With Brian Brown at the helm, the crowd of pro-marriage supporters who gathered on the steps of the state capitol in Madison, Wisconsin felt immediately at ease.
“We respond to intolerance and to incivility with love,” he told the pro-marriage crowd. Bishop Morlino who spoke echoed that message. He called for two Our Fathers, one for all the good folks in Wisconsin who know that marriage is a man and a woman, and one for those who disagree with us, that they will come to know the truth. He emphasized that there is no place in our movement for hatred of gay people, who have the right to be protected from unjust discrimination.
In a rare joint appearance, Maggie Gallagher told the crowd that our mission doesn’t end with winning this fight against gay marriage. Far more important is what we are for: building a civilization of love in which each year more and more children are born to and protected by their own mom and dad united by a loving marriage.
The intrepid Julaine Appling of the Wisconsin Family Institute—who fought the good fight for the Wisconsin marriage amendment that was approved by 59 percent of the people of Wisconsin in 2006, pointed out that the way the world works in Madison (with moral zealots shouting down their opponents) was not the whole world. “Marriage is under attack,” she said, “And the Wisconsin Family Institute is going to keep up the fight.”
Pastor Ron Dobie of Christ the King Community Church echoed Maggie’s sentiment: In protecting marriage we need to build marriages ourselves that shine like a beacon of light to the world. Both believers and non-believers get married, and all those marriages matter, he reminded us, but those of us who believe in Christ have a special obligation to show—through our own families’ lives—that love can be real, that marriage can incarnate love. For this good, we will fight.
State Senator Glenn Grothman provocatively told the crowd the reason the protestors try to shout us down is they know, deep in their hearsts, we are speaking the truth in love.
A number of people came up after the rally, telling us that the Madison cops (God bless ‘em), in their zeal to keep the counter-protestors out, were preventing them from joining NOM’s rally.
“Do not be afraid” was the theme, in the end truth and love will prevail.