Wednesday, July 25, 2012

NOH8

NOH8 - Hartford, CT - May 2012 - Photo by Adam Bouska

mar·riage/ˈmarij/

Noun:
  1. The formal union of a man and a woman, typically recognized by law, by which they become husband and wife.
  2. A relationship between married people or the period for which it lasts.
One of life's more controversial topics of conversation is over same sex marital rights.  I am proud to say that I live in the first state that legalized same sex marriage.

This year, I will celebrate my twentieth wedding anniversary with my husband.  On top of those twenty years, we had five years before that, where we dated, fell in love and got engaged.

I am of the belief that there is someone for everyone.  In my case, it was my husband.  For many though, that someone might be the right woman for another woman, or the right man for another man.  

People talk about marriage being defined as one man and one woman. That marriage is about procreation of children into a family with one father and one mother.  I would fit into that classic definition.  However, I don't think in 2012, that definition fits society as a whole any more.  

More and more heterosexual couples are having children out of wedlock, living together, breaking up when the relationship gets too tough and they don't feel like making it work.  More people are getting divorced for the same reason, because to work at it might rob them of something they aren't willing to give up emotionally.

I see same-sex couples who want to have the same basic rights as heterosexual couples.  They want the same legal recognitions when it comes to property, taxes, parental rights all because they love each other and want to spend the rest of their lives with one another.  Honestly, what is wrong with that?  

California became the second state in the country to legalize same-sex marriage, but in November 2008, Proposition 8 was passed to amend the California state constitution, to ban same-sex marriage.  Couples who want to be married, are not allowed now.

NOH8 (pronounced No Hate) was started by celebrity photographer, Adam Bouska and his partner Jeff Parshley in direct response to the passage of Proposition 8.  It is a photographic silent protest, photos feature subjects with duct tape over their mouths, symbolizing their voices being silenced by Prop 8 and similar legislation around the world, with "NOH8" painted on one cheek in protest.

NOH8 - Boston, MA - March 2011 - Photo by Adam Bouska
Last year, NOH8 came to the City of Boston. It was a proud moment when my son and I joined a group of friends, comprised of fellow photographers and models from our photography group, and "voiced" our protest.  It wasn't just posing for the photograph that made that day special.  We met so many like-minded people--gay, lesbian, and straight.  In that lovely spring day, we all came together sharing the same voice, the same message.  That same-sex marriage is marriage.  And those who want to be married, should be allowed to be married.  Period.

Messrs. Bouska and Parshley, along with their dedicated staff, continue to get the message out to the world.  They continue adding to the protest, city-by-city.  

It was my honor to participate in this 'fight' again, this time in Hartford, CT.  I attended the day with a dear friend, who if she wanted to marry her girlfriend, she could here in Massachusetts. I have a friend who lives in California with her girlfriend.  For all intents and purposes, the life they lead is a marriage.  It is my hope that someday I can celebrate with them, their love for one another in the form of their legalized marriage.

mar·riage/ˈmarij/ (as defined by me)
Noun:
  1. The formal union of two people, typically recognized by law, by which they become husband and wife, husband and husband, or wife and wife..
  2. A relationship between married people or the period for which it lasts.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Denied Comic Con Coverage

We are DirecTV subscribers. So this week's nastiness between DirecTV and Viacom, has been inconvenient.

At first I wasn't all that upset about it, a bit irritated about it, but not a huge amount.

Until this morning, when I found out from a friend, that Spike TV would be airing coverage from Comic Con 2012. Comic Con where there will be a Firefly cast reunion, where Henry Cavill will be there promoting his role as Superman, where all number of cool things will be covered. My irritation turned to irate anger at the injustice of it all.

So what it boils down to for me is this. Two behemouth entertainment entities are in a war of words, trying to turn the public against one another. They are in a giant game of chicken, to see who will flinch first and made a concession.

In the midst of this, I can't help but wonder what would happen if I pro-rated my DirecTV bill for the missing channels for as long as this outage lasts. Something tells me that I will have the threat of my satellite servie being cut off.

I'm tired of being under the thumb of corporations. And I long for the days of a simpler life.

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Blast From The Past

It seems, all of a sudden, that all the parents are feeling the need to pare down their lives.  They are simplifying their lives, so that some day, when they are gone, we don't have a huge amount of work to get rid of their lifetimes.

My Mum's project this week, is to go through old photographs.  She's gotten rid of a ton of them.  But she's also kept a large amount of important ones.  Now comes the question, what to do with them.  I'm an only child, as is my cousin.  Mum set aside a number of pictures of her sister, my cousin's mother, and her husband, both of whom have been gone for 24 and 35 years respectively.  Mum wondered if she should give them to my cousin, or would they be a source of pain for her.  They talked about it, and my cousin said that she wanted them.

I'm a computer geek.  And a photography geek.  I love looking at old photographs. Growing up we would spend the weekend at my grandparents house. My favorite thing to do on a rainy Saturday afternoon was to look through the photo albums. I loved seeing pictures of my Mum growing up in England, pictures of ancestors that I had never met, pictures of my cousin as a little girl.

After Mum mentioned she was doing this, it occurred to me that I had few pictures of my uncle. And that I had a scanner at my disposal. Thus started the quest to scan as many photos as possible. But more importantly, I sat with Mum going through the photos. A lot of them I remember from my childhood. But there were also photos that my Nana never had. Like the ones of my Mum that Dad had taken in Montreal during Expo 67, where she was wearing a cute little green & white Sixties style dress. Or the one photograph that exists of when Mum was pregnant with me (you can't even really tell she's pregnant, but the date puts it in the right time frame). Or the pictures of my godfather, who was so young at the time that I didn't recognize him. Those were scanned and shared with his daughters, who were thrilled to bits, having never seen pictures of him from the Sixties.

Tomorrow is never guaranteed. Yesterday is a memory, but at least I have sat with Mum and made the attachments to those memories.
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