Montrose Does Its Part To Protest California's Prop 8 Decision

After waiting in anticipation to hold either a party or a protest, the LGBT community can take another collective exasperated sigh. It's back to the grind after Tuesday's California Supreme Court ruled to uphold Proposition 8, but also maintain the validity of approximately 18,000 marriages that were in question.

The LGBT bat-signal was flashed, via Facebook, that Impact Houston, Houston's full-equality activist organization, was hosting a rally at Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church, located at 2025 West 11th St., with an after-party and fundraiser at Guava Lamp to follow.

Before attending the events, Cory Witt, Will Brooks, Chip Ware, and Manuel Olivo took it upon themselves to bring the issue to the minds of passers-by as they stood at the corner of Westheimer and Montrose with signs during rush hour traffic, "making sure that everyone has something to think about on the ride home," said Witt.

Will Brooks and Chip Ware have been together for eleven years. "I am here because I believe it is important for the public to see the people that these decisions are affecting first hand...We just want the same legal benefits as a heterosexual couple. It has nothing to do with the religious aspect of it for us personally." said Brooks.

Chip Ware had to go to the hospital earlier in the day, and while Brooks had to sit in the waiting area, husbands and wives were allowed to sit with their significant others, he told Hair Balls. "And if it wasn't for the generosity and compassion of certain nurses," said Ware, "he wouldn't have even gotten little updates and gotten to come back at different times to hold my hand when I was scared."

The four men sweated for their cause, taking in the sun's rays, but as for heat from Houstonians, there was mixed feedback.

"I like that I live in a blue city," Olivo said, but whether or not you believe that Houston is a Blue droplet in a sea of Red, the responses were not overall overtly disapproving. Their signs received mostly positive feedback: smiles, other GLBT-friendly signs (from other protestors, no doubt), cheers, and honks with an occasional thumbs-up out of the window.

However, under the guise of Montrose, it's easy to forget: we are still in Texas.

"This is more fundamental than almost any other right out there... the right to be able love who you want and for the government to be able to help protect you from the people who want to hurt you," said Ware, "That's it."

If you were lucky enough to get hitched in Cali between June and November of 2008, you were able to beat the system by, in some cases, leaving home and getting government recognition and protection of your lifelong commitment of love in one of two states at the time to allow same-sex marriage -- all within the span of time lasting no longer than it takes most clothes to go out of style and season.

And, in case you didn't know, Texas prohibits same-sex marriage.

Doesn't mean that can't change, though.

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Melanie Pang