From the National Center for Lesbian Rights:
The California Supreme Court has agreed to hear our challenge to Prop 8. That is good news, but we still must convince the Court that Prop 8 cannot stand. The lawsuit alleges that Prop 8 is too serious a change to the California Constitution to be enacted through the initiative process. In its very title, which was “Eliminates the right to marry for same-sex couples,” the initiative eliminated an existing right only for a targeted minority. If permitted to stand, Prop 8 would be the first time an initiative has successfully been used to change the California Constitution to take away an existing right only for a particular group. Such a change would defeat the very purpose of a constitution and fundamentally alter the role of the courts in protecting minority rights. According to the California Constitution, such a major revision of our state Constitution cannot be enacted through a simple majority vote, but must first be approved by two-thirds of the Legislature.
In May, this Court issued one of the most important human rights decisions from any state court in our nation’s history. The ruling not only eliminated the exclusion of same-sex couples from the right to marry, it also held that any type of government discrimination based on sexual orientation is subject to the strictest constitutional review. The ruling was courageous, brilliant, and honored the finest tradition of our judiciary: exercising its role in assuring that everyone enjoys full equal protection of the laws.
Now with Prop 8, not only is the ruling on marriage threatened, but the Court’s very role in interpreting and applying the fundamental constitutional principle of equal protection is under threat. Sadly, the duplicitous forces who ran the Yes on 8 Campaign are threatening the Court in the press with a recall effort if the Court invalidates Prop 8. That kind of attack on the independence of the Court is a serious threat to our democracy. The leaders behind the lies that fueled Yes on 8 don’t care about undermining the constitution and we know they certainly don’t care about equality, honesty and fair play. So, we must be the ones to stand up not only for our rights, but for the very concept of equal protection for all.
We need your help to educate the public about the importance of this case! We need you to talk to your friends and family, attend rallies and marches, post and comment on blogs, and write letters to the editor. As you do, please remember to applaud the Court and remind your audience of the threat that Prop 8 represents. We have examples of blog comments and letters to the editor to help you here: http://www.nclrights.org/site/PageServer?pagename=nclr_getinvolved_whatyoucando
Also, on our homepage (http://www.nclrights.org/site/PageServer
) you can download and read all the legal papers filed by many groups asking the Court to invalidate Prop 8. I hope you will take a moment to read through these arguments—they will help in understanding the full threat posed by Prop 8 and how critical it is that we speak out in support of the Court striking down Prop 8.
As we head into the Thanksgiving holiday, I am looking forward to time with my family—finally—and to a moment to reflect on the past months and what they mean for our future. There is no doubt that we face many challenges in the days and months ahead. There is no doubt that we have come through literally the best and worst of times. And there is no doubt that whatever happens next, we are in this together. I’m giving thanks for that.
This is important even to those of us who live in California but it is especially important for Californians to write letters to their newspaper editors and to post in their blogs.