Love Equality

It's the great American dream isn't it?

Fall madly in love with someone, get married, have children, buy a home and live happily ever after.

What happens though when your "happily ever after" is threatened because the government refuses to "recognize" your marriage?

What they don't tell you is that the American dream doesn't apply to you if you are married to someone of the same sex.

This is the battle that Mark is fighting right now.  He has been with his husband Fred for over 22 years.  They were legally married and are raising four beautiful kids.  They have a home that is filled with love and strength, and yet the American government is threatening to split this family up.

Fred is a French National whose visa expired in September of this year and even though he is married to an American citizen the government cannot recognize their marriage for immigration purposes.  This means that Fred risks deportation and this family risks being torn apart.

You can read this struggle in Mark's own words here.  I urge you to go and see this beautiful family.

The past few months I have gotten to know Mark.  He is truly a wonderful and supportive human being.  It is terrible that he is having to go through this right now.

It amazes me that even in the year 2012 the United States refuses to recognize marriages of any kind.  A family isn't built by a man and a woman, a family is built by two people who care about each other and who pass that love on to others.  Their family is no different than mine or yours or millions of others across the world.

So please, if you want to help, please take the time to write a letter in support of Mark and Fred.  We are constantly writing every day:  text messages, Facebook comments, twitter updates and emails.  Take an extra five minutes and write a heartfelt letter to keep this family together, or better yet call in support.

In Marks own words:

"You can write to Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano.  And if you live in Pennsylvania, you can write to Senator Casey's office.  Both, on our behalf.  You can let them know that you read the story on or that you know of our story from another source.  If you do this, I would urge you to, as best you can, write it when you're in a good mood.  No one likes a nasti-gram ... You read my post that I copied  You know that we are asking for approval of our green-card application.  Or at the very least, held in abeyance and not denied.  And in fact, actual letters and phone calls are the best."

Contact Info:

Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr.
393 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-6324
Toll Free: (866) 802-2833
Fax: (202) 228-0604
Secretary Janet Napolitano
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Washington, D.C. 20528

I hope that in the future my children will never have to know such inequality and that we can one day grow as people to recognize love comes in all colors, shapes, sizes and genders.

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Shellsea said...

I agree and would love to help further the cause. What a great family shot with the shirts!

Kiddothings said...

Yes, I read about Mark & Fred's predicament. Being a Malaysian I don't know if I can do anything to help except maybe tweet this out and pray hard that they win this fight.

Mark said...

You are such a doll!
I can't believe the outpouring of love and support that I'm getting from people who I have never met. It really is overwhelming. I was just commenting over at Jessica's at FourPlusAnAngel how I don't know how to say "Thank You" better than I have been doing so far. You must know that what you and others are doing for our Family, means the world to me.
We knew that this day would come. Fred hasn't really worked full-time since 2004. We are nicely getting by only because we downsized years ago in order to live on one salary. Plus, the sale of our last home helped tremendously. But, we are healthy and the kids are thriving and that's the most important thing.
Thank you for sharing Casey's and Naplolitano's info. Contacting them is the most important thing anyone can do for us right now. I believe that this world-wide support that we are getting is what will save us.
Thank you so much for sharing with your Friends. It means so much!
Your Friend, m.

vinobaby said...

I first heard this story last week and was just sick with disgust. There is no reason to keep antiquated laws which can tear families apart. Enough already.

I hope all the publicity and awareness can stop this senseless deportation and keep a loving together, where they belong. Best of luck to you, Mark and Fred.

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

To rip that family apart would be absurd! That's exactly the kind of family that should be together. This is heartbreaking.

I totally agree with you that when writing in support of them, tone is especially important. Nobody responds well to mean-spirited letters.

Ali - My Suitcase Full of Tricks said...

Such an important story to share. I simply cannot believe the ignorance. Shameful.

Adrienne said...

Will write. Thanks for pulling us all in.

Amanda said...

What a gorgeous family - and I LOVE the family shot of them in their t-shirts! It is so sad that they are being treated differently than heterosexual couples on the immigration front. It feels as though we have made more progress than this! The year is 2012, for goodness sake!

Kate R said...

Thanks for sharing. I've just spent far too long reading back through Mark's blog! Beautiful family (and beautifully written about). It's a shameful reality they face but we can hope through their fight that they can improve the situation for themselves and others.

Cookie's Mom said...

I just can't believe this still goes on. My heart goes out to these two. Bless you for writing about it and standing behind them, Barbara!

Sara Louise said...

This is heartbreaking! I'm on my way to check it out

Sara Louise said...

I've shared this on my FB page and added the link to my latest blog post... here's hoping every little bit helps :-)

Jacqui@FrenchVillageDiaries said...

Found this from Sara Louise and have shared on my Facebook page too.

Rachel said...

Found this on Sara's blog. I'm also going to spread it/post it on my blog. I have had immigration issues with my husband. Immigration laws need to be changed! We Americans can marry who we want and that person then has the right to stay with us damn it!

Susan said...

This is ridiculous. So glad you shared.
Those children are blessed to have 2 loving parents. Period.
I will definitely read further. What year are we in again???

Tamera Beardsley said...

Barbara, thank you for doing this post....this inequality is something I have campaigned against here in California during the prop 8 debate. I had never even thought what the family implications could be in a situation like this....I so appreciate being educated...thank you also for the contact info!

Kimberly said...

This is so heartbreaking. Those children are so lucky to have 2 parents who love them, and each other, where a lot of other children don't have that.

Jen said...

Oh, Barbara, I love that you wrote a post about this. I have been following Mark and his family religiously. I SO hope everything works out for them.

Stasha said...

Multitasking mumma introduced me to Mark last night and I am so shocked by this story. I am writing a letter and will do my best to spread the word. Thank you for a lovely reminder on what family is!!
And Mark's is a beautiful one, just look at those smiles!

Kim said...

Thanks for bringing this to my attention. It is devastating what some of the minority populations have to endure. I'll head over there now.

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