September 23, 2007

Seven Straight Nights For Equality Update

I'm very happy to see that things have really taken off with the Seven Straight Nights For Equality event. As of 9/22, 26 cities were listed that are having vigils.

Amy Buttery is leading the event in Lansing Michigan.

As GLBT allies, my husband and I hope to model for our boys the values of tolerance, of equality and justice, and of standing up for one's beliefs. We hope and expect that someday (perhaps soon?) they will model these attitudes through their behavior among their peers, even when it might be uncomfortable to do so, and we'll inch (or sprint) forward to a more equitable society, where families are defined by the bonds of love.

We are just learning about the ways we can actively participate in this movement, by identifying other straight allies and encouraging them to take a stand, by gently but insistently bringing up the issue at church and at other public settings, and by simply asking the community how we can help.

Plymouth Congregational Church is hosting a showing of the film "For The Bible Tells Me So," which reconciles homosexuality and scripture, and a candlelight vigil will follow outside the church.

Jack McKinney, the pastor or Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, is leading a vigil at the North Carolina state capitol in Raleigh.

His co-pastor, Nancy, and her partner Vickie have an adopted daughter. Only one of them is considered the legal parent of the child; the other partner is not allowed to adopt her. So if something tragic happens and the "legal" mother dies, there is no law protecting her wishes that her partner raise their daughter. Why? Because they have been in a committed relationship for 10 years? Because one is a minister and the other a teacher? No! Because they happen to love someone who is of the same gender.

Where is the fairness in this? Even at a young age our children expressed their disgust at this injustice. So what do we do? Tell our children, "Life is not fair?" No! We make choices to support our friends. We take a job in a church which supports LGBT people. We march and demonstrate for equal rights. We hold vigil. Come and join us as we not only tell our children "Life is not fair" but demonstrate how to be the change we want to see.

Kari Danskin will lead a vigil at Courthouse Square in Santa Rosa, California.

I don't see the justification in making LGBT rights a "straight issue," or just a "gay issue" for that matter; it's an issue of fairness and equality. Our constitution guarantees every individual's right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Marriage, respect and justice are all a part of that guarantee, regardless of color, sex, religious status or sexual orientation. How straight people can believe that allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry, adopt children or make medical decisions for their partners would affect their own marriages is beyond my comprehension.

I am too young to have been a part of the civil rights movement of the sixties, or the women's movement that followed. This is my chance to stand up for what is right. Today, only five states are without a statute or constitutional provision prohibiting same-sex marriage. It is imperative that the straight community stand up and be heard for their support of equal rights for all Americans.

I encourage you to visit the Seven Straight Nights home page to learn more about the leaders of this event and to see if there is one close enough for you to participate in.


  1. Great blog! I added you to my blogroll. I'd appreciate it if you'd consider linking back.

    Most blogs allow you to enter your blog url in a special field in the comment section. If the blog doesn't have that feature, then you will also need to put my url in the comment.

  2. Was out of town the night of the Raliegh vigil but understand it was meaningful. Having spent the last 20 plus years in staffing and human resources protecting the rights of workers, it escapes me how a whole group of highly contributing members of society still have to fight this fight here in Raleigh, NC.