Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Canvassing for Marriage Equality

Last weekend my wife and I were proud to take our son out for his first taste of social justice when we canvassed for Marylanders for Marriage Equality. There were about two dozens volunteers there, young and old, giving up their Saturdays for the cause. After the "how to canvass" talk from the organizers, College Park council member Patrick Wojahn and state Delegate Justin Ross fired up the crowd.
College Park council member Patrick Wojahn, my family, and Delegate Justin Ross

Although our little guy was a great conversation starter, the realities of canvassing with a baby slowed us down a bit. We also got assigned the Rogers Heights neighborhood of Bladensburg, which came by its name honestly - very hilly! It was a great experience and I hope we'll get a chance to help out again.

This is a very personal issue for my wife and I - many of our best friends are gay or lesbian and they deserve the same dignity, respect, and rights that all of us enjoy as Americans. We all want the same things as human beings: to love and be loved, to have a family and friends, and to live in peace. We were planning our wedding during the often hateful 2004 presidential campaign, when many anti-marriage equality initiatives were on state ballots all over the nation, and it was really stark to us how lucky we were that society does not discriminate against who we are and how we live our lives. We tried in a small way to do the right thing with that privilege - we vetted all our potential officiants in that context and found someone from a social justice oriented congregation that had actually worked against an anti-equality ballot initiative.

I urge those of you who care about civil rights, and the dignity of all your friends and neighbors, to find some way to support Marylanders for Marriage Equality. Maryland could become the first state to defend marriage equality at the ballot box, but for that to happen quiet supporters must become vocal supporters. Wouldn't you hate to look back the day after the election and wish you had done more?

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