October 24th, 2008

cats - tori glare

Desperate, despicable, and lots of other words that start with "de"...

"Yes on Prop 8" campaign threatens to "expose" businesses and individuals who donated money to the other side

ProtectMarriage.com, the umbrella group behind a ballot initiative that would overturn the California Supreme Court decision that legalized gay marriage, sent a certified letter this week asking companies to withdraw their support of Equality California, a nonprofit organization that is helping lead the campaign against Proposition 8.

"Make a donation of a like amount to ProtectMarriage.com which will help us correct this error," reads the letter. "Were you to elect not to donate comparably, it would be a clear indication that you are in opposition to traditional marriage. ... The names of any companies and organizations that choose not to donate in like manner to ProtectMarriage.com but have given to Equality California will be published."

Blackmail. Yeah, that's the way to convince people of the rightness of your cause.
book - pile

Game for a Friday


Oh, no! Your house is suddenly going up in flames! You have time to save all your animate loved ones (children, pets, housemates, etc.) a handful of vital possessions, and ONE BOOK from your beloved collection. (Just one!) Which book will you choose? (Decide quickly!)

There are some good answers (and agonizing!) in the comments to the entry above. But the decision was surprisingly easy for me: the German-language Bible that my grandfather gave me. Not at all practical, but it's irreplaceable in at least two ways.

So how about you?
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Prop 8 Round-up

I continue to follow this story really closely and collect lots of links. Some recent interesting ones:

  • The celebrity endorsements are starting to roll in. Two notable ones: Project Runway's Tim Gunn and Ellen DeGeneres.

  • Interesting blog post on the "Yes on 8" campaign's tactics. It includes some of the most thoughtful commentary I've seen on the charge that teachers will be "forced" to teach about same-sex marriage in schools. A claim, by the way, that the CA state superintendent of schools has gone on record to refute.

  • Speaking of campaign tactics, I didn't think it was possible for Yes on 8 to go lower than the blackmail attempt I posted about earlier (which, on reflection, was not only despicable, but stupid -- I suspect these companies will get way more good publicity than bad from their donations, because history has shown that pro-gay-rights boycotts have been far more effective than anti-gay-rights ones), but I was wrong:

    My husband is a phone banking coach for the local No on 8 campaign. Tonight, at an update meeting, they confirmed a rumor that was circulating around the phone banking session last week: Yes on 8 supporters are calling members of gay and lesbian communities and telling them that if they support same-sex marriage, they should vote yes.

    It's been clear all along that this is a campaign based on lies, but this... I don't even know what to say.

  • This is one of the most fascinating videos on the subject I've seen: a Morman man talking about his church's involvement in the effort to pass Proposition 8.

    It's part of a small YouTube channel devoted to Mormon's speaking against Prop 8. Some of the other videos there are also thought-provoking, even if I'm not really the intended audience.

  • Election polling maven Nate Silver (of fivethirtyeight.com) wrote about the polling on Prop 8 yesterday. He analyses most of the polls he can find on the subject (excluding internal polling -- he finds them untrustworthy because campaigns tend to cherry-pick the polls that they will tell the world about) and concludes that the proposition has about a 45% chance of passing. Which is far too close to my comfort, and so...

  • Jed posts information on volunteering for the No on Prop 8 campaign. And I think I'm going to do it. I've never volunteered for a political campaign before, but then I don't know that I've ever felt this strongly about a campaign issue before, either. Strongly enough that I'm willing to talk to strangers on the phone? Yeah, I think I do. (So if any locals are interested in going to the SF office this weekend or next, drop me a line.)

So, the sharp-eyed among you have probably noticed that I've posted a lot about Proposition 8, and about same-sex marriage in general. This might lead you to suspect that I feel strongly about this issue. And you'd be right. Marriage equality, and gay rights in general, and tolerance and equal rights for all kinds of people across the board, are the causes that raise my passion. I may even care more about this proposition than I do the presidential election. It might seem odd to say that, when so many other states have already passed constitutional amendments against same-sex marriage. But this isn't just another "defense of marriage act". Not just because it's my state, my home, although I'm sure that factors into it. But same-sex marriage is legal in California. If Prop 8 passes, it could nullify legal marriages -- 11,000 of them at last count. Including those of friends, co-workers, family. If that's not a reason to get personally, emotionally involved, what is?

I still believe that history will prove us right, and that we will win marriage equality in the United States, probably in my lifetime. But if this measure passes, it sets the struggle back, quite significantly. And I've already been to two wedding receptions for my aunts; I'd really rather not have to make it a third. So I write, and I work, and I'll hope. And I'll cross my fingers that we'll have many reasons to celebrate on November 4th.