November 15th, 2006
The vote counting for Arizona’s Proposition 107, the same-sex marriage amendment, goes on as absentee and provisional ballots continue to be processed. Interestingly, Prop 107’s margin of defeat has actually widened over recent days. Meanwhile, same-sex marriage opponents are starting to cry foul, claiming that the only reason Prop 107 failed is because Arizona Together “distorted” the issues. Leading gay-marriage opponent Maggie Gallagher complains:
You may beat a so-called gay marriage ban, as long as you never use the word “marriage” … or “gay.”
And the Scottsdale-based Alliance Defense Fund says:
Even in Arizona, the only state where a marriage amendment has apparently failed (defeat has not been conceded yet as many ballots are still being counted), opponents of the amendment have admitted that they had to distort the real issues in an effort to confuse the public.
The Center for Arizona Policy had intended Prop 107 to be a referendum on same-sex marriage — following the playbook in every other state where this issue has come up for a vote. By “distorting the real issues”, ADF is referring to the fact that Arizona Together built their campaign message on how Prop 107 would affect straight people.
But how is that message “distorting the real issues”? The Houston Chronicle begged precisely that question the other day.
When Arizona voters signed enough petitions to put a same-sex marriage ban on Tuesday’s ballot, opponents decided their best shot at defeating it was to shine a light on real people who would be hurt by Proposition 107.
If most of those real people were not gay, they said, all the better.
Here are the statistics. According to the 2000 census, there were 105,864 households with opposite-sex unmarried partners in Arizona, but only 12,332 same-sex unmarried partners. This suggests that opposite-sex unmarried couples outnumbered same-sex unmarried couples by a ratio of more than 8.5 to 1.
The Center for Arizona Policy, who wrote Prop 107 and got it on the ballot, clearly intended to target gay couples. But their over-reaching proposal would have hit far more opposite-sex couples than same-sex couples. And if many times more opposite-sex couples were going to suffer the consequences of Prop 107, how is it deceptive for Arizona Together to make that the centerpiece of their message?
The fact is, same-sex marriage was illegal before Prop 107 was put on the ballot, and it is still illegal now that Prop 107 has been defeated. Absolutely nothing would have changed for same-sex marriage regardless of whether Prop 107 passed or failed. And to argue that Prop 107 was needed to guard against activist judges, well I have to wonder where these swarms of activist judges in Arizona have been hiding. The very idea of it is ludicrous.
The only thing that would have changed if Prop 107 passed was the ability to create alternatives paths to some of the benefits for unmarried couples. Tempe, Tucson, Phoenix, Scottsdale and Pima County all offer some type of benefits to domestic partners of their unmarried workers. Tucson also has a domestic-partner registry that grants certain rights, such as hospital visitation, to those who sign up. Prop 107 would have take that away for far more straight couples than gay couples. This fact is inescapable.
If the Center for Arizona Policy (CAP) had written a “clean” proposition similar to the one that passed in Colorado which simply ended with their proposed definition of marriage and didn’t try to destroy other avenues for unmarried families to see protections and benefits, Arizona Together would have been left without a message. Or at least, their message would have been limited to gay equality, and that would almost certainly have meant that Arizona would have joined the other seven states in adding discrimination to the constitution.
But CAP’s careless shotgun blast at gays in Arizona would have inflicted far more “collateral damage” on straight couples. Arizona Together was just smart enough to point that out to everyone. Arizona voters, like voters everywhere, are just smart enough to vote for preserving their own interests. This isn’t deception. It’s the truth. And it’s nothing but sour grapes on the part of gay rights opponents to gripe about it.
In this original BTB Investigation, we unveil the tragic story of Kirk Murphy, a four-year-old boy who was treated for “cross-gender disturbance” in 1970 by a young grad student by the name of George Rekers. This story is a stark reminder that there are severe and damaging consequences when therapists try to ensure that boys will be boys.
When we first reported on three American anti-gay activists traveling to Kampala for a three-day conference, we had no idea that it would be the first report of a long string of events leading to a proposal to institute the death penalty for LGBT people. But that is exactly what happened. In this report, we review our collection of more than 500 posts to tell the story of one nation’s embrace of hatred toward gay people. This report will be updated continuously as events continue to unfold. Check here for the latest updates.
In 2005, the Southern Poverty Law Center wrote that “[Paul] Cameron’s ‘science’ echoes Nazi Germany.” What the SPLC didn”t know was Cameron doesn’t just “echo” Nazi Germany. He quoted extensively from one of the Final Solution’s architects. This puts his fascination with quarantines, mandatory tattoos, and extermination being a “plausible idea” in a whole new and deeply disturbing light.
On February 10, I attended an all-day “Love Won Out” ex-gay conference in Phoenix, put on by Focus on the Family and Exodus International. In this series of reports, I talk about what I learned there: the people who go to these conferences, the things that they hear, and what this all means for them, their families and for the rest of us.
Prologue: Why I Went To “Love Won Out”
Part 1: What’s Love Got To Do With It?
Part 2: Parents Struggle With “No Exceptions”
Part 3: A Whole New Dialect
Part 4: It Depends On How The Meaning of the Word "Change" Changes
Part 5: A Candid Explanation For "Change"
Using the same research methods employed by most anti-gay political pressure groups, we examine the statistics and the case studies that dispel many of the myths about heterosexuality. Download your copy today!
And don‘t miss our companion report, How To Write An Anti-Gay Tract In Fifteen Easy Steps.
Anti-gay activists often charge that gay men and women pose a threat to children. In this report, we explore the supposed connection between homosexuality and child sexual abuse, the conclusions reached by the most knowledgeable professionals in the field, and how anti-gay activists continue to ignore their findings. This has tremendous consequences, not just for gay men and women, but more importantly for the safety of all our children.
Anti-gay activists often cite the “Dutch Study” to claim that gay unions last only about 1½ years and that the these men have an average of eight additional partners per year outside of their steady relationship. In this report, we will take you step by step into the study to see whether the claims are true.
Tony Perkins’ Family Research Council submitted an Amicus Brief to the Maryland Court of Appeals as that court prepared to consider the issue of gay marriage. We examine just one small section of that brief to reveal the junk science and fraudulent claims of the Family “Research” Council.
The FBI’s annual Hate Crime Statistics aren’t as complete as they ought to be, and their report for 2004 was no exception. In fact, their most recent report has quite a few glaring holes. Holes big enough for Daniel Fetty to fall through.