At 12am today, gay and lesbians were lined up at the Boulder County Clerk and Recorder’s office to get their civil union licenses. Parties were being held, organizations were offering free officiating of civil union ceremonies, our friends were there to celebrate, even my straight Rabbi was there in support of us queer couples. But we weren’t there.
While YES, this is big news for Colorado -- which in the past has been named, (by the glbtq community), “the-great-hate-state", I still have a bit of a bad taste in my mouth about it.
At first I thought I was just being cynical because we don’t get enough sleep in this house, so not wanting to stay up until midnight just makes me feel old. And tired. Then I thought it was because of the rollercoaster ride that our relationship has been on since the birth of our son. Everyone says it changes everything, but you can NEVER know how it will change. And shit… has it changed.
And then I thought my cynicism was because we are sometimes on the same page about baby number two and then in the blink of an eye, we are shelved in different library systems. And then I thought it was because what we did to ensure that we had medical power of attorney, parental rights, and other protections costing us thousands of dollars to our lawyer, case worker, and court fees, now gay and lesbian couples can get for $20 and a few signatures. But it’s not even that. I’m thrilled to be a shoulder that younger glbtq folks can stand on to get closer to having equal rights. God knows I stood on the shoulders of
of glbtq folks who endured the unspeakable so that I may live in relative safety and comfort as an OUT
queer family in our liberal crunchy town. The fact is that civil union is still SEPARATE AND STILL NOT EQUAL.
We do gain some rights, lots of rights…. And they are important rights. But we do not gain ALL of the more than 1,138 federal rights, protections and responsibilities automatically granted to married heterosexual couples. The law says that we can adopt children as a couple now, but it doesn’t clearly state anything about parental rights. My understand is … that if we continue to live in Colorado, then Jenn will have rights to any additional children we have (without needing to do another 2nd parent adoption). But if we cross the state line, then our rights go right out the window. How is that fair?
And… we already got “married”/”commitmented” or whatever you want to call it…. FIVE AND 1/2 Years ago. And there is no way my size 10 butt will fit into my size 6 wedding dress. (DAMN, I did love that dress)! So if I’m not thrilled about this civil union thing, you may understand why.
And Jenn and I are having a hard enough time coming together to plan a date night, so the thought of planning a civil union ceremony (even if it is just us with or without a handful of family/friends) feels daunting.
Okay, so maybe I’m
a bit cynical. Maybe I do need more sleep and need to get to the gym more often to get rid of the grumps.... But I don’t think it’s all without