Celebrating Love and Family on Oregon’s Birthday

By Jeanna Frazzini of Portland, Oregon. Jeanna has worked for Basic Rights Oregon since 2005, and has been the executive director since 2008. She grew up in rural Eastern Washington, moved to Oregon in 1992 and now lives in North Portland.

Today’s a day to celebrate what’s sweet, including Oregon’s statehood and our progress toward equality. Join us in pushing that forward by reaching out to those you care about and striking up a conversation about marriage equality.

There’s so much to love about Oregon, and yet caring and committed gay and lesbian couples can’t get married here. These couples share Oregon’s values of hard work, perseverance and community. These families do the hard work of marriage every day and share similar hopes and dreams with all couples.

That’s what Americans will see today in a marriage equality public education ad featuring four Oregon couples, developed right here in Oregon, airing nationwide on CNN as part of a national campaign launched by our partners at Freedom to Marry. The couples, two gay and two straight, share their personal stories as they talk about their longtime commitment to one another and why marriage matters to them.

In a state where the square dance is the official dance, committed couples hold a special place in Oregon. Yet without the clarity and security of marriage, longtime gay and lesbian couples can’t provide and protect for each other as married couples can. These real consequences have even included an Oregon Registered Domestic Partner being kept out of the hospital room as his partner lay dying.

As we celebrate our state’s birthday and reflect on what makes our state great, it’s clear that Oregonians believe in treating others as one would want to be treated. That’s why more and more Oregonians believe that fundamental fairness includes allowing committed gay and lesbian couples to join in civil marriage.

We know that support for marriage equality rises dramatically when someone has had a heartfelt conversation about allowing same-sex couples to join in civil marriage, answering qualms, explaining that it wouldn’t change religious practices in any way and sharing why marriage should include all loving, committed couples.

You can learn more at marriagemattersoregon.org and sign the Freedom to Marry pledge.

Won’t you be a part of moving marriage equality forward by talking with friends, family and neighbors about why marriage matters?

For love, for Oregon,
Jeana Frazzini, executive director, Basic Rights Oregon

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    I would like to see a Marriage Equality Act on the ballot in 2012.

    Oregon appears to have the educated and compassionate population that may by popular vote create equal standing before the law for all its citizens.

    As a Mormon (the religion of CA's Prop 8 infamy) I owe it to my fellow man to place my support for such a measure in writing.

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      November 2, 2004: Oregonians voted 57% to 43% to pass Ballot Measure 36, a constitutional amendment defining marriage to be between one man and one woman.

      I am not sure my fellow Oregonians have become more enlightened since then, although I hope they have.

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        Yes, November 2, 2004...the day religious Democrats came together with their religious conservative counterparts and said just said no to equal rights.


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