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"I am a fugitive! I am hunted by the mob! I am wanted by the cops! I am forgotten by decent women!"
Ad for the 1939 movie "They Made Me a Criminal"

Okay. I confess. I attend the wedding of Richard Neal and Christopher Williams in the Texas Discovery Gardens at Fair Park this weekend. Flaunting the Texas state law banning gay marriage, these two men vowed to love, honor and cherish each other till death do them part. And that makes me and the couple of hundred other attendees who were there to support them accessories to a crime...

We were all John Garfield in that old Busby Berkeley movie, "They Made Me A Criminal." We are now all condemned to a life beyond the law because two people love each other. One bad law made a bunch of otherwise normal, middle class taxpaying people into a gang of scofflaws. Surely we were all heading down that slippery slope that leads to sex with turtles as former Senator Rick Santorum warns.

That’s the thing about laws that are so happily violated—it just makes it harder for us scofflaws to respect the Law with a capital el in general. Because the whole gay marriage issue is, in reality, a non-issue . Two people declared their love and devotion to each other before their friends and family. And after the wedding the couple returned to the home they’ve been living in together for over five years. This was hardly "the end of Western Civilization as we know it" that many gay marriage detractors portray.

Many tears of joy were shed during the ceremony. As I watched Rich and Chris say their vows, I asked myself why anybody would want to stop this? How can the same people who rail against government intrusion into their lives support the State telling a happy couple of consenting adults they cannot legally marry? Just what are those who oppose gay marriage afraid of?

For the Law to be respected, the Law must first respect the rights and dignity of those who live under those laws. In the case of laws banning gay marriage, the basic rights of "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness" are being denied to many of our friends and neighbors. If you have the chance to break the law and participate in the wedding of two people of the same sex, I urge all of you to join me in a life of crime.

Let them make you a criminal too.

Originally posted to Dallas Dem on Mon Sep 21, 2009 at 10:55 AM PDT.

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