Tag Archives: Arkansas

Deep in the Heart of Dixie

Last Friday (9 May 2014), Pulaski County Circuit Judge Chris Piazza ruled that Arkansas’s ban on marriage equality was unconstitutional. Are we going from

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to

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One can only hope. Given the judge’s rank, the ruling will be applied county by county at the choice of the license clerks until higher courts confirm or deny the finding. The attorney general of the state, Dustin McDaniel, will appeal. He claims he supports marriage equality, but is bound to defend state laws.

Those who have read this blog over the years know that I support equal rights. Gay or lesbian couples don’t threaten me. They don’t harm me. So why would I object to them marrying?

With that in mind, here’s the message that I sent to Attorney General McDaniel:

Please do not appeal Circuit Judge Piazza’a ruling that the state ban on marriage equality is unconstitutional. That ruling is plainly correct, given rulings from both the Supreme Court last year and many state rulings in the months to follow. Our ban also violates the Fourteenth Amendment and likely the Ninth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Don’t waste our tax dollars defending the indefensible.

I expect he won’t listen, but rights delayed do tend to become rights demanded and asserted. But over the last several years, this country has been recognizing rights more and more, so I remain hopeful.

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Sleet Day

Here in the southern part of the United States, we talk about our four seasons: December, January, February, and summer. But we’ve been forced to acknowledge that Arkansas is now in December.

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Sleet is descending; the roads are slick; the schools are closed, and the Northwest Arkansas Writers Workshop meeting is cancelled.

Hello, everyone. My name is Greg, and I’m a writer.

Fortunately, the power is still on, so I can sit here typing away, my cat in my lap pulling as much heat from me as he can. But it’s days like today that remind me of the fragility of our twenty-first century world. A little bit of ice, a falling tree limb, or some swirling wind, and we find out how thin the veneer of civilization is.

And yet, when these events come, what I have seen is that the aftermath is more often like Jericho than The Road. Which is to say, we suffer the hit, pull ourselves back together, and get back to building a good world.

And yes, I realize that we’re just having a little sleet, not a zombie apocalypse. But I really hate missing writers group. I must review the steps:

1. We admit that we are powerless to stop writing.

2. We have come to believe that our writing comes from a Power higher than ourselves–the Muses.

3. We started drinking when we couldn’t stop the revelations.

4. We made a searching and fearless inventory of all the manuscripts hidden under our beds for something publishable.

5. We inflicted those manuscripts on anyone who would sit still for even a moment.

6. We objected loudly when anyone pointed out flaws in our writing.

7. We secretly made the changes others recommended, then claimed them for our own.

8. We made a list of everyone who has done us even the slightest wrong.

9. We made all of them characters who suffer bad ends in our stories.

10. We continued to drink, discovering that alcohol comes in many different forms.

11. We finally admitted that the Muses have good ideas, if only we’d get to work on what we’re given.

12. We carried the message of what we’ve written to the whole world, telling everyone to buy our books.

Yup, those are the steps. Happy sleet day, everyone.