I guess since I blog here quite often about same sex marriage I should give my take on the Gathering Storm ad campaign for the National Organization for Marriage. It is an interesting take on this issue. The focus of the campaign is that religious liberties will be taken way if marriage equality becomes the standard in the USA. If you have read me before, you know that I am a fervent believer in the separation of Church and State. I would have a definite issue with this if it indeed happened.
Why this campaign at this time? I think it boils down to the point that evangelicals and conservative Christians have strongly linked their faiths’ beliefs and doctrines with civil rights. Their thought is that religion dictates the morals and values of this country, and those morals and values drive the laws in our country. Using this thought process; it’s easy to see how they have linked the progress of marriage equality to the denial of their rights and threat to their belief system.
They speak a lot of intimidation and threats to themselves due to their beliefs. It’s a one sided view of this issue. How many years have LGBT people been subjected to this harassment and intimidation? The interesting point they make is that they will seek recourse under the law against these people. That is interesting since the majority of these conservative Christians overwhelmingly have fought to make sure a law to protect LGBT people from harassment will not be enacted. I guess not quite everybody deserves protection from harassment, violence and harm. Harassment under any circumstance is not acceptable. I believe there is a small minority of folks on both side of the issue who use this tactic. We should all strive to live our lives without using these tactics.
The anti-marriage equality people are in a state of “confusion”. First, it was the activist judges, so they said the legislative branch should address the issue. Then when legislatures passed marriage equality laws, they became activist legislators. Now they want the issue to go directly to “the people” and be voted on in ballot initiatives. You know my stance on this. People should NEVER vote on civil rights. The majority has no right to impose their power on a minority.
So, why go directly to “the people”. It is their best chance to impose their view and limit the civil rights of LGBT people. Look at national polls; the nation is almost split evenly on the issue of same sex marriage with the anti-marriage equality folks having a slight edge. Now, look at the voting trends in this country. Younger voters overwhelming favor marriage equality. What this means is that these ballot initiatives only have at most 4 years of life left. By 2012, same sex marriage will be a non-issue at the ballot. Younger voters just do not care.
As I usually end my posts, there is a bottom line. Marriage equality advances in the past month are substantial. Many attribute this to the passage of Proposition 8 in California. It invigorated the passion and drive of LGBT people and supporters on this issue. The ball is definitely rolling toward marriage equality and the religious right knows they need to stop it. They have looked at the voting patterns and know that basing their arguments on religious scriptures is a no-win for them. They hope that by turning the issue around and painting themselves as victims and protectors of civil rights that those in the independent middle ground will walk their way. I give that a small chance. They are not the rainbow collation of people of all faiths and backgrounds as they claim. They have just put a lot of lipstick on the pig, but guess what; it’s still the same old pig.