town hall–legal

time for Shannon Minter. Minter says the reason they have been successful in the courts because everyone works together for a well-done legal plan. he says we had an incredible coalition in the marriage case. he says its because of the work EQCA did. 

Minter says the issue before the court is can a majority of voters strip away a fundamental right from a historically targeted group. he says it’s great the court is considering the case because they didn’t have to hear it.

Karen asks about what happens to all the 18,000 couples married already?

Minter says right now Prop 8 doesn’t do anything to the the validity of same-sex marriages between May and Election Day. He notes the court has asked them to brief on that question. He hopes the question will be moot. 

He says if Prop 8 stands, the court would have to then decide about the already married couples. he says if someone says you’re not married contact lambda Legal and NCLR.

Karen asks if adoption rights is next. Minter says he’s worried about that as well. If Prop 8 stands that’s an issue. “People who do not like out community can come back at us,” he says, noting we are in a fight for out lives. “It is going to take every last single one of us” to get through the fight. 

Karen asks some transgender questions–Minter says the law governing transgender people is very complicated and varies enormously from state to state. He says a lot is much up in the air but the atmosphere in California is very good. Minter says as a trans person himself he’s glad he lives in California. 

He says the ability to marry without an issue of gender is important for trans people too. he notes in CA the LGB part has been supportive of the T.

Karen shifts to what we do from this point on. She asks Lee about the effectiveness of organized boycotts. Could there be a backlash?

Lee says he is not sure if this time a boycott would be effective. he says right now we need to educate more, particularly clergy, and if not clergy than congregation of the clergy. He talks about community forums that reaches out to organizations, advertising in black newspapers and radio to reframe message and gaining allies. He’s not sure if boycotts would work now. Lee says without the proper understanding in Af-Am community it’s not going to work. “once there is clarity on this is a violation of human rights, we have a number of options at that point,” he says.

Karen asks Lorri about a day without gays, but it seems she’s not there. Kors jumps in. he talks about how they should support No on 8 businesses. 

Lorri is back. she talks about invalidate prop 8 event, and mentions the Mormon Temple protest. She mentions the postcard initiative –they raised $60,000 for NCLR, Lambda Legal and HRC.

Karen asks if all the money was spent or can it be used on continuing education and what’s up with the email list. Lorri says she doesn’t know if there is money left. Lorri says she hopes there is not a deficit. She says organizations that gave $100,000 or more can do a fundraising email to the larger list. She says money left over will work for the email list.

Karen asks how they will keep the media alive and use a more effective strategy. Kors says they have a petition that also asks for more hard work. He says they have had 100,000 people agree to carry petitions. Kors says there will be a summit in January for anyone who wants to be involved.

Karen wants to know if it will be put on a web cast. Kors says that is really a group deciding the agenda, goals and how it will be run.

Kors says they have people already crunching the numbers to figure out when they have the best chance of winning–he notes they get to pick the language as well and building a broader coalition.

Lorri says she is worried 2010 would be too soon. She doesn’t want to give the California Supreme Court any excuse to punt the question because they think it will be on the ballot in 19 months. She wants the time to make sure public opinion has moved far enough to win. 

Kors says they will have to protect any pro-marriage judge who might be a recall target. 

Karen says they need to create one central website. Karen then reads an email thanking people and how to promote unity. Very We are the World.

Kors says we have to make sure we are all out there and working together. Lorri agrees and says the question that’s been a challenge for our community is that we are all so different. “It’s my hope with this summit it will include virtually any organization of any kind,” she says, noting they need to keep the grass roots engaged. 

Rev Lee says this is a start but if they are talking unity they are truly inclusive. I hope we get to a point where we don’t talk about gay or straight. he talks about projects at social and even economic levels. 

Karen says there were 270 participants before thank you’s and goodbyes.


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