Earlier this month, I shared with you a commercial titled, “Grandparents” that was put together by Freedom to Marry. In the commercial, Fred and Yvonne Peterson, of Duluth, talk about their marriage and the fact that they don’t see why we would deny love and equality to committed same-sex couples.
Their letter to the Duluth News Tribune starts out:
On Sept. 5 we celebrated our 59th wedding anniversary. It was an anniversary we certainly will remember because it is not every year you make a television commercial supporting gay and lesbian Minnesotans. For our anniversary this year we decided to stand with those who want to make the same lifelong commitment we made nearly six decades ago.
They share that they agreed to make the commercial to start a conversation.
Our generation did not talk about people who were gay and lesbian; you certainly did not think they should get married.
However, times change.
The letter goes on to share that most people know someone that is gay. Having a gay grandson, the Peterson’s have been talking about this topic for years.
They’re also so very grateful for all of the people that have reached out to them after the commercial aired. From old babysitters to military buddies, the support has been “overwhelming and incredible.”
But not everyone agrees with Fred and Yvonne:
We do know there are some people who don’t agree with us. That’s OK. We understand. People are not used to this idea, and we weren’t either. It takes time. We just wanted to tell our story and start a conversation. What we tell people is what we learned from our 59 years of marriage. It is about love. It is about making that lifelong commitment and sharing the responsibility.
That’s the story we wanted to share, and we want other Minnesotans to share their stories as well. The people we have talked to say we’ve made it easier for them to talk about this very important issue. The support we have received tells us Minnesota is ready to be the first state to vote down this type of amendment.
If I could, I would give both Fred and Yvonne a big hug! It’s through honest and open conversations that we change hearts and minds – and I’m so thankful for this Duluth couple for helping with that cause.