. It's about time the state of California, (and the nation as a whole, for that matter), grant Steve and Mark, and Thom and Frank, the legal legitimacy and benefits that they deserve. 'Till death do they part.

So hire the wedding planners, Steve and Frank - I see a road trip to S.F., and June weddings... And I am completely A-OK with that. Love ya, Boys.