Day 25 - Photo 25. The wedding day had finally come. They stood before the alter and committed their lives to each other. Members of the audience smiled and nodded knowingly. At times the couple giggled breathlessly like school kids. They blushed. They faltered. They exchanged vows and slipped rings on each others fingers. And then, they turned to face a church filled with family and friends as a married couple.
They stood in a reception line and accepted the handshakes, hugs, smiles and congratulations. They mingled amongst well wishers. A friend lifted a glass and toasted the couple and finally with hands intertwined, they cut the cake. As weddings go, events and people stayed to the script. Unless of course you take into account that the happy couple were two women who've waited on this day for 15 years.
The camera is a bully pulpit. As photojournalists, we will often say we prefer to remain in the background, the shadows, attempting only to portray people and events, never wishing to influence the outcome with our presence. That much is true. Though the photojournalist has great power for change by what and who we show with our cameras. Many a social injustice has been brought to light through the lens.
On November 4th voters in California will defeat or approve proposition 8. If passed it would amend the state constitution to define the word marriage as "between and man and a woman." Many look upon this as a religious issue, a legal issue, a moral issue. Simply put, it's a social justice issue. It was within my lifetime that a mixed race marriage was illegal. Illegal.
I never wanted this blog to be process driven. I started it as a photographic journey. Part of the journey was to find the passion that had driven me to be a photojournalist. I found something unexpected though, part of my heart and soul that had been missing. I don't want to lose them again.
On November 4th I will follow my heart and soul when I step into the voting booth.