August 3, 2012 was the day son Michael and his fiancee Shirley were married at Findhorn in Scotland. Findhorn is where Michael was born, Karin lived for 25 years, and Shirley lived for much of her life.
Because Karin and I are in proceedings now – her request for a visa extension was denied last year, so I filed for a marriage-based green card in January to sponsor my legally-wedded spouse for immigration – Karin cannot leave the country. She is in grave jeopardy of not being allowed to return, to re-enter the U.S.
So we had to watch the wedding on Skype and imagine what all the family was doing and imagine all the fun they were having and imagine and wonder and wish. This blog post really puts a face on the discrimination we face – the discrimination I was describing to journalists at a convention (UNITY 12) less than 24 hours before the wedding took place.
A few pictures have started arriving and we are thrilled to see these. The Skype link at the wedding made us feel like we were there, and we got to see family say Hi to us via the iPad, but it was blurry and broke up and pixellated sometimes.
Here’s the bride and groom, Michael and Shirley, filling out their marriage paperwork:
Here’s Connor, Shirley’s son, with groom/Dad 2 Michael
Here’s much of the rest of the UK family – grandsons Adam and Daniel and David and granddaughters Samantha and Christina and Hillary and son-in-law Terry
My wife and I should not be separated from these folks, our family, because of DOMA! No American should have to choose between family and country. No American should be separated from family because of country, laws or discrimination. We see the hope of change, but it is not here – not tied up with a bow – yet. Karin and I have discrimination fatigue. We say ENOUGH already. Wouldn’t you be heartsick to miss this wonderful event with this wonderful family? We thought so!
Here’s my regular sign-off on blog posts:
Immigration Equality, Out4Immigration and Love Exiles Foundation are the three groups working on our issue – and the three groups who receive whatever money comes in from sales of my book, Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law, Findhorn Press, 2011.
My newer project, with David W. Ross, whose new film “I Do: The Movie” will be out in June 2012, is a portrait project of LGBT binational families, United by Love, Divided by Law Portrait Project. It expands the reach of my book and will keep adding portraits as we find couples and funds to add more. We will hold events to assist the work being done for our families by Lavi Soloway and Stop the Deportations – The DOMA Project. Check out the site at
and see the Facebook page at
To follow Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law, go to its Facebook page at:
Read an excerpt of my book at this link: http://bit.ly/eIyGxh
Order online from the publisher at this link:
Elizabeth Gilbert wrote the foreword to my book. She is an ally in our fight and has suffered from the immigration situation herself as part of a binational relationship. Though she and her boyfriend were able to marry, they know what the drill was and they advocate for LGBT binational families. We like that!
Remember, too, you can follow me and what I am doing and thinking and reading on twitter @tornapartbook