Monday, September 27, 2010

"National Organization for Marriage" and "New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms" ramping up efforts in New York State

Two anti-LGBT extremist groups are ramping up their efforts to demonize our community and prevent loving, same-sex couples from ever getting married in our state. Will you help us hold our ground and elect pro-LGBT candidates in November?

"New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms" (NYCF) is back at it. The out-of-touch, right wing Albany lobby that even fought against the widely-supported Dignity for All Students Act to prevent bullying and discrimination in public schools, is organizing a fundraising tour, going around the state spreading lies about LGBT New Yorkers and our families. The DC-based group National Organization for Marriage (NOM) organized their own smear tour last summer, including a poorly-attended rally in Albany.

NOM is now back in our state, and their latest tactic has dire implications that go far beyond our movement. Last week they filed a lawsuit bringing a constitutional challenge to New York's democratically approved campaign finance laws. They are seeking to draw from a network of anonymous anti-marriage donors from across the country to spend vast resources infusing our elections with the politics of division, all without any public accountability whatsoever.

The people of New York deserve to know who is influencing our elections and why. Groups like NOM have no right to come to New York and try to covertly undermine our elections while the Pride Agenda and everyday New Yorkers follow our state's duly-established laws.

This lawsuit — and lawsuits we've seen like it across the nation — have sweeping implications for democracy and election transparency. We've seen the right wing try to hide the identities of people who petitioned to put a domestic partnership ban on the ballot in Washington State, and hide the identities of donors to the marriage bans in California and Maine.

The anti-LGBT industry is trying to cast themselves as the victim again, but LGBT people have been demonized by these people for too long to let our neighbors be fooled. We carry out our campaign in the light of day, while they work in the shadows, hiding their donors and spreading misinformation. In the end, we can prevail on election day, but only with your help.

Please make a donation to our Political Action Committee, to help our allies who voted for marriage and support transgender non-discrimination. We need to make sure these pro-fairness candidates have the resources they need to counter the misinformation used against them by groups who have no interest in playing by the rules.

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