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10/09/2012

Another marriage campaign cites conservative publication, pretends it's mere 'scholarly journal'

by Jeremy Hooper

Minnesota For Marriage has done it. Protect Marriage Maine has done it. Now it's the Maryland Marriage Alliance's turn to act like a social conservative print outlet is nothing more than a "scholarly journal":

Screen Shot 2012-10-09 At 1.13.37 Pm [SOURCE: Maryland Marriage Alliance]

"Ooh, Harvard—that's a good school. Those are smart people. Heck, they're even 'liberal elites,' so if they say something like this, it's *extra* true! "

That's what the Maryland Marriage Alliance wants readers to hear and think. Only thing? Despite having an innocuous name, this Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy is not a mere scholarly journal, but rather a far-right publication with a stated purpose of advancing conservative thought. In fact, it is the official publication of the very conservative Federalist Society.

This piece that the Maryland Marriage Alliance references, titled "Marriage facts," states in the introduction "the conclusion that the package supportive of man-woman marriage is decidedly more defensible." This particular examination was meant to analyze the legal reasoning that leads judges to either accept or not accept the "facts" that the conservative author has already accepted as true and not further debate the facts themselves. It was written as a sort of intra-movement debate for conservatives who have already rejected same-sex marriage. It was meant for the conservatives to discuss among themselves, not for proponents and opponents to debate marriage equality on its merits. It's an openly subjective take.

Oh, and the unnamed writer of this referenced piece? Well, that would be Monte Neil Stewart—a Mormon, former BYU professor, backer of Utah's anti-gay-marriage amendment (Amendment 3), and co-chair of the resulting "Yes on 3" coalition campaign. Stewart is also the president of the Marriage Law Foundation. That would be this Marriage Law Foundation:

Screen Shot 2011-08-24 At 2.10.51 Pm
[Marriage Law Foundation]

This is the same Marriage Law Foundation that touts NOM co-founder Maggie Gallagher as a board member. In fact, Maggie's name actually comes up twelve times in the footnotes of the article that Protect Marriage Maine references. Other prominent "protect marriage" voices like NOM co-founder Robert George also get mentions.

Of course the Maryland Marriage Alliance doesn't tell you any of this. They, the members of the team that is out to willfully deceive Maine into pitting personal faith beliefs against shared civil freedoms, just want you to believe that they have an objective Ivy League voice on their side. They, the movement that typically gets shot down by deep scholarly analysis, want you to see this reference and think of scholarly heft. But in reality, the article is a piece of partisan commentary. They don't want you to know that little bullet point.


Deception is their game, my friends. They use stock video to represent locals. They present conservative thought as if its objective analysis. They cry victim when they are the ones working to harm their fellow taxpayers. They push discrimination and call it "values." They bear false witness and call it godly.

Reject the games. Vote For Question 6!

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