PLEASE take the time to read this.

So, my parents and I went out to dinner this evening.  They took us to a very nice Chinese restaurant, but we made a quick stop on the way; they were picking up an Obama/Biden sign for our front yard.  I’m happy to show my support for the Democratic ticket this year, and rather ashamed of the farce that the GOP has presented during this election race.  However, they also made a stop on the way home to pick up another political sign for the yard: “YES ON 8!”

I so sincerely wish that I had the ability to advertise my own political affiliations in that yard, for I would very quickly tear down the “yes” ad and replace it with an emphatic “NO!”

However, things being as they are, I must turn to other avenues to express my beliefs and opinions, and while I’m somewhat reluctant to use MySpace as a political forum, I feel obligated to do what I can to counter the rabid, terrified cries from the religious crowds clamoring for a “yes” vote on Proposition 8.

After we got home, I innocently asked my mom for someplace online to “read about Prop. 8” knowing full well she’d only think to send me her Mormon propaganda — and she certainly delivered.  She provided me with a link to preservingmarriage.org — a site created by the Mormon church to persuade the public to vote for the passing of this proposition on the ballot.  As you can see by visiting the site, there is a short list of items (presented as “facts”) with brief elaborations on each point, there is a “countdown timer” to voting day, labeled with a loud “I support Traditional marriage/religious freedoms/children and families/Proposition 8!” (the lower line switched between the different “I support…” items), there are links to other “resources” (read: more propaganda) and on the top of everything is a bold, striking title of “Preserving the Divine Institution Of Marriage” with an embedded video clip just below.

If you’ve got the patience, and either a strong stomach or a great ability to laugh in the face of Stupid, watch the two and a half minute video.  I managed to sit through the whole thing, and came away with quite the sour taste in my mouth.  If you believed them, not only is the sky falling, but anyone who chooses not to accept homosexuality as a natural, normal thing will be labeled as bigoted, lose their job, be cast out of society and ridiculed and scorned by everyone else.

I even steeled myself long enough to watch a small segment a few times over in order to transcribe this venemous, ire-inspiring rally cry:

“Although the argument of redefining marriage is couched in ‘happiness’ or ‘equal rights,’ it’s really about gaining control.  Forcing all of us to give up the very foundation of speech and religious freedoms on which this country was founded.”

Wait — so all the gay and lesbian couples out there… *don’t* want equal rights?  They *don’t* want to be happy?  It’s all a big lie so that they can take over the state, then the country, then — perhaps — the whole world?!?  Wow.  I’ve seen some pretty out-there conspiracy theories before, but this ranks right up there at the top of the crazy list.  Somehow Christian churches know homosexuality so much better than those involved in that lifestyle, and I guess if we know what’s good for us, we’ll start listening, or else every freedom we hold dear will be stripped from us.

These same people preach tolerance and acceptance, but then qualify that tolerance by saying that they don’t have to give up their own beliefs that homosexuality is just a feeling, a “temptation” like others such as the feeling to walk into a store and steal something, or the feeling of becoming angry to the point of snapping at someone — but as long as all these remain just feelings, and not conscious choices, you’re sin-free… but just to make sure, you should “control” these feelings, suppress them as the evil things they are, and never, EVER act on them.  So now they’re tolerant, but only as long as you choose to do what they say is “right” and would please their God.

And then when called on their hypocrisy, and rightly named as intolerant and unaccepting, they become angry, as I have watched my father do when a man on television decried these religious groups as intolerant — his face twisted into a menacing glare, his arm reached out and beckoned as he growled, “Yeah, just come here to *my* house — *I’ll* certainly set you straight.  Yeah, I’ve definitely got something for you here!”… and his hand clenched into a fist.  Men like him are up in arms crying for their kindred to work themselves up to anger, to intolerance, to hatred and cruelty, all the while boasting of how they love their fellow man, how they are so tolerant and kind and forgiving, and wish to let everyone make their own choices and live their own lives.

Anyway, I would ask that anybody out there who reads this *please* take a moment to do your own research, read the arguments presented by *both* sides, and after having done so, be sure to get to your polling place on election day — there are a lot of religious folks out there who will be doing their best to deny happiness, equal rights, and essentially freedom of choice to a decent segment of the population, simply because they disagree with them; we need all of us who care about fairness and equality out to vote so that this proposition does not pass.

Please pass either this message itself, or your own sentiments and feelings, to those who you feel would benefit from it — but don’t mass-mail your entire address book, don’t send this on just to cause contention to someone who you know has already closed their mind, and just use common sense and common courtesy (I know they’re not so common anymore, but I hope you can find them within yourself!)

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