Know Your State, Work For Change ~ Jeff Adams: Outside the Margins

Join us as Jeff Adams goes Outside the Margins.

Jeff_adams_OtMKnow Your State, Work For Change

I was in Alabama a couple weekends ago to see some hockey and catch up with friends. One of the people I saw while I was there surprised me in how little he knew about how his state handled gay marriage. The topic came up as we were talking about the move my husband and I made back to California. He asked if we’d considered moving to Alabama.

Truth of the matter is, Alabama was a non-starter for us because our New York marriage wouldn’t be recognized there. My friend knew Alabama didn’t perform same-sex marriages, but he didn’t know that the state didn’t recognize marriages performed in other states. He found it ludicrous that I could be married in one state and not another.

In fact, Alabama citizens voted to ban same-sex marriage back in 2005 and in 2006 the Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Amendment passed that not only prevents same-sex marriage, but bans couples from attaining any other form of family status. In the simplest terms, we wouldn’t be a legal couple in Alabama even though we’d have legal status in the eyes of the U.S. Government because of our NY marriage.  (Some good news came up as I wrote this on Friday, January 23, a Federal judge struck down the Alabama amendment. Alabama’s attorney general is asking for a stay, however, so it may still be some time before we can be legal there.)

My friend is a smart guy, and an ally, but he didn’t realize how deeply discriminatory the state where lives and raises his family actually is. It’s a concern that citizens don’t keep up with the laws that are enacted, or are threatening to be enacted, that turns a state into a discriminatory one.

There are laws being considered in other states that would bring LGBT discrimination to an all new level. Remember the Arizona law which would allow discrimination based on religious beliefs? It ultimately didn’t pass because too many big businesses, including the NFL, threatened to pull out of the state. Similar bills have cropped up in a few other states, including my home state of Michigan. I wonder how many people in states where these bills come up actually realize their legislators are trying to enact discrimination? How many people actually want these laws, or is it being dictated by a few loud people?

Discrimination rooted in religious freedom is disturbing to me. The God and Jesus I know are all-loving, embrace everyone and I can’t believe they’d appreciate these sorts of laws. Passing discrimination-allowing bills also seems like a slippery slope. If someone’s allowed to discriminate against LGBT people on the grounds of religious freedom, when do bills crop up that use religious freedom to discriminate against other groups—potentially even against other religions?

It’s a slippery slope. I do believe reasonable heads will prevail and these discrimination bills won’t be enacted. I also believe that, eventually, same-sex marriage will be nationwide (here’s hoping the Supreme Court will rule in favor in the coming months). However, there are always going to be people and groups who feel its their right to discriminate. It’s up to those who believe that we live in a country where everyone is equal to fight against them and to make equality as the law of the land.

Please join me in an effort to stay aware of the laws local and state representatives are putting forward as well as what they’re voting for. It’s not always easy, but it’s so important these days because attacks on freedom and equality come from many sides and it’s critical to speak out against them.

~ Jeff Adams

About Jeff Adams

Jeff Adams caught the writing bug in middle school and finally became a novelist with the Hat Trick series. He’s currently working on the final novel in the series, Hat Trick 3: Penalty Shot, which is due out this summer. He’s also written a number of m/m romance shorts, including the recent re-release of Rivals. Jeff and his husband, Will, live in the peaceful, coastal beauty of Humboldt County, California. He also covers the Detroit Red Wings, as well reviews books that feature LGBT hockey players, for PuckBuddys.com. To learn more about Jeff, visit jeffadamswrites.com and follow him on Twitter at @hockeyguynyc. You can also sign up to receive email updates from Jeff (no more than two per month) at http://eepurl.com/7TJC9.

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

Brandilyn
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