April 8th, 2011
This is huge! Good As You’s Jeremy Hooper has the scoop. Louis Marinelli, National Organization for Marriage’s former tour organizer, and NOM Facebook page founder and blogger, now supports civil marriage equality for LGBT people. Marinelli told Hooper in an email exchange that it was last summer’s marriage tour last summer which opened his eyes.
In the interview exchange, Marinelli repudiated much of what he had previously written, blogged and tweeted on behalf of NOM. He called his earlier statements using Paul Cameron’s discredited research “inappropriate and offensive,” retracted his endorsement of Peter LaBarbera (“he is just a hateful man and I would be embarrassed and ashamed to be associated with him”), and he regrets personal attacks against gay people (“This includes calling them an abomination”).
Marinelli’s position didn’t shift from completely anti-gay to 100% pro-gay:
“I personally do not agree with homosexuality and without any shame will continue to uphold my belief that homosexuality itself presents a public health concern due to the sexual diseases that are associated with it and that spread rapidly as a result of it. …
…Having said that, the health issues facing promiscuous homosexual men is irrelevant to the issue of same-sex marriage. I was guilty of and apologize for this insensitive and inappropriate rhetoric.
He’s not pro-gay, but his shift is, I think, enough:
…I personally disagree with it. The same way I disagree with many other things other people do with their lives. That doesn’t give me or anyone else the right to prevent homosexuals from being homosexuals or to take away their constitutionally protected civil rights as American citizens.
The most interesting thing about it, is that Marinelli’s change of heart came about during NOM’s disastrous 2010 Summer for Marriage Tour. When the tour stopped in Atlanta, where the overwhelming turnout of counter-protesters, when compared to the dismal showing of supporters, “was nothing short of inspiring.” He wrote, “the lesbian and gay people whom I made a profession out of opposing became real people for me almost instantly. For the first time I had empathy for them and remember asking myself what I was doing.”
He continued blogging on behalf of NOM through the fall, but things started to change for him. He began an exchange with a blogger by the name of RJ, who responded to one of Marinelli’s blog posts.
At that point, between what I had witnessed on the marriage tour and RJ’s post about marriage equality, I really came to understand that gays and lesbians were just real people who wanted to live real lives and be treated equally as opposed to, for example, wanting to destroy American culture. No, they didn’t want to destroy American culture, they wanted to openly particulate in it. I was well on my way to becoming a supporter of civil marriage equality.
By December, Marinelli became a supporter of repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and relinquished his moderating duties for NOM’s Facebook page.
Hooper’s email interview with Marinelli is fascinating, and is indicative of the slow but sure growing support for marriage equality that we have been seeing over the past decade.
What’s more, Marinelli now has issued a statement on his own blog: “I now support full marriage equality,” where he speaks of his former cohorts at NOM:
Having done that [delegating his Facebook duties], I had to pick up where they left off. I was largely taken aback by the fact that the page I created had become such a hateful place. My comments and rhetoric paled in comparison to what that place had turned into. I began to understand why the gay community was out there claiming opposition to same-sex civil marriage was all about hate.
I soon realized that there I was surrounded by hateful people; propping up a cause I created five years ago, a cause which I had begun to question.
…My name is Louis J. Marinelli, a conservative-Republican and I now support full civil marriage equality. The constitution calls for nothing less.
i encourage you to go over there and show him some love.
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.