Yesterday, the Proposition 1 ballot initiative passed in North Carolina. I can honestly say that I was in tears. Our company has worked with dozens of couples from North Carolina over the years, including one of our 5/15/12 weddings and one of our 5/19/12 weddings. Two couples this month, from (yet another) state which treats them as second-class citizens.
The passage of this proposition forbids those kind, loving couples from equal marriage, civil unions, domestic partnerships and every other "family" construct. The way the amendment was written was truly horrifying.
I honestly try to focus this blog on the "how to..." elements of wedding planning, but the truth is that 14 Stories is an activist-type company. We care about the laws. We only plan legal weddings. We provide every couple we meet with a list of resources that can help them protect their families. The reality is, for LGBT couples, marriage is not enough.
14 Stories is paid to plan beautiful weddings, and I love that. But we have gone through the process of planning our own wedding, having some family support and some not, having to hire a lawyer for all this extra paperwork, the same stuff that every LGBT couple must face. And that's just the tip of the iceberg of what makes LGBT weddings different.
I love working with couples who give a damn, LGBT couples for whom this stuff is important, who don't take equal marriage rights for granted and who want to make some slight political statement with their marriage ceremony (and if you don't know how, we have ideas...)
Even if you live in a big city (like we do) with many LGBT friends (like we have), please don't take whatever rights you have for granted. We have to keep fighting because, in most of the world, our LGBT brothers and sisters have no rights. Even in states like California and Florida with "gay mecca" cities, LGBT couples have very limited rights.
Your marriage and wedding is important, of course, but please, above all, protect your family. Please contact us if you need resources in your area for financial planners, estate planning attorneys, insurance agents and other professionals who can help protect your family.
And please, along with us, keep up the good fight. It's not just about the wedding.