In the comments, some news from Paul Barwick. More than 40 years ago, he and Faygele ben Miriam walked into the King County Recorder's office, demanded a marriage license, and were denied by a man whose name may sound familiar: Lloyd Hara.
The backstory is here, and today's story, according to Barwick's comment:
I just got off the phone where I was chatting with Lloyd Hara, who was the County Clerk who refused to issue us the license in 1971. It's funny what a difference 40 years can make. Mr. Hara, who is now the King County Assessor, and who coincidentally ended up the father of a lesbian, became a strong and vocal advocate for marriage equality. It was a real pleasure to be able to talk and share today's happiness with him.
Sometime I wish it were possible to get young people to understand just how bad and oppressive life was for queer folk back in the day but then I have to remind myself that the whole idea of putting ourselves on the line to change things was so that they wouldn't have to know or experience the things that we did. So it's good that in a couple of years when Tim and Bob or Mary and Sue end up walking down the aisle it won't even occur to them that there was a time when such an act would have been banned, questioned or even looked at as unusual.
Good job, folks. Faygele and I may have been on the front lines early, but it is all those who came after, gay and straight together, who did the heavy lifting on this. Each and every one of us should be very proud of what we have accomplished.
And pot, too? Just too friggin' awesome.
Also: You have got to see the picture of Barwick and ben Miriam at the King County marriage license desk in 1971—ben Miriam in seersucker jacket and tie, Barwick in tight white t-shirt reading "GAY." Click here and scroll down.