Derek McCoy in The Afro:
As executive director of the Maryland Marriage Alliance, I am compelled to address Julian Bond’s recent opinion editorial featured in The Afro on Sept. 5.
I have a great deal of respect for Mr. Bond. He holds an honored place in the Civil Rights movement. In his role as chairman emeritus of the NAACP, he continues to speak out with passion and conviction on issues of civil rights. However, by equating the same-sex marriage movement to the civil rights movement, Mr. Bond is simply wrong.
During the civil rights movement, thousands of Americans, both black and white, were literally being murdered in the struggle to give African Americans basic freedoms. What were those freedoms? They were fighting for access to education, access to health care, access to jobs, access to decent housing. They were literally fighting for the freedom to be able to move around in their own country.
Gays and lesbians who want to redefine marriage have no such struggle. They are protesting because they are not able to call a relationship what it is not.
... Our work across the state shows that Marylanders do not believe that the definition of marriage should change. Even after the
president and the NAACP threw their weight behind same-sex marriage, our alliance garnered over 200,000 signatures for a petition to protect the definition of marriage. This number was more than three times the number required, so many that the Maryland State Board of Elections stopped counting.