Saturday, November 15, 2008

The impact

25,000 people in San Diego, which finished in a human rainbow flag. This was the biggest protest by far in any city in California--sleepy surfer-city San Diego! I can't convey to you how amazing it was to be part of this. We are hoarse from chanting. It was intense, and moving, and very very positive.

For you Episcopalians, the Episcopal Cathedral of San Diego hung a huge rainbow flag, and joined the marchers with a massive purple banner stating that all are loved by God. They had many marchers in distinctive purple tee-shirts.

There were straights and gays, families and single folks, kids and grandparents. One older couple stood on a street corner downtown, with signs that read "Christians support gay marriage". Marchers went to them and hugged them. Unlike previous marches, which have been in Hillcrest (San Diego's gay district), this one was right in the heart of the city: we marched down 6th Ave to Broadway, then up Pacific Coast Highway to the County Admin building. Drivers honked with approval. And as we made the turn onto PCH, one of the cruise ships at the Embarcadero a block in front of us blew its horn. I can't believe we got that route, through the middle of downtown! The march was so huge, that it shut down quite a bit of traffic. The police were very helpful and positive. (updated)

I was looking for some comments on Constitutional protection of the minority on the web. I found there remarks from the US State Dept website "Principles of Democracy". These are supposed to tell other countries what we stand for. Only right now, we don't. (updated again)

# Majority rule is a means for organizing government and deciding public issues; it is not another road to oppression. Just as no self-appointed group has the right to oppress others, so no majority, even in a democracy, should take away the basic rights and freedoms of a minority group or individual.
# Minorities -- whether as a result of ethnic background, religious belief, geographic location, income level, or simply as the losers in elections or political debate -- enjoy guaranteed basic human rights that no government, and no majority, elected or not, should remove.

# Minorities need to trust that the government will protect their rights and self-identity. Once this is accomplished, such groups can participate in, and contribute to their country's democratic institutions.
# Among the basic human rights that any democratic government must protect are freedom of speech and expression; freedom of religion and belief; due process and equal protection under the law; and freedom to organize, speak out, dissent, and participate fully in the public life of their society.

# Democracies understand that protecting the rights of minorities to uphold cultural identity, social practices, individual consciences, and religious activities is one of their primary tasks.


Update 2: A screen shot from a Youtube video, with your very own St Paul's Cathedral on the streets with us.

Pictures 1 and 3, credit the San Diego Union Tribune. Picture 2, credit IT. IT, BP and friends were in the purple part of the flag.


Counterlight said...

The chant here in New York was "Yes we WILL!"

Though we had a huge turnout here in Gotham, it looks like San Diego outclassed us. Love the human rainbow flag!

Though there were lots of speeches here about how New York has to take the lead on gay marriage, I'm still convinced that y'all in California will get it before we do.

JCF said...

Awesome pics, IT (esp. the one you took!)

THANK YOU to all who participated---let's keep going, and overturn H8 (across the country!) once and for all! :-D

Leonardo Ricardo said...

WOW, how did everyone get together on orchestrating the rainbow card stunt? Now, that´s the kinda stuff we´re made of (and a Hell of a lot more)...good for you and in San Diego...not exactly West Hollywood or The Castro!



Fred Schwartz said...

"Just as no self-appointed group has the right to oppress others, so no majority, even in a democracy, should take away the basic rights and freedoms of a minority group or individual."

This may be too fine a point, especially now, but no one can take away someone's rights. Certain rights are inalienable -- in essence (at least for me) God given for you social contract types, inherent in nature. One can be denied the ability to exercise a right as in this case but the right is yours/ours and cannot be "taken away". I believe that the courts will in short order vacate Proposition 8 once and for everyone.
Taht being said, great post!

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

Reading about this manifestation makes me hopefull that equality for all is approaching soon.

However, it will take some work yet, as usual...

The arc of God bends towards Justice.

Mike in Texas said...

The human flag is breathtaking!

James said...

IT, how will you ever get those words washed off your body? :)

Thanks for this report. We only had about 1,000, but we are small area, and most of those there were college students --

David G. said...

LOL,....Food Service jobs acquire Food Coloring. Easily... (well with some scrubbing).. eradicated.(sounds like a Rat Fest.)

David |Dah • veed| said...

That is a remarkable turnout!

Especially for San Diego, which is not known for getting too excited about much.

IT said...

James, I didn't look that good 25 years ago, when I was her age, so I sure as heck don't look that good now...! ;-)

I have updated the post with some additional observations.

Anonymous said...

Picture of St Paul's Cathedral and its wonderful banners on facebook

More commentary from the Huff Post


David said...

Sweet! Thanks for the report :)

JCF said...

Don't miss PaganSphinx's account of the rainy-day protest in Northampton, Mass, here. (W/ special thanks to PS's daughter&wife, who got married in CA last month)

Trey said...

The crowd was smaller in DC, but we did have to brave some heavy rain. Still, an amazing day. Runner up for favorite poster: "More Gay Marriage = Less Gay Sex. Happy Now? And my favorite was: "Single and Bitter, but Still Support Marriage."

Anonymous said...

Hello, 29th and 30th purple dot from the left!

That puts our measly 1,400 to shame - but on the other hand, we were in parkas (or else overly optimistic and therefore freezing). Amazing what a temperature difference of 50 degrees F. can do.