Last week the Supreme Court of the United States of America cleared the way for same-sex marriages to resume in the state of California. Unfortunately, for my girlfriend and I, we still can’t get married.
Even though we’re both natives of California and call the Golden State home, I am in Los Angeles while she lives 2,400 miles away in Whittier, Alaska after giving up all hope of ever finding a job here.
My girlfriend is of African-American and Latino descent and fluent in three languages–English, Spanish, and American Sign Language–but past criminal convictions make it practically impossible for her to find a job in California. For a time she would work sporadically after failing to check the box indicating that she’d been convicted of a felony crime, but in the end after companies completed their background check, she’d always be dismissed for failing to do so. I finally told her to just be truthful, but the job offers stopped altogether. No one was willing to give her a chance to prove that she had changed.