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Prop 8 protests, both public and personal

November 17, 2008

Protesters across the nation demonstrated their displeasure at the passage of California’s Proposition 8 yesterday, and with any luck, gave the gay-rights movement some much-needed momentum. I know a number of people who were involved in the various demonstrations, and I’ve heard they were moving, massive, and momentous.

My friend Dima Otvertchenko called Saturday “a day to remember.” He also took some great pictures of the rally in Los Angeles, and they make me feel all warm, fuzzy and empowered inside. Check ’em out:

You can see more of them here.

My friend Nori, above left, told me she wore her rainbow Batman shirt specifically for the march. “Though I suspect the ‘Straight Against H8’ sign Dima and I had broke a few hearts,” she noted sagely. (Soon you’ll be able to see her thoughts on marching over at her own blog.)

Sara Perle, a friend of mine who’s a law student in New York City, says The New York Times underestimated the protest there with its guess of 4,000 people. She told me that a friend of hers who volunteered had a somewhat better view than she did and thought there were about 20,000 people there.

“I could only see a very small part of it because it was so packed I couldn’t get around the corner!” Sara said. “They had traffic basically down to one lane on Broadway and people totally packed on either side of the street.”

She also suggested you look up estimates of the turnout at the protest nearest you.

Another friend of mine posted a note on Facebook describing the rally in Santa Barbara, Calif. which he said featured speakers from all walks of life talking about why this is something we need to protest.

It all sounds very moving, and I’m sorry to have missed it, but it was my boyfriend’s birthday this weekend, and he had to work. So while everyone was protesting, I was up in Fishkill, N.Y. doing laundry, grabbing a last-minute card and one final gift, and then going out to dinner.

I rationalized missing everything by deciding that celebrating him would be my own form of protest. While I didn’t get them to do the birthday “gong parade” to our intimate table for two at O’Sho in Poughkeepsie, I did give him a pile of presents the next morning, making him a very happy 25-year-old.

So to all of you who protested, please accept my sincere thanks! And to you who voted for Prop 8, I say this:

Too bad! I still love him, and that’s not something you can change with a poorly reasoned law.

Happy birthday, honey!

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