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02/27/2014

No, NOM—your carefully spun stories are the same; the bigger story is peaceful

by Jeremy Hooper

Reacting to Gov. Jan Brewer's veto of Arizona's license-to-discriminate bill, the National Organization for [clearly more than just] Marriage [Discrimination] wrote the following:

Wherever marriage is redefined, the story is the same: florists, photographers, bakers, caterers, social hall owners—anyone who runs a business that caters to the celebration of nuptials—these individuals are forced to choose between their deeply held beliefs about marriage and the prospect of being forced out of business by onerous lawsuits claiming ‘discrimination.’ [NOM]

Bull caca poop shoot!!

The actual story of marriage equality is that is completely benign. In the eighteen jurisdictions where we have marriage equality (seventeen states plus D.C.), the prevailing tale is one where tens of thousands of same-sex couples have married without incident. In every state, marriage equality becomes close to a non-discussion once it becomes legal. The debate, even when heated, ends almost overnight, and even strong opponents have to admit that their lives really are not impacted in any way.

There are literally only five or six cases that organizations like NOM cite (Elane Photography, Arlene's Flowers, Masterpiece Cakes, Sweet Cakes by Melissa, Wildflower Inn) , and many of them didn't even happen in marriage equality states (and all deal with nondiscrimination, not marriage)! Considering the percentage of the United States that has marriage equality and the fact that virtually any wedding vendor, even in a non-equality state, could step up and make a big political stink the way this small cadre of vendors has, the fact that groups like NOM can only find a handful of willing business owners to turn into martyrs for the conservative cause is really the big story here. And just because they have been able to beat the drum in order to give these scant few cases outsized attention doesn't change the fact that there are so few of them!

This attempt to turn a tiny number of likeminded examples into a supposed representative sample didn't work in Massachusetts, where groups like NOM tried to turn two sets of anti-gay parents into supposed voices of tens of thousands of beleaguered Bay State mothers and fathers who object to tolerant public schooling. It won't work now.

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