Humanizing Gay Marriage: Activists Go Door-to-Door in Orange Co.
In Orange County, California this weekend, dozens of gay-rights activists took to the streets in an attempt to put a human face on same-sex marriage.
- Harvey Milk Day : May 22, 2010
- Rallies nation-wide for Harvey Milk Day
- Proposition 8 Trial in California
The men and women canvassed neighborhoods in Santa Ana, Fullerton andMission Viejo as part of Harvey Milk Day, a tribute to San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk, the first openly gay man to be elected to public office in the state. He served 11 months in office before he and Mayor George Moscone were assassinated in 1978 by a former supervisor.
From San Francisco to Los Angeles, the activists – focused their efforts on cities where in 2008 a majority of residents voted in favor of Proposition 8, which banned same sex marriage in the state of California.
Statewide, it was supported by a majority - 52% - of voters, with many in Orange County.
“The reason I do this is to create a society of inclusion, not of hate and segregation,” said Elizabeth Aversa, a field manager with Equality California, a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocacy organization that sponsored the event along with other groups.
Such events give volunteers a chance to talk to people face-to-face about their struggles and feelings about the marriage ban. Religious beliefs and a fear of influencing children were given by citizens as the reason for their support of Proposition 8.
Activists tried to speak about their own relationships with partners and children, hoping to put a neighbor's face on an issue filled with conflict and myth.
This weekend saw the first California state official "Harvey Milk Day", which was celebrated for the first time on Saturday, May 22.
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