Here's a letter to the editor of the Seattle Times and my response to that letter. It is unlikely to be published in the Times, so I am submitting it here for the record.
"Agenda-driven citizens forget others disagree"
Here's the answer to how Referendum 71 gathered enough signatures to be on the ballot ["137,689 names later, gay community asks: How did they do it?" page one, August 3]. Look no further than the first sentence of the article, "The odds seemed almost insurmountable."
There seems to be a disconnect with agenda-driven citizens, our governor included, in the belief that everyone agrees with them. In this case it led to a surprise for the gay-rights activists.
There are a great many of us who desire to keep the definition of marriage as a legal and/or spiritual union between a man and a woman. Not because we hate gays, not because we fear gays, not for religious reasons or fear of change -- but simply because marriage is between a man and a woman. Please accept this as a difference of opinion. I respect your right to your opinion, now please respect mine.
Regarding the recent University of Washington poll suggesting 77 percent of voters believe gay and lesbian couples should have at least some of the same benefits as married couples. This can be accomplished with a civil union. I am not opposed to the recognition of gay and lesbian families as Josh Friedes of Washington Families Standing Together also states, but I am just opposed to same-sex marriage.
It has been very frustrating to be confronted with vitriolic rhetoric concerning my intelligence and character when opposing these issues. I agree voters need to look ahead in their consideration of Ref. 71 because it is critical stepping stone to same-sex marriage, not a step everyone wants to take.
-- Deanna Sundvick, Woodinville
Seattle Times editors:
In regards to the 'Agenda-driven citizens forget others disagree' letter, there's a disconnect between the rights of all citizens and Deanna Sundvick's supposed right to impede the rights of gay people.
Deanna Sundvick of Woodinville says "Please accept this as a difference of opinion. I respect your right to your opinion, now please, respect mine." This is about much more than 'an opinion'; you are trying to take away basic rights for US citizens THAT ALREADY EXISTS AS LAW. This is ONLY your opinion and I do not respect it. You are trying to make your opinion law and whining when someone calls you on your deceit. Did you actually read what you wrote and still don't understand the 'vitriolic rhetoric' that's directed at you because you don't seem to understand that you are a bigot who is trying to take someone else's rights away? We don't like that sort of thing here on the West Coast in the United States of America; perhaps you should check out Birmingham, Alabama.
You don't seem to understand that we're all US citizens with the right to have a loving relationship with whoever we want, including all the American amenities such as visitation, money and all other legal rights granted to American citizens. By signing on to Ref 71, you want to restrict the rights of other US citizens; like you have the right to do this. I don't like your lifestyle; do I have the right to stop you from living your lifestyle? This isn't about who agrees with who, this is about basic human US citizen rights. Man, I don't agree with you and I could care less what you agree with. Just stay out of my way or you'll get run over by the other humans.