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Verdict: Forced to die alone. Crime: Gay.

This is why we need a federal gay-marriage law. It's why we need to change our legal system so that people who are in long-term, committed relationships can enjoy all the same benefits that those who marry in a church enjoy.

Read this post by Nicola Griffith and you'll understand what I mean. Because she was a lesbian, Janice Langbehn was denied the right to visit her dying partner; it's why their children were denied the right to visit their dying mother. It gets worse:

"U.S. District Judge Adalberto Jordan dismissed a lawsuit yesterday, essentially finding that the Jackson Memorial Hospital was within its rights to leave a dying woman alone while denying her present and immediate family to visit her, be updated on her condition, or even to provide the hospital with medically necessary information."

I come back to the question whose answers I simply do not understand: Why do certain religious fundamentalists hate gay people? Why do they feel the need to deny them the right to form legal entanglements with others? It's not as if atheists are denied the right to marry. It's not as if getting a church wedding is any guarantee of long-term success, fidelity, or happiness. And one needn't even go to a church to get married. So why do the fundamentalists scream with foaming mouths about "protection of marriage" and fight with bloody fingernails against the right of human beings - citizens of a nation founded on the very notion of personal freedom - to declare to the world, "We choose each other! We wed our finances and property. We promise to chop everything we own into two equal parts and support the other and our offspring should our union fail." I mean, for those who have endured a divorce - especially one that spawned children - that's no huge honor.

So here we here a marriage (in every way except the legal protection) between two women. They raised four kids together. One of them is stricken with an aneurysm. Now the partner and children must sit terrified in the hospital waiting room. Now the stricken woman must die alone.

This is barbaric, people. Is this not the 21st Century? Is this not The Future as conceived by our SFnal forebears? Is this not the United States of America, land of the free and all that? If so, why must gay partners die alone? Why are those who enjoy rights of citizenship allowed to deny the same rights of others just because they disapprove of certain bedroom activities? Why is love, the most beautiful and perhaps sole redeeming feature of humanity, only valued when it occurs between a man and a woman?

It's time for change, people. Based on campaigns that fired us all up last fall - and whose top-dog speaker used to great effect - I'd say that the climate is right for this necessary change.



( 27 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 19th, 2009 04:38 pm (UTC)
Well said, Chris.

Let this also be a wake-up call to all of us who are in committed relationships to have Power of Attorneys, Living Wills and all the necessary paperwork drawn up to protect our rights as patients and to see that our wishes are respected.
Oct. 19th, 2009 05:09 pm (UTC)
If I recall correctly, in this case the partner had all the necessary powers of attorney and such and was still denied access to visit her.
Oct. 19th, 2009 05:40 pm (UTC)
You are right. This is a travesty of any kind of justice for a family to endure.

It's time to stand together, so no one has to die alone, just for being gay.

Edited at 2009-10-19 05:41 pm (UTC)
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:18 pm (UTC)
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:17 pm (UTC)
Yeah, and that's what really makes me crazy about this case - and its legal dismissal. If that kind of legal documentation isn't enough, then it's obvious we need gay marriage. So why the anti-gay-marriage loons except that they're hoping gay people disappear?
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:18 pm (UTC)
Yup, and those papers need to be legally recognized.
Oct. 19th, 2009 04:56 pm (UTC)
Yeah, this is why the feds need to cram legalization down the populations throat like they did with civil rights.
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:14 pm (UTC)
Sometimes that's what government is for, especially one in charge of a free country: Protecting the minority. But I'd like to think that the majority of Americans support gay rights.
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:17 pm (UTC)
My understanding is that more people support gay marriage today than supported integration and black civil rights when they were legislated in the 60s.
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:19 pm (UTC)
Yup. And ain't that something to consider?
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:19 pm (UTC)
A majority may but I don't know. It's scary that state amendment got voted down in California.
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:23 pm (UTC)
We tend to think of California as a progressive state. And then they do something like that. It blew me away when that happened.
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:16 pm (UTC)
In the words of our nation's founders, this should be "self-evident." We shouldn't need to be loud about it.
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:23 pm (UTC)
Too bad that top-dog speaker's administration hasn't shown much interest in this particular change. Their stance on the DOMA issue wasn't exactly inspiring.
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:30 pm (UTC)
That's disgusting and depressing.
Oct. 19th, 2009 06:33 pm (UTC)

And people wonder why I was (was? am!) a tad pissy about that little Nobel Prize topic. *polite cough*
Oct. 19th, 2009 08:41 pm (UTC)
I did read about this in another one of my friends' journals. This is something I definitely fear for my family as my parents have an unconventional relationship.
Oct. 19th, 2009 10:49 pm (UTC)
That makes it more personal. Even Dick "Gunnin' Down My Friends and Makin' 'Em Apologize for It" Cheney changed his tone and went against his party to stand up (at least a little) for gay rights. I'm sure the only reason that happened was family.
Oct. 20th, 2009 01:57 pm (UTC)
In the comments thread on your post, you hit the nail on the head for me. It should be self-evident.
Oct. 19th, 2009 09:40 pm (UTC)
What the #$@#$@$ happened to "truths to be self-evident" such as being "endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights"?

I once actually changes someone's mind. He was against gay marriage, but did not know about the whole hospital visitation/determination thing. Once he heard that, he was all like, "I see the point now. It's stupid to deny people those rights."

Now, if only I can have that conversation 300,000,000 more times...
Oct. 19th, 2009 10:49 pm (UTC)
Only for those whose sexual practices we approve of, y'know.
Oct. 19th, 2009 11:37 pm (UTC)
Oh. I missed that part. I did notice the "men" repeated throughout.
Oct. 19th, 2009 10:39 pm (UTC)
I wish there was a way to truly force those in charge to make the changes they promised to make.
Oct. 19th, 2009 10:50 pm (UTC)
We need to get filthy rich to have that kind of effect.
Oct. 20th, 2009 04:03 pm (UTC)
Why do certain religious fundamentalists hate gay people?
It says right there in the Good Book (Bible) that queerness is bad. I do not remember where I found it, but do remember that it was written by that Paul person.

Why do they feel the need to deny them the right to form legal entanglements with others?
Because they can't get around the "problem" of having sexual contact with a same-sex person.

It's not as if atheists are denied the right to marry.
No, but a queer atheist would be.

And one needn't even go to a church to get married.
OK, this is a good point. Now I'm baffled, too. Here in the good ol' US of A, we are supposed to have separation of church and state. So if denying gays the right to marry is a religious quandary (and it is), then why can't a marriage take place in front of a Justice of the Peace? I don't get it. To me, this is the point, where I don't understand it, either. DANG IT! I thought i could be the sassy one on your f-list with the answers to these questions.

In fact, it does not make sense.

And the rule about not allowing YOUR FAMILY OF CHOICE into a hospital room (regardless of whether or not they are bound by marriage) ???? Why? What's the point?

I'm a fail with the answers to these questions...but I'm not a fail with the solution to this problem. I agree with you 100%: it's time for a change.

Edited at 2009-10-20 04:03 pm (UTC)
Oct. 20th, 2009 05:11 pm (UTC)
I love your attempt to be devil's-advocate (from the POV of those particular, anti-gay, hate-filled Christians). And I find it fascinating that even then you can't fully grasp their argument. I should say, "argument," because it's not based on logic.
Oct. 20th, 2009 05:38 pm (UTC)

I tried! But you're right, there is no understanding something that makes absolutely NO SENSE, and is also just plain wrong.

( 27 comments — Leave a comment )

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