Monday, December 6, 2010

Via Courage Campaign:

Courage Campaign

The so-called National Organization for Marriage has declared war on the judicial branch of America's government, in its neverending quest to shred the 14th Amendment's guarantee of equal protection under the law.

First, NOM attacked Judge Vaughn Walker's perceived sexual orientation. Then they organized a judicial jihad in Iowa, abusing the purpose of a retention vote to force three state Supreme Court justices off the bench for their historic unanimous decision to allow same-sex marriage.

Now, in the last 96 hours, NOM mobilized 300,000 members to attack one of the three appeals court judges who will determine the fate of Prop 8. Prior to today's hearing before the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the "Yes on 8" attorneys attempted to disqualify Judge Stephen Reinhardt from the case. The reason? His wife works for an organization that opposes Prop 8.

Their weak legal motion was immediately denied, but that didn't stop NOM from mobilizing their members to crush the Ninth Circuit's phone lines in an egregious attempt to bully the court, to no apparent end. As Adam Bink wrote Friday on Courage's Prop 8 Trial Tracker web site:

"If a judge is about to do something that NOM doesn't like, NOM will viciously attack the judge on any grounds it can find -- judicial independence be damned."

With NOM declaring war on the judicial branch, it's up to you to stop them. That's why we launched the Prop 8 Trial Tracker -- to hold NOM and the Yes on 8 attorneys accountable for their outrageous attempts to undermine the case against Prop 8. But without donations from people like you, the site would not exist. To keep coverage going, we need your help urgently. Please show your support by contributing $25, $50, $100 or more right now:

Today, the Prop 8 Trial Tracker is the eyes and ears of marriage equality supporters, with more than 3.7 million views and 84,000 comments and counting. If you haven't been reading on a daily basis, you've missed some amazing moments.

The best part might actually be what's happening in the comment threads of each Prop 8 Trial Tracker post. The relationships that have formed in the comments -- and the discussions and debates that have developed -- are sometimes quite moving and emotional. Two people even met on the site and have been dating ever since.

Meanwhile, NOM is spending $10 million a year attacking LGBT families, while cultivating the animus and isolation that leads to tragedies like the recent spate of LGBT teen suicides. Right now, even with the Prop 8 case potentially on its way to the Supreme Court, NOM is moving to roll back marriage equality in New Hampshire and other states.

We can't continue to hold NOM accountable and bring you breaking news on the Prop 8 case if we aren't able to cover the costs of the Prop 8 Trial Tracker. To continue our relentless coverage, we urgently need your financial support. Please show your support right now by making a tax-deductible contribution of $25, $50, $100 or more today:

Thank you so much for supporting our work to hold NOM accountable and bring the case against Prop 8 into the lives of Americans. We can't do it without you.

Rick Jacobs
Chair, Courage Campaign Institute


The Courage Campaign Institute is a part of the Courage Campaign's multi-issue online organizing network that empowers more than 700,000 grassroots and netroots supporters to push for progressive change and full equality in California and across the country.

To support the Prop 8 Trial Tracker, please chip in what you can today:

Help Overturn Prop. 8
When the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issues its ruling—which can happen at any time—we can expect the proponents of discrimination to use every tool in their arsenal to try to keep Prop. 8 on the books.
Make a donation to help us prepare for the fight ahead.
Today, the nation saw AFER’s stellar lead attorneys, Theodore B. Olson and David Boies, face off against the proponents of Prop. 8.
As America watched live, our attorneys presented the eloquent and well-reasoned case for marriage equality. Meanwhile, the supporters of Prop. 8 relied on the same assertions, junk science and rhetoric that failed in the district court.
Today was a great day for civil rights, but we aren’t done yet.
We need your help to prepare for the fight ahead.
When the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issues its ruling—which can happen at any time—we can expect the proponents of discrimination to use every tool in their arsenal to try to keep Prop. 8 on the books.
They will stop at nothing to ensure that discrimination is enshrined in our Constitution.
Make a donation so we can continue to make our case.
Every day that Prop. 8 remains in effect is another day that harms loving couples, their families and the nation.
We will not rest until all gay and lesbian Americans are afforded the equal rights guaranteed to them by the Constitution.
Chad Griffin Portrait Chad Griffin SignatureChad GriffinBoard President
American Foundation for Equal Rights

Yes We Scan!

Paul Stanley Speaks out through NOH8 Campaign

Via HimalayaCrafts:

Buddhism is based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as “The Buddha”, who was born in what is today Nepal. 

Civil Rights Leader Jesse Jackson Speaks Out in Support of Marriage Equality


Civil Rights Leader Jesse Jackson Speaks Out in Support of Marriage Equality


Media Contacts:
Molly McKay, Media Director: 510.332.0872
Pamela Brown, Policy Director: 510.384.3655
Butch Wing, Push Coalition Coalition (510) 701-8955

San Francisco Rev. Jackson called into the community gathering at the Ninth Circuit courthouse hosted by Marriage Equality USA and made the following remarks in support of marriage equality and Judge Walker's ruling.

Oppose Prop 8 –  Defend Equal Protection Under the Law for All People! 
Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr, President & Founder, Rainbow PUSH Coalition

Many years ago in the late 1970s’, I visited South Africa, then deep in the throes of apartheid.  I was asked by the media what I thought of the situation, and I said,  “I believe in human rights for all human beings.   We must measure human rights by one yardstick.”  That principle – our moral center - still applies.  Everything flows from this perspective.

We stand together today as equal members of the human family…. as consistent principled advocates for human rights for all people.  We stand together today to uphold the principles of due process, of equal protection under the law, of fighting against discrimination against any and all people based on race, religion, gender or sexual orientation.

WE stand with you today to support Marriage Equality, and to declare that Proposition 8 must be struck down as unconstitutional.  Peoples’ right to self-expression, self-determination be respected and affirmed.  It’s time to challenge ignorance, a time to break the silence and the chains of hatred, of divisive and discriminatory bigotry.   Marriage is based on love and commitment – not on sexual orientation.  I support the right for any person to marry the person of their choosing.

If Dr. King and our civil rights movement has taught us anything, it’s the fundamental principle of that all people deserve Equal protection under the law.   LGBT people deserve equal rights – including marriage equality – and equal protection under the law. Discrimination against one group of people is discrimination against all of us.   The State – and the Courts - should not sanction discrimination.

To those that believe in and fought for civil rights, that marched to end discrimination and win equality, you must not become that which you hated. It’s past time to exist in hypocrisy and ignorance, and time to come out of the shadows and darkness to support unequivocally, equality for all people. Those that support civil and human rights cannot, must not, become perpetrators of discrimination against others based upon race, religion, culture, sexual orientation.

African Americans know too well the sting of legal, state sanctioned, constitutionally driven “second class” citizenship – from centuries of legal slavery and Jim Crow segregation, to classified as 3/5 of a human being in the U.S. Constitution, to facing anti-miscegenation laws that prevented Blacks from marrying whites. 

We cannot not sit idly by while Prop. 8 seeks to target gays and lesbians for a disfavored legal status, as America’s newest “second-class citizens.”  Our legal scholars have cited fourteen times where the Supreme Court has stated that marriage is a fundamental right of all individuals.   That principle must be upheld today – for Blacks and Whites, for straight and gay, for ALL Americans.  No group of people should be denied their fundamental constitutional liberties, like equal protection under the law, simply because of who they are.

So today, we do not stand alone.  It’s time to go forward by hope and not backward by fear, to stand up with courage, hope and strength and send a shout out for equality.  Stiff winds of resistance seek a return to intolerance, bigotry and state sanctioned discrimination – whether against immigrants in New Mexico or against marriage equality in California.   It should only strengthen our resolve to defend equal protection under the law, equality for all Americans, and the forging of a One Big Tent America.

Keep Hope Alive.

"We are deeply touched and honored to have Rev. Jesse Jackson, one of the most powerful civil rights leaders alive today, join our event today and make these historic remarks in support of marriage equality," said Molly McKay, Marriage Equality USA Media Director.  "Hearing Rev Jackson's vision of the Rainbow Coalition as I came of voting age in the late 80s inspired me to want to get involved in making our country's promise of equality and justice for all ring true.  Hearing his vocal support against Prop 8 and in support of marriage equality today his been a truly extraordinary and we look forward to continuing to work together towards our shared vision of forging a One Big Tent America." 

The Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a progressive organization protecting, defending and expanding civil rights to improve economic and educational opportunity. The organization is headquartered at 930 E. 50th St. in Chicago. For more information about the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, please visit or call (773) 373-3366.