It's the Home Stretch – Time to Get Active

I emailed this out to a large group last night, and thought I would post it here. (Be sure to check out this article in the Dallas Morning News (free subscription might be required) for more reasons to vote against this amendment.)


I wanted to take a brief moment to let you know about something that is important to me, and my family. This November in Texas, voters will have an opportunity to vote on a Constitutional Amendment that would define marriage, as well as prohibit the recognition of civil unions or any other “marriage-like” relationships in the State of Texas.  I am emailing you to encourage you to VOTE AGAINST this amendment.

Other people may have already contacted you, and suggested that you need to vote in favor of this amendment, as it is the only way to protect the sanctity of marriage. Sadly, these people are failing to tell you that this amendment would also prohibit any state or local government (agency, judge, etc) from recognizing a relationship that “looks” like marriage. Given the vagueness of the wording of this amendment, the only place that this will get resolved will be in the courts – the very reason that Texans have been told we need to adopt this amendment (to avoid “activist judges” from deciding public policy).  Currently, the wording of the amendment would prevent wills from being probated if a challenge is made to suggest that a “relationship” existed that was “like” marriage, or to challenge the legal contracts between same-gender partners.  This could also extend to property rights, health insurance and even foster parenting.

Personally, I have never advocated for same-gender marriage, and I'm not doing that right now.  This Amendment goes far beyond defining marriage.  In fact, it does nothing to strengthen marriage, or protect children from abusive parents (two claims often made to support this amendment).  If our legislators wanted to protect marriage, then they had the option to make divorce more difficult, create covenant marriage laws, or strengthen child abuse laws. Our legislators did none of this, and instead focused on preventing same-gender couples from having our relationships recognized in ANY form.  (Oh, and don't even get me started on the new law that prohibits cheerleaders from jiggling too much when pepping up crowds.)

Simply put, this amendment is not just about defining marriage, it's about writing discrimination into the Texas Bill of Rights – a document designed to protect Texas citizens.  If this amendment passes, it will be the first time that Texans will allow our State Constitution to actively discriminate against a group in Texas's history.

Chris and I have been working very hard to make our friends, and families aware of the real issues surrounding this amendment, and I would encourage you to forward this on to your friends and family to encourage them to vote against the amendment. This is so important to both of us.

Again, I am emailing you to encourage you to VOTE AGAINST this amendment. Please consider the impact that this amendment will have on your family, your friends and your neighbors – the people you love – who are in same-gender relationships.  Constitutional Amendment (Proposition) No. 2 is bad for Texas.

Now, more than ever, your involvement and support is so very important. Remember, that families matter, and my family needs your support to not allow this amendment to succeed.

Warm regards,
James

PS. You have until October 11, 2005 to get your voter registration in the mail.  You can download the application from the Texas Secretary of State's office at http://www.sos.state.tx.us/elections/voter/reqvr.shtml

If you would like more information on why this amendment is bad for Texas, please visit: