Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Write-wing conspiracy

I don't like politics, but I don't like feeling powerless either. Today (encouraged by my friend Beckie Bittle who submitted a opinion piece to the Lancaster Sunday News) I wrote to my state senator who introduced the Marriage Amendment (SB 1250)to the state legislature. He wants to change the PA constitution to put a limit on our rights. It is a proactive stance from a Senator who represents a very conservative constituency to get to the laws before the liberal judges do. I don't think it will surprise anyone who read my novel SUMMERS AT BLUE LAKE that I believe that gay marriage should be allowable and dare I say...celebrated. It's love, and it's not a choice. Who are we to block love? I try not to wear my politics out with me because I don't want to get into bigger battles than I can take on. My verbal volleying skills are limited to paper. But this amendment doesn't just shut down marriage between people of the same sex, it denies health coverage to families, it changes the way domestic violence cases are handled. Not married? Then it isn't domestic violence. And if this amendment does get passed...does that mean my own marriage is more sacred? Please! I just think that more is at stake with this proposal than most people realize. Pennsylvania was founded by the Quakers on a basis of religious tolerance. It is fine for a person to oppose gay marriage because he or she does not believe in it, but let's not legislate against it. I asked Senator Brubaker, who just happened to be a member of the church where Mark and I got married (for all I know--he still is), and asked him to use his time to take a stand against hate crimes and prejudice instead of taking a stand against my rights.
The moral of this story is that by writing, I felt powerful today. I urge everyone, even those who have politics that are different than mine, to find an issue you feel passionately about and take the time to write to your representatives in the legislature. We get to vote, and that is a great thing, but why limit yourself to feeling powerful 2 times a year? In the words of Henriette Klauser (and the title of a great book) Write it Down; Make it Happen.

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