Letters to the Editor

Marriage equality is about love and fairness | Letter to the Editor

Did you know Vashon has more same sex-couples per capita than anywhere else in the state? We need your help in protecting these families by approving Referendum 74.

In 2006, our Legislature created the Registered Domestic Partners (RDP) system. Then in 2009, Washington voters approved the so-called “Everything But Marriage” law — the law that granted many rights and responsibilities for RDPs.

Some people might think that is good enough and our gay and lesbian Island neighbors don’t need marriage. I am here to say that the RDP law is not satisfactory to gay couples who want to marry and does not afford all of the same rights as being married. RDP is not portable to other states (even those that recognize marriage equality), nor does it provide spousal rights found in private contracts (such as health insurance to a “spouse” through one’s employer).

Everyone knows and understands what “marriage” means. Marriage says we are family like no other word. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to explain to someone what a “registered domestic partner” means. And you know what? In the time of any crises, I shouldn’t have to. After 17 years I simply want to marry my wife.

Marriage equality is about love and fairness. Civil unions and RDPs were a step, but they are not the same as marriage and never will be. That which is separate is not equal. Don’t take my word for it, see Brown v. Board of Education. For all Vashon families, help us approve R-74.

 

— Pearce Cobarr

 

 

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