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12/27/2012

Hey NOM: We want marriage. Always. Every time. In every state. We're not hiding that fact.

by Jeremy Hooper

The National Organization for Marriage is rounding out 2012 by doing what the discriminatory outfit does best: naming a false reality and hoping others will just blindly follow it.

Check out the following two snips, which come from two different action alerts that NOM just sent out. The first focuses on Illinois, where the state legislature is about to consider bumping up its separate-and-unequal civil unions system to full marriage equality. Focus on the highlighted part:

Screen Shot 2012-12-27 At 4.28.51 Pm
[SOURCE]

This second is directed toward Minnesota, where activists just beat back a discriminatory marriage ban and could take up the matter of marriage equality in the near future. Again, pay attention to the highlighted line:

Screen Shot 2012-12-27 At 4.28.29 Pm
[SOURCE]

In both cases, the NOM writer (cited as Brian Brown in both instances) is presenting an argument that we pro-equality activists supposedly made in one, loud, united voice. Only problem? In both claims, NOM is being bunk ass deceitful (i.e. typical).

In Illinois, most of us supported the idea of civil unions because we always want to protect families in the strongest achievable way. But there is not one organized LGBT group out there that denies our ultimate dream is for marriage equality in all states and federally. We are not making in any attempt to hide our hopes. Full disclosure: We think marriage bans are wrong, we think marriage equality is inevitable, and we think stepping stones like civil unions will always be replaced with full marriage rights. This is all on the table. It is not shocking.

Then there's Minnesota. NOM is not only pretending that we, the monolithic gay activists, made this certain claim—NOM is actually claiming that we "were falling all over [ourselves]" to make it. Um, in a word: no! What many of us did say was that the vote against the marriage ban was not necessarily a vote for marriage equality and that a positive outcome on election day (which we got) would not mean the immediate legalization of marriage equality. But no one was denying that marriage equality could be debated and eventually passed in the near future—especially not the openly pro-LGBT groups behind the campaign. Who would've believed us if we denied our hope for marriage equality someday?! If you did believe that, then you were the fool!

What NOM is doing here, in both instances, is portraying the pro-equality side as deceitful and dishonest. It's the same ol', same ol'. They always want the public to view us as some sort of negative thing. Sometimes we are portrayed as militant, and other times we are said to be anti-religion. When there is a particularly strong coalition in a state made up of one certain minority population, NOM positions us of "hijacking" that group's history. If our legislative champions are outspoken, then NOM of course frames them as craven or even corrupt (with graphics to match). Fair-minded justices are always decried as "activist." Gay parents are "exploitative" for showing our families in commercials or in hearings. Etc, etc. In every instance, the goal is to make Team Equality seem like Team Shady.

In this latest round, NOM is plant seeds that accuse two states' activists of "putting one over" on their neighbors and hoping said neighbors buy into the deliberate meme. The strategy is as gross as it is telling.

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