Archive for the ‘same sex’ Tag

California Voter Guide

Polls open in 24 hours.  

The most important right as a citizen is to vote. 

No matter how you vote, if you are over 18 and an American citizen, you OWE it to yourself to vote.  This is your land and your government.  Whether we like the results or not, you should not ignore your fundamental duty!  flag-21

These are my recommendations for the California initiatives.  You will either agree or disagree, or change your mind from one to the other based on what I write or make you seek out additional information – which is the best.  If you cannot have a level-headed discussion with friends and family, write it here.

Prop 1A:  High Speed Rail Bonds.  YES.  We have already outgrown our infrastructure.  We will continue to grow sooner or later.  It’s time to work on alternative transportation. $9.95 billion in bonds.

Prop 2:  Standards For Confining Farm Animals.  YES.  This is a simple initiative to treat farm animals like pregnant pigs, calves raised for veal, and egg-laying hens, humanely.  It is SICK that anyone finds it acceptable to not allow these animals to fully extend their limbs/wings or be able to lie down, stand up, and turn around all of their lives.   Even sicker is the fact that people find food from these confined animals acceptable as well!  Opponents allege increased salmonella and bird flu from eggs coming from Mexico and out-of-state and increased costs to farmers.  Here’s a simple recommendation:  Only buy California eggs.  As simple as the theory of supply and demand.  The farmers have until 2015 to comply, which is plenty of time to spend the money in upgrades.  If it puts them out of business, then I question their ethics in the first place.  Abuse is unacceptable in any form and certainly has no place on my dinner table.

Prop 3:  Children’s Hospital Bond Act.  NO.  Another $750 million in bonds.  Go back and look at 2004’s Prop 61 that authorized the sale of $1 billion in bonds that apparently remain unspent today.  What happened there?  Time to organize the existing funds accordingly.  Then if there isn’t enough, come back and ask for more.  

Prop 4:  Waiting Period For Parental Notification Before Termination Of A Minor’s Pregnancy.  NO.  This will only force illegal or out-of-state abortions and a likely increase in abandoned infants.  This isn’t the right measure to involve parents. 

Prop. 5:  Nonviolent Drug Offenses.  Sentencing.  Parole and Rehabilitation.  YES.  Keyword:  nonviolent.   It provides for rehab before and after prison time.  Opponents allege there is a loophole for violent criminals to escape prosecution.   I haven’t seen that but if there is, I don’t doubt the law would go through the courts to close any loopholes.   Opponents also allege sentencing for meth dealers would be reduced.  Prop 6 should take care of that.

Prop 6:   Police And Law Enforcement Funding.  Criminal Penalties and Laws.  YES.   There it is:  Sentencing increased for such things as meth sales (see Prop 5).  Opponents allege $1 billion will  be taken from schools, health care, fire protection, and proven public safety programs, empty argument.  Funding will actually come from the General Fund but any budgets or existing bonds for the schools would not be affected.

Prop 7:  Renewable Energy Generation.  YES.  Requires government-owned utilities to generate 20% of their electricity from renewable energy by 2010, 40% by 2020, and 50% by 2025.  Currently the standard of 20% applies only to private corporations (way to stick it to them – totally unfair).  Opponents allege this would lead to higher electricity costs and potential for another energy crisis.  We have to start somewhere.  Like anything, costs may increase, but eventually will decrease as clean energy becomes the norm.  It’s rather convenient for opponents to say this isn’t the time because of the economy.  It’s highly suspect that gas prices are falling as we head into our election, which may give people a false sense that we don’t need to start changing our habits after all.  If not now, when is the time?

Prop 8:  Eliminates Rights of Same-Sex Couples To Marry.  NO.  If you’ve seen my first blog, or the blog before this, you will know where I stand.  More “it’s about the children” ads popping up.  This is a pure and simple discriminatory initiative to amend the California constitution.  It’s only about equal rights.  Hell,  if they stop gays from marrying, what’s next, repealing the rights of blacks and women to vote?  FYI – apparently ProtectMarriage.com does not allow anyone to comment or blog on it’s blog:  http://www.protectmarriage.com/blog/  Guess they don’t want to hear how they are for inequality and discrimination. 

Prop 9:  Criminal Justice System.  Victims Rights.  Parole.  YES.  Requires notification to victims and opportunity for input during processes such as bail, pleas, sentencing, and parole.  Considers victim safety for bail and parole.  Opponents allege current statutes already protect victim rights.  If that’s true, why do we need this one? 

Prop 10: Alternative Fuel Vehicles and Renewable Energy.  NO.  This title comes off like Prop 7 in the use of the term “renewable energy” but is not that at all.  It call for rebates to consumers to purchase clean, alternative fuel vehicles, increases grants to universities to develop cheaper alternatives to gasoline.  Leave it up to the private corporations already researching and developing alternative fuels and save the $5 billion in bonds.  

Prop 11:  Redistricting.  NO.  Takes it out of hands of our elected legislators and puts it into a 14 person commission made up of California voters.  These voters are not elected, nor will there be any audit for their processes.  So where do they come from and where’s the accountability.  Not sure this is worth amending our California constitution, but rather, revisit the process.  Seems opportunistic for corruption.

Prop 12:  Veterans’ Bond Act of 2008.  YES.   Replenishes Cal-Vet home loan program.  Veterans are doing a job for our country whether I agree with war or not.  They volunteer to defend our country.  They deserve some type of benefit whether they ever see combat or not.  Fact is, many get benefits and perks through their employers, so why shouldn’t a veteran – who unselfishly works for our country – not be entitled to benefits for doing that job as well.  Opponents suggest citizens insist this program be limited to the most needy and deserving veterans such as those injured in combat.  I disagree.

Prop A:  City of Los Angeles Special Gang and Youth Violence Prevention, After-School and Job Training Programs Tax.   YES.  Seems like a no-brainer.  Annual $36 special tax on each real property parcel and allows for Low Income and Lifeline Rate reductions.   Good for Los Angeles.  No skin off my back.

Prop B:  Update of Low Rent Housing Authorization.  NO.  Enables the City to receive State funds for the development of previously approved affordable housing units within the City’s zoning and land-use laws.  Does not tax residents or increase the number of allowable units in any area.  Will not change land-use or zoning laws.  Does allow access to previously provided funds of $2.8 billion under Prop 1C.  Opponents say current aging and neglected infrastructure cannot support this.  This needs to be addressed as part of the package to get my vote.

And that concludes my recommendations.

PLEASE VOTE!

Shamerica

Advertisements

Prop 8

You knew it was coming.  I wrote about same sex marriage because, well, I married the same sex. 

NFL has been grueling.  I could not watch the past 2 Sundays.  It had nothing to do with who was playing who.  I’m a football whore, I will watch almost any game.  Not only do I participate in the office pool (how very valley of me) but I also have a fantasy team.  I can’t take the barrage of Prop 8 ads.  Of course I say VOTE NO on it because there would be nothing more heartbreaking than having my marriage dissolved.  The thought of it makes me sad. 

Please, I beg, vote NO on Prop 8.  It has NO effect on teaching in schools, or anything else “public.”  In fact, it is projected to generate hundreds of thousands of dollars for our budget-lacking state.  Will it cost to reverse the 11,000 or so marriages already performed?  Yes.  But that’s not the issue.

Those opposed to it still struggle with the word “marriage” in a religious sense.  For one thing, the Constitution (of California and our great nation) is not faith based.  So religious groups who opposed this need to realize that there is no place for religion (any kind) in politics, and vice versa.  Ooh, that reminds me… how is it that religious organizations are tax exempt?  If church and state are supposedly separate, than what is tax exemption for?  Seems to me that should exempt them from spending any money on ads or mailers stating their political position, right?

Look, we cannot remove the word marriage from our vocabulary.  The right to marry, same sex or not, is law based, not religous based.  Just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean I should not have the same right as a straight couple.  Hey, some don’t agree with abortion, but it’s legal.  Some don’t like wearing helmets when riding motorcycles, but it’s the law.  I could go on and on.  The point it, how those opposed to same sex marriage benefit or lose from gays marrying?  There is no loss, there is no benefit.  So leave it to the gays to decide for themselves.  Let them endure the ups and downs of a legal union.  Sure you think domestic partnership is the same thing, but it’s not.  Try going to a hospital to visit your partner and try explaining your way into the room with a legal partnership.  It’s not fair!

This equates to blacks voting, women voting, interracial marriage, and so on.  Equal rights is the issue.  These bullshit ads from Prop 8 supporters are so far from reality that they resort to leaning on “the children” to push their agenda.  That only tells me that these poor kids, should any of them be gay, will have to overcome their ingorant parents ideals.  Very sad.

So please, PLEASE, vote NO on PROP 8.  I don’t want to get divorced.  I don’t want problems when we have children.  I don’t want a battle if either one of us ever end up in the hospital.  I don’t want estate fights when one of us passes away. 

Thank you!

Los Feliz Lesbian

Same Sex Marriage-what does it matter to you?

Last week some friends visited me.  They brought their 11 year old child, who knew I was gay and just learned I was married.  Her parents asked her to congratulate us.  Then something odd happened.  This couple started to go on about the definition of marriage, explaining that marriage is a religious term.  They also went on to say that some churches who refuse to perform same-sex marriages are facing losing their tax exemption status from the government and they DISAGREED with this saying it was wrong to punish the church! (I thought church and state were separated so how can the government make such an imposition?  Wait, I don’t even agree that churches should have tax exemption and should be paying taxes EQUALLY as the rest of the nation.  Don’t get me started).  Finally, they said that the REAL reason that people don’t want same sex marriage is that it will affect a host of things like social security, health care, family leave, you name it.  They couldn’t be more oblivious and I hope I made myself clear with them. 

The main reason people oppose same sex marriage is religious based.  Maybe the use of the term marriage is religious based, but what other word is there?  Millions have gotten married and not all were performed in churches or religious institutions.  So, what do you call those marriages?  If it’s a term you are bitching about, find another word that everyone will accept and let’s move on.  Yes, we’ve heard of civil unions, but when asked, what do you say?  I am civilly union-ed with so and so?  Is that even correct?  The fact is, the word marriage is used in a general sense. 

In California, the ban on same-sex marriage was lifted and deemed discriminatory.  Yay for the gays!  Bad for the straights.  But why?  Tell me what the problem is?  I have YET to come across an acceptable position besides the “it’s wrong” or “the bible says so” or “it’s disgusting.”  NEWSFLASH:  Not everyone follows the bible, it is NOT the only book in town, don’t be so ignorant of other religions that exist in our country, and who gave you the right to JUDGE?  That’s right, WHO gave you the right to pass judgment on people YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW!  A whole helluva nerve you all have!

So you don’t like same-sex marriage… and you can’t really articulate why in any intelligent fashion except to lean on your religion.  But what will you gain if gays can’t marry?  What is it that you are losing if gays marry?   No one has given me an answer to this.  Because no one can find a reason that doesn’t sound discriminatory!  So you want to take something away from me, but you get nothing out of it? 

If anyone caught the show “30 Days” where this very religious lady who was against gay couples adopting children stayed with a gay couple who had adopted 2 or 3 kids, this show would be a good example of this.  She was absolutely against gays adopting.  She admitted she liked this gay couple and admitted that they not only provided a loving, safe and secure home, but that they were doing a great job raising these kids, but she still did not believe in gay adoption!  So she was asked why she should be allowed to vote on something that would cause this couple to lose their children, asked what she was gaining by doing this… and she had no answer. 

A few days later, I spent some time with different friends.  Friends who not only supported me and my wife through this legal battle, but vowed to vote against this measure that would amend the California constitution to define marriage as being between a man and a woman.  I asked them why.  They said because it had no bearing on their life, there should be no inequality in this day and age, and besides, they loved us.  I know some people who think they are my friends and say they respect me and wife and love us dearly as friends, BUT do not agree with gay marriage.  How can someone expect to be someone’s friend who does not agree that they should be equal?  NEWSFLASH:  You are not my friends and shame on you for thinking you can have it all. 

Sometimes it’s a tad embarrassing how the U.S. touts our freedoms and equality around the world, yet we are here today discussing the rights of human beings to enjoy equal opportunities.  I can only imagine what it was like when black people or women could not vote.  Or what about interracial marriage?  WOW, what a controversy THAT was.  We got over that, so why not this? 

WHAT DOES IT MATTER TO YOU?   And why do YOU think you should have a say in equality for U.S. citizens?