For Your Viewing Pleasure: Prop 8 Trials and Tributes


Remember, oh, six months ago, when there was all that landmark, potentially law and life altering Prop. 8 Trial business going on? For a few weeks everyone followed it obsessively, because we thought that any minute someone could make a pivotal statement that would either confirm or repeal Prop. 8 forever—or at least give the whole issue enough of a boost to get it to the Circuit Court of Appeals. It was exciting!  We were excited!  But, then, we came to the realization that this was not an episode of Law & Order, that it wasn’t going to fall together neatly at the end of the hour, and that we had to stop obsessively Googling “Prop. 8 Trial News” and get on with our lives.

Well, it is time to dust off your Google and brush up on your trial trivia because the long-awaited ruling of Perry v. Schwarzenegger is nearly upon us.

And what better way to do so than to avail yourself to the extensive trial reenactments that are cropping up all over the Internet. As you may recall, just before the California trial began, the Supreme Court blocked all broadcasting of the proceedings, to much uproar from the LGBT community, who felt that this appeal for marriage equality should be made to the entire nation. As a response to the media cap, groups like Courage Campaign and others have taken it upon themselves to show the nation just how personal this political can be.

The most extensive and complete reenactment can be found at, where you can view the entire proceedings of the January trial in real time. Marriage Trial uses the official court transcripts verbatim, and actors who look startlingly like the actual attorneys and witnesses (side-by-side pictures are posted on the “Cast of Characters” tab). Additionally, they provide commentary by Professors David B. Cruz and Linda Hirshman to clarify the daily developments.

Marriage Trial is perfect as a review of events you may have missed, or perhaps for diehard law fans, but for those of us who find the task of watching over 50 videos somewhat daunting, may be a better fit.

Equality On Trial is a national call for video reenactments of scenes from the trial. They provide the “scripts” (chunks of the transcript selected for their dramatic and emotionally compelling qualities) for you to download, and free hosting of your video on their site—which links to Facebook for easy sharing. You can browse the archives for videos from concerned folks around the nation, as well as celebrity reenactments from actors like Marisa Tomei, Josh Lucas, Cheyenne Jackson, Michael Urie and Patricia Clarkson.

This viral video movement of acting activists certainly has its own appeal, but as of the closing arguments, held on June 16, all eyes, ears and Googles are going to be on this ruling. Whatever your take on the marriage issue, this is definitely a case you don’t want to ignore. 

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