In 2008, Prop 8–a ballot proposition intended to ban same-sex marriage–was passed in California. I was devastated by the news. Like many, I didn’t think it could pass in California. To encourage me during a time that felt like defeat, a former HR Executive, Jay Allen, told me that the opposition is strongest and makes its last stand when you’re really making progress.
Jay was right. Proposition 8 was declared unconstitutional by the federal courts two years later. In 2015, 37 states allowed gay marriage before the Supreme Court ruled declaring same sex marriage legal in all 50 states.
Here we stand again, in 2022, facing profound disappointment following SCOTUS’ dismantling of Roe v. Wade. We knew it was coming, but the deep disappointment in that decision was felt when it was final and communicated at the end of June. The reactions were loud and resounding. We posted and we marched. We expressed our hurt to each other, online and in the streets.
What else do you do when you face profound disappointment? I want to encourage you to take thoughtful measured steps to deal with what you are facing.
Now that we have worked through our reactions, it’s time for a response. What are we going to do? Some will organize independently and others of us will follow their organization’s lead and guidance. Even more will show the power of their vote by getting behind campaigns of Pro-choice candidates. The powerful thing about a democracy is that there is power in the people and people can lead change.
We just witnessed this in action. Be inspired to change it back.
When Prop 8 was passed, people in California took action. They responded and they were met with the majority of Americans who agreed that the right to marry is a constitutional one that should be shared by all Americans. The same is true for choice. Surveys show that most Americans believe that reproductive health is a private matter. So, let’s get back to work and make America reflect the desires of its people.
Our theme song is “Birmingham Sunday” by the Joan Baez.