Poster Children

I imagine couples all over the States are emailing the ACLU or Lambda Legal, etcetera volunteering to be the case that sues their state for marriage equality. I’ve always wondered if lawyers look for the storybook or “perfect” representative to build a case with. I realize that this completely displays my ignorance of the legal system so please just rub things out and move them around in your brain and we’ll call it even.

I can tell you that we’ve been doing a stint as poster children in our own community this year. I imagine it’s because we have all the right things to ply the public with: we’re well-spoken on the fly (or at least my wife is), we’ve been married for nearly seven years, we have a cute kid who we tote along to rallies, and we’re not terrible looking. I think we make it easy for the general public to see us people like us as normal. At least, I hope that’s the effect for the fence-sitters.

We’re in one of the weekly papers this week, both of us swinging RR and D making awesome quotes. If there’s a link, I’ll post it!

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8 Responses

  1. Incidentally, if you ever do want to talk to the ACLU, I am good friends with a woman who does lots of their LGBT plaintiff finding…. The answer to your question is, of course, yes: they do look for plaintiffs that increase the odds of both winning and getting favorable treatment in the press. Most of the cases involve groups of plaintiffs, so part of it is about balancing the group so that different races, ages, locations within a state, and so on are represented.

    • I think we’d make a good addition to any case but I doubt there’s much room to stand in Virginia at the moment. I wonder if the first case here will be brought by individuals married in DC who can’t file state taxes together here (or access a suite of federal services made available through state organizations). We’re quite firmly (so far) committed to marrying in Virginia eventually rather than doing it in DC. The continuing fight is important to me and I’m not sure it has the same voice when spoken by someone already married elsewhere. Besides, I deeply want to marry AT HOME.

  2. I am so thankful for the people who are willing to be poster children. I hate being the focus of that kind of attention which makes the people who are willing to go there even more appreciated. 🙂 Thank you!

    • We began as accidental poster people but now it’s more intentional since we both have come to the view that its important to have a visible long-term couple with kids model that resonates with some of the very traditional folks in a rural area. I’m sure there ar ethers who would step in if we stepped out but for now its a part we’re willing to play.

  3. Exciting! We were interviewed briefly on tv because we got our marriage license on the first day they were available in DC. B. said something smart about the rights the Attorney General in MD was extending to couple who married in DC. The reporter told us that he picked us because it’s actually really hard to tell a couple of homos from a couple of random federal workers going to lunch, or a couple of people doing whatever you do at the court building. They picked us because I was carrying one of the flowers that volunteers were giving out.

    The whole experience was really wonderful, but it was a bummer to realize how strong the social taboo still is against implying that someone who isn’t gay might possibly could be gay.

    (thinking unicorns for you)

  4. That’s exciting! Good for you. We have to work our activist angle on the sly because my wife works for a Catholic school who has the right to fire her for not adhering to the morals of the church. Bugs the heck outta me, but what can we do? Los Angeles is certainly not swimming in teaching jobs at the moment.

    • It’s so frustrating – outrageous really – that we have to face being fired for who we are. I respect groups’ rights to hire and fire who they please but it’s still frustrating.

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