Kris Hermanns, in front of the gathering crowd before speaking at the Seattle Rally to celebrate SCOTUS

Kris Hermanns, in front of the gathering crowd before speaking at the Seattle Rally to celebrate SCOTUS

Honoring the Supreme Court rulings today that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (Doma) and Pride Foundation Staff attended rallies and celebrations across our Northwest Region. Here are Executive Director, Kris Hermann’s remarks from the rally in Seattle.

Congratulations! What a great day!

As Executive Director of Pride Foundation, your regional LGBTQ community foundation, I’m thrilled to be here to share this moment with you. I really could get use to this.

It has been hard for me to put into words what this day represents. I was in California for Prop 8. I worked hard, as did so many, and in the days following that loss, I can certainly say that this day, this joy, didn’t feel likely.

Today’s Supreme Court rulings took us one step further toward ensuring that the pursuit of freedom, liberty, and happiness are available to all of us. I have a rush of emotions when I realize how far we have come and how all of this was possible because of the pioneers in our movement, many who are no longer with us.

As we celebrate this day, let’s start dreaming about what else we will accomplish. The wave of momentum that began to crest when we passed Ref. 74 is unstoppable. We showed what we can do when we come together and believe in one another. During the Washington United Campaign, we worked across boundaries and beliefs with faith, business, allied communities, and with elected officials, many who hold diverse political opinions.

We know what it takes—courage, commitment, resources, and all of us—to win at this level. It is the only way that we will continue to be successful.

Now, we need to take those same ingredients to the next stage of this battle for full equality.

As we fight for the freedom to marry in Oregon, which will be on the ballot in Nov 2014. As we continue to advocate boldly and loudly for basic protections in states where there are none, including in our backyard with Idaho, Montana, and Alaska. Our rights should not end at any state line. And as we stand up for humane immigration reform, accessible health care, reproductive rights, and a federal employment nondiscrimination law, because these issues affect all of us.

There is no going back and no holding back. Even when we know our opponents are gearing up, changing their tactics, and re-energizing their base. We are in an era of game changing moments we are no longer always playing defense. While celebrating this pride weekend, hold this victory and joy—and refuel and recommit. We are just hitting our stride. Remember, never has more been possible and our humanity and dignity will prevail.

Congratulations again. Love wins.

Please stay tuned, here, and on Facebook and Twitter for more in-depth analysis on these rulings and what they mean for our community.

Posted In: Blog, Connecting Leaders