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Anti-Gay Billboard Ad On Telegraph

By |2015-05-08T09:00:00-04:00May 8th, 2015|Michigan, News|


DEARBORN HEIGHTS – A coalition of anti-LGBT organizations has launched a controversial advertising campaign that is hitting a little too close to home for LGBT and allied metro Detroiters.
On the east side of Telegraph between Warren and Ford Road is a billboard, sponsored by, that reads, “Homosexuality is a choice. Not a civil right,” and lists two Bible verses: Genesis 2:24 and Matthew 19:5. Three anti-LGBT images circulate on the electronic billboard along with three PHR Laser Hair Removal ads and an advertisement for a local law office.
“As someone born both black and gay, I can say that I am not ashamed of being either, and that neither was a choice,” stated Affirmations’ Executive Director, Darrious D. Hilmon. “When a group of people are denied fundamental human rights for any reason, it is very much an issue of civil rights.”
While none of these organizations are located in Michigan, one supporter from the coalition was recently seen on the Lansing capitol steps during a rally the day before the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments over the constitutionality of marriage equality bans. A banner identical to the ad over Telegraph was present.
Anti-LGBT groups have been popping up across the country in response to sweeping support for LGBT Americans. According to the Williams Institute in California, support for marriage equality has grown immensely in all 50 states since 2004, especially in states that have legalized same-sex marriage. Recent polling from the Institute finds that a majority of Americans, 63 percent, support marriage equality and the equal rights for all Americans.
“To have open and honest dialogue, it is important to get the facts right. The fact is that a majority of Michiganders support marriage equality. The fact is that people are not choosing to be LGBTQ. The fact is that LGBTQ families in Michigan should have the freedom to marry who they love. Equality Michigan is confident the Supreme Court will recognize these facts and continue to stand by their position that marriage is a fundamental right that provides stability and emotional support to loving and committed couples,” said Sommer Foster, director of political advocacy at Equality Michigan.
In response to the billboard, local man Ferman Smith has launched a GoFundMe campaign titled “Stand Up Against RestrainTheJudges.” In less than 24 hours the campaign had gathered nearly $1,500 towards purchasing space on the same billboard to “show everyone that we are all equal and are not separable due to our ethnicity or sexual orientation, but that we are all human and seek equal treatment for everyone in our land,” Smith wrote on the campaign page. Supporters are using #thiswontstand on Facebook and Twitter. Check out the GoFundMe here.
The group,, is a coalition of anti-LGBT organizations from across the country that are seeking to inform and mobilize Americans that stand against marriage equality and LGBT rights. Coalition members include: Americans For Truth About Homosexuality,, Vision America Action, Judicial Action Group, Defend the Family, BarbWire with Matt Barber, The American Family Association of Pennsylvania, Conservative Republicans of Texas, Campaign for Texas Families, Liberty Alliance, Dr. Hotze – the Prescription for America and CMP.
On the national level, the group is calling for a recusal of U.S.Supreme Court Justices Ginsburg and Kagan and is seeking to remove any powers of implementation the high court has over American policy. The coalition is currently hosting a service where interested parties can pay to send a “Restraining Order” to SCOTUS. The restraining order directly reads: “We the people of the United States affirm our right to self-governance and hereby issue a restraining order to the United States Supreme Court and all Federal Courts who attempt to usurp the following: 1. The sovereign vote of the American people 2. Our State Constitutions 3. The sacred institution of marriage between one man and one woman and 4. Our Constitutionally protected First Amendment Rights.”
The order continues to claim that SCOTUS has assaulted the constitutionally protected First Amendment rights of pastors, churches, businesses and facility owners, employees, public officials, organizations, ministries and citizens and demands a “cease and desist from undermining the will of the American people.”
Joining in support are Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. King introduced HB 1968, titled “Restrain The Judges on Marriage Act” which is seeking to remove jurisdiction from federal courts and remove appellate court jurisdiction from the U.S. Supreme Court before the nine justices can issue a ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, the same-sex marriage case currently being decided by the Supreme Court. Respectively in his branch of government, Cruz introduced Senate Bill 1080, the “Protect Marriage From The Courts Act,” which aims to restrain the judges in an attempt to maintain that the “sacred right of marriage” stays between one man and one woman. recently reported that billboards such as this one are to be installed and shown in Flint, Grand Rapids and Lansing in upcoming months.

About the Author:

Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.
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