Monday, December 05, 2011

North Carolina expose on anti-gay group NOM should be required reading for us all

Okay while this isn't as glamorous as a Lady Gaga song or as shocking as Neil Patrick Harris (or NPH for those who want to perpetrate like they know him)'s slur against the transgender community, an expose published today by the North Carolina gay publication QNotes on the National Organization for Marriage  and its campaign against marriage equality in the state is very important and very vital for us all to read.

Enough of the "we already know this" chatter.  The fact of the matter is that many of us don't know the things we should know about NOM and a lot of us who do aren't taking the time to educate our friends and families, or making a loud enough stink about it,  or supporting the publications which bring this information out (full disclosure - I contributed to this expose):

In past campaigns, NOM has been caught pushing obvious misinformation, lies and spin.
This year, the group came under fire for misrepresenting supposed “legal scholars” opposed to marriage equality. Each of the several scholars cited by the organization were extremely biased and one, Robert George, is a former NOM board chairman.

NOM has also regularly exploited children in their political quests.

Also this year, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Politifact knocked the group for their repeated claims that legalization of same-sex marriage in New York would lead to kindergarteners learning about same-sex relationships.
The group has also attempted to link homosexuality to pedophilia — not once, but twice. The NOM-affiliated Ruth Institute has also claimed that homosexuality is a “learned” and “addictive” behavior.

In August, NOM accused gay activists of engaging in “jihad” to take away anti-gay Christians’ rights.
One of NOM’s first campaigns featured a billboard comparing a marriage equality supporter to Judas and Benedict Arnold. The group reincarnated the theme this year for mailers targeting pro-gay legislators in New York.

Equality Matters has provided a more in-depth run-down of NOM’s efforts in New York.

And here is where I am quoted:

South Carolina blogger and anti-gay watchdog Alvin McEwen told qnotes that he expects a strong NOM presence in the lead-up to the May 8, 2012, vote on the amendment.

How NOM goes about instituting their campaign strategy is a question still left unanswered. McEwen said the group’s past rhetoric and actions provide some clues.

“Look for them to push that nonsense about how ‘the best research says that children belong in a home with a mother and father,’” McEwen said. “Also, I expect them to push the lie about the Catholic Charities ‘being forced’ to give up helping to place adoptive children. The thing about NOM and other religious right groups is that they are big on ambushing people with anecdotes and horror stories about situations that allegedly happen because of marriage equality and the like. The big thing is to remember that they never tell the entire story.”
NOM’s campaigns often take a three-pronged approach, McEwen said.

“My guess is that NOM is going to target three angles — ‘gay marriage will harm children,’ ‘gay marriage will destroy religious liberty’ and ‘gays are trying to piggyback off of the Civil Rights Movement.’”
The entire expose is here.

Sometimes our community takes things for granted. In order to defeat NOM, we must expose the organization's lies every chance we get, as well as support the publications which do the same thing.

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'Michele Bachmann gets schooled on same-sex families' and other Monday midday news briefs

Rep. Bachmann's Twisted Logic On Support For LGBT High School Kids - What bothers me about Bachmann's recent comments is that very few challenged her on the insult of reducing same-sex relationships and families to sexual intercourse.

BREAKING - As the video shows, Bachmann meets a child in one of those families she reduced to sex acts. It's doubtful that she will give this family and other like it the respect they deserve, but it's still nice to see her schooled:

 And in other news:

How he became a she - A very impressive feature expose on the transgender community.

If Newt Gingrich is the nominee, the GOP loses the marriage debate - No comment on whether or not I'm rooting for Newt. I don't want to jinx it.

DELAWARE: For state's same-sex couples, end of wait near - January promises to be interesting for Delaware.

Outrage – Church tells HIV+ patients to stop taking meds, claiming they were ‘healed’ - And the "healing process" was nauseating.

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NOM lands in North Carolina, allies already pulling the pedophilia card

According to the North Carolina gay publication, QNotes, I have some interesting neighbors up north:

A referendum committee formed by several anti-gay religious groups is among the latest official campaign organizations set up for an impending ballot initiative on an anti-LGBT state constitutional amendment banning marriage, civil unions and domestic partnerships for same-sex couples.

The committee, Vote for Marriage NC, was formed last week by a coalition of groups including the N.C. Baptist State Convention, Christian Action League, NC Values Coalition, a coalition of African American pastors and the National Organization for Marriage.

 . . . “We very much look forward to a dialogue with North Carolina voters about the importance of preserving marriage as the union of one man and one woman,” Tami Fitzgerald, executive director of NC Values Coalition, said in a release. “The marriage amendment ensures that voters and not activist judges will decide the definition of marriage in our state. Marriage as the union of one man and one woman has served North Carolina well since before we were a state, and it’s time we respected the institution of marriage enough to protect it in our state constitution.”

Fitzgerald is a former lobbyist for the Christian Action League and N.C. Family Policy Council, groups affiliated with national organizations named as hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Fitzgerald’s NC Values Coalition led the fight for legislative approval of the amendment, which came in September. The group has provided the new committee’s first $1,000 in funding.
 . . . “We are going to keep it on a positive note: keeping marriage as marriage and keeping it from being redefined,” she told the paper.

Of course we all know it means when anti-marriage equality folks say that they want to "keep the discussion on a positive note."

Should they accuse gays of wanting to corrupt children,  wanting to imprison Christians, or maybe both?

Luckily, however, QNotes is already starting to raise questions about the finances of this group in light of the fact that NOM continues to hide its donors - in violation of the law - in several other states. (Full discloure - this blogger is quoted in that article).

As for "positive discussion," according to Pam Spaulding, that nonsense has already been thrown out of the window after a debate yesterday on a radio show between two African-American community leaders - Dr. Patrick L. Wooden, Sr. of the Upper Room Church of God in Christ in Raleigh, NC who supports the amendment and Rep. Marcus Brandon (D-60, Guilford County), who opposes it

I'm willing to bet that Wooden is a part of that newly-formed coalition. According to Pam, Wooden made a number of interesting statements:

He stated statistics (providing no source) that gay men in relationships have 8 partners outside of relationship. Too bad no one asked him about Herman Cain’s fidelity. (Editor's note - Wooden is distorting the Netherlands study which looked at casual relationships between gay men in the years before gay marriage was legalized in that area. It excluded lesbians and gay men in monogamous relationships).
He compared same-sex marriage to pedophilia.

. . . My favorite howler from Wooden: ”They are going to have to teach anal sex in the public school classroom” if gays can marry.

In contrast, Brandon came off as reasonable (hell, a badly bleating horn would come off as reasonable compared to Wooden):

Marcus Brandon did an excellent job of addressing the hypocrisy of the religious objection, noting Wooden has not called for an amendment to ban adultery and divorce, two sins that are in the Bible, as well as throwing back in Wooden’s face charges that the black civil rights movement has nothing to do with LGBT rights, saying ‎“these are all false arguments; Rosa Parks was tired because she was treated differently…That is what the civil rights movement was about.”

Whatever the case may be, the question of marriage equality in NC is heating up. And it would do the gay community well to start preparing now. As idiotic as Wooden sounded, he was getting those statistics from somewhere. And we are probably going to be hearing more of them.

It's not going to be pretty. But then again, the best victories are never pretty.

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