Sunday, November 9, 2008

Their First Rally



Last night, the girls and I headed down to Silverlake to take part in the demonstration against Prop 8. The girls wanted to go in honor of the family and friends they know were discriminated against by the passage of 8. I wanted to go in the name of equality for all.

Now I know protests alone don't win the fight, but I wanted to be around people who felt as we did. I wanted to yell and scream and make my voice heard. Turns out it was Sylvia's voice that got heard the most!

She led us in shouting "What do we want?" while we'd respond, "Equal rights!" She'd yell, "when do we want them?" and we'd yell "Now!" They even got her a megaphone for a while. Riley joined in a few times. Riley's favorite chant, however, was "hey, hey, ho, ho, bigotry has got to go!" She danced it out.

It's so basic to them. Equal rights for all. I've taught them all their lives that this country is about justice and equality for all. They know that minorities do not mean less than. The lawsuit that's being brought about touches on this issue: that it is fundamentally wrong to allow a majority to outclass a minority. That's like saying it's okay if we passed a proposition that no person in a wheelchair could hold office. Some things just aren't okay.

I also believe that the churches that lobby as heavily as the Utah church did must be taxed. Non-profit organizations are not allowed to campaign. If you would like to file your own complaint with the IRS, email me. I can send you the form and supporting evidence.

I was a little worried that the protest might get ugly, but it did not. Early on, we came across some opposing the protest, but we were far enough away from them (protected by many, many more anti-8 protesters) that there were no issues. Although, Sylvia wanted to know why we were chanting "Shame on you." And then she asked, "is it the Others?" Our friend answered, through laughter, "yes, it's the Others."

At one point, we passed the Children's Hospital, and they were waving to us. We switched the chant to "Get well soon!"

There were some awesome signs out. "Can I vote on your marriage?" and "Straight but not narrow-minded" are two I remember. We would also see people lined up and down the streets, standing out on balconies, holding up their signs in support of equal rights. From where we were, we couldn't see the beginning or the end of the march. I have since learned that there were an estimated 12,000 attendees. No arrests were made.

There's another rally today, but I think one is enough for the girls. We've said what we have to say, and I will continue to monitor the struggle, add my name to petitions, and whatever else I can do to see this discrimination thrown out.

One of our chants last night was "Si se puede/yes we can." We learned, through the election of Obama, that people can and do make a difference. Equal rights for all will prevail.

13 comments:

Natalie said...

Oh April, you are so awesome! What a wonderful experience for your girls and a great lesson.

One of my biggest pet peeves is those people who say "Hey, it was a majority vote, most people don't want it and that makes it right." It's like, do you guys not remember slavery? Most people WANTED slaves, but that didnt' make it right. UGH!

Oh and the goat/polygamy/incest arguments bug the snot out of me, too.

I do think that there should be some retribution for how involved the church was in passing this. Actually, I think the church has been too involved in our politics in general and something has to give.

liz said...
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Tara R. said...

When my daughter was home on a short weekend, a few weeks before the election, she and I talked about a similar amendment on the Florida ballot. I was pleased that we both had the same view... that we were voting against passage because we felt it was a bigoted proposition. Unfortunately the amendment also passed in our state. I was happy to know though, that my daughter has taken a deep interest in politics and can be articulate in her views. You are doing your daughters a great service in helping them become active in their community.

Jeff said...

Good for you. Your daughters will be the better for it.

Immoral Matriarch said...

My girls and I would have been right there with you if we could have been. :)

hotmamamia said...

What an outstanding life lesson you have modeled for your girls! Congratulations April...you done good!

Kori said...

You are THE best mome for being willing to give ALL you have to your girls, and for raising them to be so tolerant of EVERYONE. I love you.

Hahn at Home said...

My daughter got to experience her first protest too - and she doesn't know what to think - she thought it was cool, but it kind of scared her because of the crowds. Hopefully, she will remember the cool part.

Laura said...

Girls in action! How wonderful that they were fully there and not just accompanying you.

~Shiona~ said...

Ooh how fun. I will be teaching my son the importance of being equal. Even though it goes agains what most of his family believes in. Yes we can sooner rather than later I hope...

Karen MEG said...

Wow, wow, wow, April, bravo to you for bringing your girls to that rally/demonstration. What an experience, and what an important issue to bring a voice to.

Single Working Mommy said...

Wow. How awesome!

You are a great mom, April!

Zoeyjane said...

I would have been as well. One of the bets things is that we rally for everything in Vancouver. Unfortunate is that everytime there's a protest, people get the green smoke billowing. Seems like I'm not going to be able to get Isobel up and out there to stand up for anything, until she is old enough to have at least be able to stand up to a contact high.