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Meet The Threats To Marriage Equality, In Washington R 74 & I 1192

So many of you may have already heard that marriage equality in the great state of Washington, my home, is already under attack by the anti gay rights lobby, we have two legal fronts that they are trying to attack us from, one being threw the referendum process, for which not even 3 hours after marriage equality was signed into law they had submitted their referendum which is now officially Referendum 74, R 74/Ref 74 for short.  They have the 3 month period starting with the end of this legislative session, in other words until June 6th, to submit 120,557 valid signature (non duplicate, signatures voters registered to vote in the state of Washington) and of the initiative they have until July 6th to tun in  241,153 valid signatures as well.  but the Initiative has been in the works (it was filed back in January).

One thing to keep in mind is that in WA petition gathers are guaranteed no rights to gather signatures on Private property even commercial property that is open to the public, and many business will kick them off the property if complained to about them. (as they don't want their customers feeling harassed/upset by signature gathers)   Don't feel guilty about doing what you can to make their job harder as it has been ruled that signature gathers are allowed to lie about the intent of the initiative/referendum, and any other manor of things to get the signatures.  Their only legal requirement that must be fallowed is that somewhere on the forum there must be a full legal text of the initiative/referendum as written by the State Attorney Generals Office (or a judge) and you must be allowed to read it if requested.  So be vigilant, as one should always do read anything presented you before signing it to prevent the signature gatherers who are often paid by the signature to gather them from lying and tricking you into signing something that you actually would not want to.  

For those of you not from the state, and even those of you from it the next part can get a little confusing, so here goes. In both cases one wants to decline to sign ether petition if/when presented it by a signature gatherer, and to encourage their friends, family and coworkers to do so as well.  But if/when these get on the ballot then we have two very different ways that we want to vote, so I will brake it down.

If/when R 74 makes it onto the November ballot you, your friends, family and coworkers will need to Approve (vote yes) R 74 to put the law into effect and protect marriage equality. Because like all referendum the question being asked is do you Approve making this law and putting it into affect or do you reject it becoming law, and since you Approve of marriage equality Approve of the Referendum.

Now we get the confusing part and the one that if it winds up on the ballot could do a crap load of damage, I-1192 seeks to change the definition of marriage in Washington to "between one man and one women" and to ban gay marriage (once again) on this one thought you want to vote NO to protect marriage.  Vote No on the Initiative to protect marriage from attack.

Hope fully nether of them will make the ballot but we must be prepared if they do and we must all be well educated on how to vote to protect marriage equality, to be vocal not only about why it is important, to help build support among the voting public, but also so that those around us know that they can turn to us to be sure that they vote correctly to support equality instead of accidentally against it (like so many did in CA with prop8)



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