Contribute Now to No on 8

by Afonso Salcedo


The ballot description for Proposition 8 makes it perfectly clear. Prop 8 "eliminates the right of same sex couples to marry."

I am not one for usually being so pro-active at political issues that I would send a mass email to all my friends and family, but to me this is one of the biggest issues in this election that has the outcome of affecting the rest of my own personal life and many of my friends.

For the first time in the history of the US, there is a ballot proposal in California “Prop 8″ that specifically eliminates the right for same-sex marriages in our state. This is unprecedented. The California supreme court found the previous law to be discriminatory against same-sex couples and unanimously decided to extend the rights of civil marriages.

It found that “equal respect and dignity” of marriage is a “basic civil right” that cannot be withheld from same-sex couples, that sexual orientation is a protected class like race and gender and that there should be no discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation under the Equal Protection Clause of the California Constitution.

A lesbian couple, Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, were the first gay couple to officially be married in California. They met in 1950, became lovers in 1952 and had been together in a stable, loving and caring relationship until they finally were able to be granted equal rights and be married by law just a couple of months ago. Del Martin passed away a month or so after they were married. She was 87 years old.

Although on a personal note I am gay, but single, having equal rights under the law is only fair to me. In the future, when I have a partner, I want to be able to visit him in the hospital or get state tax benefits and let’s be honest, I want to be able to be married and have a civil marriage that is recognized legally by the State.

There have been rumors that this means that churches will risk losing their tax-exempt statuses. This is NOT true. Under California law, churches are protected against this. The constitution gives them the right to marry whoever they please and to follow their own beliefs. Proposition 8 is simply about civil marriage. It has nothing to do with religion.

It has also been said in campaign ads in favor of the elimination of our rights that this would indoctrinate our children and the school system, by forcing teachers to say that gay marriage is OK. Again, this is NOT true. Even the California Teachers Association is supporting the No On 8 team.

I am basically writing you, friends and family, to spread the word about this civil rights issue and to please tell fellow California voters to go to the polls this coming election and vote NO on 8. Even if you do not live in California, please talk to your friends who do.

It is about letting me, and thousands of other people, enjoy the right to marry the person we love. We are not changing or removing the rights of anyone else, but those rights are being taken away from us if you don’t vote NO on 8.

I really appreciate you reading my plea and I hope you help defend equal rights for everyone by spreading the message or donating any amount that you can and, by doing so, also defending love for all.

Equality for All