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11/24/2008

The wrong side of history: Standing together yet apart

by Jeremy Hooper

Last Thursday, when the official "yes on prop 8" crew issued a press release in which they expressed dismay about some who have exploited the Prop 8 fight for their own gain, we suspected that they were speaking directly about Randy Thomasson and his fringe group, the Campaign For Children and Families. This morning, the San Francisco Chronicle all but confirms our suspicions:

EXCERPT: The group that persuaded California voters this month to pass Proposition 8, which bans same-sex marriage, now is fighting its friends as well as its foes.

Other conservative groups that loudly backed Prop. 8 are being targeted as too extreme and off-putting by ProtectMarriage.com, which put the constitutional amendment on the Nov. 4 ballot and hopes to help persuade the state Supreme Court to uphold the measure.

 Good As You Images 200811060919"We represent the people who got things done, who got Prop. 8 passed," said Andrew Pugno, general counsel for the Yes on Prop. 8 campaign. "An important part of defending Prop. 8 is eliminating arguments not helpful to our concerns."

Pugno, for example, persuaded the Supreme Court last week to bar the Campaign for California Families from intervening in the court case over the validity of Prop. 8 and the same-sex marriage ban.

 Good As You Images  Good As You Images 200811061333-1-1"That organization represents the extreme fringe and is not representative of the coalition that got it passed," Pugno said. "They didn't even support Prop. 8 until sometime in the summer."
...
The group, now known as the Campaign for Children and Families, is run by Randy Thomasson, who for years has been one of California's most visible opponents of gay rights and what he bills as "the homosexual agenda."

The people behind Prop. 8 have been butting heads with Thomasson for years, arguing that his efforts to outlaw same-sex marriage and curb domestic partnership arrangements are a long step further than a majority of California voters is willing to go.

FULL: Prop. 8 backers splinter as court fight resumes [SF Gate]
(H/t: Joe.My.God.)

So we have "official" folks who want to futz with LGBT people's lives, and "fringe" people who want to do the same. We say to that: Ladies, no need to fight -- you're both deeply hurtful!

Though Andrew, we do totally understand WHY you would want to distance yourself from an organization that, among other things, once compared clerks who have to issue marriage licenses to gays to Nazi soldiers who once had to kill Jews. We just wish that distance would put you in the tank with equality, not just in a slightly more palatable part of the biased boat.

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Your thoughts

This is what happens when groups build fences to exclude those that they consider "other". Having successfully (at least temporarily) excluded the nasty gays from participating in marriage equality, they now turn on each other. I guess they figure it's time to make their little fenced in corral a bit smaller and more exclusive.

Which reminds me of something I learned from my former mother-in-law: They're all queer but me and thee; and I'm beginning to wonder about thee.

Posted by: keltic | Nov 24, 2008 12:30:02 PM

Is this good or bad for us? On the one hand, it's good to see them fighting each other. On the other hand, it might hurt that the court won't see the extremism that's behind this whole thing.

Posted by: RainbowPhoenix | Nov 24, 2008 2:25:26 PM

Well, hey they are also excluding the KINGDOM OF GOD...who filed a brief too.

Posted by: LOrion | Nov 25, 2008 12:07:49 AM

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