Freedom to Marry!
At 9:00, Tuesday, June 17, 2008, my brother Stuart and John, the love of his life and partner for over 21 years, were finally able to legally marry!
Stuart and John (my BIL!) are a bit famous in the marriage equality movement, plus they had one of the first appointments of the day, and the press were mobbing them – I couldn’t get any pix of the wedding itself because of the camera lights in my eyes. So the press got many more pictures than I did (better ones, too, I'm sure). Here are a few links:
Before the ceremony.
During the ceremony. You can even see me in this one, in the blue sweater.
Descending the central staircase. You can see me in this one, also.
This interview contains still pictures and audio of the entire ceremony, which was lovely, and performed by a judge for whom John used to clerk. It's about 5 minutes long.
This video is only about 2 minutes long, and is also lovely.
These were our wedding favors. Cute, yes? Sorry the picture is so blurry. Now you know why I am not a professional photographer. I could have gotten a better one by kneeling, despite my knee injury, but I am no Tiger Woods. In fact, I'm better. I already had my left ACL reconstructed.
One of the happy things Tuesday was that it was NOT all about the two of them – over 200 licenses were issued Tuesday at San Francisco City Hall, and dozens of ceremonies took place. Every 10 or 15 minutes, cheers would burst out as another happy couple walked down the grand staircase.
I have really come to expect to see the two of them on the news whenever there is news about marriage equality – but now, there are hundreds of couples involved, and it is wonderful.
We had a rehearsal dinner Monday night, then Tuesday we were at City Hall right after they opened (slight delay – they had to wand me due to my post-op leg brace setting off the metal detector). They had their license appointment at 8:15, and their ceremony appointment at 9:00. A judge for whom John once clerked performed the ceremony, and did a beautiful job.
The press mobbed them – sigh, a lovely small wedding, surrounded by dozens of photographers, a few of whom were disregarding their wishes and blocking out family and friends. However, we tried to be understanding – it was not just a family wedding, it was a historic occasion.
We were there most of the morning. A couple descending the grand staircase was invariably applauded by everyone in the rotunda. There were women there from a Unitarian church handing out cupcakes, people outside were singing and handing out flowers. All the protesters were missing Tuesday, having spent Monday evening vigorously protested the wedding of two octogenarians who had been together over 50 years. Don’t you think they’d all have something better to do??
Then we had a reception lunch. It was great fun, and exhausting, and energizing, too.
The current poll numbers seem to show that the marriage discrimination proposition won’t pass, but it’s a near thing at this point. Legal experts are divided on the effect of the proposition on existing marriages if it does pass, but I think most of the experts think it wouldn’t affect the legal marriages being performed now.
However, it was all about the joy and love on Tuesday. Hooray for marriage equality!