The issue came up in a phone call my partner got from his mother while I was washing cups in the bathroom sink (no kitchen at the moment-- ahh, home renovations!).
"Oh, do I have something to discuss with you!" he said. Something in the tone of his voice told me he would dread bringing this up with me.
"What did I do?!" I asked.
"Oh, YOU didn't do anything...."
Background: Now that same-sex marriage is legal in California, my partner and I decided to get married. We've been together for over 5 1/2 years, we're completely dedicated to each other, so why not? Granted, doing it during a house reno wasn't great timing, but we've managed to put together an intimate, fun, low-key beach wedding followed by a little catered reception at my partner's parents' house. His mother has gummed up things by inviting friends of hers that we don't know-- or have particularly fond feelings toward-- but we figured they could come to the reception (which, by the way, we are paying for). The wedding's in a bit less than two weeks. In our invitation, we ask attendees to not give us gifts other than their presence-- and a small donation to Equality California to help keep same-sex marriage legal.
"My mom says 'Cindy' (name changed to protect the trollish and idiotic) won't give to Equality California because she doesn't believe in same-sex marriage. But she supports us. And she'll make it up to us at Christmas."
'Cindy' is the spinster daughter of a deceased friend of my mother-in-law's (my M-I-L feels some kind of obligation to keep in touch with this woman). She's a perfectly miserable creature who can occasionally be sweet, but usually is just irritating. But who knew she was such a religious bigot?!
I hit the roof. "Call your mother back and tell her to tell 'Cindy' to go to Hell. Your mother's friend is not welcome at our wedding. She is not welcome at our wedding reception. She is not welcome in my house. I never want to see her again. If we go to your parents' house and she's there, we are leaving. I'll be DAMNED if she sits her fat ass down in my presence on OUR wedding day and eats the food WE pay for, and says she can't support same-sex couples getting married. If I see her face that day, I will collect up you, the rest of our family and our friends and we will go do our own thing. And I will send your mother every goddamn bill for the wedding we have paid for."
A couple of angry phone calls later and 'Cindy' is uninvited. We think. Like all Republicans, she lives in a constant state of cognitive dissonance, so who knows if the reality of "She is not welcome" will cut through the constant buzz of "Well, those two fags are OK, they invite me to their cookouts, they can get married, but if any others want to, that's just icky, EEEEWWWWWWWWW!"?
So now my partner and I are livid at this horrible excuse for a human being that we thought was better than this. How can someone divide people into "those that she can deny full human rights to" and "those that can have full human rights because I know them and they invite me to cookouts"?! My mother-in-law feels caught in the middle. Was I wrong to fly off the handle like this? Have I become intolerant?
I don't think so; why should I tolerate HATE? Especially when my partner and I are footing the entire bill for this shindig, AND planning the setup and cleanup of the reception location (the back yard)?! Why should our special day be ruined by this?
I've decided I will stand up for myself and what I believe in. I won't put up with intolerance any longer. Of ANY kind.
We have an important election coming up. Things look a bit bleak at the moment. Sometimes I despair at the seeming bottomless well of stupid that the American people can tap into. But I have decided that I can't give up. We ALL have to decide what is worth fighting for. And we have to make a stand. This is bigger than I. Or my partner. Or this stupid woman 'Cindy'.
This country is completely and utterly screwed up thanks to stupid people. It's time to take it back. Get involved so everyone gets a fair shake.
Let's get Barack in office. Let's vote down Proposition 8. But let's do something NOW.