The Big Commit: Gays Win Equality Forever With Activists and Adorable Children

THE BIG COMMIT:

So the National Organization for Marriage has had this Summer of Marriage tour happening for a while now, which is like the Summer of Love except the exact opposite. You haven’t heard much about it here because it’s been pretty underwhelming as far as orgiastic displays of hatred and willful ignorance go; counterprotestors have outnumbered attendees at almost every event. The finale of their tour was no exception: in Washington DC an incredible coalition of gay groups organized a counter-protest so large and complex that it completely outstripped the original NOM event it was supposed to be in response to, and pretty much turned into a carnival of activism and love all on its own, with some weird bigoted people standing confused and upset on the sidewalk. Sorry, haters, but this is how we roll. There were so many gay organizations there that it is honestly hard to keep track of them, but we have definite attendance records for GetEQUAL, Full Equality Now, the Courage Campaign, Freedom to Marry, Queer Rising, and best of all WILL MOTHERF*CKING PHILLIPS, the ten-year-old who wouldn’t say the pledge of allegiance because America doesn’t care about gay people. (@pamshouseblend) (@queerty)

Activists from Queer Rising also participated in a Die-In, an activity the specifics of which I am unclear on but is probably very effective in changing hearts and minds, and also went to the White House to demonstrate against hate crimes and hate speech. Pam’s House Blend sums the day up like so: “Despite using different tactics, we all spoke loudly and clearly in support of equality; we all won today.” Yeah, that’s right, WE WON ACTIVISM. Also, despite the fact that this was the last and theoretically biggest stop on the “tour,” Maggie Gallagher didn’t even bother to show up. Metro Weekly reports: “When asked by Metro Weekly about Gallagher’s absence, Brian Brown, president of NOM, said Gallagher was initially listed as one of the speakers, but there was a conflict in her schedule. “She’s on vacation,” Brown said, adding that he did not know where Gallagher was taking her vacation. ” (@metroweekly)

And here is your Will Phillips moment of Zen. OMFGSOCUTEYOU’REWELCOME.


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Rachel

Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1142 articles for us.

7 Comments

  1. NOM came to my city (Madison, WI) this summer and I attended the counter protest, which was just under 500 people. This number of people at a protest is quite large for Madison, a small city even when the State University students are in town and most were not at this time. One can only imagine how much bigger it would have been had they chosen to enter our city mid-semester.

    During the counter protest we offered to give their small hate-filled crowd hugs, which some accepted. One woman was yelling and pointing at my friend and I, waving her anti-gay marriage sign at us, but our counter-protest chants were so loud we could not hear her, which was clearly for the best.

    The general feeling I came away with from the protest was good; I felt like Madison’s somewhat dispersed and small queer community really made an effort to come together and support each other. The one thing that brought me down was seeing the children and teenagers toted along to the NOM rally by their parents. I couldn’t help but be sad for them because they have to grow up around so much hate.

    Additionally, the news coverage by our local NBC station was interesting (not really in a good way). NOM organizers claimed in the NBC interview that because our large 500 person crowd was so loud (we did not have a PA system, however) and the NOM people’s PA system could not compete with our chants of “you need a hug, a big gay hug!”, that we were infringing upon their right to free speech. NBC did not air any response to this claim on TV which is unfortunate because this is a ridiculous misinterpretation of rights; the freedom of speech does not guarantee you to quiet listeners or guarantee the response a person wants. NOM did have a chance to speak in Madison, however 500 people also exercised their right to free speech and those people happened to be louder.

  2. ACT UP did a lot of die-in demonstrations in their prime.

    this is from the ACT UP/New York site:

    A die-in is when protesters lie down on the ground to represent the thousands who have died or are being killed by the policies and neglect of the government or your target. Often people chant (“How many more have to die,” “We die, they do nothing,” etc.). Sometimes protesters carry cardboard tombstones with names or slogans, creating an instant AIDS cemetery, and others times the “dead” bodies are outlined in chalk with massages written in.

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