Sunday, November 9, 2008

One Thing Led to Another

After an early morning spent mulling over the content of Meet the Press, This Week With George Stephanopolous, and Fareed Zakaria's GPS, we entered Season's Restaurant exactly at 12 noon, the appointed hour. Laurie greeted us at the door. The restaurant was surprisingly empty. Well, perhaps not surprising given the dreaded word - ECONOMY! Luckily, we had a $40 gift certificate that remained unused since my last birthday in January.

We had thought perhaps Connor would join us, but he had gone to a concert in Chico Saturday night, and didn't arrive back in time. Never mind. We had lots to talk about as we hadn't been in each other's presence since the election.

One thing led to another. First, what did we think about the Raum Emanuel pick as Chief of Staff. I had a definite opinion about that, having seen him and his two brothers interviewed by Charlie Rose some weeks/months back and been impressed by his sense of humor and the warmth shown with his brothers. While he may be thought of as aggressive and abrasive by some, his true self I believe showed a different side with his brothers - a warmth he may not always display in his direct side. Obama knows him well. Obama doesn't seem afraid to have people with whom he may disagree surround him. He strongly believes, "We can disagree without being disagreeable." I think it will serve him well to have someone perceived as the "attack dog" in his stable. He can remain "No drama Obama!" and let his Chief of Staff do the heavy lifting.

Laurie commented that before the election, one of her colleagues had asked her how she felt about Proposition 8, the California gay marriage ban question. I had assumed "opposed", but Laurie said, "No, ...'mixed.' This led to a lengthy discussion, because my (and Ed's) feelings had been that whether a homosexual couple marries and calls it "marriage" does not in any way affect our marriage and that they should have equal rights. For us, it was a no-brainer.

Able to look at both sides of the issue, Laurie put forth what I suppose is a logical reason for the "mixed" opinion. Disagreeing without being disagreeable, we concluded that the best of all worlds would be that everyone, heterosexual as well as homosexual couples wishing to be joined in some kind of legal union should apply for a "domestic partnership" license with the state(s) and have whatever kind of spiritual/religious ceremony they wish to have. The vows they would take would be of their own choosing. The domestic partnership would entitle equal benefits, privileges, and legal status to each. No difference. The words "husband" and "wife" could remain with the heterosexual couples as currently used - or not.

Remember back in the beginnings of women's lib when being identified as "my wife" somehow seemed to infer entitlement or chattel? Although this was not part of today's discussion, I'm wondering when that changed. Two of my daughters and my daughter-in-law chose not to give up their maiden name when they married. It seems clear they wanted to maintain their own individuality, their own identity separate and apart from their legal domestic partner. Did they give up their right to their own identity when being identified, as in somebody's "my" anything? Just saying.