28 October 2008

No on 8!

Tonight I was minding my own business, getting ready to go to the swimming pool for my thrice-weekly hour of jumping around in the water like a lunatic at aqua aerobics when I saw a tweet pop up on my computer screen.

"Saw Yes on 8 protesters at Mills & Main" wrote Luna-X, one of my hometown twitterers. She is someone I have never met, but know as a kindred spirit from her tweets.

Proposition 8 on the California ballot seeks to make gay marriage, which is now legal in our fine state, illegal AGAIN. I would be crushed to see it pass.

"I have markers and cardboard - you wanna go?" I tweeted back.

And just like that, a counter protest was born. I put on my cute dress (might as well look nice if you are going to be standing on a street corner) and my Superhero necklace (for love and power!), made a "No on H8TE" sign and headed out.

I got to the very wide, very busy street corner before Luna-X and there were only two sign-wavers, standing back from the street a bit. I could not see their signs, but I thought I would alert them to my presence.

I stuck my fingers in my mouth and whistled. I can whistle LOUD. To my great surprise, the protesters smiled and waved and then shook their signs "No on 8"!



Turns out the Yes on 8 people had been there and gone already. Luna-X showed up and we did the happy hugging of internet friends who have never met before. Soon, about 6 more of our people showed up, then one confused looking lady with a tiny Yes on 8 bumper sticker.

I greeted her warmly and we chatted for a minute. I told her the scoop that her pals had come and gone, and she said she would probably leave. She seemed pretty nice. We agreed that we were proud to be Americans and that there was no reason to hate.

"What group are you with?" she asked.

"We aren't organized," I said. "Somebody saw the Yes people and put the word out. It is the power of the internet." Ah, crap, giving secrets away. Now those people will know about the Internet!

Then two of her fellow believers showed up with signs and they all stood in one group, with the No on 8 people spread out a little more. Our signs were definitely better because theirs were printed on flimsy plastic and crumpled up and were hard to see.

Both sides got their share of honks, with us getting about 90 percent to their 10 percent. But they were a smaller group, and some of our supporters went round and round the block. Our favorite honk came from a city bus. Either that or a little girl of about nine who leaned out the window and did a full-on, fist pumping cheer.

One of the cute lesbians talked with the Yes people quite a bit. The two ladies were cool, but there was one pinch-faced unhappy looking middle aged guy who was determined to be cranky. Sarah, the lesbian, had grown up in the church and had wanted to be a missionary, so she could speak the Christian lingo and she said they had a good conversation.


Sarah is in the middle - her sign says "Yes on 8 = Hate"

As darkness fell and it began to get cold, the Yes people left, with the nicest lady wishing us "Good luck" as she went.

I stayed a bit more and then headed off to the gym. All in all, a good day in democracy.

35 comments:

VDog said...

Good for you guys!!

Thanks for standing up for 'our' side. ;)

Adrienne said...

I am so very proud to be able to call you my friend.

queenofspain said...

whooo hoooooo

§åïñ† §ïññêr said...

Good for you!!!

I wish more people understood that this isn't just about gay marriage, it's about taking away a fundamental right.

If this passes, what else will the government take away?

zenmom said...

Awesome! Way to go!

West Coast Grrlie Blather said...

Nothing feels as good as getting together with like-minded people and arousing the honk of the passing horns. The late gathering through the "I" word is an added bonus. (We dare not speak its name. Even though we are using it right now.)

So nice to hear about the cordial interchange between the two camps.

Finally, that you were able to abandon your routine in the spirit of the moment...understanding that you could go gym later...which you did. That's like having your cake and eating it too...

Ms. Juanita said...

You captured it perfectly! And I'm so glad we got to meet this way. You are wonderful and sweet! The way you "made peace" with the Yes on 8ers was awesome. Thanks to you, we both got to do something unexpected today. And it felt really good! :)

ps: Pictures have been sent!

Tootsie Farklepants said...

You. Are. Awesome!!!

We have way too many Yes people in my little neck of the woods.

super des said...

When I was in CA I saw the commercials for Yes on 8, and I was confused for a bit because of the wording. then Jay clarified "no we want NO on 8" (can you see why I love him? It's not even our state and he said WE). I never met anyone that was voting yes, but that is probably the crowd I run with.
:)

Deb on the Rocks said...

Excellent story! You ARE a superhero.

Kizz said...

I want that photo of you to be the cover of a children's book called "The Prettiest Protester." It'll be all about one determined woman with markers and poster board driving around her town and combating hate and ignorance with brains and a smile.

MsLittlePea said...

We have 8 too here in Fl. But here it is 2. I voted no on 2 and would have voted no on 8 had I lived in California. I did some sign waving for no on 2 myself so I'm glad others on the other side of the coast did too. Ours was organized though so yours counts more. I live in homophobic-land so unfortunately 2 has a bigger chance of passing than your 8. Sigh....The thing that irritates me the most is that people just blindly got behind this amendment not even realizing that it will discriminate against all couples not just gays. A lot of couples who live together or are common law couples will be affected by this. But hate is such an affective tool...

Swistle said...

And that IS a super-cute dress!

Shutter Bitch said...

Sueb0b, I have to say I'm really proud of you. I watched a video on the Lesbian Dad website where a Yes on 8 protester attacked a bystander who was simply filming the picketing with his cell phone. She got her sign in his face, made a nuisance of herself for a good full minute, and then when she got too close that the guy felt the need to push her sign out of his face, she got violent, grabbed his phone and tried to break it, and then the video went dead.

It's nice to see that people with opposing viewpoints can protest without getting aggressive and assholish to each other.

GraceD said...

You, Missy, are the Best Person in the World!

And, so dainty in your purdy dress!

Sister Davis, you rule and you rule hard.

Equality for all! No on Hate!

Project Christopher said...

I love me some SueBob! Thanks SOOO much on behalf of the family members out in CA. I am a resident of IL, but my partner is in Claremont CA so I've been paying very close attention to the 8 crap. Like the Obama campaign, there is a chance that it could go the wrong way, but I HAVE to have faith that both efforts of ours will be successful because reason, logic and good karma wouldn't allow it to be any other way.

Cross your fingers, vote if you haven't already, and thanks to you and anyone else who's out there stomping out H8TE!

meno said...

I full on <3 you! And you are so right, no reason not to look cute while you are demonstrating.

the queen of awkward said...

this is my first time commenting, but i've been reading for a while, your posts always make me laugh!

i think it's so great that you did this! so few people jump at the opportunity for something like that.

thanks for another excellent post!

Mrs. G. said...

Well done.

Traceytreasure said...

You rock! And you're beautiful too! I didn't see anyone else dressed to kill!!! :)

Hugs!!

jennster said...

i love this.. i love that it was civilized and everyone maintained niceness amongst varying beliefs. i was SUPER suprised when i visited my hometown (simi) the other day and say YES ON 8 people hanging out. i was like.. WHAT?! since when did we do this here?!?! and it made me mad. yeah, mad. i'm not proud. lol

Working Girl said...

good story!

mar said...

you are so cute!
i wish i could vote in cali...
glad you could all be so civil

Deodand said...

Go You!

I hope like hell you guys win this thing.

apathy lounge said...

I AM SO PROUD OF YOU!!!

jessica said...

What a GREAT post! I SO wish I lived near you because I, too, drive around with sign supplies in the car. And I also think it is wonderful that (just about) everyone was able to do their thing without acrimony - we're never all going to agree, but we all have to live here, so good for you and them that civility was the order of the day. PEACE!

Count Mockula said...

You're awesome! I'm glad it went down that way.

Working Girl said...

Also, that dress is really flattering

Gordo said...

That's an excellent use of some time. I'm very proud that we've had gay marriage up here in Canuckistan for years and the country hasn't blown apart. ;-)

J at www.jellyjules.com said...

Sounds like a fun and democratic evening.

Brandon said...

I have to say, I'm sooooo glad I'm not in Cali to witness this whole Prop 8 horribleness. But I am a little sad to have missed out on the counter rally within a couple blocks of my old apartment. Thanks to you and Luna for going out there, I was with y'all in spirit.

grace said...

A great story AND a hot picture of you! Go Suebob!

lizriz said...

Good for you! I am so inspired when I read these stories.

Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

1) I wish we got to vote no on 8. Virginia isn't even considering it.

2) You look ADORABLE!

Day Dreamer said...

I love this about you.

Love that you dropped your plans, put on new duds and went out to fight for what you believe in.

Just. Like. That.

Sistah, you rock. Seriously!

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