The LGBT Community is Called to Action

PhotobucketElection Day is 8 short weeks away and your vote is becoming ever critical in this landmark election.

Proposition 8 is a measure currently on the ballot in the State of California which is helping set the stage for human rights around the world. The Proposition would state that "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California" and would effectively ban gay marriage in the state if passed on November 4th, 2008. There are a handful of initiatives such as Protect Marriage.com which encourage voters to vote for the proposition in efforts to have it pass. Lori Hahn of HahnAtHome.com recently came face to face with what she calls ‘paper spam’ from one of these initiatives on her car and decided to ask her readers for ideas on how to thwart their efforts. She herself tried to reach out to the organization who distributed the flyers for more information on their plans. Hahn is a lesbian blogger who resides in California and feels that “by passing the anti-gay marriage amendment in California, they (proponents of Prop 8) are doing the very thing, that if done to them, would send them into civil unrest”.

Like Hahn, other gay and lesbian bloggers have become vocal about striking down the proposition and some have organized a civil protest against Proposition 8 while simultaneously showing support for a major corporation who recently joined the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC).

Fellow lesbian mom bloggers Paula Brooks of Queen of The Surf Pirates, and Julie Phineas of Lesbian Mommy have initiated an “LGBT Community Call to Action” in efforts to strike down the measure by encouraging all members of the LGBT community and those who support them to "get out and about" in their community every weekend until Election Day. The bloggers are hoping to "Personalize Prop 8 Across the State" with these efforts, encouraging the community to participate in everyday activities out in the community, rather than staying at home or indoors over the weekend. The number one recommended way they are suggesting the community get visible? Visit their local McDonalds.

The initiative is hoping to use the popularity and support of McDonald’s as a common ground for those who are for the measure to interact in daily life with those in the community that the measure would affect.

Here is the statement released by lesbian mom blogger Julie Phineas in regards to the official LGBT Community Call to Action:

PhotobucketWith 8 weeks to go until Proposition 8 comes to a vote in the State of California, in effort to strike down the measure we call all members of the LGBT community and their supporters to take action with us!

We need your help to put a face on the lives of those that this proposition affects!! Help us to ‘get visible’ and let our presence as upstanding citizens of this world be seen by all. We need to raise awareness amongst all citizens of the good State of California of the need to stand up for equal rights by vowing to Vote NO on Prop 8 on the up and coming Election Day, November 4, 2008. We call all who support equality and fairness to help us "Personalize Prop 8 across the State!"

You can join us in taking action every weekend (Saturday and Sunday) from now until Election Day on November 4th, to “get out and about” in your community!

The idea behind this LGBT Community Call to Action is to put a familiar face on the LGBT community and give those in the heterosexual community a chance to interact in daily life with those that the measure would directly affect.

Here are Some Ideas for What to Do Over the Weekends :

• The number one recommended way to become more visible on your community is to visit your local McDonald’s one day each weekend until Election Day, November 4th. McDonald’s is a highly recognized and popular business that is located in most communities across the state, country, and planet! Many locations offer a McDonald’s Play Land if you have children, plus you can find many choices on their menu to fit your lifestyle and budget. McDonald’s is a corporation who has recently shown their support to the LGBT community by joining the NGLCC. Visiting your local McDonald’s over the weekend is a great way to get highly visible in your community, and is one way that we can show support for a corporation that supports our community!

• The next way you can become more visible in the fight against Prop 8 is to get out and about in other ways such as attending birthday parties and weddings, going to the mall or movies, taking your laundry to the laundry mat, walking your pets, grocery shopping, or take your kids to the park. Visit straight friends and family members and tell them why you are making it a point to get out and about, and let them know how important their vote is to you this Election Day. You could even just drive, ride your bike, roller skate, or just go for a walk around your neighborhood!

• Take it to the next level! Purchase “No on Prop 8” tools and merchandise to wear while you are out and about in the community or hanging out at McDonald’s. You can put a bumper sticker on your car (or window decal), wear a No on Prop 8 t-shirt (men’s here and women’s here), or a No on Prop 8 button.

• Want to take it even further? Report your experience from the weekend or your visit to McDonald’s on social news websites like iReport or on your personal blog! Download the NO on 8 ToolKit here for good examples.

Even if you don’t live in California or are not a member of the LGBT community, you can still help in the fight to strike down Proposition 8 on Election Day!

You don’t have to be married or planning to get married to vote for freedom, equality, and fairness for all by voting NO on Proposition 8. Everyone can and should support equality for all in any way that they can… it could be your rights that are up for debate one day! We are all in this together.

Here Are the Ways That You Can Help:

• In California – Visit your local McDonald’s to show your support for our efforts every weekend until Election Day. You can let us know about your pledge to Vote No on Prop 8 by utilizing the tools mentioned above, and/or reporting your experience on iReport or on your personal blog. Above all else make sure that you register to vote and Vote NO on Proposition 8 on Election Day, November 4th.

• All Over the U.S.– Sign the Million for Marriage petition by clicking the banner below:

• Around the World - Voice your opinion about gay rights and let’s open up the conversation to discuss equality worldwide. Comment and discuss the issue on your favorite social networking websites, message boards, or even write your local newspaper. You can also join the fight in our efforts to strike down Prop 8 by joining the NO on Prop 8 web pages on MySpace and FaceBook.

Wherever you are, please pass this message on!

Re-post, forward, or link to this post and spread the word to help in the fight.

Every vote counts, and every vote matters...

The call to action was reportedly sent via email to gay and lesbian bloggers across the internet, gay and lesbian centers in the State of California, as well as known celebrity gays and lesbians. The message was also posted on gay and lesbian social networking websites and major social news portals as well.

McDonald’s was notified of the call to action, though they are not an official sponsor of the event.

More information on the efforts of the lesbian bloggers to call the LGBT community to action can be found at www.Lesbiatopia.com.

The original call to action was posted by Julie Phineas on lesbianmommy.blogspot.com.

The website for the official campaign against Proposition 8 is http://www.noonprop8.com/home.


Queers United said...

thanks, i reposted this on my blog as well.

Say No to 8!

~Julie Phineas~ said...

awesome! we are ALL in this together.

Paula Brooks said...

There are some in our community that think we don't matter, that we are too small in numbers to make a difference, that if we bide our time things will get better for us. and that if the Republicans win they will be benevolent benign and kind to us LGBT's...

To them I say Bullshit...

I am appealing to every LGBT voter... this is an important election to us... if McCain gets elected and Prop 8 passes, it will be thirty years before we get to where we want to go...

SO get off your asses... register...vote... and tell 5 friends to do the same.

~Julie Phineas~ said...

I told a LOT more than 5 friends and I hope to see many friendly LGBT faces at McDonald's over the weekend! Gina and I are planning to drive to several different locations with the kids. We'll sit and sip our iced tea (with splenda!) while the kids explore each play land, LOL. We're hoping to find friendly staff and clean bathrooms, too! Gotta get some NO ON PROP 8 gear, though; but we are heeding the call!

Sei said...

There is a long complicated saying about waiting for it to get better. The reality is that we have to do what we can now and not wait for things to get better.

No matter how small a minority we are, we exist. The smallest estimates that I've seen is that we account for as much as three percent of the population. Even if we account for only one percent, or half a percent, that's half a percent too many to be denied our rights.

Back in the 1960's a C. S. Scott argued against desegregation. He ran the African-American newspaper in Atlanta called the Atlanta Daily World. He believed that things would one day get better. Things got worse even without the moves to desegregate.

We should not just tell those of us in our community, but everyone who supports us, and give them the ammunition to fight with (I'm working on that aspect).

Supposedly, this nation stands for Freedom, Justice and Equality for all. Until they give everyone freedom, equality and justice, then it is just empty words not even worth the pixels that make the type.

I am not much help in voting these down since I am without money and in Vermont, but I've got a brain and I'm going after their lies with the power of words.

Hahn at Home said...

I just had a note from Terry McGuire, Regional Field Organizer at HRC that they have just opened both a San Francisco and Sacramento area office. I have volunteered my services and hope to hear very soon what I can do.

It takes so little to make a difference. I'll be out all over the place this weekend, but then, I am every weekend.

~Julie Phineas~ said...

To let you all know, I have been emailing this call to action out to key contacts around the state, nation, and even the world! I have sent this call to action to all of the major gay and lesbian centers across California, including college based centers, radio stations, tv channels, news papers and all the gay and lesbian bloggers I can find. Plus you will see the message posted across LGBT social networks and message boards. Help me in spreading the message and this LGBT Community Call to Action by sending the call to every LGBT community member that you know! Thanks everyone.

~Julie Phineas~ said...

...plus if you repost the LGBT Community Call to Action on your blog or website please let me know so that I can add your link to the list of supporting sites. Thanks again everyone, especially Paula for her help on this!

~Julie Phineas~ said...

FYI this is what McDonald's wrote back in regards to the LGBT Community Call to Action:

"Hello Julie:

Thank you for contacting McDonald's. We appreciate this opportunity to share information regarding our commitment to our employees as well as the communities that we serve.

First, it's important to note that McDonald's respects and values people. Diversity and inclusion are business imperatives and integral components of McDonald's culture. We believe that by embracing our differences we are better enabled to value and respect other people as well as understand differing points of view.

We have a long and proud history of leadership in these areas. We continually strive to maintain an environment in which everyone feels valued and accepted. We encourage employees to recognize and appreciate the contributions that all diverse groups and individuals bring to the McDonald's system.

Thank you for sharing your personal point of view on this topic with us.

McDonald's Customer Response Center"

I smell french fries. =0)

VRMHugs1957 said...

Ok, a big mac for the good cause. I'm going to go to the Riverside pride festival too, I'll be the one riding my powerchair.

Virginia Rae

~Julie Phineas~ said...

Thanks for supporting the cause Virginia! Have fun at Riverside Pride and let us know what happens at your local McDonald's. Stay well!

~Julie Phineas~ said...

Here is a letter that my wife sent to her family along with the 'LGBT Call to Action' via email:

"Dear family and friends,

I'm sending this out with hope that you all can help and VOTE NO ON 8. It is very hard for me to express how I feel but you all know that I love Julie and the kids with all my heart and I just want to stay married to her for the rest of my life. Please don't let a group of people who don't even know us take away our rights to be able to take care of our children and have the equality that we all deserve. Some people will say that we will still have "rights" but that the word marriage is out of the question, but why can't I have that word? Am I a second class citizen? Should I accept and live by what someone else thinks and dictates to me? You all know me and you know that I would never infringe on another persons rights to be treated with respect, dignity, and as an equal. So I am asking you, not just for myself, but for Julie, Noah, and Trini, please let us live our lives as a married family because that one word is something that I would fight for until the fight is over and I'm begging you all to have my back. I love each and every one of you and I thank you for taking the time to read this.

Love always, gina"

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