LONG BEACH – The passage of Proposition 8 was a dark chapter in California history.
More than 52 percent of voters approved the 2008 ballot measure that outlawed same-sex marriage, though a federal court in 2010 ruled it unconstitutional. That decision didn’t go into effect until June 26, 2013, when the US Supreme Court’s ruling left the district court’s intact.
But Proposition 8 also was a catalyst for some members of the LGBT community to become politically active.
The documentary “Inspired: The Voices Behind Prop 8” tells the story of 21 Los Angeles-area gays and lesbians — including a few from Long Beach — who were politically dormant; however, in the days preceding the November vote and the months following, they were galvanized into activists and community organizers.
“The passage of Proposition 8 was a positive thing in their lives,” director Charlie Gage, 41, an openly gay Long Beach resident, told Out in the 562 in 2011. “Before it was passed, the only way to be a gay activist was to have an HRC (Human Rights Campaign) equality sticker on your car, pay $500 a ticket to attend an Equality California dinner or volunteer at a gay and lesbian center.”