The defense rested today in the Perry v Schwarzenegger Prop 8 Trial in San Francisco federal court. Judge Walker announced he'd be taking 30 days to "digest" the two weeks of testimony and set February 26th as the date he'll be ready to decide on a closing argument schedule.
So here's a foretaste of the NOT-so-heavenly banquet of Prop8 Trial post-mortem by the "Protect (our-but-not-your) Marriage" folks. I spied it yesterday on General Counsel Andy Pugno's blog which began:"Once again, religion was on trial this morning ..." No. In point of fact, what was on trial in Federal Court over these last two weeks was the abuse of religion as a weapon of mass disinformation in the 2008 Proposition 8 Campaign.
What was on trial was the use of money, resources and influence to fuel animus based bigotry by those hiding behind "freedom of religion" while attempting to inflict their view of religion on the rest of us.
What was on trial was a campaign to take rights away from gay and lesbian families based on the belief that since God does not equally bless the "lifestyle" of same sex couples then the Constitution should not equally protect them.
What was on trial was a homophobic attack on the foundational values of our constitutional democracy.
And while the defense may have rested today, in point of fact there IS no defense for allowing bigotry to trump the constitutionally protected rights of all Americans. None.
So let the "spin" begin. But remember at the end of the day it is the truth that will set us free.And what the truth can set us free to do is to stop fighting and fundraising and politicizing and demonizing in order to keep some Californians from being married and focus instead on supporting ALL Californians as we work to build stronger marriages. Stronger families. A stronger California and a stronger America.
For the truth is that families are not undermined by gay marriage. Families are undermined by poverty, joblessness, lack of health care, racism, discrimination, failing education systems and the deteriorating infrastructure of a state that should be pouring all its energy into supporting families -- not discriminating against gay and lesbian families.I rest my case.
The Rev. Canon Susan Russell is a Senior Associate at All Saints Church in Pasadena, CA., a member of the Sponsoring Committee of CFE and a frequent CFE spokesperson.