In California on November 4th, while we were whooping and hollering with joy over the election of Obama, we were also scratching our heads over the passing of an irrational bill that takes away the rights of gay people to get married. The bill was the direct result of fear-based pressure that originated in religious institutions. It was one of the primary reasons I changed the format of this blog to help spread the word that Religion hurts our society.
Today is “Day Without a Gay.” Did you know this? To protest Proposition 8, people were encouraged to “Call in Gay” and not shop. Rather than working, they were to spend a day with a variety of service organizations.
While I encourage protest of Prop 8, and agree with the sentiments of this event, I doubt it will exact much change. Why? Because the pain will not be felt in the appropriate places, and the benefit will also be misplaced. The people punished are the various work places who lack key team members today. Are they the cause for Prop 8’s passage? That’s unlikely. Secondly, by not shopping they really hurt no one. The gay person who doesn’t spend $1 today, will spend $2 to make up for it. Pure silliness. By volunteering at service organizations, that’s really good and all, but does it hit a bulls-eye on their target? This aspect might possibly help, simply by spreading good will toward humanitarian causes, but the effort won’t directly impact Prop 8 proponents.
Lastly, the “take a day off work” strategy simply makes dissatisfied people feel good about being an activist by giving them an excuse to do something they want to do anyway. To take a day off work you don’t need to cloak it beneath some humanitarian cause.
To really create long-term pain—vote with your dollars. The great thing about this (and I’ve talked about this before) is that you don’t have to do it once every four years. You can do it every day. Start spending more of your money with gay friendly corporations.
Start spending less of your money at gay-adverse (or religion-backed) organizations. Especially Mormons, since they are the ones who covertly funded Prop 8. Stop eating at Chick-Fil-A, stop renting videos from Blockbuster. Specifically stop patronizing companies that funded proposition 8.
Be ye not fooled: religions care about one thing above all else: MONEY.