Monday, October 27, 2008

what's the buzz

One day last week, I took the children shopping at Target.

The plan was to pick up some diapers. The reality was that I bought diapers, a few gallons of Mums for our garden, six bags of 90-piece Halloween candy and three of the exact same, cheaply made Halloween costume.

William spotted the costume first. And although I tried desperately to convince the girls that they wouldn't want to be Buzz Lightyear on Halloween, they wouldn't listen.

For a solid 20 minutes I tried to persuade William to be a big bad wolf and the girls could be little red riding hood. Or, William could be a prince, the girls could be princesses and Henry could be a frog. Or, they could all be bees. Or they could all be something - anything - other than dressing up in the most pathetically cheap costumes I've ever seen.

With a last ditch suggestion that the children all dress up as monkeys, William smiled and said "Hey Mom, I have a good idea. Why don't YOU be a monkey?"

So, Buzz it is.


All the way around.


A few weeks ago while at the doctor's office, I got carried away in conversation with the receptionist while I was waiting. She was one of those people that was very easy to talk with and in 20 minutes, we covered topics ranging from the busy life of parenthood to favorite family recipes.

At one point, she indicated that she would be fasting and praying for the next 40 days that Proposition 8 would pass. I gave her a puzzled look because at the time, I hadn't received my voter pamphlet and wasn't familiar with Proposition 8. I feigned understanding and privately vowed to go home and get caught up on the ballot.

Now I fully understand what the receptionist at my doctor's office was talking about. And honestly? It hurts my heart.

Several months ago, Charlie and I went out to dinner with some of our very good friends, and over dinner, we discussed a recent sermon we had heard at church. During the sermon, our minister indicated that homosexuality is a sin. If people have homosexual tendencies, they need to ignore them and live a pure heterosexual life. Or, they need to abstain from any relations.

See, the problem with all of this, in my opinion, is that people are born the way that they are meant to be. I believe that a person has about as much choice in selecting their sexual identity as they do in selecting their eye color. I believe that the reason so many people I know - who have been hurt by relationships in which their spouse discovered that they were gay - is because those people who were born with predominantly homosexual tendencies, attempted to mask their true identity.

What a painful and lonely row to hoe.

To know that you are gay, when every one around you is not? To be told that your very existence is sinful? To try and fit in to a situation by ignoring your true feelings, or living a life alone?

The way I see it ... people are born the way that they are meant to be born and in my opinion, everyone is a creation of God. I believe homosexuality has existed as long as humankind has existed even though I don't believe it is completely "normal" because a species would not survive if everyone was gay. Especially if sperm banks went out of business.

However.

I think that everyone should have the right to follow their heart and enjoy companionship while they walk through life. I think that if two women or two men would be happy together, than they should have the civil right to be together. What is their alternative? Live a life alone - or one in which they are not true to themself or their heterosexual partner?

All around my neighborhood are signs on front lawns advertising "Yes on Prop 8!" People that I've talked to have told me that voting "yes" will protect marriage and family values and make the world a more wholesome place.

Really?

I don't see it that way at all.

I don't think that overturning a law that will provide everyone the right to marry, is going to do anything to improve the state of our world or humanity. I think that it will only further the discrimination among people who are already discriminated against.

If people really want to make the world a better place and enhance family values, they ought to first go after television stations that air Maury Povich shows in the middle of the day, just when children are coming home from school, with episodes about paternity testing. It seems to me that programs regarding "I slept with four men and don't know who is my baby's daddy!" and "Your triplets ain't mine!" do a lot more to undermine the moral structure of society than allowing a same-sexed couple to form a union in which they are eligible to accept insurance or benefits.

The supporters of Prop 8 argue that our children will be taught about same sex marriages in school. The commercials that I've seen show a little girl coming home and telling her appalled mother that she learned how two princesses can get married.

I can't help but wonder if that family would be equally aghast to see a little boy dressed in ballerina garb, or answer the door on Halloween night only to find two little girls wearing a boys costume.

I guess I'll soon find out.


Because thus far, the children show no sign of wanting to be anything else.

63 comments:

  1. thanks for this!
    I totally garee with you.
    And let me add that same sex couple wanting to get married means, inmmy opinion, strengthening family values. They want a stable union too!!!

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  2. This is another post entirely but it bugs me that it is mostly socially okay for girls to cross gender lines and we call it gender neutral but that if William wanted to be a princess, he would probably run into trouble.

    As for Prop 8, I have friends that were married in CA recently and I really hope they get to stay married and that Prop 8 doesn't pass and void their marriage. I think everyone is entitled to their own religious views and my pastor teaches the same thingas yours about homosexuality. But that is a *religious* objection and I don't get why people junk their religious views should be imposed on other peoples' civil relationships. I used to live in Brazil and people there routinely have a civil and church marriage because only the civil one is good for civil purposes. I like that because it clarifies the religious purpose for marriage andthe civil one.

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  3. junk = think

    Stupid iphone

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  4. Do we get to see your monkey outfit too? My grandson is going to be a monkey and "help" me give out candy, he is 7 months old:)
    I remember the tutu's, so cute but think that Charlie needed one also so that he would match.
    As for Prop 8 I think to each their own and everyone should have the right to be themselves and to be happy. If being happy means being married or having a legal union to someone of the same sex, so be it. I have heard it argued that it isn't natural because they can't have children, but in my mind I can also argue that it might just be a natural way to control over population.
    Kathy

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  5. I totally agree with you!

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  6. Great post, I always seem to have big disagreements with my grandmother and mother in law on this, my mother in law is very religigous and believes it is somthing no different that over eating because you love food, its just something you have to control, good grief. For the love of pete we had a rabbit that used to jump onto our cat, of course that cat wasn't that happy aobut it. Not very conservative here. I also remember wanting one of those cheap cheap costumes but when I was little it was plastic that always tore and a terrible mask, but kids know what they want!!!!

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  7. Regular reader...infrequent commenter here:

    I could not agree more on the Prop 8 discussion.

    My brother is gay, and is the greatest uncle and male role model to my two sons (my exhusband left us). He has an adorable boyfriend and I hope and pray that some day they are able to get married, and have that marriage recognized. They want to have children, too, and having a recognized marriage would certainly ease difficulties there.

    You're right - this is about introducing religious beliefs into law. I'll be watching the Prop 8 outcome in CA closely, even though I'm an east coast girl.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!!

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  8. My boys were Woody & Buzz 3 YEARS IN A ROW!!! I really didn't think they would ever want to dress up as anything else! This year I wanted them to be Sully and Mike from Monsters Inc and have my daughter be Boo, but they wanted no part of that :(((

    I am not from CA, but I agree with you about Prop 8.

    Kelly(Houston)

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  9. Good for you. Your kids grow up watching you for cues about what is and isn't acceptable in life. Prop 8 terrifies me as it takes away choice - and for a country that was founded on religious freedom, it amazes me that something like that can even be proposed, let alone carried through. Everyone is different and having seen the miseries visited upon homosexuals forced to be who they aren't - the fact that this can be enforced by law in this day and age is scary. In Britain, it was illegal and now is not - how can you (the USA) be going in the opposite direction?!!

    It sounds minor, but it is so easy to get caught up in the whole 'girls are princesses, boys are princes' stereotypes that are reinforced by the choice of costumes out there. It may seem trivial but it is all to do with choice. It may make you feel uncomfortable to see the reactions of people to your children's choices - that is just social conditioning - but good on you for letting them express those choices and feel comfortable in doing so. Better start now and get used to it ;) There will be plenty more challenges to come.

    I am glad that you can listen to your pastor and take what you need from his message. It shows you are a strong mum and able to differentiate between religious beliefs and religious persecution.

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  10. Thank you for your Prop 8 comments. I was on the fence about this, but made the decision last week to vote "no" - mainly because of the reasons you just mentioned. Thank you for putting it so eloquently in a way that I never could.

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  11. *standing up and applauding wildly*

    as the mother of a gay son in a committed relationship, i am hoping one day soon to dance at his wedding.

    thank you for your well-thought-out post on this highly charged and controversial subject.

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  12. I think your children make cute Buzz Lightyears.
    But I disagree with you about Proposition 8.

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  13. my partner, our three fourteen month olds, and I thank you.

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  14. I totally agree with you about Prop 8! We have a gay couple 3 houses down and and a neighbor across the street put a sign on the lawn facing their house. Sad! I'm voting NO!

    Peace and Love!

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  15. I think all you in Cali should vote yes on 8. But regardless of how it turns out (I think a lot of gays have moved there because they can get married). I will always teach my children that MARRIAGE IS BETWEEN A MAN AND A WOMAN. And I will always fight to protect marriage as between a man and a woman. People have a choice to live how they want. What makes me angry is when they try to tell me what I believe is wrong. Living a gay lifestyle is a choice. A wrong choice. Having gay tendencies may be another thing but acting on those tendancies is wrong. I don't HAVE to believe that being gay is ok. I'm tired of right and wrong being distorted. I'm standing up for what I believe - Marriage between a man and a woman.

    And for some stats (that I've read) 60% of Californians voted to define marriage as between a man and a woman but that was later overturned by liberal judges. How's that for majority rule? So that's why it's up for vote again.

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  16. I totally agree that all adults should be able to choose who to spend their lives with and to reap the legal benefits of that union.

    What I don't get: when my husband and I are told that our marriage is threatened by same-sex unions. How is that?! Neither of us feel the least bit threatened.

    KarenM in NC

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  17. A hearty "AMEN, sister!" to you on this one. I wish I could vote in the California election to join the ranks for NO on Prop 8. Alas, here in Montana that ship has already sailed, and our state residents did something we have never done with our state constitution - limited rights - by saying the state would not recognize same-sex unions or marriages.

    I try to see the other side of the issue, I really do, but truthfully I keep coming away seeing such fear in people who would post that they need to maintain marriage as only between a man and a woman. What are they so scared of? It doesn't take anything away from your marriage to allow others to be married. In truth, marriage has historically been used by the state as a way of keeping tabs on families and control over resources - I'm not really for this, either, but if that's the system we're in why are people already in state-oversight marriages against oversight of others' relationships?

    There was a time in our country when people said marriage could only happen between people of the same race - anything else was going to break down our social structure completely. Luckily, the federal government stepped in and said that this was unconstitutional. I just don't understand how people cannot see the same parallels here.

    Anyway - off my soapbox here (and sorry to have gotten on it in your space) to once again say HOORAY for this great post.

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  18. Had to click through my feed reader for this one! Thank you thank you thank you. I so hope that when our kids are grown they will all wonder at how ridiculous it was that people weren't allowed to get married.

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  19. Clarissa,

    I must disagree with your statement that living a gay lifestyle is a choice. While entering and actively participating in a gay relationship might be a choice, having homosexual tendencies is not. As the friend of a gay man in a serious relationship, I have seen how his lifestyle “choice” has torn his family and the family of his partner apart and now both men are entirely isolated and have been removed from their families. Their parents disowned them and they are no longer permitted to visit, even for the holidays, because of their poor “choice.” Why would anyone choose a lifestyle that so isolates them from society? Why would anyone choose to be publicly humiliated and tormented if they could choose anything else? I happen to be straight but I know that I didn’t choose to be this way, no more than you or I could choose to be attracted to the same sex if we so desired.

    Many people believe that homosexuality isn’t “natural” yet according to fieldwork research and early scripts it has been seen worldwide in nearly every civilization, including early societies and the animal kingdom. Preventing marriage between two members of the same sex will not protect the sanctity of marriage, which has already been defiled by divorce, shotgun weddings and Britney Spears’ 55 hour marriage. You are entitled to your own opinion, but I believe that love is more important than gender when it comes to a sustainable marriage. Denying rights to people for something that is not under their control brings us back to the days of segregation: another giant step back for America. And I can only hope that if one of your beautiful babies happens to be gay, you will still love and embrace them rather than isolate and ridicule them for a decision that wasn’t theirs to make.

    P.S. Jen, I had to de-lurk for this post but I love your blog and it never ceases to make me laugh when I need it. Good luck with all of your recent life decisions and way to go on the triathlon! You are an inspiration to us all!

    -Rachel in CA

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  20. To jump in...J, the kids are awesome! I love that they all wanted to be the same thing for Halloween.

    As for Prop 8. "Living a gay lifestyle is a choice." I agree in that embracing who you are is choice but denying who you are, who you were born to be - that is wrong.

    Living a lie is wrong. My brother is gay and we knew it before he did. It isn't a choice it is in your very make-up. To tell a person to be something else is in no one's best interest.

    Can't people focus on the real evils in the world? And not worry about who loves whom?

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  21. I couldn't agree with you more on this post. I'm so glad we don't have this on our ballet this year.

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  22. I sure hope that you have the same view if and when one of your children turns out to be gay. If that happens I don't think your view will be so liberal.

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  23. I agree with you whole heartedly - and how can anybody argue that allowing gay marriage destroys the sanctity of marriage when TV shows such as "The Bachelor" and "The Bachelorette," which make a complete mockery of marriage, are so popular.

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  24. Great post.

    My son is going to either be Buzz or Woody, whichever way the wind blows on Halloween. Good thing I have both costumes!

    I could not agree with you more on Prop 8. My brother and my husband's uncle are gay and even though neither of them have voiced wanting to get married, I don't think that they should not have the choice.They are human and citizens of the US and should be treated as such. What I never get and probably will not ever get, is that Religion and state are suppose to be separate yet it always seems like their is this very grey line area that someone somewhere in the government can't seem to understand. Religion should not be involved in government decisions and as a leading country in the "free" world (and I use thst term loosely) saying yes on Prop 8 really does not seem to FREE to me but more controlling and very non evolving.

    How in the world does having 2 men or 2 women get married affect me or anyone else? It doesn't. We all get to live our lives they way we intended and probably in a more loving world.

    As for the comment someone said that they heard that it wasn't natural because they could not have kids, my arguement for that one would be alot of heterosexual couples can't have kids so is their marriage not natural?

    Both my neighbors have signs that say yes on Prop 8, which makes me cringe every time I see them. So today I got the biggest sign I could find and put it out there for all to see NO on PROP 8!

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  25. Today seems to be the day to talk about this subject. I did too. Thanks for ringing in over here.

    And? I love the Buzz!

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  26. Hi Jen,
    Your family is so cool.
    Don't agree on prop 8. If we allow marriage to be between two women or two men where will it stop. Soon we could people wanting to call a marriage between 3 women, or 2 men and 1 woman or whatever.
    To me, it's not about saying gay couples don't deserve the legal benefits of marriage. I think that's fine. But why do we have to change the definition of a marriage?
    By the way, if your daughters knocked on my door saying "trick or treat" in their buzz light year costumes I would think they were adorable and nothing else.
    Love your blog.
    Stacey

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  27. I like your reasoning. (And, I really like the Halloween costumes; one year my mom let me dress up as Laurel and Hardy - yes, both; it was an odd plastic in-a-box costume from K-Mart. I thought I was VERY cool that year!)

    It seems like this issue is getting caught up as a religious/moral thing, when it seems so simple to me:

    I really like being married! Being married is great! I am much happier now that I am married! I think everyone should be happy and married! (Unless, this is not the choice for you, of course.) What is the problem?

    I don't have kids, and yet my marriage is not threatened by people who do. Heck, I even enjoy reading their blogs :), and (gasp) I would talk to someone with kids if I knew this fact about them instead of shunning them for the freaks they are. (note: some exaggeration here to make the point)

    It seems to me that having kids vs not having kids is REALLY a different kind of marriage, much more so than the gender of anyone else in that marriage. It's a strange lifestyle choice to me, and not one I would ever make. And yet...my marriage remains just the same, even though others have made this (weirdo) choice.

    Then again, I tend to swing toward the Libertarian. Don't boss me around, and I won't boss you around. Don't marry a person with kids if that is not your choice. Don't marry a person of the same gender if that is not your choice. Butt out of my choices, and make your own.

    A non-California "Yay Marriage!" vote from me! :)

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  28. Really well said! I wish I could vote No with you, but I'm in another state.

    I think they look adorable as Buzz Lightyears! Even in the cheap costumes!

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  29. eloquent post!

    i think it is a shame that much of the population doesn't understand that being gay isn't a choice. they should get informed before they try to undermine other's rights.

    and btw, those buzz lightyear costumes are actually really adorable in the photos. love that last one. priceless.

    my four are going to be bees this year. but i'm pretty sure this is the last year that I can pick the costumes.

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  30. I agree with you wholeheartedly on Prop 8. I think we need to put this issue to bed once and for all...I say, Live and Let Live.

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  31. Anon, you are kidding, right? If not, you haven't been around this blog long enough to understand the unconditional love that I have for my children.

    If one of my children told me that they were gay, I would love them REGARDLESS. Of course it would pain my heart because I would fear that their lives would be punctuated by pain and rejection. God knows in this judgmental and condemning world, they would need all the support and compassion that they could get for a lifestyle that I'll wager they would not have intentionally chosen for themselves.

    As their mother, it is my first and foremost job to nurture my children as they grow in to whomever it is that they will become.

    Although I will take credit for a lot in my children's lives, I will not take credit for making them the unique individuals that they are. God wired all of us.

    If my children grow up to make a positive contribution to this world and are compassionate, kind and accepting individuals, my job as their mother will have been a success.

    Sometimes, I am liberal. Sometimes I am conservative. On this particular issue, I am a humanitarian.

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  32. Excellent post!

    I'm Canadian (from just north of Toronto), so we don't have this issue to the same extreme as in the USA. For the most part, I live in a world that is understanding of homosexuality (doesn't mean EVERYONE is understanding of it, but I freely have many gay friends and a gay uncle, and it's just a part of life... not a big deal!).

    I don't understand people going on about "changing the definition of marriage". And I really don't see how it's any sort of stepping stone to "What else will they allow people to do!?".

    Clearly, human love relationships have three options: man/woman, man/man, woman/woman. It's still a marriage of one person to one person, who are in love. This will not lead to three people getting married and that junk (I mean, technically, that already existed in history and sometimes today, with Polygamy! Polygamy came BEFORE gay marriage, afterall! Gay marriage didn't create polygamy!). I just don't see this as a true argument to the gay marriage deal.

    Plus, why does marriage have to be so defined? Seems a bit pretentious. There are already so many types of families in the world (single-parent, foster families, step-families,etc etc), and as others have said.. there are dumb reality TV shows making a mockery of the institution of marriage every day... so I really think this whole "save the definition of marriage by not allowing gay marriage" doesn't make sense.

    Marriage = two people in love, joining in a legal union. That's how I think of it.

    And anyway, just voting that they can't get married doesn't mean you're voting that there not be gay people. Homosexuals are a part of our world, and they are human beings. You can't choose who you love. So if they can't get married, it doesn't mean they won't live together and very much live like a common-law heterosexual couple. So as human beings, can't we grant them the legal rights they deserve? You can't change that they're here, so you might as well be a human being about it all.

    I just don't understand being being homophobic in 2008. People are people are people... who they partner with shouldn't matter.

    Thanks for speaking on the matter, J. I cannot stand discrimination.

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  33. The whole argument of gay marriage insulting the sanctity of marriage is garbage. If your marriage is insulted by someone else's marriage, then maybe your marriage isn't that strong. Why do people care what others are doing in their lives? It doesn't affect you.

    The only reason gay marriage is outlawed is because it goes against religion. Separation between church and state needs to be remembered. The God I believe in isn't so judgmental.

    According to the Bible homosexuality is a sin as big as premarital sex. Lets go ahead and outlaw that too and see how many people against gay marriage start rioting. I just hope these people against gay marriage don't have gay children. Those poor children would be shunned by the very people that are supposed to love them most.

    I believe in living my life and letting others live theirs as long as they aren't hurting anyone.

    Great post Jen!

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  34. Long time reader, first time commenter here.

    I found your blog randomly over a year ago, looking for people who had gone on amazing trips to places I've been. Anyway...

    I work with kids in the foster system and have had foster kiddos. I now live with a girl, and in my fabulously conservative state (Nebraska), the gays are not allowed to have foster children. Well, not the gays as much as two members of the same gender, not related, over the age of 19, living in the same household are unable, but yeah.

    My parents are voting yes on prop 8, and it hurts. It hurts that they will never accept me for me, and it hurts that they hate so much.

    I know I can't change them, or their minds. Eventually I'll live in California, and I really hope that my partner and I will have rights. I don't even want to get married, I'd just like basic human rights.

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  35. Another long time reader, first time commenter.

    Thank you for this post. And thank you to those of you who commented positively towards this post. More people need to realize that we are all human beings and we ALL deserve the same rights and civil liberties. None of us is lesser because of something we are or something we do.

    Honestly, I'm not quite sure why this is even up for vote because the Supreme Court ruled that it's unconstitutional to deny gays and lesbians marriage, but I sincerely hope that people open their eyes and close their bibles and really think before they vote.

    The Buzz costumes are super cute, btw!

    ~Stacey

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  36. Your children are so blessed to have a Mom that will love them no matter what. As a person who lost practically every friend they had and had their family practically disown them, I can tell you it is a tough row to hoe indeed. Time has made things much better, but a great deal of pain would have been avoided if my family had been able to see things the way you do.

    Dana in CA

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  37. I have tried all day to type a message as eloquently as you did on this subject. I keep typing messages and deleting.

    As someone who was once married to a person who is gay and fathered a son this is a very tough subject on my behalf and at moments in time a painful one.

    My son (now of voting age) (who loves his father dearly) and I both have the same thought. We believe in the sanctity of marriage. That is a marriage consisting of a union between a man and a woman.

    However, at the same time it is very cruel to keep loved ones away from one another during time of need. I don't think that being gay is a choice. It is very difficult for the person to admit that their lifestyle is different and because of certain desires they are forced into a lifestyle that is against thier true feelings hurting a lot of people in the process.

    It is becoming common for 2 people who aren't married to adopt children, visit each other in hospitals, etc, whether they are gay, straight or purple. So basically why has this become such an issue therefore wasting taxpayers money and time?

    The kids look adorable. Love the costumes!

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  38. Good for you. I agree with your comments.
    MOM

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  39. geez, do we live in the same town? I have these "Yes on 8" signs all over my town too.

    I will be voting NO on Prop. 8.

    I have family members who will be voting Yes on 8. That is their right, and if that's what they want to do, that's fine. But they should also respect my right to vote how I want to vote as well.

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  40. YES! Thank you for being so clear-headed! The people who are pushing Prop 8 have never seen the truly beautiful and loving relationships that exist between between human beings who happen to be the same sex.

    Why should gays be denied their civil rights? Why can't we all experience love? I am convinced that God loves all of us, and he surely loves diversity because there is a lot of diversity in this world.

    The yes-on-Prop. 8 folks are trying to scare everyone by saying that the current law in California will teach children in kindergarten about gay love. My response to them is: Read the fine print. Read all the editorials from well-respected newspapers, magazines, and universities.

    Jenn -- I am very proud of you for speaking the truth about this issue.

    Sue (a happily married heterosexual)

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  41. One of many cuzzins!10/28/08, 12:44 AM

    Hi Jen!

    Love your female renditions of Buzz Lightyear and especially love your sleeping Buzz!

    Across the street from me live a female couple who married about 2 years ago when same sex marriage first became legal here in Mass. They are the most normal and best neighbors anyone could ever hope to have in their community. They are hard working, keep their property meticulous and are very generous to everyone. I feel blessed to know them and proud to have them as friends. They are wonderful individuals and we accept their lifestyle with unconditional respect and admiration.

    Quirky topic of discussion for your blog and some interesting comments from your readers.
    ~Regina

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  42. I was trying to find a link for a study I read once regarding fraternal triplets and homosexuality, but I couldn't find it. Basically, since our males were in utero with two other females and subjected to much higher levels of estrogen during gestation, there is a greater chance they will actually be homosexual in theory, due to uterine environment. I was really hoping someone followed up on this or one of these doctors would contact the TC to follow up. (I kinda never told Greg about that study.)

    I hope that my son isn't gay, because I don't want him to have a hard life. But if he is, I will have the same attitude you have about it. I just really want my kids to be happy when they grow up.

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  43. I don't live in California, but if I did I would vote yes to protect my rights as an adoptive parent. There are far more social consequences to voting "no" than people realize. It's not about discriminating. I'm not into that at all... No matter how you slice it, a homosexual union is not marriage. And my adoption agency only places children in married families. And knowing what I do about parenthood and the stresses of adoption, I think that is very, very important.

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  44. Of course you are going to get comments about this, and here is mine:

    Never mind the fact that it wouldn't mean children would be taught any moral position on same-sex relationships in school, anyway - that was made up by people who want Prop 8 to pass.
    The fact of the matter is, two random strangers of the same sex getting married doesn't hurt your own personal relationships in any way. Period. The way my roommate and her fiance's marriage will be has absolutely no effect on the marriage my fiancee and I will have. Prop 8 doesn't protect any existing relationship or legal arrangement of that relationship, it only protects an IDEA of what marriage is (an idea that is completely ethnocentrically biased and narrow-minded).
    It probably shouldn't matter to me, but for some reason I am really glad you're against it.
    - An Australian who is apparently very threatening to the institution of marriage
    (I've commented once and sent one de-lurking email [I believe I squawked about kitchen de-cluttering] but otherwise just read and chuckle.)

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  45. My partner, our two month old triplets and I thank you for your humanity.

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  46. Wow Jen! I think you struck a nerve here. Good for you!!

    AMarie

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  47. Amen, Jen.
    Wish I was there to vote NO also.
    All the points you brought up were great.
    Separation of church and state, people.

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  48. Longtime lurker from Canada who so enjoys your intelligent writing!

    I was surprised and gladdened to read this post. I'm so used to coming across blogs that are saying the opposite it was refreshing.

    The capacity for loving another isn't only a heterosexual trait. I'm glad that my country has already recognized this and I look forward to the day when it is no longer termed "gay rights" but is just part of "human rights".

    Blondie

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  49. Jen,

    I thought your post was very well written, and your comeback to annon also well thought out.

    Thanks for bringing the issue out there. I dont live in CA, but rather in CT, where gay marriages are about 2 weeks away from being legal, and I couldn't be happier for friends who are about to finally declare their love for each other, and be legally recognized on each other's health insurance, and at a hospital bedside, and in life insurance policies, among other things.

    I also have to note, that I appreciated the way that MOST people who disagree with you have been so polite about it. It's really cool to live in a place where we can agree to disagree.

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  50. Jen,

    I love your blog and reading about how you parent your darling children. I usually agree with what you have to say, but on this point I have to politely, but strongly, disagree. This issue seems to be an equal rights issue, or an issue of people imposing restrictions on others. In my view it is a completely moral issue.
    I risk sounding like a religous fanatic, but my beliefs stem from the feeling that we are all God's children, created in His image. Being God's children doesn't it make sense that there is a Heavenly Mother as well? I believe that God has a plan for each of his children. He didn't send us to earth to just have a good time and do whatever we want. He wants us to learn, grow, overcome our challenges whatever they may be and become more like Him. Marriage between a man an a woman is the biggest step in this process. Men and women are meant to compliment each other physically and spiritually. Becomeing parents in this union is the ultimate in learning compassion, charity, and unconditional love.

    I don't deny that people are born gay. I don't deny that people are born with other genetic predispositions that bring challenge, heartache, and predjudice to them throughout their lives. I beleive that gays are meant to find happiness, but not through challenging something that is so imprtant to the fabric of society.

    "Traditional" values not old fashioned rules, but guidlines and safeguards for society. I totally agree with you about all the junk that is one TV. I hate that sex is glamorized in a way that is common and casual, and not the beautiful and special relationship it can be between one man and one woman married to each other.
    The decay of what we see on TV is only one way in which our society is moving away from the values that will keep families strong, and keep society strong. There is a point where we have to draw a line. I for one feel it should have been drawn long ago. That's why I am even bothering to write this comment - becuase people who say nothing about what they believe in are contributing to things becoming what they don't want them to be.

    So now we have both had our say. Thanks for "listening" to my point of view.
    -Karla

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  51. I have to agree with ambulance mommy about how polite your readers are being on such a sensitive subject. I think you draw a unique audience with your blog.
    Stacey

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  52. This post made me love you (in a non stalker, blog-reader way) just a little bit more.

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  53. Jen,
    Kudos to you! I admire your thoughtful viewpoint on Prop 8, and the kids look adorable.

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  54. I think they look precious! You are a good mom for letting them choose!

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  55. Well spoken Jen. I simply DO NOT understand why people are so threatened by gay marriage. It's not going to effect my marriage or any one else's for that matter. Can't they just let go of the hate, oh and brush up on some science while they're at it?

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  56. This is wonderful. I started reading this thinking "yes, I get the whole costumes matching thing" (my daughter is a mermaid so I wanted son to be something fishy or something, now sounding kind of lame) and then . . .was blown away.

    To me, this whole fervent endeavor to ban gay marriage is appalling and ridiculous, and me, an avid church goer. What I think is especially stupid and nonsensical is that it is all based on a biblical perspective and I think anyone who goes to church and wants to worship like they choose to should support a HUGE separation of church and state. I don't want my government telling me how to worship, therefore I don't want my government controlling marriage based on religious points of view. Especially when it is an issue where gay marriage hurts no one, harms no one, has no effect on our rights and priveleges, etc. Anyway, very well said!

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  57. Doulala pointed me here and I have been absorbed by your blog and the discussion for much longer than planned! Your words, wisdom and heart are much appreciated.

    In Arizona we are fighting Prop 102 - which also seeks to amend the constitution. Please check out our blog when you get the chance:
    http://noon102.blogsome.com

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  58. I am one of your "lurkers" but felt compelled to comment on this blog entry. You say things so powerfully yet respectfully. You say them with conviction - your readers can tell you really believe what you are saying - yet, you have a way of being so respectful. It's a great talent - you are smart, and a good mom to boot! Thanks for the thought provoking post.

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  59. Anna from England10/29/08, 12:07 PM

    Jenn, I think you have to stop beating yourself up for using the beautiful God-given brain that you have. The creationists are like scared little kids who bang their toys louder than anyone else and therefore think they are the most important and rightest. In the grand scheme of things they use religion to influence everyone elses politics and outside of America they are viewed with a certain amount of ridicule and disbelief. OF COURSE the world wasn't crreated in 6 days - it' a beautiful myth derived from pre-israelites who lived in that region. There are many versions of creation and the flood and all those amazing stories that have been discovered and archived over the years . I think they tell us a lot about the god we believe in- ie, a loving, creative God that puts beauty and creation of all things good and harmonious at the heart of what everyone could or should be striving for.

    Asking questions and testing your belief is good - it stops you from accepting stupidity or politics as the word of God. In the end, at the heart of this is the question - Am I treating my neighbours as I would wish to be treated myself?

    I think you should accept that in the USA there is a very narrow band of accepted Christian thought and that you may well, as an intellegent, thoughtful adult find yourself up against the recieved wisdom. It is very hard to step outside of what is all around you but I wish you could feel more at ease with yourself for asking these questions and realise that they are healthy and life giving questions that allow your faith to grow and deepen.

    The Chrisian right has a lot to say about many subjects, none of it looks reasonable, acccepting loving or in any way imitating Christ. Step away from the Right and follow your intellect and heart. You are a good person and I love your blog and your views and the way you are bringing up your children

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  60. Why does it matter if homosexuality is a choice or not? If you don't think it's wrong, then making a choice to be gay is still OK right? Saying it's genetic is saying "it's not your fault." Well what the heck are do we need that line of reasoning for? Who cares if its a choice or genetic or whatever. Stay out of my bedroom and I'll stay out of yours! Deal?


    Also, I tried to take the good and ignore the bad about the Christian church. But I'm not sure that you can in good faith let your children be exposed to a church that says homosexuality is wrong. What if they said being black was wrong? Would you still sit and listen? The Christian church also denigrates the role of women. Is that OK too? I couldn't handle my own hypocrisy and had to stop going. Too bad, Jesus had a lot of good things to say.

    I like your blog a lot.

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  61. You and I are on the same train of thought these days...

    http://www.sweetsalty.com/sweetsalty/2008/10/23/what-was-planted-to-heal-the-world.html

    Enjoyed your post, although I simply can't stomach the opposition. I just can't, for the reasons in the the post. I guess you'd call it perspective, although I wouldn't recommend the method.

    On another note, the interesting thing that almost no one has brought up - what ever happened to separation of church and state? What business is it of anyone else's to decide that my life is immoral? Isn't there something in the bible about glass houses?

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