There will always be resistance to change. So far the resistance against marriage equality in the state of Washington has been relatively slow, thank goodness.
When Gov. Chris Gregoire signed gay marriage into law, everyone knew there would be a backlash in the form of public initiatives designed to overturn it. Sure enough, there are two petitions going around to block the new state law. Initiative 1192 needs 241,153 more signatures by July 6 in order to be put on the state ballot in November, according to The Seattle Times.
Ref. 74, however, is the more immediate threat to equal rights in Washington.
As of April 5, The Seattle Times reported that Ref. 74 has 4,583 of the necessary 150,000 signatures needed by June 6 to get on the ballot. If Ref. 74 gets those additional 145,000 signatures, the gay marriage law would be put on hold until after the November elections. Even with a smaller number of signatures necessary, the supporters of Ref. 74 are still not a credible threat to marriage equality.
The group behind Ref. 74, Preserve Marriage Washington, has managed to raise just $17,145, according to the Public Disclosure Commission. Most of this has been donated by the National Organization of Marriage, which famously called for a boycott of Starbucks in light of the company’s support for Washington’s gay marriage law. Good luck with that. Starbucks would not be able to get away with those outrageous prices if it was not nationally adored.
Protect Marriage Washington, not to be confused with Preserve Marriage Washington, have raised a paltry $170 for I-1192.
By comparison to those dollar amounts, Washington United for Marriage has raised $378,737 in defense of same-sex marriage. That is a staggering difference, and one that restores my hope in humanity’s capability to progress.
I realize, however, this is early yet. PMW 1 and PMW 2 will get their act together so at least one of these petitions gets on the ballot — most likely Ref. 74. Churches may be the deciding factor on this, in particular the Catholic Church.
In a letter sent statewide, Archbishop J. Peter Sartain and Auxiliary Bishop Eusebio Elizondo wrote the following: “Instead ‘marriage’ reflects a deep reality — the reality of the unique, fruitful, lifelong union that is only possible between a man and a woman. There is nothing else like it, and it can’t be defined or made into something that it isn’t.”
Wow. I guess my definition of love is less narrow-minded.
The letter goes on to point out that Washington already provides domestic partnerships with the same “rights and privileges of married couples.” Funny they would mention that given the Catholic Church was opposed to that state law, too, according to seattlepi.com.
Changing the name of something does not change its purpose or meaning. Love comes in many shapes and forms, and I see no reason to deny the ultimate symbol of love from anyone.
Remove any religious argument from the equation, and those against gay marriage look like cartoon villains — enacting evil just for the sake of it. Seriously, the Grinch had better reasoning behind his attempt to steal Christmas. Although I still cannot figure out why the villains on “Captain Planet” loved pollution so much.
I think I have strayed from my topic now.
Early signs indicate the opposition to equality in our state is small, poorly funded and disorganized. There has been much confusion between supporters of Ref. 74 and I-1192 – the similar group names are just a sample of that.
As I said, however, eventually Thing 1 and Thing 2 — excuse me, PMW 1 and PMW 2 — are going to get their acts together and form a legitimate threat to equal rights.
When that time comes, I will take great pleasure in voting in favor of gay marriage and against oppression. I urge all of you to do the same.