Since the day I was born the best thing about me has always been my family. I am an extension of them. I would die for anyone of them and have often prayed to switch places with each of them at one or more times throughout my life. They are my world! I would do anything I could to protect my family.
I, admittedly, am a person whose choices are largely governed by my religious beliefs. These beliefs are not always popular with the world, most often not. And, I will have to say that at several points in my life I have chosen to take a religious stand that opposed that which I believed to be constitutionally sound, but have never regretted doing so, not even for a moment. But, today, I am proud to say that I believe my actions and beliefs are in accordance with my personal interpretation of The Constitution.
I have always believed that there is one God for all people and that this God was omnipresent during the triumph of the American Revolution and creation of The Constitution. It is my belief that the Founding Forefathers of America created this country under the direction of God. I have never quite understood why we can't admit that proudly or why some want to remove it from the Pledge of Allegiance or U.S. currency, when it's been a part of our country's history since its foundation. I think it was John Page who wrote to Thomas Jefferson after the signing of the Declaration of Independence "We know the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong. Do you not think an Angel rides in the Whirlwind and directs this storm?"
In my opinion, marriage has always been directly linked to religion. In my opinion, it always should be. Marriage is a divine institution. This belief, is not only mine, nor is it one for the minority of the population. According to the California Secretary of State website, on March 7, 2000, the people of California voted on Proposition 22, a proposal to enact a state "Defense of Marriage Act" as an initiative statute. The text of Prop 22 reads: "Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California."
Prop 22 was ratified by an overwhelming majority of California voters, prevailing by a 23-point margin. Statewide over 4.6 million votes were cast in favor of Prop 22 comprising 61.4 % of the vote, while opponents garnered only 2.9 million votes. Final vote counts revealed that Prop 22 won in 52 of California's 58 counties.
Unfortunately, earlier this year the California Supreme Court overruled this vote and declared Prop 22 unconstitutional. In 25 days (on November 4, 2008) we will be voting again to uphold the original wording of Prop 22, defining marriage to be solely between a man and a woman. I strongly encourage all of you who live in California to vote Yes on Prop 8, in order to do so, you must be registered to vote by October 20th.
I also strongly believe in equality. I believe that equality provided the primary reasoning and power behind the strength that led the fight to formulate of our country and justify the battles that created it, defining our freedoms and liberties. But, it is important to note that Proposition 8 will in no way rob any persons of that equality, those rights and privileges governed by our country. In California, the law provides for marriage-related benefits to be given to civil unions and domestic partnerships. Prop 8 DOES NOT in any way diminish these benefits. But, it will hurt our children and it will hurt our church. (For more information see http://www.protectmarriage.com/ , http://www.perservingmarriage.org/ and www.newsroom.lds.org/ldsnewsroom/eng/commentary/the-divine-institution-of-marriage.com ).
There is A LOT riding on this proposition. The bain of the The Family : A Proclamation to the World created in 1995, defends this very type of issue. As I understand it, because of the strict Anti-discrimination laws in California, any church who does not allow all types of legalized marriages to be performed in their chapels/churches would risk losing their tax-exemption status, having huge implications for the LDS church as a whole.
I am pretty sure that all 15 people that read my blog are LDS and well aware of my beliefs. And, I am pretty sure that about 13 of you live outside California, (but I guess it's a public blog, so you never know... I did get those random foreigners commenting on my blog last year!) And, for those of you who DO live outside California, you can still help! Please donate your money to the cause at http://www.protectmarriage.com ! It will not only affect Californians, but all U.S. Citizens and more importantly the church as a whole. I mean, we built our own $20 million dollar temple and we've taken then brunt of the economic drain from illegal immigrants, so could some citizens who live in the other 49 states throw us a bone here! Seriously!!!
P.S. To illustrate how strongly I feel about this cause. I have just agreed to wear a "Vote Yes on Prop 8" shirt to DISNEYLAND tonight... which is tantamount to walking the gauntlet, if you ask me. But, nonetheless, if I die, I'll die justly having supported Prop 8 (for a minimum of 4 hours this week :)! If I don't make it through the night, I love you all. If I do, I am going to try it at The GAP for 4 hours next week... JUST KIDDING!!!
However, I am willing to "get a bumper sticker for my car and risk getting my car vandalized" (to quote my dear friend Holly Boyd), but I don't know where to find them. Anyone know???