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The Fight is Not Over

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Hey ladies, everyone’s favorite Top Butch is back!!!!! It’s Raye and she wrote this just for us. :) 

 

By now, everyone is aware of the recent SCOTUS ruling against DOMA. This new development sparked a flurry of new marriage equality lawsuits against states who refuse to recognize a federally accepted same sex marriage. Protests are ringing out all over the country and people are choosing sides.

Many straight people I have spoken with, are under the assumption that our battle is over. Others think we should be happy with the proverbial crumbs we have been given from the floor under the table of society. They don’t realize that the SCOTUS did not completely demolish DOMA and that states are still free to discriminate and oppress legally married LGBT people. Meanwhile the majority of states (a whopping 70% of them) still have laws and sometimes even constitutional bans against marriage equality. The conservatives still cry out saying that marriage equality will lead to polygamy, incest, and bestiality. They treat us as nothing more than sex-crazed subhumans and blame us for the degradation of society and the desecration of the institute of marriage.

All of this has been extremely personal for my wife and I. We were recently married legally in Connecticut but we reside in Texas. The people in the Connecticut courthouse saw our Texas ID’s and smiled with a seemingly pained expression of compassion, congratulating us on our marriage. I have to wonder if they get many out of state LGBT folks coming to them for legal validation, and if they do… do they feel like part of something bigger? A civil rights movement as in the days of protesting Jim Crow laws?

My wife and I felt a fundamental difference in our treatment while we were in Connecticut. No one gave us side-glances. No one grudgingly served our dinner in restaurants while giving us eye daggers or avoiding eye contact all together. We walked into every business we patronized and were met with cordial, inviting people. Our hotel concierge was a transgendered woman who had fled north from Alabama.

None of this was new to me as I had lived in Connecticut for almost four years before moving back to Texas. I went there as a straight married woman, but went through my coming out process there and returned to Texas an out butch lesbian. I immediately saw stark contrasts in my treatment as a butch in Texas, but after a few years I guess I had learned to ignore the sting of it. It had been seven years since I had been back to New England. And with the reminder of what my life could be like, I began to realize that “southern hospitality” was something reserved for heterosexual white people. The rest of us are not seen as worthy of respect, sometimes not even seen as human beings. We’re just “faggots, queers, and homos,” and let’s not forget… “abominations”. Herein lies the problem.

So when we returned home to Texas, we were met with a whole new list of questions for what this means for us as a married couple. We began trying to find a lawsuit to lend our names to, in order to try to help change things for LGBT people in the South. Texas is a state with a constitutional amendment banning not only gay marriage, but domestic partnerships, civil unions, and the recognition of anything remotely resembling marriage equality. We flew back from New England to our home where we pay taxes and stashed our marriage certificate in a safe.

Prior to our “legal” marriage, we had a wedding in Galveston with about 25 supportive friends and three of my family members. My parents did not attend. Her parents did not attend. We wear our wedding rings everywhere we go and my wife had her name legally changed to match mine. But still, in Texas we struggle to explain to our friends and medical professionals at doctor’s appointments, and our bank tellers who handle our affairs, what this means. “You’re married?” they ask.

“How does that work?”

“Is that legal?”

“I thought Texas doesn’t allow gay marriage.”

This list goes on and on making our lives a constant political conversation and often alienating people who posed as our friends until a discussion shows their true feelings on the subject. Most times they are ok with us being a couple… just as long as we don’t get to share the word “marriage”, because clearly they do not feel our relationship is worthy of the word. Meanwhile their heterosexual divorce rates keep climbing. These are the passive aggressive conservatives.

All of this was beginning to frustrate me greatly. I began to think about how to protest this situation in a way that would get conservatives to recognize the folly of their “slippery slope” argument. And then it dawned on me… polygamy is legal now thanks to the conservative bigoted states who have enacted gay marriage ban amendments defining “marriage” as between one man and one woman. Then I got an even grander idea… tell all the polygamists who want federal tax credits for their dependent spouses to join in this protest. Here is how you do it:

First go to one of the states where gay marriage is legal and have one wife marry the other wife. Then go to a state where there is a constitutional amendment defining “marriage” as between one man and one woman and have one of the wives marry the husband. You might think they could not get away with this because marriage applications require that you state truthfully that you are not already married in another state. But here is where they screwed themselves: if they define marriage as between one man and one woman, then you can legally say to them that you are not “married” by their definition so you are free to marry your opposite sex husband. If you want two husbands and a wife, you could do this as well. The key is to get married first to your same sex partner and then to your opposite sex partner in the bigot state. They now have state sanctioned polygamy (their worst nightmare… well except for the bestiality, which hillbillies already do anyway) and there is nothing they can do about it.

After that, proceed to file joint federal tax returns with your spouses as your dependents and state taxes with your opposite spouse as your dependent. Because the government now has to acknowledge that you are married in two different states to two different people, or try to nullify one of your marriages by “overruling the laws of the states” which is a big no-no to conservatives trying to ban marriage equality in their state. Follow this simple protest and you have now given the conservative idiots refusing to recognize gay marriages from other states a taste of their own irony. They allow legalized polygamy due to their refusal to recognize the sanctity of OUR marriages. How about them apples?

My wife won’t let me do it. But I’m counting on you guys to get it done. Show the conservatives that they are the ones promoting polygamy and indeed have already legalized it. And polygamists… enjoy.

7 Responses to “The Fight is Not Over”

  1. Rexie August 2, 2013 at 5:05 pm Permalink

    Hey, Raye! Leave it to you to find a loophole to give conservative bigots a headache. It’s a priceless! On another note, best wishes to you and your lovely wife! I am so happy for the both of you. Despite all of the prejudice you must tolerate in your home state, you both did what so many others can only dream of and that is to find the love of your life and then marry her!

  2. Raye August 3, 2013 at 6:43 am Permalink

    Thanks Rexie! Where have you been all my life? I’ve missed you!

  3. Rexie August 3, 2013 at 10:59 am Permalink

    You’ve got the swagger and charm, more than ever, Raye. That’s what a good relationship does, isn’t it? Expands the best parts of you? I’ve missed you, too, friend. We’ll catch up one of these days.

  4. Daniel August 3, 2013 at 7:05 pm Permalink

    Hi, Top Butch! I’m from Mexico and I’m really sorry that you live in such a backward country… Ha, ha, ha! OK, I see that this time I’ll have to start apologizing for my poor sense of humor earlier than I used to. Man, it only gets worse with time. Anyhow… I guess that what I wanted to say is that, even thou I fully undestand that the situation up there is quite worrying, I can’t help feeling that matters are a lot uglier down here. You see, in Mexico abortion is banned everywhere but in one place: our D.C. And only there exists something close to civil union for gay couples. For the rest of the country, reproductive and sexual rights are still where we left them in the Middle Ages.

    Now, I’m not saying that in Mexico we’re burning homosexuals at the stake by the dozen. As far as I know, bigotry is not any more (or less) rampant here than in the States, at least, among the general population. But, for one reason or other, our legislative bodies are visibly less prepared to make the change than yours.

    I really hope more and more of your States get wiser, and soon. First of all, just because that’s the right thing to do, everywhere in the world, but also because it might help us to have such a good example close to home to advance things around here.

  5. Raye August 3, 2013 at 10:32 pm Permalink

    Hi Daniel. I know there are many countries that have it worse regarding gay rights. But I think you are right when you say that our country can be a catalyst for change elsewhere. Unfortunately our leaders and citizens don’t think it is important to speak out against human rights violations for gays around the globe. We have seen this evidenced by the fact that the U.S. is not boycotting the 2014 Olympics in Russia. Instead of making a statement that we will not support laws that persecute LGBT individuals, our leaders accept a weak promise not to arrest our gay athletes as long as they stay silent about their lives while in Russia. This is total bullshit.

    In the case of Mexico, I would think you guys have much more life threatening issues to tackle first, like how to stop drug cartels from running your country and brutally killing off thousands every year. I’m not saying gay rights are not an important issue in Mexico or anywhere else for that matter. But I am saying y’all seem to have more dangerous threats that need to be addressed first. Maybe the situation is not as bad as it looks from here but seeing videos of people getting their heads chopped off by Zetas with chainsaws seems pretty fucked up to me. Either way my prayers are with you. I can’t imagine how hard that must be for you.

  6. AnieGrrl August 4, 2013 at 4:24 pm Permalink

    Oh this is golden! I love it. I understand this a little to well. My fiance and I have been debating our marriage. She spends most of her time in Ohio with me, but is a resident of California. We’ve been talking about possibly getting married in California but since we spend most of the time in Ohio and Ohio (like Texas) is a major pain in the ass, we keep putting it off. The only way we see it working at the moment is if by getting married in California I would somehow be made a resident of California to receive those state benefits. The whole thing is a lot more complicated than it should be.

  7. Raye August 5, 2013 at 4:17 am Permalink

    It is ridiculously complicated all because some bigots don’t want to treat us as equal. The federal courts think they are dodging responsibility by narrowly ruling on these laws instead of striking them down as unconstitutional altogether. But in reality they are making a huge clusterfuck by allowing states to determine who is worthy of civil rights. If this protest is enacted, it would force the hand of federal government to make a decision. Either they allow states to discriminate causing trouble and headaches for everyone for the sake of not intervening in state’s laws, or they force states to enforce full faith and credit clauses equally with no discrimination. I really think this could create some waves.

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