NOM BLOG

"Coercive Big Government Run Amok"

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

"This is coercive big government run amok."

That is the phrase The Daily Signal has used to describe a recent bit of news from New York state which represents only the latest act of bullying and intimidation by the same-sex marriage lobby against those of us who refuse to step in line with their radical ideology.

This time, the victims of this discriminatory and bigoted targeting are a couple who rent out their family farm for wedding receptions, but who respectfully declined renting to a lesbian couple because they could not in sound conscience participate in such an event.

To the Orwellian New York Human Rights Commission, however, this kind of conscientious dissent is ungoodthink. The farm owners, Cynthia and Robert Gifford, are being fined $13,000.00 for this malfeasance: $10,000 in civil damages to the State of New York and $1,500 to each of the two women of the couple denied services, for the "mental anguish" they have supposedly suffered.

But the damage of this terrible legal ruling goes beyond the pecuniary penalties against the Giffords themselves. In fact, they are only the chief victims of this travesty of justice. The wider implications are for you, and I, and future generations of Americans who suddenly see one more fundamental right—the right of conscience—being eroded more and more under the tidal wave of the marriage redefinition ideology.

Not the Onion

Sometimes news is so absurd that when you post it on Facebook or Twitter, you need to include the caveat that it is "not the Onion"—referring to the famous parody humor website.

As I read through the decision from the New York Human Rights Commission in the case of the Giffords, I had to keep reminding myself that it wasn’t parody.

For instance, in the section called "Findings of Fact", the document details the only recorded interaction between the Giffords and the female couple that wanted to rent the farm for their 'wedding.’ It reads as follows (the numbers are part of the ordered list of "facts" found by the court):

59. When Complaintants found the [Farm’s] website, they felt "very grateful and very excited" as if "this was meant to happen." [...]

60. Complaintants first attempted to contact [the Farm] about renting the wedding venue spaces electronically. Complaintants then left a phone message. [...]

62. In September 2013, Melissa McCarthy [one of the 'brides’] and Cynthia Gifford spoke by telephone. Jennifer McCarthy listened in on the phone. [...]

66. After being invited to visit [the Farm], Melisa McCarthy referred to her fiancé as "she" when discussing making an appointment to visit, and stated that "she works until 5:30." [...]

67. Upon hearing Melisa McCarthy refer to her finance [sic] as "she," Cynthia Gifford said there was "a little bit of a problem" because "we do not hold same-sex marriages here at the barn." [...]

70. Melisa McCarthy... asked Cynthia Gifford the reason for not allowing same-sex marriages. [...]

71. Cynthia Gifford responded that the reason for the policy was that "it’s a decision that my husband and I have made that that’s not what we wanted to have on the farm." [...]

72. Melisa McCarthy ended the phone call with Cynthia Gifford by stating that learning of the policy was "very disappointing" and that Complaintants "won’t take up anymore of your time." [...]

Apparently, Melisa McCarthy was simply being quaint when she said she and Jennifer wouldn’t be taking up any more of the Giffords’ time, because of course they ended up hauling the Farm owners into court.

But this is the extent of the interaction between the Giffords and the two women who wanted to 'marry’ at the farm. This is the basis of finding that $1,500 worth of "mental anguish" penalties were due to be paid to each of the complaintants!

I wish I could say the near-parody of the piece ends there, but it gets even worse. While the monetary damages are perhaps the most egregious penalties being imposed against the Giffords, they aren’t the most ridiculous penalties—nor the most invasive and insidious.

The judge also ruled that:

Within sixty (60) days... [the Giffords] shall prominently post in [their] place of business, where members of the public are likely to view it, a copy of the [New York Human Rights] Division’s poster...;

[The Giffords] shall establish in [their] place of business both anti-discrimination training and procedures... [and] shall provide proof of the aforementioned to the Division upon written demand... [emphasis added].

So, not only do the Giffords need to establish a kind of "re-education" regimen in their place of business (which is also their home, by the way), but they also need to hang on the wall a poster that reads in a big red box, in all capitals:

DISCRIMINATION BASED ON AGE, RACE, CREED, COLOR, NATIONAL ORIGIN, SEXUAL ORIENTATION, MILITARY STATUS, SEX, DISABILITY, DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIM STATUS, OR MARITAL STATUS IS PROHIBITED BY THE NEW YORK STATE HUMAN RIGHTS LAW....

It’s like Hawthorne’s Scarlett Letter or something else out of dystopian fiction!

How would you like a poster like that hanging on the wall at your wedding reception? When you went to visit the venue and you saw that, wouldn’t you wonder what kind of place this was that has been forced to hang such a thing on its wall?

This is Only the Tip of the Spear

Those who clamor for the redefinition of marriage talk a lot about the damaging effect of stigma—but it is becoming increasingly clear that that is precisely the treatment they have in mind for anyone who dares disagree with their radical agenda.

They want to stigmatize them, publicly shame them, label them "bigots" and "haters"—yes, even to the extent of hanging public notices on the walls of their workplaces to identify them as such!

Wedding professionals are only the tip of the spear. What has happened to the Giffords in New York is a direct consequence of that state’s political act to redefine marriage, making a romantic attachment between adults of the same sex the legal equivalent of marriage between a man and a woman, something that has helped form civilizations since the dawn of time.

It used to be that same-sex 'marriage’ advocates would ask, "What does the gay marriage down the block have to do with your marriage?" They suggested Americans adopt a kind of laissez-faire attitude that effectively downplayed the consequences to come. Now that marriage has been redefined, we can plainly see those consequences, however... and they are not just to those in the wedding industry.

If same-sex 'marriage’ advocates were to ever succeed in redefining marriage nationwide, the consequences would be felt by everyone. We are already seeing religious groups’ tax exemptions challenged, charities such as adoption agencies forced to abandon their mission or sacrifice their beliefs, and family-owned businesses being compelled to provide services that conflict with their values or else get out of business altogether... and on, and on.

It’s safe to say that if marriage were ever redefined nationally, we would see happen across America what has happened in New York: the full force of government would be deployed to force people not only to accept it, but participate in it.

"How does 'gay marriage’ affect you?" It threatens your church’s liberties, it changes your child’s school curriculum, it determines which charities are allowed to operate and what businesses will be allowed to continue, and it engenders "coercive big government run amok" narrowing and cutting away at our rights to speak and act upon the truth of marriage.

Rolling Back the Tide

I referred earlier to our civil liberties being eroded by the "tidal wave" of same-sex marriage. I borrow the phrase from Bobby Lopez, who used it in a recent talk to the Anscombe Society at Stanford.

Bobby was speaking about the effects of redefining marriage on children, whose rights are almost always ignored when our opponents bring this debate into the public square. Bobby said that the same-sex marriage agenda, in practice, "ultimately means that in order to protect the sexual relationship between two adults, you have to shatter the relationship between a child and either his father or his mother."

He said that those "who kept on warning that gay marriage was a portal to new things" years ago (when he disagreed with that view) have turned out to be right: "Gay marriage became this tidal wave that then swept up children."

But I need to repeat something I have said again and again in these newsletters: it is NOT inevitable!

Just this week, we saw a huge victory in the judicial realm when the Supreme Court unanimously decided to block the enforcement of a ruling in Virginia that had struck down that State’s marriage amendment! And that’s on top of the tremendous court victory in Tennessee which rejected an attempt to redefine marriage.

These are the sorts of things which, according to the inevitability narrative parroted by our opponents, should never happen. And yet it did.

So, remain hopeful. Unfortunately, there will be more such sad cases as that of the Giffords—cases of good and honorable Americans unjustly targeted and discriminated against simply for believing in marriage between a man and a woman.

But we will see that tide roll back, and an end to "coercive big government run amok."

We have the truth on our side. We have the right principles, and a just cause. We stand for something wholesome and good: we stand for marriage as God made it and as humanity has treasured it; we stand for the rights of kids to a mom and a dad; we stand for the liberty of conscience.

Let’s continue to stand for those things bravely and unwaveringly, because marriage will have its day in court again—and we’re going to win!

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
President
National Organization for Marriage

Brian Brown


Couple With "Amazing Love" for One Another Die Four Hours Apart, Holding Hands

Here's a bittersweet tale that should nonetheless brighten your Friday with its wonderful witness to Married Joy:

A couple married for 62 years recently died four hours apart while lying next to each other.  The story of their lifelong love has quickly gone viral.

KERO-TV reported that Don and Maxine Simpson traveled the world, adopted two boys, and participated in many different activities together.  According to their relatives:

“Gram woke up and saw him, and held hands and they knew that they were next to each other,” said Sloan.

CoupleBut what no one knew is how they would leave this world.

“I knew in my heart this is what’s supposed to happen. Grandma and grandpa are supposed to be together and grandma and grandpa are going to die together,” she said.

And that’s exactly what happened.

“I could hear on the monitor, she took her last breath and I came to check. She had passed,” said Sloan.

Maxine was gone.

“I walked them out with her body, walked back in to check on grandpa and he quit breathing as soon as her body left the room.  He left with her, and they passed four hours apart from each other,” she said.

The man, that married the love of his life more than 60 years ago, was only hours behind in death.

Godspeed to them in their final journey together and may they be reunited in the life to come!

We DO Need Fathers

In a recent Rolling Stone interview, pop icon Katy Perry remarked about fatherhood, “I don't need a dude.  It's 2014!  We are living in the future; we don't need anything.  I’m not anti-men. I love men. But there is an option if someone doesn’t present himself.”

D.C. McAllister responded at The Federalist with a very fine article:

Father-DaughterSociologist David Popenoe, a pioneer in the field of research into fatherhood, says, “Fathers are far more than just ‘second adults’ in the home. Involved fathers bring positive benefits to their children that no other person is as likely to bring.”

That means it’s not just the fact that he provides money so there is reduced stress in the home, and it doesn’t mean just any “dude” can step in and replace him. There is a real and organic relationship between a father and a child that is irreplaceable and essential in the development of the child.

Williams wrote in an article at the Wall Street Journal that “when fatherless young people are encouraged to write about their lives, they tell heartbreaking stories about feeling like ‘throwaway people.’ In the privacy of the written page, their hard, emotional shells crack open to reveal the uncertainty that comes from not knowing if their father has any interest in them.”

Study after study has shown that children with fathers in the home are better off in school, commit less crime, have more stable relationships, and are less likely to be involved with drugs or engage in other deviant behavior. Girls, in particular, exhibit higher self-esteem and are less likely to have out-of-wedlock pregnancies.

[...]

Studies have shown that fatherless children are more insecure, more likely to experience depression, and more inclined to exhibit disruptive behavior. “Boys with involved fathers have fewer school behavior problems,” and “girls have stronger self-esteem.” In other words, “fathers have a powerful and positive impact upon the development and health of children.”

[...]

A dad isn’t just some dude to dismiss. Children need him. They will always need him; from infancy to adulthood, he is the cornerstone of their lives... if the statistics are to be believed, then the truth is that growing up without a dad is no fairytale.

Read the whole piece.

Worth Your Attention: TN and VA Court Decisions

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

Great news!

Yesterday, the US Supreme Court intervened to grant a stay — a delay in the implementation of a lower court's ruling pending legal appeal — in Virginia, halting the redefinition of marriage in its tracks in the Old Dominion!

The justice in charge of reviewing petitions in the 4th circuit (Justice Roberts) referred the matter to the full court. And once again — just as was the case in Utah earlier this year — there was no dissent from a single justice in granting the stay!

Let me remind you that one of the conditions for overturning a lower court's decision in granting a stay is the reasonable expectation of victory on appeal!

Won't you please take this opportunity to renew your commitment to defending marriage by making a generous contribution of $35, $50, $100, or even $500 to NOM today?

After winning many lawsuits in lower federal courts presided over by hand-picked, liberal, activist judges, the momentum behind the marriage redefinition agenda is waning.

Remember, in addition to the Supreme Court's intervention in Utah and Virginia, federal judges in states like Wisconsin are taking notice and issuing stays on their own decisions to allow the legal process to play out.

Much, much more importantly, we recently won a case at the lower level in Tennessee! You might not know about it because the media is doing everything it can to ignore the facts, but Roane County Circuit Judge Russell E. Simmons, Jr., of Kingston, Tennessee ruled that "neither the Federal Government nor another state should be allowed to dictate to Tennessee what has traditionally been a state's responsibility."

In addition, he correctly commented on the Supreme Court's Windsor decision of last summer, saying that the "Supreme Court does not go the final step and find that a state that defines marriage as a union of one man and one woman is unconstitutional. Further, the Supreme Court does not find that one state's refusal to accept another state's valid same-sex marriage to be in violation of the U.S. Constitution."

The rush to judgment declaring marriage to be unconstitutional is not only premature — it's flat out wrong!

Won't you please give a generous donation today to help NOM continue fighting to defend marriage and the faith communities that sustain it?

The US Supreme Court has determined that states have the right to define marriage and we remain confident that they will uphold all the various traditional marriage laws and constitutional amendments that have been wrongly invalidated by federal judges.

Moreover, we look forward to the US Supreme Court taking one or more of the three marriage cases now pending before them, and ultimately ruling that defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman is entirely constitutional.

Thank you for continuing to stand for marriage!

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
President
National Organization for Marriage

Brian Brown

PS: As the recent actions of the Supreme Court in Virginia and the legal victory in Tennessee show... the tide is turning! And NOM needs your help to keep building the momentum! These lower federal court cases are making their way up to the Supreme Court, and we must demonstrate that Americans across the country and from all walks of life believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. Won't you please make a generous donation today to help us build a grassroots movement and make a powerful statement that will be heard throughout the country and especially in the halls of the Supreme Court?


National Organization for Marriage Pleased that the US Supreme Court Granted a Stay of the Decision Striking Down Virginia’s Marriage Amendment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 20, 2014
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


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Washington, D.C. — The following statement may be attributed to Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage:

"We are pleased that the US Supreme Court has put a halt to the decision in Virginia redefining marriage in violation of the state’s marriage amendment overwhelmingly approved by voters. We had called upon the Court to take this step and are gratified that they will now be able to carefully consider the issues. This is another indication that the rush to judgment declaring marriage to be unconstitutional is not only premature, but incorrect. The US Supreme Court has determined that states have the right to define marriage and we remain confident that they will uphold all the various traditional marriage laws and constitutional amendments that have been wrongly invalidated by federal judges. We look forward to the US Supreme Court taking one or more of the three marriage cases now pending before them, and ultimately ruling that defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman is entirely constitutional."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray, [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

A Hopeful Outlook

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

In this week's marriage news, the big story is a big win from the courts in Tennessee.

A Tennessee state judge has ruled that the state's constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman—which was passed by an 81 percent majority of voters in 2006—does not violate the United States Constitution.

In his ruling, Judge Russell Simmons found (correctly) that the Windsor decision from the Supreme Court does not demand that states' marriage laws be overturned:

The Supreme Court [did] not go the final step [in Windsor] and find that a state that defines marriage as a union of one man and one woman is unconstitutional. Further, the Supreme Court does not find that one state's refusal to accept another state's valid same-sex marriage to be in violation of the U.S. Constitution.

Very significantly, the Judge also agreed with the arguments by the State of Tennessee that the state's marriage amendment does not violate equal protection, quoting the following from the State's brief:

Tennessee's Marriage Laws have a rational basis in law and thus do not violate equal protection. [...] Marriage can simply not be divorced from its traditional procreative purpose. [...] The promotion of family continuity and stability is certainly a legitimate state interest, [...] Tennessee's Marriage Laws expressly recognize the family "as the fundamental building block of our society." [...] [T]here is nothing irrational about limiting the institution of marriage to the purpose for which it was created, by embracing its traditional definition [emphasis added].

As I said in a statement on Tuesday, it is refreshing to find a judge who is willing to apply the federal constitution as it is and not reinterpret it so as to redefine marriage.

It is also refreshing to find a judge who gets the point about what marriage is, in its essential meaning and purpose. This should add hope to our outlook in the courts going forward.

They Can Read the Writing on the Wall

Last week, I highlighted the news about the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals hearing of challenges to the marriage laws of Ohio, Michigan, Tennessee, and Kentucky.

You'll recall that even the biased Washington Post admitted about the hearings that, "It became clear after three hours of arguments that the [three judge] panel could become the first roadblock for proponents of same-sex marriage."

For all our opponents' insistence that same-sex marriage is "inevitable," the truth of the matter couldn't be clearer: they know, just as well as we, that the future of marriage in the courts is still very much up for grabs.

We are confident, based on the rationale of the Windsor decision and other key rulings—like the affirmative action case out of Michigan—that the Supreme Court will find in favor of states' rights to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

And I'll let you in on a secret: many of our opponents think so, too!

Back in May, the national pro-same-sex-marriage group Freedom to Marry announced that they were opening new field offices and media operations in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana, spending over $1 million to prepare for future campaigns in those states.

Ask yourself: why, if they were confident that the 6th Circuit or the Supreme Court would find in favor of redefining marriage, would they be pouring these kinds of resources into these Midwest states?

An article in POLITICO last week gives an indication of the answer. The article quotes the national campaign director for Freedom to Marry, Marc Solomon, saying:

If the issue's not resolved [by the courts] we are preparing to go to the ballot in five key states — Ohio, Arizona, Nevada, Michigan and Colorado. We are doing this because those are the places where we think we have the best chances of prevailing ... pretty much all of them are right-down-the-middle, swing states [emphasis added].

In other words: they're hedging their bets.

They know, as we do, that it is far from certain that the Supreme Court will impose a radical redefinition of marriage nationwide. And so, they know they will need to pony up for campaigns to redefine marriage on a state-by-state basis.

And I promise you this: NOM will be there, every step of the way, fighting to preserve and protect marriage and to safeguard the voices of millions of voters in these targeted states who have made clear that they believe in the TRUE definition of marriage!

The Importance of Marital Witness

We are confident that the debate over marriage will not be cut short by the Supreme Court, and that our work will continue. That makes one thing perfectly clear: we need marriage champions now more than ever, and we will continue to need them going forward.

Yet, I know it isn't always easy to stand on the front lines of what NOM's founding Chairman, Professor Robert P. George, has called a "civilization-defining battle."

We need to have courage and the right arsenal of arguments, sure. But we also need inspiration and edification, and examples of the joy of marriage: for this, really, is why we fight. On the NOMblog we now have a new category that we will be posting to from time to time called "Married Joy." I encourage you to check it out today, and bookmark it. There are only two posts so far, but we will be adding more in the days and weeks ahead, and maintaining it as a regular feature.

It is important to see heartwarming stories like that of Zelmyra and Herbert Fisher who, in 2008, broke the Guinness World Record for longest married living couple. By the time of their deaths (both at age 105), they had been married for nearly 90 years!

Fortunately for us, before they passed away, Zelmyra and Herbert gave some advice to all of us about how to make married joy last so long and so well, including this great tip: "[P]ray with and for each other every day." Read the rest of their advice here.

I hope it puts a smile on your face and a song in your heart. And I hope it inspires you to keep standing up and keep fighting for marriage, because we know what it really is all about!

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
President
National Organization for Marriage

Brian Brown


National Organization for Marriage Calls for Supreme Court Stay of Decision Striking Down Virginia's Marriage Amendment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 14, 2014
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


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Washington, D.C. — The following statement may be attributed to Brian Brown, President of the National Organization for Marriage:

"We urge the Supreme Court to grant Prince William County Clerk Michèle McQuigg's request for a stay of the decision in Bostic v. Schaefer while the matter is appealed. The 4th Circuit has wrongly rejected the request for a stay, and now it lies with the Justices in Washington to ensure that this case can be appealed in an orderly and reasonable fashion without the spectacle of premature same-sex ‘marriages’ filling the news as an affront to the people of Virginia who voted overwhelmingly to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. As the Court stayed a similar decision in the case coming out of Utah, we urge them to find the same good reasons for staying the present decision, maintaining the dignity and credibility of the judicial process and giving the people of Virginia the respect they deserve to defend their vote for marriage before our highest court."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray, [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

NOM Praises Judge for Showing Deference to Voters and Upholding Tennessee Marriage Amendment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 12, 2014
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"This important decision has largely been ignored in the media because it undercuts the narrative that same-sex marriage is inevitable. But it isn't." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today praised a state judge in Tennessee who ruled last week that the Tennessee state constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman does not violate the federal constitution. He is the first judge to uphold the constitutionality of a state marriage amendment since the US Supreme Court issued their 2013 opinion striking down a section of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

"It is refreshing to find a judge who is willing to apply the federal constitution as it is and not reinterpret the constitution so as to redefine marriage," said Brian S. Brown, NOM's president. "Judge Russell Simmons is exactly correct when he says that there is nothing about the US Supreme Court's Windsor decision that would invalidate the right of Tennessee voters to define marriage as one man and one woman or require the state to recognize a same-sex ceremony performed in another state."

The Tennessee case involved two gay men who 'married' in Iowa four years ago and now wish to force Tennessee to grant them a divorce. But Judge Simmons wrote in his ruling, "neither the Federal Government nor another state should be allowed to dictate to Tennessee what has traditionally been a state's responsibility."

A number of federal judges in recent months have misinterpreted the US Supreme Court's ruling in the Windsor case, which held that a section of DOMA was unconstitutional because it interfered with the right of New York to redefine marriage. The Court's majority held that regulating marriage has historically been a responsibility of the states and the federal government cannot substitute its judgment for that of the states.

"This important decision has largely been ignored in the media because it undercuts the narrative that same-sex marriage is inevitable. But it isn't," said Brown. "NOM is confident that when this issue reaches the US Supreme Court, likely within a few months, that the constitutionality of marriage amendments and statutes defining marriage as one man and one woman will be upheld."

###

To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray, [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

Tell Them Enough is Enough

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

I wrote you recently about the newly introduced Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act [S. 2706, H.R. 5258], that aims to protect child welfare providers—including private and faith-based adoption and foster care agencies—from discrimination so that they may continue providing valuable services to families and children.

If you haven't contacted Congress about this legislation yet, please do so today. Click here to express your support for this Act and to urge your Representative and Senators to support it as well.

Believing that kids need both a mom and a dad ought not to disqualify service providers from doing their great work. We cannot allow people to be penalized simply for holding to the common sense principle that children do best when raised by both a loving mother and father.

Shutting down agencies that provide for the needs of kids simply to advance a radical agenda is dirty politics at its very dirtiest, and we need this law to say enough is enough.

So please take action right now to urge your elected officials to support the important Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act. Congress must uphold and defend the rights of religious child welfare service providers and not to allow them to be forced from the public square.

And, please, after you've taken action today, forward this message to your friends and family members using the buttons below and encourage them to do likewise.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
President
National Organization for Marriage

Brian Brown

Brian Brown on FoxNews Special Report

NOM's President Brian Brown was featured in a segment of FoxNews' Special Report, saying that the right of the people of individual states "to vote on key issues and resolve them for themselves" is likely to be upheld by the Supreme Court when they take up the issue of marriage again.

Watch the clip here:


The Results Are In

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

The results of the survey are in... and they aren't very pleasant.

I'm talking about University of Texas Professor Mark Regnerus' new study on attitudes about sexual morality.

In it, he analyzes sexual and relational attitudes of Christians and non-Christians who support—or who oppose—same-sex marriage. And what he finds is both incredibly significant and extremely disturbing. I'd encourage you to read the article linked above and review its findings here:

Activists trying to force a redefinition of marriage on America have constantly evaded the question, "what is marriage?" Meanwhile, they have insisted that gays and lesbians simply want access to the same sacred institution of marriage and that they don't intend to change anything about that institution.

But the survey responses from gay men and lesbians themselves don't support these claims.

The institution envisioned by those who want to redefine marriage isn't faithful... it isn't exclusive... it isn't permanent... put bluntly, it isn't marriage.

We must stand up for the truth about marriage—now more than ever—before it is "redefined" out of existence!

Won't you please consider making a financial investment in the National Organization for Marriage to help us defend marriage and the faith communities that sustain it?

The report documents that gays and lesbians have a very different view of the core values of marriage that we hold, and that have been at the heart of biblical marriage since the beginning. For example, over 80% of non-Christian gays and lesbians believe no strings attached sex is OK. Nearly 80% of them say viewing pornography is OK. Three-quarters say pre-marital cohabitation is a good idea. And an astonishing 37% say that marital infidelity is sometimes a good thing.

Of perhaps greater concern is the increasing acceptance of redefining marriage within Christian churches. This is especially concerning because, while the study doesn't make note of this fact, we know that membership in many mainline churches is already rapidly on the decline.

This study should sound an alarm and serve as a wake-up call to those who want to remain silent in the face of the movement to redefine marriage, because that movement seems to correlate with a push to abandon traditional sexual morality altogether.

Not only is the attitude of going-along-to-get-along deeply out of keeping with the witness of scripture; it is also sacrificing the credibility and vitality of the church in America.

As the study shows, Christians who support redefining marriage are:

  • more than seven times as likely (as Christians who don't support redefining marriage) to think pornography is OK;
  • three times as likely to think cohabiting as a good idea;
  • six times likely to say "no-strings-attached sex" is OK;
  • five times likely to be permissive of adultery;
  • six times as likely to favor abortion rights; and
  • incredibly, thirteen times as likely to have no issue with polyamorous relationships!

In many of these opinions, Christians who support redefining marriage are actually more sexually permissive than the general population! And it is to be greatly feared that this trend will only continue the more mainstreamed acceptance of same-sex marriage becomes.

We have a chance to stop the spread of this terrible social experiment in our churches and our society, but we must stand up and act before it's too late.

Won't you please join us in this fight by clicking here and making a generous donation of $35, $50, $100, $500 or more today to help NOM defend marriage and the faith communities that sustain it?

Thank you so much for all you do to defend God's truth about marriage.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
President
National Organization for Marriage

Brian Brown

PS: The new research done by Professor Regnerus is a call to action. It's not too late to save our churches and our society from the radical social experiment of redefining marriage. But we have to act now. Won't you please click here to make a generous donation to support the work the National Organization for Marriage is doing throughout the country to defend marriage and the faith communities that sustain it?

Bishop Rozanski: "Family" is "the Basis of Society"

Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski, former auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, will be installed tomorrow as the ninth bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield.  A Western Massachusetts news site posted a curiously-written article about the new bishop, a vocal marriage supporter.

Mitchell T. RozanskiThe article wasted no time in criticizing the sex abuse scandals of the 1990s and then went on to imply that Pope Francis somehow holds a different view on marriage than the official position of the Catholic Church:

Last September, Francis, in an interview, said abortion, contraception and gay marriage had become an "obsessed" focus in the Church. Last July, he also said, “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge."

However, Church teaching that married love is between a man and a woman, for the purpose of reproduction, as ordered by nature, that itself was ordered by God, is not likely to be modified, no matter the pastoral approach to it.

Notice how the article implies that Pope Francis's comments signify a break in Church teaching.

In reality, Pope Francis's "who am I to judge" comment was a continuation of what the Catholic Church has always taught--that those who are attracted to the same sex are called to chastity and should not be subjected to unjust discrimination.  Also notice how the article omitted the portion of the pope's quote denouncing the formation of a "gay lobby."  To include that would be an admission that Pope Francis isn't the radical doctrine reformer many want him to be (so would including anything about Pope Francis's opposition to redefining marriage when he was Cardinal Bergoglio).

The article did, however, include very wonderful comments from Bishop Rozanski on the importance of family - although it was evident that the author of the piece did not take kindly to these observations:

What we offer as Catholics is to strengthen the family as the basis of society. When there is a solid family life, there is less likelihood of crime, there is less likelihood of drug use. The children grow up with a solid foundation. And that is a foundation they can take all through their lives.  And, as a Church, what we are saying is that God made us male and female, and that the institution of marriage is so crucial. It is a sacrament of the Church, if the sacrament is well lived, then the children and future generations will benefit.

Bishop Rozanski is absolutely correct.  When children grow up with a married mother and father, they are much less likely to experience poverty, juvenile delinquency, or drop out of school.

The bishop's defense of marriage is rooted in love for all members of the human family and concern for the welfare of children and society as a whole.  His charitable, truthful comments about the family as the basis of society should inspire Catholics and non-Catholics alike, even if they do upset liberals in the media and those who wish to turn Church against itself by unfairly twisting the words of the Pope and other leaders.

Case Closed? Not Even Close!

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

Emboldened by a spate of radical judicial rulings handing them untimely victories through ill-reasoned decisions, same-sex marriage activists—both here in the U.S. and abroad—have been increasingly trotting out their tired old narrative of "inevitability."

The media and the leaders of the same-sex marriage movement have been so relentless and so consistent in propagating this idea that you probably know it well enough by now to repeat each talking point word-for-word: so-called (and falsely named) 'marriage equality' is a foregone conclusion, we're told, and will soon be the law of the entire realm.

But taking one's view of the marriage debate in America from this narrative is a very narrow-sighted way of looking at things. It is not even like listening to the partisan play-by-play commentary of the home team's radio announcer; it is more like asking the captain of the cheerleading squad at halftime who is going to win.

Of course those who cheer for the goal of marriage redefinition are going to say that the case is closed, that it is inevitable that their agenda will win out in the end: what else would we expect? So in order to gain a better perspective, it is more important for us to take note not of what they are saying, but rather what they aren't saying. Because their silence can speak volumes.

The Biggest News That Wasn't News

"European Court Says No Right to Same-Sex Marriage."

That was the headline from Breitbart News on July 25th. But apart from this, the story of this monumental ruling received little to no media attention. The mainstream media, having long joined the cheerleading squad of the same-sex marriage movement, took their typical approach to stories combatting the narrative: silence.

Sure, it might have gotten some coverage: deep in a webpage side-bar, or buried on page A-17 of a print edition. But we've known for a long time about the media bias on this issue: one study showed that pro-SSM statements are reported in the press at a ratio of 5-to-1 compared with statements supporting true marriage.

Therefore, considering the complicity of the media in the cause to radically redefine marriage and family, we shouldn't take the by-the-way coverage of this case as a sign of the story's unimportance, but of its importance. They don't want you to know about this!

Joseph La Rue, writing at the Alliance Defending Freedom blog, gives a fair summary of the ruling and its importance:

As the debate over the definition of marriage rages across the states, the European Court of Human Rights (kind of like a "Supreme Court of Europe") has decided that the European Convention on Human Rights (kind of like our Constitution) does not require that nations recognize same-sex marriage [emphasis in original].

La Rue notes: "This is a monumental decision, and could have a major impact as our Supreme Court is expected to take up a marriage case in the coming term" [emphasis added].

He explains that the U.S. Supreme Court—including Justice Anthony Kenney—has looked to and cited the European Court on Human Rights in previous decisions.

La Rue gives this explanation of the present decision [emphases in original]:

The Court held by a 14-3 vote that the European Convention on Human Rights does not require countries to recognize same-sex marriages.

[...]

One reason the European Court said it reached its decision had to do with the fact that there was no 'European consensus' regarding same-sex marriage. Ten countries recognize it; 37 do not. The Court concluded that it would be better to let the debate continue than to impose a 'one size fits all' solution on all 47 countries in Europe.

Truly, as La Rue notes, it is not surprising that "this ground-breaking decision from Europe has escaped the notice of the mainstream media." But I'd say, rather, that it didn't escape their notice so much as they chose deliberately not to make note of it.

La Rue explains the potential importance of this European case for the United States this way:

[T]his decision supports our argument that same-sex marriage is not a fundamental right. It would therefore be good for our courts to do as the European Court did. Our courts should let the debate continue, and not try to impose a fifty-state solution on the American people.

Of course, our opponents will observe that our courts have shown themselves unwilling to do just that, to let the debate continue. In decision after decision, the trend has been to shut down that debate and impose a radical new orthodoxy from the bench, side-stepping the democratic and legislative processes.

But what our opponents won't make a point of saying is that this trend might be careening toward "a roadblock" and a sudden putting on of the brakes.

Far From "Case Closed"

On Wednesday, a three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments in cases challenging the legal definition of marriage in four states: Ohio, Michigan, Tennessee, and Kentucky.

It was impossible for the major media outlets to ignore such a widely-impacting story. Thus, the news was picked up, among other places, in The Washington Post and The New York Times.

I will get to what they said in a moment. I want to make note first of all of what they did NOT say.

The major stories on these historic hearings did not point out some of the essential facts that I observed on Wednesday in a statement:

  • While they are not physically present in the courtroom in Cincinnati, the votes of 8.7 million citizens are at stake in this hearing.
  • Voters passed marriage amendments by overwhelming margins in these four states — nearly 8.7 million votes were cast in support of these four amendments, amounting to a combined 65% of the vote cast.

No, you won't find these wholly relevant facts in the articles from the Post and the Times. Both articles do, on the other hand, take great pains to mention the "legal landscape of the last year, in which more than two dozen lower courts and two appeals courts have ruled that gay couples have a right to marry" [SOURCE].

Both articles also trouble to focus on the "caustic questions" from the lone Clinton appointee on the panel, Judge Martha Craig Daughtrey—questions which, the New York Times says "left no doubt where she stood." (It's good to see the matter was not pre-judged or anything!)

But for all their efforts, neither of the reporters for these complicit media engines could evade the major fact about Wednesday's hearings: the case is far from closed... at least with respect to the other two judges on the panel.

The Washington Post journalist was forced to admit what seemed to be the reaction of everyone in the courtroom: "It became clear after three hours of arguments that the panel could become the first roadblock for proponents of same-sex marriage" [emphasis added].

A decision at the Circuit level favoring the right (explicitly upheld in last year's Windsor decision) of states' to define marriage would be a hugely important moment in this debate.

Our opponents have put everything they've got into these court cases, and have derailed every attempt to allow voters to have a say in the matter, because they know that they've run out of places where they can even squeak out a narrow win.

In any event, the 6th Circuit looks poised to deliver a decisive blow to the "inevitability" narrative. Even if the decision doesn't go that way, we can expect a very vigorous and important dissent. And either outcome is important, because the Supreme Court is certain to be weighing in on this matter again, and this decision could be the impetus for that eventuality being sooner rather than later.

"Both Sides Agree" — Not Everyday That Happens!

Yesterday's big headline in marriage news was from The New York Times, and the headline says it all: "Both Sides in Gay Marriage Fight in Utah Agree: Supreme Court Should Hear Case."

We at NOM have been saying that the Supreme Court should, and most certainly will, be taking up this issue in the near future, and have also noted that the Utah case seems one of the best candidates for really testing all of the parameters of the issue.

This week, as the Times explains:

Lawyers for three couples challenging Utah's ban on same-sex marriage said Thursday that they would join with their opponents to urge the Supreme Court to hear their case, even though they recently won an appeals court ruling striking down the law. [...] The unusual move could hasten a final ruling from the Supreme Court on same-sex marriage.

It isn't everyday that "both sides agree" in any legal question connected with this issue, so it is safe to say that this is an important moment in the progress of the debate.

Marriage Supporter, this matter will return before the Supreme Court—that is certain. What remains uncertain is how the Court will vote. It is obvious from the Utah plaintiffs' actions this week that they hope for a victory there. But I think we have reason to hope.

I hope that the 6th Circuit ruling comes down in favor of the millions of voters in the four states who argued their cases this week. I hope that the wisdom of the European Court of Human Rights last month be noted and respected by our own highest court's justices.

But most of all, I hope that ordinary citizens like you continue to stand up and to speak out bravely on marriage. The other side keeps claiming "inevitability" and a certain outcome. We need to show the Justices of the Supreme Court, between now and the time that they reconsider this issue, that the American people still stand divided on the issue of marriage!

Write letters to the editor.

Stage rallies in your hometown or state capitol.

Hold the gay lobby's corporate cronies accountable—(have you joined our Target boycott yet?).

Sign petitions.

Donate to defend marriage.

Get out and vote.

Pray.

Don't buy the hype of "inevitability" from the other side. Don't feel like the Supreme Court is beyond your power to influence. Each of us can do our part to show that marriage still enjoys deep and wide support throughout our land.

Let's show the American people and the Justices on the bench that there's still a debate to be had on this matter, and hopefully they will come down in favor of letting that debate continue.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
President
National Organization for Marriage

Brian Brown


ICYMI: Slovakia Amends Constitution to Protect Marriage

SlovakiaThe Slovakia National Council voted June 4 to define marriage as the unique bond between one man and one woman in its Constitution. The amendment states, "it will be impossible for the rights and duties associated with marriage to be conferred in any way other than a legally recognised union between a man and a woman."

One hundred and two lawmakers supported the marriage amendment and 18 voted against it.

This should put to rest some of the silly claims that we've lost the marriage fight in the United States and abroad.  Slovakia's newest Constitutional amendment is evidence of the support that marriage enjoys.

Croatian voters similarly protected the definition of marriage back in 2013.

Who's Targeting Whom?

National Organization for Marriage

Dear Marriage Supporter,

On Tuesday, the retail giant Target signed on to an amicus brief for the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in two pending cases challenging the definition of marriage in Indiana and Wisconsin.

Target joins with a number of other companies in signing the brief, including the Starbucks Coffee Company. But it is the spirit behind the brief, and its language, which are most noteworthy.

The brief uses extremely charged language to refer to laws defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman. It calls them "the states' bans [on same-sex marriage]" and, even more radically, "marriage discrimination" laws!

Without providing any rationale at all, the brief states bluntly that "Same-sex couples should have the same right to marry as opposite-sex couples," and refers to Indiana and Wisconsin's traditional marriage laws as "an unproductive, inequitable, and unjust status quo."

Perhaps most ridiculously, the brief—while touting the benefits of pro-LGBT businesses—presents the claim that "corporate cultures that don't encourage openness and inclusiveness leave employees feeling isolated and fearful."

Well, tell that to the employees at Chase bank.

There, employees were recently asked on a survey to identify whether they were members or "allies" of the LGBT community. The spirit of "openness and inclusiveness" behind that question worked to the opposite effect from what this brief suggests.

It was this radical and intrusive question precisely that left some employees "feeling isolated and fearful." As one of them put it, "The worry among many of us is that those who didn't select that poorly placed, irrelevant option will be placed on the ‘you can fire these people first' list."

Target and other companies need to be forced to realize that it is their alignment with the radical cause of redefining marriage that is "bad for business"—not states' marriage laws that uphold and protect the common-sense idea that kids do best with a mom and a dad!

So I'm announcing a new boycott today, against Target, for insulting consumers like you and me. The brief they signed in court this week insinuates that people like you and me, who would vote to uphold traditional marriage, as akin to segregationists and racial bigots. Would you want to shop at a place that viewed you in that way?

I'm not exaggerating. Take a look at this description, from the brief, of the marriage laws in Wisconsin and Indiana:

[A law that defines marriage as the union of a man and a woman] requires that… we single out colleagues with same-sex partners and treat them as a separate and unequal class as compared to employees with heterosexual partners.

Target also complains that such a law "upsets our business philosophy and prevents [us] from reaching our full economic potential because it dissuades employees from living and working in the jurisdictions where we do, or want to do, business."

Really? I know that you, like me, don't see things this way. We'd most like to live in a land where the true and noble good of marriage is upheld and protected in law as an institution about the welfare and rights of children rather than about the capricious desires of adults.

And we'd like to live in a land where laws are determined by the people or their elected representatives, not corporate titans or unelected judges - a land where the votes of over 50 million people cast in free and fair elections across this nation are respected rather than ridiculed.

Join me in telling Target today that they are out of touch with consumers and they have insulted the millions of Americans who have voted to uphold marriage as the union of a man and a woman—tell them how much we resent being fashioned "bigots" and "haters" for doing so!

It is ironic to see Target climbing fully on board with this radical political agenda in the 7th Circuit case. In the nearby 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Target is involved in its own legal matters for a data breach that exposed over 100 million customers to financial threat.

I think Target would be better served if it got its priorities in order. Wouldn't it be better for them to worry about protecting the personal information customers entrust to them, than to be issuing insulting and judgmental statements about beliefs deeply held by millions of their customers regarding the nature of marriage and family?

Click here to pledge to take your business elsewhere. Target and its peers in the corporate world need to realize that the countless Americans who believe in marriage as the union of a man and a woman will not stand for being insulted and demeaned.

The rash of corporate meddling in the politics of marriage and family will only continue if we do not stand up and say enough is enough. Please join me in this boycott today, and please forward this message to your family and friends urging them to do the same.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

Brian S. Brown
President
National Organization for Marriage

Brian Brown