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08/27/2009

We won't take this 'Stand' lying down!

by Jeremy Hooper

Picture 17-69After poking around Stand For Marriage Maine's newly spruced up website for a few hours, a few observations have come to mind:


(1) The National Organization For Marriage's fingerprints are all over this thing! Some of the copy is lifted directly from past NOM press releases, and most every bit of information (and stock phrases like "whether we like it or not") are pulled right out of the Maggie Gallagher playbook. So make no bones about it: There's all kinds of out-of-state influence here.

(2) Some of the claims are unbelievable, even for the reliably deceptive 'pro-marriage' movement. Like, for instance, the claim that the Roman Catholic Church has "historically fought hard for the dignity of homosexuals" because they have "worked to improve AIDS funding and provide hospice and health care for gays and lesbians in need." Apparently Stand For Marriage Maine has forgotten that the Roman Catholic Church and its head Pope dude refer to homosexuality with words like "intrinsic moral evil" and "objective disorder." If that's "dignity," then we would hate to see disrespect!

(3) As already noted: The site's stock images come from a company called "Monkey Business." And that's just funny.

(4) There is more of an attempt than ever to make the site look wholesome and earthy. This is especially evidenced by the site's green grass motif. The soothing blues and greens are clearly meant to invoke a pure vibe. it doesn't at all invoke the spirit of Maine -- the intent seems to be to invoke the spirit of crunchy, compassionate, coolness.

(5) In one interesting point, they say: "States where homosexual marriage has become legal are allowing teachers to instruct children as young as kindergartners about marriage. (California Education Code ¤51890.)" Apparently Schubert/Flint and NOM (the clear driving forces behind this effort) have forgotten that they actually rolled back California's marriage equality! So if that state's education code allows for more equal instruction, than its not the "fault" of equal marriage -- it's the "fault" of reasoned progress that's independent of civil marriage law!

(6) The anti-gay side keeps referring to Title 19-A §650, a Maine marriage statute that does, as they assert, support "traditional monogamous marriage" as being an "inestimable value to society." And they are right in suggesting that Maine's marriage equality will trump this statute. But what they don't tell you is that this piece of "traditional marriage enhancement" is only 11 years old! it was put into Maine's marriage laws in 1997, when a wave of DOMA era marriage fears led several state legislatures to add certain kinds of "marriage protection" into their laws. So it's not like this wording that they so love some sort of notion that is as old as time itself. It was politically-motivated wording that was put into the constitution in large part to stop gay people! So it's more than hypocritical for them to cling to this barely-decade-old wording as if its the Gospel, yet reject LD 1020 (the marriage equality law) as some sort of wacky, newfangled idea!

(7) The host the following Q & A without any awareness of how anti-intellectual it is:

Will Question 1 take away any rights for gay and lesbian domestic partners?

No.

Question 1 doesn’t take away any rights or benefits from homosexual partners who are covered by Maine’s domestic partnership law.

Maine law guarantees homosexual couples many of the rights of married couples.

Passage of Question 1 will not change that
.

Now, it doesn't take a well-versed legal expert to understand that "many of the rights" is not the same as ALL of the rights! So yes, if Question 1 is approved, gays couples will, in fact, lose rights! It will change what Maine gays have already won through their elected legislature and governor! To suggest otherwise is not just a political half-truth -- it is an outright lie!

(8) They are really conscious of saying that they have a "broad-based coalition" of support. This is likely in response to the "Mormon factor," meant to reassure their peeps that no one group is fueling this effort. But those of us who follow this kind of thing know that this is absolutely the work of the same sort of troops who put Prop 8 into unprincipled effect. And we know that this "broad-based coalition" is largely made up of one shared political party and belief in church-state marriage.

(9) They also run this canard:

What will happen to the existing same-sex partnership laws if Question 1 passes?

Nothing.

All laws on the books regarding same-sex couples will remain intact.

Gays and lesbians in a committed relationship will continue to enjoy all the legal rights and benefits of Maine’s domestic partners law. Question 1 does not affect those rights and benefits.

This one is particularly egregious, since it's technically true yet practically flawed. The reality is that no, same-sex partnerships as they currently exist won't change if Question 1 passes -- but that's only because this so-called "people's veto" has stopped the marriage equality law from taking effect! Had it not been for the anti-gay side's efforts, Maine would now be hosting same-sex marriages on a daily basis! So in fact, Question 1 has already affected same-sex partnerships in Maine: It has prevented them from achieving full recognition under the law!

(10) Happily, people seem to be hating their linked YouTube videos. They have posted five of them at this point -- all five have a one star rating and almost unanimously pro-equality comments!


Feel free to poke around their site yourself. Heightened scrutiny is always a positive for our side, and always a negative for them.

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Your thoughts

Jeremy, I visualize bulls behind the "family" photo surrounded by the green grass - you know what bulls do with green grass and the result makes the photo and information just what it is - bullsh*t!

Posted by: tom | Aug 27, 2009 10:50:40 AM

Jeremy, I suppose now is as good a time as any to tell you you are fkn awesome. Particularly love your looking through the stock photo terms and conditions. You show hypocrites for the hypocrites they are. Your work is appreciated.
I've been married 6 years here in Canada and your country continues to boggle my mind. Keep up the great work.

Posted by: Strepsi | Aug 27, 2009 11:00:22 AM

Next, Colonel Sanders has historically supported the dignity of chickens...

Who the hell do these people think they're fooling?

Posted by: GreenEyedLilo | Aug 27, 2009 11:50:52 AM

Since comments are disabled on these two related posts - "Don't have a cow, Maine" and "Maine flower power" - I'll comment here. They are really COOL!!!

Loved the animated growing flowers!

And laughed out loud at the cow animation. I assume the cow's name is Maggie, and the dung represents the crap she emits. And the flies are a great finishing touch, as they obviously represent the people who think her crap smells pretty good and eat it up (like those at the recent Rhode Island event).

Hopefully, the dung will act as fertilizer and help some flowers grow.

Those posts made my day!

Posted by: Richard Rush | Aug 27, 2009 3:04:30 PM

Um.... do we *really* need to dredge up all of the roadblocks the immoral and reprobate Cardinal O'Connor of New York threw up when both the city and AIDS activists wanted to disseminate safer sex info and condoms? It's the main reason why ACT-UP had their now famous action in the cathedral in front of the b@stard.

The Advocate named him "Sissy of the Year" because of it -- and richly deserved.

Posted by: Marlene | Sep 12, 2009 3:13:55 AM

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