You Mean It Wasn’t About Religious Freedom? (Color Me Shocked)


It pains me to admit this, but Washington isn’t really the blue state it appears to be on presidential election eve.  King County, which includes the city of Seattle, is as deep a blue as the ocean and the sky on clear, sunny day.  The surrounding counties are tinged with purple.  But the rest of the state is a rosy shade of red.  We come out blue in national elections because King County is crammed with citizens, while the eastern part of the state is relatively sparsely populated, but there are still lots and lots of right-wingers here. 


That’s how we came to have a law that bans gay marriage. 


As a consolation prize, gay and lesbian couples in Washington can register as domestic partners and receive some of the rights and benefits enjoyed by married couples.  That was the best we could do until a few months ago when, perhaps embarrassed by our lack of progress in the matter, the state legislature granted all of the remaining rights and benefits of marriage to domestic partnerships.  It was dubbed the “everything but marriage” law. 


And it still isn’t marriage.  Let me be clear on this point.  There’s no ceremony.  No flowers.  No cake.  And certainly no church.  It’s paperwork.  Strictly a civil matter.


Before I tell you what happened next, let me remind you about California’s Proposition 8.  Remember how all the gay-rights supporters accused the Prop 8 supporters of being bigots, hating gays, and possessing all manner of unloving characteristics?  Remember how the Prop 8 people whined piteously?  “Quit calling us bigots just because we think some people shouldn’t have the same rights others do!  We do not hate gays!  We’re just so worried about our freedom of religion!  Some queer freaks might force us to let them get married in our church!”  Yes, I know you all remember those discussions.


Ok, back to Washington State.  The legislature granted gay “domestic partners” the benefits of marriage, such as the right to adopt your partner’s child, and the right to claim child support.  But remember, no flowers!  No churches!  No need to fear an abridgement of religious freedom!


So the religious folk in our fine state should be fine with this, right?  It has nothing to do with them, right?




A petition drive soon followed.  They feverishly organized and gathered signatures.  Just enough signatures to force a referendum to appear on the ballot at the next election, giving voters the opportunity to rescind those rights, granted by our elected representatives, from domestic partners. 


I must now conclude that the Prop 8 people lied to me.  It wasn’t about religious freedom at all.  I know; you’re all shocked too. 




14 thoughts on “You Mean It Wasn’t About Religious Freedom? (Color Me Shocked)

  1. I am ever surprised by the depths to which they will sink in order to deny human rights to people who do not fit their mold. Just, yuck. But consider yourself lucky, for you live in that small pond of deep blue. I live in a freakin’ lava pit, man. AK-47s at health care town halls? Yep, that’s us. But someone is gonna need to turn one of those things on me if a public option doesn’t pass.

  2. I have lived in the Pacific Northwest area (now, recently in Bellingham) for many years but I was raised in Eastern Washington….ya, there’s a huge difference in the political views. My own family, my brother and sister at least, have VERY different views…so we don’t talk politicsIt is a shame about prop 8…and a shame that people are so ignorant and bigoted….

  3. *shakes head*  Sadly, if the situation were reversed, if someone dared to tell them they couldn’t have the same basic rights, they’d be aghast, but they really can’t see what’s wrong with what they’re doing. To hide behind my two least favorite shields–religion and ‘won’t someone think of the children!’–is ridiculous and pretty much a mask for hatemongering justified by the frantic whispers of ‘don’t you know what this will do to the world?’. Ick.

  4. I live in Alabama and feel a sense of frustration  because  Alabama might as well call  itself  the red as an  over ripened , beginning to rot tomato state,  but that said around here people are unabashedly bigoted and proud of it.My feeling is that while it is taking far too long eventually  people in this country will not have the state or other people dictating who they can  make a life with. it is is a basic violation of civil liberties anyway you slice it.I wish the news from Washington state were better.

  5. Our last home was in the woods just northeast of Graham, Wa. Our neighborhood was so red necked you could occasionally hear automatic weapons being fired. If anyone was gay they sure weren’t admitting it. My S/O is a black lady and I think her family felt uncomfortable visiting us. Ironically, when you live amongst a bunch of anarchists, nobody bothers you………

  6. I support the right to arm bears…..or anyone else to defend any freedoms that everyone else has.   Right wing bigots are the same all over. They need at BIG CRUSHING bear hug.  

  7. It’s hard when you’re relegated to second class status without your consent.  Like you say if anyone were to suggest that they didn’t deserve the same rights as the rest of society, they’d be agast.  I am but I’m also tired.  Tired of being outraged.  Tired of having to fight.  Tired of telling people that I deserve the same things you do, and should be able to live my life without your approval as long as I don’t do anything to hurt you.  Gay relationships don’t hurt anyone.  They can’t affect you anymore than the color of someones skin can.  Yet here we are.  I’m ready for it to be over.

  8. A recent article in the newspaper stated that out of state gay couples are flocking to Iowa to be married.  Believe it or not, the sky has not yet fallen, our children have not turned into ungodly drug addicts (other than that meth thing, thanks to farm chemicals) and anarchy does not reign supreme.  Whoda thunk it ?

  9. As it can’t be said enough, “Won’t someone PLEASE think of the children?!” (Hey, Simpsons references embiggen even the smallest man!)I am of one mind when it comes to legislation that gives rights to minorites.  Fuck the people.  The people don’t have enough sense to wipe themselves properly or come out of the rain.  Think that Brown v. Education, Roe v. Wade, and various civil rights laws would’ve come about from a vote by the people?  Nope.  People have theirs, and they sure as hell don’t want to give anyone else anything.Since the people are so stupid, don’t let them vote!

  10. Oh, the sarcasm is SO DEEP!!!  Yes, “relgious freedom” is a bit of stretch.  I personally think we should give the divorce lawyers as many prospects as possible, just to keep them busy. 

  11. And when you think about it, these people voting against prop 8 and ref 71 and such are the same ones who insist the pledge of allegiance is said in schools- “with liberty and justice for all.” Oh, but LGBT don’t count, cos we aren’t really people. How could I forget.I had a long argument with my Catholic friend the other day in which I pointed out that if the situation was reversed, straight people would be outraged if they weren’t allowed basic rights. The only response she would give was “But the situations AREN’T reversed, and they never will be.” I pointed out that homophobia is not any different from racism, and I don’t remember what she said, but it was nonsense.

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