Gay Marriage

Dennis Brauer
Comp I

I marched with Dr. Martin Luther King. I protested the segregation of Katz drugstore in Des Moines, Iowa. I helped remove the “White Only” signs from the Iowa State Capitol building. I fought in Viet Nam as a Marine, and did 2 tours of duty for my country. I serve my religious community as a “Chevra Kaddisha.” My greatest battle started in 1980 when I joined “Act Up” and “Queer Nation” to demand equal rights for the Lesbian, Gay, and Transgendered Community. Same Sex marriage is one of the rights I fought for. On April 3rd, 2009, the Iowa State Supreme Court upheld a ruling by the Polk County District Court in Varnum vs. Brien which effectively forced the state to rescind any outstanding discrimination against same sex couples who wish to have their marriages recognized and licensed under state law. Iowa has provided benefits to same-sex partners of state employees since 2003.
Dr. Martin Luther King said in one of his speeches, “Cowardice asks the question – is it safe? Vanity asks the question – is it popular? Expediency asks the question – is it political? But the conscience asks the question – is it right? There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, popular, or political; but because it is right.”
I have faced criticism my whole life, for virtually every major decision I’ve ever made. I don’t really let that stand in the way of doing what I think is right. When it comes to supporting gay marriage and equal rights for all it wasn’t a difficult decision. I would like to know who can give me one good reason why two people who wanted to get married should be prevented from doing so, and why they fell threatened by it. When fair-minded and decent people break the strangle hold of the religious right on their collective consciousness of cultural customs; they will see that they are being ignorant and bigoted by being against same sex marriage. That’s thanks in a large part to some kind of “sanctity of marriage”...