Monday, January 31, 2011

State Of The Civil Union

Wow there's a lot of civil unionizing going on!.. Today, the governor of Illinois signed The Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Unions Act bringing many of the protections and responsibilities of marriage....minus the the citizens of Illinois. In similar news Hawaii advances one step closer to passing it's own civil protections with its own civil union bill passing the senate stop, the state House of Representatives. Cross your fingers.... Hawaii has been fighting this fight for a long time and it would be nice to see something finally happen there. AND...if that's not enough for you..Colorado is beginning it's own push for same-sex civil unions.

Marriage has been such a major battleground for gay rights...and sometimes the discussion finds it's way to the superiority of marriage over Civil Unions and Domestic Partnerships in terms of protections and perceptions of equality. And when people claim that should be happy with civil unions, I will be one of the first to hall out the separate but unequal analogies. But that's only because I forget how spoiled I am. I forget what it was like to not even have the protections of domestic partnership. Though I do remember how I held my relationship as a marriage in my heart and no ones opinions or pieces of paper could tell me different.

Then one day...after a night out with Jay in the city, we were having breakfast in a Denny's when he handed me a card with his proposal in it and I cried like a baby....right in the middle of the restaurant. It felt so incredible  to go to the court house and sign our Domestic Partnership papers, even though  all we had was just a paper to ceremony, no guests, no wedding gifts, and no reception...but at the time it was all we had, and it felt for all the world like a fairy tale wedding in Westminster cathedral. That first step became a building block to so much I have the honor of calling Jay my husband and that is something I never thought I would see in my lifetime.

 Congrats to the good folks of Illinois...may your unions be truly joyous affairs filled with all the promise of a lifetime of love. And Hawaii....I am keeping you in my thoughts. Your day is coming any minute now. And Colorado...kudos to you. We all hope to be celebrating your unions some day soon as well. And may these first happy unions be the beginning of so much more joy to come for you all.

Bryan and Jay


  1. So true, as much as I don't like seperate but equal systems as they are never truly equal, I'm glad to curantly reside in a state That has a truly seperate bye equal domestic partnerships, as they are the same as marriage in everything but name. Its world's better then not Havering them at all.

  2. As a former Chicagoan, I'm very happy that Illinois is finally taking a step towards full marriage equality. And it is just a step. Eventually, when people realize civilization won't collapse as a result of "Civil Partnerships," Full equality will follow. "The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice..."

    I also agree that it is what you feel in your heart that matters. I was married in my Unitarian Univeralist Church in Stillwater, OK and I consider it a marriage even though there is no legal recognition of it. I call my husband, husband even though, now living in Nebraska, it isn't legally true. It's true to me and my husband, our friends and parts of our families, and our faith community (Unitarian Church of Lincoln, where a Marriage Equality banner was proudly displayed along a busy street along its tour of UU churches across the country).

  3. If we must crawl before we walk as equals, so be it. It is progress and I can not fault that. Sometimes the concessions of compromise build a dialogue for the future.

    It is ultimately how we feel with each other that truly matters. Community recognition is wonderful but in the end it is really about love.

  4. You build a wall 5ft tall
    One brick at a time,
    A 1ft stone or 4in one.

    Three steps forward two steps back,
    why bother with the three?
    Why not only one?
    1-2=-1. Every opportunity is

    A step. Grasp it,
    Plaster it with mortar,
    Foolish pride 1/3 rejects
    Blind to childish truth

    Who are we to say
    5≠5 ? Who are we, to deny equality?

  5. In Brazil the Supreme Court said in official document that the Gay Union will be solved (positively or not) this very month. It's been delayed since February 2008.

  6. Very happy to hear positive words about my state of Illinois. I was disappointed it was not called marriage, but happy it is everything but. I am a straight female, and seriously wishing to change my marriage in to a civil union, since that is the same for all in Illinois.