By Janette Williams, Staff Writer
Posted: 11/18/2008 10:36:12 PM PST
PASADENA - When Tracie Jones and Valerie Paget awoke the morning of Nov. 5, they were "devastated" to find that California voters had passed Proposition 8 and that same-sex marriages like theirs were no longer legal in the state.
"There aren't words to describe how we felt - it was a sad and depressing time," said Jones, 38, who wed Paget in Vancouver, B.C., Canada, in April, their 10th anniversary as a couple.
But, that same day, after being "energized" at a Revoke Proposition 8 rally, the Pasadena couple decided to take their case for equality on the road - a 450-mile march to the doors of the state Supreme Court in San Francisco.
They left Tuesday morning from West Hollywood Park and, walking at a rate of 10 to 20 miles a day, expect to take about five weeks to reach their destination. With them is a 200,000-signature petition they hope to add to as they walk up the coast.
"Our goal is to harness all the energy that people are showing" in opposition to Proposition 8, Jones said.
"Everybody has a story, and we want to collect them as we go," she said. "It makes a difference when you put a human face on things. We live our lives like everyone else. We get up, shower, drink our coffee and go to work. Nothing subversive."
The Rev. Susan Russell of All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena - which conducted same-sex weddings and hosted pre-election phone banks to drum up opposition to Proposition 8 - said Tuesday that the couple's march is more than just a symbol.
"It's exactly what people of faith should be doing - putting their faith into action ... taking the opportunity to stand up for one of the defining civil rights issues of our time," Russell said. "We hold these women in our prayers, and we think it's exactly the kind of action we'd like to see more of as we continue to battle the effort to write discrimination into our Constitution."
Four legal writs have been filed with the state Supreme Court to overturn Proposition 8, Russell said, but working through the legal system is only one part of the opposition.
"I think everything we do is going to be effective" in fighting Proposition 8, she said. "As this couple takes a symbolic journey for justice, our prayers will move this state and this country."
Full article: Couple plan 450-mile walk against Prop.