Sunday, March 02, 2008

No Response

What follows is a letter to my senator, a republican who, along with all the others in the Senate, sponsored SB299. SB299 was meant to make the Salt Lake City domestic partnership registry illegal. This registry would go some distance to getting stuff like equal access to health insurance for our spouses, and some of the children of same-sex parents.

I typed it, sent it last week, and got no response; not even one of the form letters I've come to expect from my representatives. May as well put it up and use it as a blog post, eh?

Dear Senator _____,

We are your constituents. My partner and I have been together 18 years and we have two adorable twins in kindergarten in your district, minutes from where I grew up. I can say firsthand how difficult the legislature has made it for our families, families headed by gay couples, in Utah, but we stay here because we want our children to grow up around family. SB299 threatens to take away one more sliver of hope for some sort of equal protections for our home, ourselves, and our children while living in Utah. Our household pays our taxes gladly and dutifully just like any other, and we sincerely hope some day for our due share of both equal protections and equal responsibilities from our government.

We are a family of dedication, love, and sacrifice. Our children are happy, great little individuals, and among the best adjusted in their class if we're to trust their teachers. I have a hard time understanding what exactly you, by sponsoring SB299, fear in giving our home this hope for this tiny measure of something too many people take for granted. A mere chance for equal access to health insurance from local employers for our stay at home parents could mean so much to our finances and our family. We cherish the ability to have a stay at home parent for our children but Utah government actually encourages us to put our children in day care to make up for what laws such as SB299 aim to take away. Please reconsider. I know this issues directly effects more than my family in your district, families who fear bringing attention to themselves.

If you cannot reconsider, I would, nevertheless, appreciate gaining some understanding as to why, if that is possible.

Thank You and Best Regards,

_____ ________


_______ (C)

I'm grateful to say the bill has, since then, been watered down and it seems, of the mean-spirited aims initially put there by Senator Buttars, only a fraction may pass. I'm not sure what it will look like in the end or how my representative will vote (though it doesn't look good, by their sponsoring of the initial, more punitive bill).

I certainly hate the feeling of my family being treated like this. I'm bothered often, daily when the legislature is in session, by my culture's notion that they can take our taxes and refuse equal treatment, rights (and responsibilities). It is the very definition of selfishness and injustice, and the glib ways many people excuse themselves of it are often as disconcerting. Nevertheless, what's worse is not being told why my representative is against us. I'd love a response that had some real explanation to it.


Java said...

AMEN! Keep fighting, Scot.

the pic: crystalline structure, feather, or leaf?? Or am I totally off?

Paul said...

Scot, I suggest you go one step further in your next letter. Ask for a personal meeting with him to discuss the issue.

It's easy to ignore a letter. It's not so easy to ignore someone sitting on the other side of the desk.

- - - -

Any thoughts about Ellen DeGeneres' emotional speech the other day at the beginning of her show, about the hate-crime murder of a 15-year-old California boy?

[kɹeɪ̯g̊] said...

I just don't understand why these people are so unwilling (or unable) to look at the issue objectively.

Kengo Biddles said...

Kraig, it's because Buttars is desperately trying to hide the fact that he's gay and that Ms. Rusilske (sp) is his Grace.

Vanson said...

Awesome letter. I really do admire your family. This truely shows how much you care for your children, and that couples like you can make it.

Keep pressing forward.

Scot said...

Hey, good eye, you guessed it there Java. It’s a feather from our boy’s parakeet... You know… for a quill, because this post was about a letter… :-) I try, at least in my mind, to make them match up somewhat with the content.

Paul, that’s a good point and I will. But it will have to wait until after the session, I’m sure. They’ll be tied up for the next couple days.

And that murder, it’s one of those topics I fear to start in on for where I might end up (thank you for the links though; I had missed them in my searching for info on the incident). Though I don’t think I’ve ever seen a full show, I’m glad people like Ellen have the soap box they do.

Craig, wish I knew, and hope Kengo isn't right. If Buttars is gay, we'll have a mass exodus from the gay community for fear of association.

And thank you again Vanson. We’ll keep pushing; I just wish my senator gave some indication it’s even noticed. Though my rep. isn’t a help either, at least I get to talk with them in person when it’s time for caucusing (and they need help putting up signs ;-)).