Monday, June 16, 2008
This is Del Martin. She's 87. She's just married Phyllis Lyon. She's 84.
I first met them in 1977 in the living room of my friends, Sheri and Lois, who were recently married in Boston, MA. (You may recall that I had the privilege of blessing their marriage just a few weeks ago.)
In 1978, Del wrote a book, 'Battered Wives', which was on domestic violence - the first of its kind, which was almost as much of a taboo as homosexuality.
Groundbreaking work was not unfamiliar territory for them. In 1972, they wrote 'Lesbian Woman', which offered a portrait of lesbian life. Their book became a model for many, many women who were lesbian who did have any role models.
They were in Boston because they had founded a social organization for women called Daughters of Bilitis - also the first of its kind. Sheri and Lois were the founders of DOB Boston and had invited Del and Phyllis to celebrate the 5th Anniversary of that organization.
I remember young, vibrant, passionate women who spoke about one day being married to each other. "It's possible," they assured us. "As long as you can dream."
"Never let anyone take your dignity, your integrity, your hopes or your dreams," they said.
I never forgot that. Neither did they.
Tonight, I celebrate with Del and Phyllis and all the other Californians who are being allowed their constitutional rights.
And they said it wouldn't last.