Friday, May 23, 2008

Bing Cherries & Gay Marriage

The streets are literally overflowing with bing cherries in California, or at least the intersection of Harbor Blvd and the 22 Fwy is: that is where you can find a very pleasant Latina hocking fresh bags of bing cherries to sweltering-hot motorists for $5 a pop. I tried to change lanes to toss her some cash so I could partake in the seasonal abundance, but this intersection is a bitch and since Matt does not eat fruit and I don't particularly love cherries, even if they are ripe and fresh off the tree and looking so darn cute all bagged up...all last weekend I debated going back to that intersection for the fresh cherries despite my misgivings, but then I made a trip to the grocery store had an overflowing table of cherries they were trying to clear out for $2.50 per bag. Niiiiice. (no wonder that Latina lady was so well dressed)

That was last weekend, when it was so hot I thought I just *might* ignore my dislike of tart, fresh cherries just so I could bite into something ice cold. This weekend we're expecting rain, thunderstorms, and hours spent cuddling under fuzzy blankets (hey, it's not worth relighting the heater for two days of cold, and even if I wanted a fireplace I can't have one). When I stare at the unopened bag of cherries in the fridge I feel like I was suckered into the Tickle-Me-Elmo of seasonal produce: I bought them because they are in season and everyone else was buying them and they looked so damn red and pretty, but now I have no idea what to do with fresh cherries. Warm cherry pie seems nice in theory, but I loathe cherry pie and cherry pie fillings. I do like cherries in chocolate, where the tartness is more subtle. I'm hoping I can find (or think of) an easy way to serve them with a rich dark chocolate and maybe a few almonds...maybe some kind of warm chocolate bread pudding with cherries? Stay tuned.
. . .

California streets are also overflowing with homosexuals flush with the news that they may marry soon, giving them the same right to the legal status of "married" as every other Californian. Today, the LA Times is scaring the gay community into believing that the unexpected victory may be overturned because a majority is against the court ruling and in favor of a constitutional amendment.

I haven't figured out how the new constitutional amendment is different from the old constitutional amendment that the courts overturned, but I am appalled at how quickly the tyranny of the majority flexes its muscles and jumps to overturn the court-ordered protections on minority rights. Marriage is, above all else, a LEGAL status that entitles both spouses to a whole host of rights and privileges enjoyed by no single adults. My 401(k) now belongs to my husband if I die; I had my sister as beneficiary but now that I am married, my husband has to waive his rights to my 401(k) in the presence of a notary public in order for me to bequeath my (our?) retirement money to another individual. This is only one tiny example: married people enjoy a legally secure partnership unparalleled by any other form of union, and I see no reason why this security should not be available to any two individuals who choose to commit to each other.

I also find it ironic that many opponents of same sex marriage believe they are protecting the decaying institution of marriage. Marriage is a lifelong commitment between two individuals to love and support each other, a partnership, a legal entwining of two lives that provides a sense of security that is deeply emotionally satisfying. Unfortunately, marriage (and divorce) has become insanely easy for heterosexuals, so easy that we make and break marriages at alarming rates. No one knows how important and valuable this institution is better than homosexuals, because they have been deprived this right and know what it is like to spend a lifetime without the security of the legal protections marriage provides. I have a feeling this exercise in considering the meaning of marriage will help us all remember just how important and valuable it is, and in recognition of that I hope we have the wisdom to impart this right on all citizens regardless of sexual orientation.


Gielss said...

Californians will pass the Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage which is NOT something the courts can overturn. An amendment is virtually impossible to abridge in the courts. It stands outside of Constitutional review.

California, home of the Liberal lunatics, land of the conservative fuck-wits.

::sad day for democracy::

Angelique said...

That's the part I was missing: Prop 22 changed a statute, but this new prop will amend our constitution. (It seems extremely silly that a simple majority can amend our state constitution, where are the checks and balances?)

Fortunately the latest polls indicate a majority of Californians are actually okay with gay marriage. The sad day hasn't arrived yet!