My Dear Friends,
The Democrats' leaders are downplaying the likelihood that repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act will pass the Senate. You know what DOMA is: the sole federal law protecting marriage as the union of a man and a woman.
Last week the Judiciary Committee approved the repeal on a party-line vote.
They now say they do not have the votes to pass it. Wow—that is quite an admission after claiming that the majority of people support it!
We have seen this in the state legislatures before. Proponents downplay the likelihood of passage, then pass the legislation.
We sent out an action alert and thousands responded. Thank you! House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Human Rights Campaign have responded by backing down, but other major groups are still telling their advocates a vote will occur. Even if you have already responded, please send your Senator a message today saying that you support DOMA and plan to vote in 2012.
I know that if you and I and thousands of Americans act today, this bill will never come up for a vote.
That's actually unfortunate, because we would love to see Democratic Senators like Claire McCaskill of Missouri choose between the pro-gay base and the voters back home. We would welcome a vote, as a vote on gay marriage is perfect for 2012.
Right now, the Defense of Marriage Act needs defenders of its own. Send an email, make a call, and tell your friends!
We've already won one major victory: The California Supreme Court has just ruled that backers of Proposition 8 do have standing to defend that measure in court.
Proposition 8 overturned a ruling by that same court, which imposed gay marriage on the state. When Prop 8 passed, advocates of gay marriage went back to the courts and tried to get it struck down. One of their strategies was to claim that Prop 8's supporters had no "standing," or legal right, to defend the measure in court. The California Supreme Court, to its great credit, recognized how much power this idea would wrest from the hands of voters, and thoroughly rejected it. "Neither the governor, the attorney general, nor any other executive or legislative official has the authority to veto or invalidate an initiative measure that has been approved by the voters," the court said.
Those of us who fight for marriage often hear that we should mind our own business. How will gay marriage affect you? Well, Damian Goddard knows.
On May 9, 2011 Damian had it all: a loving wife, two small children, and a dream job he loved as a sportscaster, for the Canadian equivalent of ESPN.
What happened to him is an absolute outrage.
Watch the newest Marriage Anti-Defamation Alliance video interview and listen to Damian tell you how the same-sex marriage movement turned his life upside down.
As the battle in New York over same-sex marriage heated up, Damian wrote a note stating his views on his own personal Twitter account—to just 175 or so followers: "I completely and whole-heartedly support Todd Reynolds and his support for the traditional and TRUE meaning of marriage."
The next day he was called in by his bosses. He expected a slap on the wrist, maybe a demand he apologize—"How can I apologize for something I don't want to apologize for?" he recalls wondering to himself.
Instead he was summarily fired. "We're terminating your contract."
One of his bosses twisted the knife: "Damian, do you remember that conversation we had a while ago about the plans we had for you and these other shows at Sportsnet? Well, that's not happening now—you're fired!"
Thankfully, Damian is speaking out in defense of marriage and religious liberty. He is refusing to be silenced by the big bosses.
A decade ago, the courts imposed gay marriage where Damian lives. He remembers being asked by pro-gay marriage friends and relatives, "How will gay marriage affect your marriage?"
Well, now he knows: "Eleven years later I lost my job for saying I believe in one man and one woman marriage!"
But despite the unjust and heavy penalties he is paying for speaking up for marriage, Damian has no regrets.
"I would not change a thing. I stand by what I said," Damian says. "The words 'Be not afraid!' keep ringing in my ears—I cannot shake it. It's so strong... 'Be not afraid, be not afraid, don't worry'—so I'm not afraid."
Speak up! Be not afraid! Damian Goddard is an inspiration to us all!
And speaking of inspirations, there has been an amazing student-led revolution taking place at Yale University.
You probably didn't know that Yale has a "Sex Week," supposedly designed to help students discuss sensitive issues and real concerns, which has degenerated into a porn industry event. A fearless group of students published a critique in the Yale Daily News:
"We, as members of Undergraduates for a Better Yale College, would like to propose an alternative approach.... Simply put, we believe that the heart of the problem is the very attitude toward sexuality that prevails on campus, a paradoxical attitude that both trivializes sex and is obsessed with it. It is trivializing to treat sex as nothing more than a casual weekend pastime. It is obsessive—and pathetic—to be as consumed with sexual curiosity as our campus so frequently is.
"We believe that the hook-up culture is fertile ground for acts of sexual selfishness, insensitivity, cruelty and malice, for the simple reason that selfishness provides the whole premise of that culture. The individual search for pleasure is all. Other human beings exist as fellow-seekers and potential outlets for our desires. Rarely is it acknowledged that the human person is intrinsically deserving of respect—respect that demands we never use one another as objects, not even with consent. In such a climate of self-indulgence, is it any wonder that the worst aspects of our nature come to the fore? A culture of promiscuity has no right to be surprised by objectification, sexual disrespect and all that comes along with them."
As part of an investigation into Yale's sexual climate, former Massachusetts Chief Justice Margaret Marshall—yes, the same Margaret Marshall who supported gay marriage—recommended that the University discontinue "Sex Week":
"We heard over and over from students, faculty, and students that 'Sex Week at Yale,' a student-sponsored event, is highly problematic... in recent years it has prominently featured titillating displays, 'adult' film stars, and commercial sponsors of such material. We recommend that 'Sex Week at Yale' be prohibited from using Yale's name and any Yale facilities."
This week, Yale President Richard Levin agreed.
Bravo to Undergraduates for a Better Yale College for refusing to accept the normalization of sexual degradation. They spoke up, and caused positive change. The times, I'm telling you, they are a-changing.
As I write this I am on a plane winging my way to the great state of Iowa, where the Family Leader is hosting the 2012 Thanksgiving forum of the Republican presidential candidates. NOM and CitizenLink are co-sponsors of the event. You can watch at home on our live stream, from 4 to 6 pm Saturday! Frank Luntz will moderate what's sure to be an illuminating discussion.
This is our chance to talk about the issues which matter the most, with the men and women who seek to be the next leader of our nation.
Brian S. Brown
National Organization for Marriage
P.S. Will you stand with us to defend marriage today? Whether you can give $15 or $150, your donations to NOM help to build the future—by protecting the truth about marriage for your children, your grandchildren, and this great country.