Compiled by Howard Israel
“Mormons have 10 wives. I can’t have one?”
– on a protest sign held by Valerie Davidson outside the Mormon temple in Los Angeles, where more than 2,000 other gay-rights advocates protested the role of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for encouraging Mormons to funnel a purported nine millions of dollars into support for Proposition 8, Associated Press, Nov. 7.
“The most important message, as painful as it is, is this is not the last word, even in California. The issue of fairness made solid progress in nearly every demographic relative to the first vote on this issue (in California) in 2000, and thousands and thousands of straight allies put their hearts into our cause this year. This is our era and we should not sit this out.”
– Evan Wolfson, Executive Director of Freedom, commenting after the election on making progress despite the losses in LGBT marriage rights and adoption rights, as quoted in a commentary tiled “Two Contradictory Emotions,” http://www.gaycitynews.com, Nov. 6.
“Even as the nation shattered one barrier of intolerance, we were disappointed that voters in four states chose to reinforce another. Ballot measures were approved in Arkansas, Arizona, Florida and California that discriminate against couples of the same sex. We do not view these results as reason for despair. Struggles over civil rights never follow a straight trajectory, and the ugly outcome of these ballot fights should not obscure the building momentum for full equality for gay people, including acceptance of marriage between gay men and women. But the votes remind us of how much remains to be done before this bigotry is finally erased.”
– New York Times editorial titled “Equality’s Winding Path,” Nov. 6.
“Change that matters is never smooth or easy. It will be important to go over the campaign carefully and learn from our mistakes. But we need to resist the temptation to blame ourselves for the loss. The perfect campaign hasn’t been run anywhere yet. Thousands of very good people worked their hearts out on this, and they deserve our thanks. The victims of an injustice should never be blamed for failing to end it unless they don’t try. And you can’t say that we didn’t try, and try damn hard. We didn’t lose by much. Eight years ago, on virtually the same question, we could only get 39 percent. On Tuesday, we got over 48. While our opponents may be celebrating now, the handwriting is on the wall. They won’t be able to hold on much longer. We’ll be back in California. And we’ll win. You can depend on it.”
– Matt Coles, National Director, ACLU LGBT & AIDS Project, commenting on the loss of Prop 8 in CA, in an ACLU LGBT & AIDS Project e-mail, Nov. 6.
“No one’s religious beliefs should be used to deny fundamental rights to others. Our civil rights are inalienable. It is a travesty that the Mormon Church bought this election and used a campaign of lies and deception to manipulate voters in the great state of California. Today we will send a message to Mormon Church President Thomas Monson that we will not tolerate being stripped of our equal rights in the name of religious bigotry. They’re entitled to their beliefs, but not to impose them upon the constitution or laws of California.”
– Lorri L. Jean, L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center CEO, at a news conference in L.A., announcing a new online initiative site launched to help overturn Prop. 8 and send a message to Mormon Church leaders who supported it, see the site at http://www.InvalidateProp8.org, Nov. 6.
“Symbolism matters to disenfranchised people in a way that is hard to explain to those of us who always knew we could be anything we want to be in America. Forget president. Gay people can’t even be spouses, though Britney Spears could have her umpteenth marriage tomorrow just by stumbling into a quickie Vegas chapel. Scott Peterson has the legal right to marry on death row after murdering his wife and unborn child. No matter how undeserved, straight people never lose the right to marry; no matter how worthy, gay people cannot earn it. Except in Massachusetts and Connecticut which, bless them, seem to be sticking to their pro-gay marriage court rulings.”
– Lisa Bloom, anchor of the In Session blog, commenting about the passing of ballot measures in Florida, California and Arizona specifying that only marriage between one man and one woman will be recognized gay marriage was on those states, http://www.CNN.com, Nov. 5.
“Last night, we got a President-elect who said, in a speech kids will likely watch and be inspired by for generations, the simple phrase ‘straight and gay.’ I don’t think we would have heard quite the same vision or eloquence or – in the case of LGBT Americans specifically – inclusiveness, if the election had turned out differently. And I think the Supreme Court, which will ultimately decide so many of the issues touching on our equality, would likely be as open-minded if Barack Obama were not the one who will have the opportunity to appoint the next couple of Justices.”
– Andrew Tobias, Democratic National Committee Treasurer, leader of the DNC’s Gay and Lesbian Leadership Council, in a post-election e-mail, Nov. 5.