Friday, October 17, 2008

Good things

You might have heard about this:

A group of San Francisco first-graders took an unusual field trip to City Hall on Friday to toss rose petals on their just-married lesbian teacher - putting the public school children at the center of a fierce election battle over the fate of same-sex marriage.

The 18 Creative Arts Charter School students took a Muni bus and walked a block at noon to toss rose petals and blow bubbles on their just-married teacher Erin Carder and her wife Kerri McCoy, giggling and squealing as they mobbed their teacher with hugs.

Mayor Gavin Newsom, a friend of a friend, officiated.

A parent came up with the idea for the field trip - a surprise for the teacher on her wedding day.

"She's such a dedicated teacher," said the school's interim director Liz Jaroslow....

The students' parents are planning to make a video with the children describing what marriage is to them.

Marriage, 6-year-old Nolan Alexander said Friday, is "people falling in love."

It means, he added, "You stay with someone the rest of your life."

The San Francisco Chronicle article has drawn over 3,000 comments, many of them full of hate. “It’s just utterly unreasonable that a public school field trip would be to a same-sex wedding,” said Chip White, press secretary for the anti-gay-marriage Proposition 8 campaign. “This is overt indoctrination of children who are too young to have an understanding of its purpose.”

As a straight parent in San Francisco--who is raising his son on Castro St., right on the border of Noe Valley and the Castro--I want to tell these people: In San Francisco, this is normal. Hell, my family is going to a lesbian wedding this weekend. There will be something like twenty kids there, all of them members of my son's community.

I can pretty much guarantee that the hateful comments on the Chronicle article are from people who don't live in San Francisco. Because those of us who are raising children in neighborhoods with large numbers of gay and lesbian families know a secret: They are great environments in which to raise kids. We have a good community and we're happy.

To people like Chip White, I say: You can rant, you can rave, you can shout your ignorance at my kid through your TV ads, Prop 8 might even pass, but you can't win. Gay and lesbian families are here to stay, and that makes our world a better place.

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