Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A letter to one of Arizona's top homophobes: Cathi Herrod

Dear Cathi Herrod,

Forgive me for raining on your big victory parade. And forgive me even more if I am not one of those who feels the need to congratulate you on your success in enshrining into our constitution the permanant second-class status of thousands of Arizonans, one of them my beloved son. In fact, forgive me, if I can only feel utter contempt and disgust at the mere mention of your name. You see, I'm not especially fond of hate mongers who try to disguise their bigotry and hate under the guise of "Family Values", "Christianity", and or "Protecting Marriage". And you are guilty of doing all three.

I can only imagine how much joy you are feeling long about now with the passage of that hate-filled Proposition 102 in Arizona, especially since you suffered such a bitter defeat just 2 years ago when the Arizona voters just couldn't pull the trigger for your first hateful attempt at stripping a whole class of people of the same basic rights that you and Arizona legislators like Karen Johnson enjoy (and "enjoy" may be a bit too subtle a word choice since your gal pal Karen seems to have enjoyed them so much she actually has five marriages under her self-righteous belt - but hey, she is a good STRAIGHT Mormon, so who's even noticing let alone counting.)

Good thing you finally got smart and learned from your mistakes back in 2006 when you tried to completely crush those nasty, icky gay folks with a much meaner, nastier amendment that would have banned gay marriage and prohibited granting unmarried couples any legal status similar to marriage. I guess you must have realized that in your hate-filled, homophobic zeal to completely crush any semblance of equality and fairness for gays and lesbians, you cast your net a little too wide and caught some straights who had the gall to be unmarried but enjoying the benefits of marriage through domestic partnerships. Woops. Big mistake. And it cost you.

So good on you. You went back to your drawing board and dedicated a good part of your life these past 2 years to trying to figure out what went wrong in 2006 and how you could remedy it. And You obviously figured out that as much as you wanted to make absolutely sure that gays and lesbians were as miserable and as invisible as you could make them, you had to make damn sure that your hate-filled proposition wouldn't accidentally touch anyone who had the good luck to be born with a sexual orientation that meets your and the Mormon church's approval. So I guess you'll have to go after any protections or tax advantages that gays and lesbians might have now in 2010.

But what I don't understand and I am hoping you can tell me is why, if you truly worry so much about protecting marriage, would you have wasted so much time, energy, and money on banning gays and lesbians from marrying? Do you really want my son entering into a sham marriage with some girl (quite possibly your daughter) that he doesn't love? I cannot imagine you could answer yes to that question, especially since we both know that those marriages almost inevitably end up in divorce with many innocent lives laying shattered in the collateral damage. And even a bigger question I have is WHY, if you truly worry so much about protecting marriage, wouldn't you have spent all of that time, energy, and money trying to find solutions to the real culprits that cause so many marriages to end up in divorce (or at the very least why you didn't just ask your good Morman gal pal Karen Johnson since she could have at least given you 5 good reasons marriages fail)?

Well good news Cathi. You don't have to answer the above questions, they were rhetorical. You and I already know the answers to those questions. So let me end this letter by just saying this. You, Cathi Herrod, are on the wrong side of history on this one. And I, Cathi Herrod, look forward to the day when my gay son and his husband's child comes home from school and asks his/her very proud grandmother (that would be me) to help him/her with his/her Arizona history homework. And I will gladly help him/her read the chapter about the AZ bigots of 2008 who didn't learn from the shameful mistakes of past bigots like the ones from the Jim Crow era. And you, Cathi Herrod, will have earned your very own place right up there with the most vile of them. And that Cathi, will be the very ugly legacy you leave Arizona.

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