A march is defined as walking in a military manner with a regular measured tread, but it can also be a group of people walking together not unlike a parade designating a special occasion such as a holiday. When thousands of people are bussed to a location and given signs to carry along a predetermined route, it may give the appearance of a being a celebratory parade, but it is more likely to serve a specific purpose such as in support for a specific policy or to demand certain rights marchers feel are being abridged by the government. Usually, the purpose of a march is intuited by the title the organizers bestowed on it, and if that is the case, the march today in Washington D.C. is in support of matrimony.
It is curious why heterosexuals would organize a “March For Marriage” when there is absolutely no need to garner public support for, protest against, or demand the government to establish their right right to marry the person they love. However, when one considers the sponsors of the march and the evangelical celebrities lending their support, it is a certainty the parade is to appeal for support to restrict the rights of other Americans to marry the person they love. Such is the purpose of the National Organization for Marriage’s second March for Marriage.
Organizers claim they are marching to demonstrate that among evangelicals dripping with Old Testament hatred for gays, there is still “deep and wide support” against same-sex marriage in spite of poll after survey revealing an ever-growing majority of Americans favor marriage equality. It is just as likely that even more Americans feel it is none of their business if same-sex couples marry, but if there is one thing Americans can count on, it is that evangelicals make other Americans’ personal lives their business; especially Republican evangelicals.
Two Republicans featured as high-profile speakers are Fox News’ host and preacher Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum as well as a bevy of extreme champions in the evangelical anti-gay movement. Still, it makes no sense that NOM is touting the march (and rally) as a show of grassroots support for traditional marriage as if there is an active campaign to stamp out heterosexual couples right to marry, but there is no making sense of people driven by religious hate or the need to lie to better spread their hate.
NOM promotes the march as a grassroots movement, but if last year’s march was indicative of today’s gathering, it is an astroturf event. Last year many attendees were bussed in, free of charge, from New York City by state Senator Ruben Diaz (R) who claims to have sent 32 busloads of primarily Latinos to Washington to participate in the purely “grassroots” march and rally for marriage. This year Diaz promised to “dispatch 100 busses” from the Bronx as a result of a YouTube video promising rally attendees an all expenses paid trip to “visit the monuments in Washington and testify that Jesus heals and saves and is the king we await.” It is unclear who is funding the “all expenses paid trips,” but there is no shortage of money in the evangelical hate movement so it is anyone’s guess who is footing the bill.
The list of anti-gay hate mongers is like a who’s who in the evangelical hate ranks including America Values president Gary Bauer who condemns homosexuality as a “destructive lifestyle and a gay man, Doug Mainwaring who claims same-sex marriage is objectively evil. The Republican Heritage Foundation and Jim DeMint is well-represented by their in-house crusader for legal discrimination against the LGBT community as well as a dirty filthy preacher just back from speaking in Singapore to keep homosexuality a crime. Not to be outdone, San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone is attending despite several Bay Area religious leaders, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and 30,000 people who signed a Faithful America petition pleading with the Catholic leader to withdraw.
It is likely the National Organization for Marriage organized the March for Marriage just to give voice to anti-gay evangelicals and little else. Even NOM co-founder Maggie Gallagher and Jennifer Roback Morse have conceded that nationwide marriage equality is inevitable. Still, there are enough Republicans, wealthy religious corporations like Hobby Lobby, and signatories of the Manhattan Declaration who oppose marriage equality and gays and are willing to fund and fight for legalized discrimination against the LGBT community.
Hatred is as dangerous a contagion as extremist Christianity, and despite same-sex marriage bans being ruled unconstitutional across the nation, the National Organization for Marriage is behaving like a mortally wounded and cornered wild beast. The anti-gay, anti-marriage equality movement may be in its death throes, but it will not go away quietly as long as there are Republicans, evangelical celebrities spewing anti-gay hate, and extremist Christians funding all-expenses paid trips to Washington to march for gay hatred; because they are not marching for marriage.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.