Being gay has never defined me as a person.
When I was asked to cover the event, "Say A Big, Gay ‘I Do’ To A Charleston Destination Wedding,” immediately I knew two things: One, that I needed to find the perfect music on my iPod to motivate my tone of writing, and two, I wanted to approach it not as a gay male, but as human being, equal to any other person and deserving of the same rights.
I am not quite sure what the law is in South Carolina, but I may be married under common law as it is, since I have lived with the same eccentric and refined British lady for about nine years now. I can assure you that the only intimacy we share is when I borrow a few of her funky rocker pants or steal a squirt of toothpaste. Obviously, she knows that I am gay, but seems more interested in whether or not I have seen Delovely, since she asks me to watch the movie about Cole Porter at least once a month.
Let’s talk about this auction. As far as the details go, through August 8, same-sex couples are invited to bid on a Charleston destination wedding package valued at $45,000 that includes limo service, live entertainment, the cake and more. More than 20 local vendors have donated their time and services to this event that’s been organized by The Alliance For Full Acceptance. All funds raised will help AFFA extend its reach, advocating for the rights of LGBT individuals in South Carolina.
How exciting and thrilling this is that something so special and compassionate is coming to our city. What a testament to the kindheartedness of the vendors and businesses involved, doing such a wonderful thing that brings attention to equality in marriage. When I saw the list of companies that were giving their time, products, and services...I teared up. The gestures these business owners are making are truly a statement of love and intelligence. It makes me even more proud to be a Charlestonian. It shows that as a city, we are educated, caring, and open-minded.
The first wedding that I ever did make-up for was a lesbian Jewish wedding in New York City, and I would be lying if I said I wasn’t sure if I could take it seriously. That was 15 years ago, and boy was I in for a lesson that changed my life and my heart forever. When two people are in love and want to make a life commitment to one another, the feeling is all-consuming. We all deserve the right to have this opportunity, and no one can tell us who we should spend our lives with.
I ask that we consider this for those who deserve a beautiful place to officiate their love.
I know that in this post I have stayed on the mushy side of things. However, I must mention the fact that our local economy would enjoy many benefits from the legalization of gay marriage in South Carolina. Hotels, transportation services, flower shops, photographers, and more would all see an increase in business if this were to happen. The wedding planners in Charleston are moving and shaking, but we can always shake a little harder.
I promised myself that I was not going to get emotional, but now I want to get married! That may never happen, but if it does, I would want it to happen right here in Charleston.
All My Best,
Andrew C. Petersen
Interested in having the same-sex Charleston wedding of your dreams? Click here to learn more and bid on the package.
Photo (The American Theater) courtesy of Touchpoint Communications