July 8th, 2009
Stand For Marriage Maine, the coalition of anti-gay activists who are seeking to overturn Maine’s marriage laws, has announced that they have enough signatures to put their petition on the ballot.
Looking to overturn a bill signed by Governor John Baldacci in May approving same sex marriage, Stand For Marriage Maine announced today that they have collected more than the 55,087 signatures needed to place a People’s Veto on the November ballot and are collecting additional signatures as insurance to meet the deadline to qualify the measure for the 2009 statewide election.
While that makes for a good press release, it doesn’t tell the full story.
As any politico will tell you, a large percentage of the signatures in any collection effort will prove to be invalid for a number of reasons. Some folks are not actually registered to vote, are registered at a different address, are registered under a different name, or provide an illegible signature. Some will agree to sign but will put down a fake name. So petitioners always collect enough extra names to have a substantial cushion.
In mid June, Bob Emrich, the head of the effort, set a goal of collecting 80,000 signatures by the middle of July. At that time they had about 12,000 already collected.
It now appears that they are not on schedule to meet their goal. By now they should have collected a total of 63,000 signatures. And to reach 80,000 by next week, they will have to collect 25,000 signatures, or nearly half of what they collected in the past month. And at this point each additional signature will be harder to get than the one before.
However, it is still very likely that the campaign can meet its goals. The projected cushion of 25,000 is aggressive; and a campaign can usually assume that a 20-25% cushion is adequate and that may well be within their means. And as the campaign doesn’t actually have to turn in the signatures until the end of the month, they can use the extra weeks for signature collection rather than for verification.
But it is encouraging to see that their efforts are not proving to be a smooth or easy as they anticipated. As I said in June, we need to hope for their failure and plan for their success.
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.