April 13, 1997

Duplicity And Complicity

Saturday, Speaker Joe Souki crowed that Hawaii's House was willing to grant "reciprocal beneficiaries" 90% of the rights under Hawaii law that are enjoyed by married couples (health insurance was the most important exclusion, and the effect date is about two years away).  Speaker Souki was proud that this package was better than that which existed in any state, or even the world [the latter is false].

Silence -- from Mormon leaders Jack Hoag and Debbie Hartman, and Roman Catholic priest Mark Alexander, the leaders spearheading the opposition to same-gender marriage.  In private, they've told legislators that they'll implicitly accept domestic partnerships, ANYTHING to stop same-gender marriage.

Even Jay Sekulow, Pat Robertson's legal beagle, has given domestic partnership the nod.  Mr. Sekulow, like the rest of us, hung around Hawaii's Capitol until the early morning hours Friday night, awaiting news of the outcome of House-Senate negotiations.

I'm left wondering:  do the supporters of domestic partnership in Brazil, where the Roman Catholic Church is a vigorous opponent, know that the same church is bobbing and weaving in Hawaii (i.e., supporting domestic partnership in Hawaii)?

Do the donors to Pat Robertson's 700 Club know that their dollars are supporting Jay Sekulow into the wee hours of the morning in Honolulu, winking and nodding at domestic partnership?

I think of the hard fought campaign in California to get a domestic partnership with just THREE rights -- only to be vetoed by their current jerk of a governor.  On what side were the Christian Coalition, the Mormon leaders, and the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church in that fight?

Because some gay people in Hawaii have asked in all sincerity for the most traditional of arrangements, namely marriage with all its rights and obligations, our religious enemies are now supporting untried social experiments involving "partial marriages" and FEWER obligations (neither the Hawaii House nor the Senate have put divorce obligations into their "reciprocal beneficiary" packages).  Moreover, our enemies have extended this package to "incestuous" relationships (mothers and sons, etc.).

Can the effects of prejudice be more clearly illustrated, for the effect it has on the bigot?  They can't SEE what they're doing.

                        Best Regards,

                        Tom Ramsey
                        President, Friends of h.e.r.m.p

P.S.  If you would like to drive the religious fanatics on to further insanity, and in the process make room for votes on OTHER rights for gays and lesbians, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE make a donation to
                        Marriage Project Hawaii
                        PO Box 11690
                        Honolulu, HI 96828
                        (tax deductible)

                        Friends of h.e.r.m.p
                        PO Box 11690
                        Honolulu, HI 96828
                        (non tax deductible)

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