Same-Sex Weddings – Is homophobia and heterosexism still alive and well in Michigan?

Same-Sex Weddings – Does Marriage Equality Guarantee Equal Treatment?

Same Sex Weddings, Pride, elope in saugatuck, Gay Friendly Beach Weddings, elope in MichiganI grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and have always believe people are people and we should all be respected just as another individual…to me it’s as simple as the “do unto others” thing that our Mom’s all tried to teach us.

It makes no difference to me what color you are, who you love or what you do in your bedroom, that’s just none of anyone’s business but yours. Because this is something I live and breathe and not just a tag-line I honestly really hard time understanding such prejudice from other people.

But out here in the boondocks of SW Michigan apparently things are a little different and all I can hear in my head is “We’re not in Kansas anymore, Dorothy!”

8/18/15 UPDATE: It’s been six years and a fantastic SCOTUS ruling since I wrote the est of the post below. Some things have changed, others haven’t. Some venues and vendors have changed their tune, which in itself is encouraging; as in the case of a local religious college, who rents out a breathtakingly gorgeous chapel. Shortly after the SCOTUS ruling was handed down they issued a big statement allowing same-sex weddings in the chapel and extending benefits to married same-sex employees; it made local headlines, everyone cheered – religion progressed that day.

On the flip side you have venues and vendors who are clearly just in for the money; you’ll know them when you see them. They’ll be the ones asking insensitive questions or making unsettling comments. Their lack of experience will shine with Male/Female based language and contracts.

My bitch today is vendors and venues who are intentionally lying to couples about their experience, which is never a good thing. It undermines the actual professionals who do have experience providing services for same-sex weddings; who wants a DJ that going to introduce two ladies as Mr. & Mrs.? I recently caught to catch the SAME venue, as discussed below, lying about their experience with same-sex weddings.

When it comes to privately owned and operated business my thought is, if they truly supported marriage equality and couples wanting to have same-sex weddings those businesses should have been serving all couples since day one, like we and are our preferred vendors always have. Shouldn’t they be honest with you about something they’ve never done before? Wouldn’t you want to know?  Six years later and we still have a long way to go.

You can read the rest of the original post below or click HERE to see the unedited post with comments; it was great to see so many people we respect in the industry siding with our outrage.  Please, share your thoughts in the comment section below!

Here’s what prompted all this – I’m working with a couple who is planning their Commitment Ceremony (same-sex weddings were illegal at this time) for next summer and I get an email back from one of the local venues that says “At this time, we are not hosting ceremonies and receptions for same-sex couples at The (NAME WITHHELD). I’m not sure what the future will bring, but that is our current policy.” Talk about a jaw dropping moment for me!

I just don’t know what to think but I am feeling pretty naive, I guess living in Saugatuck, which is a very open town with a large gay population, I didn’t think I would get that reaction from a new venue that is less than 30 miles from here.

But I’m quite the bull-dog and can’t bring myself to shut-up and play nice (hence this blog). My first reaction is to tell this venue to jump in the Lake and I won’t be bringing anyone out there until they change their policies.

Doing that could go either way, they know a lot of the wedding pro’s in the area so I could either be shooting myself in the foot or making a bunch of new friends. As much as I do love new friends – this move has the potential to get me “blackballed” with other vendors in the area…or least that’s my fear.

If I didn’t have to ever work again I would be shouting their name off the rooftop, taking out ad space in the local papers and plastering my Facebook and Tweets with things like “DO NOT BOOK HERE!” but I am trying to be reasonable (and professional).

So my questions to all of you is – if you were in my shoes what would you do?

What do you think?