This is an abridged version of the complete review as it appears [...] at my blog dedicated to reading, writing (no 'rithmatic!), movies, & TV.
After sadly having to review The Invisible Orientation negatively today, I'm relieved to be able to review this one positively. Posting so many reviews of gender-queer books and novels, some people might ask: does he have an agenda? And the short, simple answer is yes, I do! I have an agenda of siding with those who are abused by right-wing religions.
I love some of the things this author says and the juxtapositions he offers us in his relating the history underlying this:
On December 21, 1996, Terry Lynn Wahls took the hand of Jacqueline Kay Reger and made public, openly and honestly, the highest commitment two loving people can make. ...[walked] down the aisle at our church to the theme song of Star Trek: Voyager
What's not to love?!
President Bill Clinton signed into law the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). DOMA, a bill - sponsored by then-Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich who was carrying on an extramarital affair and signed by President Clinton who was later impeached for lying about an affair of his own - explicitly defined marriage, in the federal government's eyes, as between one man and one woman, ostensibly to protect the sanctity of the institution
What's not to despise?!
There was some inconsistent writing in this book. For a book which is trying to fight against stereotyping and bigotry, I found it odd at best and hypocritical at worst when I would read a sentence like this: "Maybe part of that had to do with the Midwestern habit of not asking too many questions about things that don't concern you".
It was equally odd to read this: "Another advantage of lesbian moms: I knew girls didn't have cooties". I'm not concerned with the trivial fact of his discovering girls don't have cooties, but that he's suggesting he could only learn this from growing up the child of a same sex couple. Heterosexual marriages can't teach this? This comment just seemed odd and out of place to me.
What bothered me in learning this was why we didn't learn of co-adoption, guardianship or right of attorney. I know nothing about this so maybe it wasn't an option. Maybe it's not even possible, but as feisty as Terry was, I can't believe she didn't look into any of this - into a means by which Jackie would have some rights with the children without Terry having to give up hers.
Having no rights, Jackie had no power, and if Terry had died, Jackie would not only have lost her, but the children, too, because she had no legal claim on her own family, over the very children she and Terry had lived with and raised together. Maybe there were no options, but if so, it would have been nice to have read that Terry tried this that and the other thing, and nothing worked or was possible. I felt that this was a serious omission.
People who base their lives on an ancient ignorant manuscripts written by old men sure as hell shouldn't be allowed to dictate to people who should be allowed to fall in love and marry and who should not. I recommend this book as a very worthy and moving read.
- Hardcover: 234 pages
- Publisher: Gotham Books; 1 edition (26 April 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1592407137
- ISBN-13: 978-1592407132
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.9 x 21.6 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 431 g
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