Forgive us for not inviting you all, but it was a small private ceremony. I can at least, however, share some of the shocking, lurid details.
Oh wait, sorry--there weren't any shocking, lurid details.
We've been together almost 18 years, and we've now had three "weddings" and two domestic partner registrations in an attempt to make our relationship count under the law. (We were actually even legally married for a few days in San Francisco back in 2004, thanks to Mayor Gavin Newsom. That was fun! But that got shot down fast, and we left the state before the California Supreme Court decided to give gay couples another go at it).
So having done the whole wedding thing several times before, we didn't even drag our families out here for the ceremony. It was held in our living room with just a few close friends, a Justice of the Peace, and the cat, who seemed to enjoy making all the allergic people sniffle and sneeze. But however low-key the celebration, we felt like we should do something--it just didn't seem right to leave Massachusetts for the winter without taking advantage of the chance to finally get legally married under state law.
Given how hard folks are fighting for this simple right, it would be lovely to shout from the rooftops "Hooray, Finally, We're Equal!" But, unfortunately, we're still not. Most of the financial benefits one gets from marriage are federal. (Especially if you're in a relationship where one person earns a lot more that the other. You pay lot more in taxes if you can't file jointly).
Why does the federal government get to ignore legal state gay marriages? I have no idea. But according to the IRS and the Social Security people, etc, we're still complete strangers to one another. Our legal marriage doesn't count like a straight marriage does.
Also, despite the panic among the religious right, it's not exactly like gay marriage has taken the states by storm. Most states have gone out of the way to make sure it never happens by amending their constitutions. And while today there are three states where it's legal (Massachusetts, Connecticut, and California), tomorrow we may lose California because of Proposition 8. (Arrrgggh!)
Yet there's always hope. And every day, happy hopeful gay couples like us keep trying to get married. And that apparently scares the heck out of a lot of people.
Batten the hatches! Bar the door! Hide the kids under the bed! Grab the shotgun, because the gays are gettin' married and you know what's gonna happen next...
Er, what is gonna happen next?
I mean, what's the "scary" thing so many people are worried about? I never get that part.
(I suspect most Cranky Fitness readers are not all that frightened, but some may be. And we do get drop-in googlers who may be even be looking for "gay marriage" just to get themselves all riled.)
Truly, we swear we will not try to mess with your commitment to your own marriage and your own family. We will not encourage you to divorce your spouse or abandon your kids. We will not go door to door throughout your neighborhoods, trying to entice you to join us in our "alternative" lifestyle--which, by the way, pretty much looks exactly like your lifestyle, except that we always leave the toilet seat down and we sometimes borrow one another's shoes.
Why do folks need to deny rights to others in order to honor their own? That seems kinda, well... selfish.
Heck, you can still think of your marriage as more "special" if that makes you feel good. In fact, I think everyone should feel like their own marriage is the most special ever in the history of the entire world.
Perhaps I should let Ellen Degeneres say a few words, because she's much better at this than I am. (The video below is in response to Sarah Palin; Ellen has also added her voice to those speaking out against Prop 8 in California.)
'Cause you know what? Honestly, I'm getting a little tired of folks insisting that their own particular religious rules should control what everyone else around them gets to do.
One thing I love about this country is that we acknowledge that not everyone has the same religious beliefs. It would not work nearly as well if we had to pick just one religion and all live by it, right?
I think it's great that we all get to choose: you can eat pork or not eat pork; you can wear head-scarves or yarmulkes or tiaras. You can drink or abstain; you can go to church on Sunday or stay home and watch football. And now, in a few places, you can get gay-married or not get gay-married!
(Although if you are heterosexual and want to show your support, you don't need to run out and get gay-married yourself. Yes, it may seem like a nice gesture, but really, it's not necessary. We gay folks really appreciate your votes and your donations and all the other support you've been giving to fight discrimination. Please, feel free to keep getting straight-married if that suits you better!)
So, to be serious again for a moment: I know how lucky I am. I found the most generous, funny, compassionate, principled, clever, playful, determined, talented, joyful, patient, all-around amazing person in the world to spend my life with. And I wish everyone that same wonderful experience! Love and commitment should not be rationed out only to special, privileged people. The world needs more love, not less.
If you've made it this far, thanks for hanging in there! I know this is off-topic for a health and fitness blog, and I also know my opinions may seriously piss some of you off.
So the Lobster and I will be heading off soon for our cross country trip, but I'll be popping onto the internet whenever I can. Merry will still be here, and we have some great guest posts lined up. See y'all soon... and don't forget to vote tomorrow if you haven't already!