Saturday, December 13, 2008

Getting ready for yuletide Prop 8 fallout

My boyfriend, my son and I will be spending the entire Christmas week with my sister and her family in Utah. My sister holds orthodox LDS views on (as far as I can tell) all subjects. On politics and religion she and I agree on virtually nothing. She likes me but would rather that the whole gay thing just go away.

I have not talked to her about Prop 8, but I feel confident that she is completely behind the Church's recent involvement in rolling back gay rights. I think that this comment from one of the LDS blogs might sum up the way she thinks:

I’m a Californian. I know not one or two but many people who identify themselves as gay. Yet like most in the LDS community and most in the Christian community I voted Yes on proposition 8.

I’m not ashamed of my vote because I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ nor of his prophets President Monson or Elder Ballard who specifically addressed this issue to Californian members. I knew it would potentially be hurtful to gays. Yet I also know the commitment required by my faith.

I'm sure that my sister (and my brother-in-law and my nieces and nephews who are in their 20s) will be kind to Tobi. They have met him before and think he's cute and nice.

I'm sure that my son will have a great time with his cousins. He's spent most of the Christmases of his life with his cousins, who are math and science geeks just like him. (We go to my sister's every year.)

I'm not so sure how I will do. My feelings about the Church's involvement in anti-gay ballot measures are still running high. I am feeling under siege because of Tobi's uncertain visa situation that is directly impacted by the unequal treatment of gay relationships under civil law. I'm afraid that I'm not going to be able to hold my tongue if the topic comes up at the dinner table.

I am resolved to leave the room if the subject of gay rights or gay anything comes up. I just hope I can keep my resolution. I'm leaking at the seams and ready to blow.


Sarah said...

Good luck. I sympathize with the anxiety you are feeling. At home, Scott and I openly discuss gay issues. Around his family, if either of us makes any kind of passing remark about one of our friends or the party we had or whatever, everyone seems to clam up. We apparently can't be ourselves around them, but they still treat us with love and respect. I guess I should be grateful for that at the very least.

Anyway, I really hope your holiday goes well and that you have a good time.

And while you are here, maybe we could arrange to meet you and Tobi, if you are going to be anywhere near SLC. :)

Mr. Fob said...

That would be tough. Best of luck and I hope you enjoy the trip.

J G-W said...

Your resolution to stay away from that topic is probably wise...

I remember a few years ago having a very heated discussion along these lines with my brother and my sister's then husband (now divorced). It was back in the bad old days before G├Âran's birth certificate had been found, and we lived in fear regarding his own citizenship status. I was so angry. My family just didn't get it. It was not pleasant. Things were said I have since many times wished could be unsaid.

Progress in this arena, I think, depends on our ability to stay steady and patient, and to keep working. We should keep telling our stories as the opportunity presents, and focus on convincing those who are willing to be convinced rather than arguing with those who -- for religious or other reasons -- are unwilling to reconsider their positions.

Judy said...

I know this is well past the time and place...but I hope everything turned out well...or as well as you could have hoped for. Sometimes family is hard. The perfect picture of the family that thinks alike, believes alike, and deals with "life" in all the same ways...most often does not exist these days.

I hope your time with your family was peaceful and calm, to whatever extent you hoped for! Sometimes we can't expect much more. I know...I have dealt with this for years. And I am not even gay!

So, to you, I wish a happy new year, prosperity (Please wish me the same!), peace of mind, and an renewed energy to fight for civil equality and constitutional rights! Amen!!

MoHoHawaii said...

Sarah, Mr. Fob, J G-W and Judy,

Thank you so much for your good wishes and concern. I will make a follow-up post, which I know is way overdue.