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Prop 8 on gay marriage a big bucks fight

October 17, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
It is a California campaign battle that has drawn national attention and prompted supporters and opponents of the measure to raise more than $30 million for the fight. But what are the facts behind Proposition 8, the proposed ban on gay marriage?Robin Tyler and Diane Olson waited 15 years to get married. Now they want to fight to stay that way.

"When we became a domestic partnership, it wasn't 'Congratulations,' it was just like becoming a corporation: you filled out papers, you sent it into Sacramento and you got some rights. But when we got married, all of a sudden the recognition of our relationship was so much deeper," said Robin Tyler, who is against Proposition 8.

They are Los Angeles County's first same-sex couple to get married and part of the lawsuit that went all the way to the California State Supreme Court.

"Who have we hurt since we've gotten married. Who have we hurt?" asked Tyler.

"My answer is, why not? Why not? There's no reason for us not to be able to be married," said Diane Olson, who opposes Prop. 8.

Tyler and Olson are fighting Proposition 8, which would place a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Supporters of Prop. 8 say they don't want to take away their rights, but the feel the state Supreme Court made a mistake.

"We feel like it's outrageous that the California Supreme Court would ignore the voice of the people and in May, legalize gay marriage even though we had a landslide election saying no, we really still want to serve the gay community, but we want to have traditional marriage on the books," said Sonja Eddings Brown, Yes on 8.

Sonja Eddings Brown is from Yes on 8. She says she supports marriage between a man and a woman specifically for the benefit of children.

The group has commercials that claim children could be taught about same-sex marriage in school.

"Gay couples deserve to have exactly the same rights and privileges under marriage that we all do," said Eddings Brown. "The only place that we have a problem is when the rights of our children are sacrificed."

Tyler and Olson say ultimately this is a civil-rights issue.

"They say if this stays they're going to teach same-sex marriage in schools. No they're not, that's an out-and-out lie. The truth is this is just about love and commitment to our relationship and all we want is equality," said Tyler.


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