These are my friends, Chris and Bill, and their two children. The photo by the swimming pool was taken at our house two and a half years ago. Those darling kids in the picture are three and four years old now!

Chris and I became friends in our first year of law school. I know him to be one of the warmest, smartest, and most decent men I have the honor to call my friend. Bill is a man of grace, dignity, and quiet strength. Their family have been guests in our home, and our family has been to theirs. Chris and Bill’s dining room table is equipped with booster seats, their bathroom has a potty chair, and their shelves have Baby Einstein DVDs and board books.

Over the years Chris and Bill have supported my children by doing things like buying Girl Scout cookies from Laura, ordering wrapping paper and pizza cards for Courtney’s high school sports teams, and helping Kristen with a college research project.

I am sharing a glimpse into the lives of Chris and Bill because today Chris sent me an email. He asked me to help support his family, as he has supported mine.

I have signed my name to the petition at the Courage Campaign, and Chris asked me to pass along the message that more signatures are needed.

From the Courage Campaign website:

On December 19, 2008, Ken Starr and the Prop 8 Legal Defense Fund filed legal briefs defending the constitutionality of Prop 8 and seeking to nullify the marriages of 18,000 devoted same-sex couples solemnized before Prop 8 passed.

The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in this case on March 5, with a decision expected within 90 days. We . . . ask that the Court enforce the equality promised to each of us by our constitution and invalidate Prop 8.

Today I’m asking you to look at the photos of Chris, Bill, and their two children, and then look deep into your heart. If you agree with me that the beautiful family pictured deserves the same legal protection under the law that my family and yours enjoy, then please click over now and sign the petition before the submission deadline on February 14, 2009.

UPDATE: The Courage Campaign has extended the signing deadline to March 2, 2009. You do not have to sign in person, be a registered voter, or even a U.S. or California citizen to sign. (This is not a petition for a ballot initiative, which has different requirements.) By signing online you will add your name to the Courage Campaign’s letter to the state Supreme Court asking that it invalidate Prop 8. Please take a moment to join me, and over 225,000 230,000 280,000 300,000 330,000 350,000 others, in sending a message to judges and lawmakers that we the people want all marriages between two loving adults to have equal protection under the law.

Click here: Courage Campaign Petition

59 comments on “Today I’m Asking You”

  1. DUDE! How many times can I sign that petition? Do you think it would be bad if I just submit my signature like 10,000 times?

    I will also email everyone I know!

  2. I’m signing even though I’m not a resident of California. My hope is that Prop 8 will be turned over, nullified, burned at the stake or whatever. Hopefully the movement for equality will start to spread across the country, much like sushi and tofu. It should take a mere 20 years to reach Georgia.

  3. Dear Cheri,
    Chris is my brother. I love him very much. I am grateful every day to have a big brother that has stood by my side,been my friend,my protector,a voice of wisdom and sometimes,a port in the storm. Bill is a remarkable man,who is one of a very few who possess the same quality my grandfather had, which is to make you feel like you are the most important person in the room. A rare gift indeed. Julie & Mitchell are my neice & nephew. They are amazing,beautiful,miraculous. They are my family. Thank you Cherie.
    Connie Brown

  4. I saw that video yesterday – inspiring and heartbreaking considering the circumstances as to why it was made.
    I would so sign that petition if I lived there!
    And I realize how fortunate I am to live in Canada.

  5. Did this yesterday my love when I put it on my Facebook page. Thanks again for putting faces and names to the 10,000 Californians who will lose their marriages if Mr. and Mrs. Ignorance and Prejudice have their way.

  6. Katie:

    Your question is excellent.

    The petition for a ballot initiative must follow specific guidelines in terms of format, circulation, and signature as set forth by the California Secretary of State. A link to those guidelines is here.

    Opinions about the legal standing and effectiveness of online petitions gathered in grassroots efforts to raise awareness and/or get the attention of politicians and judges are all over the Interwebs. When deciding whether to sign one, even (or especially) for a cause in which we believe wholeheartedly, it is good to ask some questions:

    Who sponsors or runs the site or organization?

    What are the names of the individuals or groups involved?

    To whom will the petition be presented?

    How is it expected to make a difference?

    Will they publish results?

    And here is the big one (at least for me):

    Are they using the petition merely to gather mailing list information, i.e., will they honor a request to not be included in any mailing list?

    Thanks Katie!

  7. I’m a godless, burning in hell Canadian (we’ve had legal same-sex marriage since 2005), but I’ll sign away!

    I ran across a very interesting site a few weeks ago. It’s a google map combined with the database of people who donated to help get prop 8 passed. I wonder if they had any idea that they could be publicly labelled as fearful phobes?

  8. Done and done. I’m a follower of Gary Rith’s blog. I have thanked him for his post and am now thanking you for yours. I have also thrown this up on Facebook and my blog. Even though I am not a CA resisdent and am unsure if my signature counts, I am sure that any support helps. Thank you for working towards equal rights for all.

  9. Gladly! A loving family like this is invaluable to growing children. When I think what is allowed to pass for “family” in the heterosexual community it makes me ill. I’m off to sign.

  10. Hey Everyonel:

    Do you have to be a U.S. or California resident/registered voter?

    Good question!

    Unlike as is the case with a ballot initiative petition, you do not have to be a resident of the U.S. or California to sign the online letter at Courage Campaign.

    Thanks.

  11. I’m not sure how I found my way to you, burning bunny or janet, perhaps (I always seem to have too many tabs open in firefox hehe), but thanks for this. We Cali gays appreciate you. I needed to let you know that.
    !!!Thank you!!!

  12. I support their right to live a full and happy life as a family and raise their sweet children together. I am hopping over to sign, if Canadians are allowed.

  13. I know not all states have it figured out yet, but I’m proud to be Iowan, where same sex marriage is legal. 🙂

    I’m on my way to sign……

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