July 30th, 2010
The National Organization for Marriage’s Summer for Marriage Tour rolled into a church parking lot set in a big green pasture (perhaps it needed fertilizer) in Rochester, MN. And the attendance was small (Tour Tracker):
18 NOM attendees
9 NOM staffers/volunteers
As absolutely nothing new or even remotely interesting resulted from NOM’s increasingly boring tour, I want to touch on something that Brian Brown said there that he and Maggie Gallagher have been saying a lot lately:
“If we do not stand up for marriage we will be treated under the law as bigots.”
Objecting to being called a bigot has featured large in their talking points as of late. But they aren’t really worried about what anyone calls them; it’s a larger issue than that.
Brian and Maggie fear that the world is changing. They fear that it may soon become normal to treat gay people with acceptance, respect and equality. They fear what anti-gay extremists refer to as the “normalization of homosexuality.”
And they have reason to fear.
Consider, if you will, the man or woman who in 1963 firmly believed that it was right to segregate by race. At the time, their views were not outside the range of normal; they were not considered to be peculiar or automatically assumed to be grounded in hatred. When George Wallace stood in the schoolroom door, he was a reflection of his time and culture and held a view that was supported by the majority of his constituents. He was certain that God was on his side.
But time has not been kind to the image of George Wallace and his supporters. At this point we look back and marvel at the fear and animus that was so embedded into a culture that kind and decent people accepted these attitudes and presumptions as normal and good and ordered by God. “It was bald-faced bigotry,” we say, and have little patience or forgiveness for that part of our history.
And Brian and Maggie fear that this is likely to be their fate.
And so it is with determination that they fight forward, hoping to turn back a culture that has already passed the tipping point. Like George Wallace, they declare that the public is behind them and toss the gauntlet declaring heterosexual privilege now, heterosexual privilege tomorrow, heterosexual privilege forever.
And with increasing shrillness they desperately look for a way to come out on the winning side of history. They hope that by claiming the rhetoric of civil rights they can achieve the success of that movement. In desperation they turn to the prayers of priests begging for divine intervention.
But I think that they know by now that there is no turning back. Marriage’s George Wallace moment was in 2004 when George W. Bush made same-sex marriage a campaign issue. That was the peak of opposition and its been on a steady decline since. Equality is coming and the signs are everywhere.
More and more the Democratic leaders are speaking in terms of equality, and more and more Republicans are unwilling to be seen as equality’s enemy. When Laura Bush said that she “disagreed” with the FMA, it disheartened them. When Cindy McCain endorsed marriage equality the end seemed so much closer. Furiously they lashed out at Tom Campbell for daring to endorse marriage.
Loudly they gloat about the California vote, knowing that polls reveal that it soon will be reversed. They bluff and demand the right to vote in Washington, DC, even while knowing that there’s a good chance they would lose that vote. As they look out at the few dozen people who park their lawnchair at their rallies, they cannot help but know what we already know.
Equality is coming. Time is on our side.
The future world will likely look back and wonder how the majority of Americans let a handful of religious zealots dictate discrimination. They’ll marvel at the fear and animus that is so embedded into our culture that kind and decent people accept these attitudes and presumptions as normal and good and ordered by God. “It was bald-faced bigotry,” they will say, and will have little patience or forgiveness for this part of our history.
And so Brian and Maggie fight on. Because they know that “we’ll be treated as bigots.”
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.