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Houston Voice, June 10, 2005
File 008
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Houston Voice, June 10, 2005 - File 008. 2005-06-10. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. December 17, 2017. http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/2763/show/2745.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(2005-06-10). Houston Voice, June 10, 2005 - File 008. Montrose Voice. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/2763/show/2745

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Houston Voice, June 10, 2005 - File 008, 2005-06-10, Montrose Voice, University of Houston Libraries, accessed December 17, 2017, http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/2763/show/2745.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Houston Voice, June 10, 2005
Contributor
  • Crain, Chris
  • Fisher, Binnie
Publisher Window Media
Date June 10, 2005
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
  • Gay liberation movement
Place
  • Houston, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 31485329
Rights In Copyright: This item is protected by copyright. Copyright to this resource is held by the creator or current rights holder, and the resource is provided here for educational purposes. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without permission of the copyright owner. Users assume full responsibility for any infringement of copyright or related rights.
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 008
Transcript HOUSTON VOICE www.houstonvoice.com JUNE 10, 2005 I national news Marriage bill co-sponsor abstained from vote in Calif. CALIFORNIA, continued from Page 1 the same-sex Latino couples in their districts. According to Assembly member Rudy Bermudez (D-Los Angeles), the power of the Catholic Church in the Latino community was a factor in why several Latino Democratic Assembly members did not support the bill. Burmudez said that he voted for the marriage bill, though his office was visited by several religious groups that expressed opposition to the measure. Burmudez said that although he sees same-sex marriage as a civil rights issue, he is concerned about the backlash that AB 19 may provoke. "When the Latinos were pushing hard for immigrants' rights for children, the radical right came in and pushed actions that eroded affirmative action for all," Burmudez said. "The radical right, who sells bigotry and racism, they are going to attack in an initiative process. ... We are going to lose rights we shouldn't be losing." Monica Taher monitors the Spanish language media in California for its portrayal of gays as a media coordinator for the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. "The media in California has evolved," Taher said. "They have been covering the issue from a human standpoint interview ing couples about how [AB 19] would affect them. This is an obvious difference from how gay and lesbian issues were covered 10 years ago." Taher said that the Latino social conservatives, like social conservatives in general have promoted fear, ignorance and confusion with statements like, "If we let gay and lesbian people get married today, next they are going to want to marry their cats." The religious messages against samesex marriage in California are coming not so much from the church directly as from outside groups that are using religious language to urge Latinos to oppose same sex marriage, Taher said. Log Cabin blames Dems for loss The vote on AB 19 took place in the context of broader legal battles over marriage in the state. Assembly members said that their offices were besieged with calls both for and against the measure up until the moment of the final vote. Assembly member Mervyn Dymally (D- Compton), one of the co-sponsors of the bill, was absent on the day of the vote. AB 19 proponents speculated that the absence of a key supporter dissuaded a few undecided Assembly members from voting for the bill. Dymally's office did not comment on his reasons for not voting. "I think that the vote on AB19 shows that the LGBT community has a lot of work to do here in California to educate the public in general," said Jeff Bissiri, director of the Log Cabin Republicans of California, a gay GOP group. Bissiri said that the bill failed because it lacked support in the Democratic Party. "The simple math is that if Democrats want a bill to pass the Assembly it will pass." John Marble, spokesperson for the National Stonewall Democrats, a partisan gay rights group, said that the bulk of the blame should be laid at the feet of the Republicans. "There are a dozen Log Cabin Republican chapters in California, Marble said. "They failed to convince even a single Republican Assembly member to stand up for gays and their families in one of the most progressive states in the country." One reason given by those who opposed AB 19 is that the people had already spoken on the definition of marriage when they adopted Proposition 22 in 2000, which said that marriage should be between and man and a woman only. Laws adopted by voter initiatives in California cannot be changed by the Legislature. The idea that Prop 22 and AB 19 would conflict was strengthened when a judge upheld the California law expanding domestic partnership rights. In that case, conservative groups argued that California was violating Prop 22 by "creating marriage under another name" with expanded domestic partnership rights. The judge found that the law did not conflict with Prop 22, because it did not create marriage in that marriage is limited to a man and a woman in California. In reaction to the ruling that upheld the domestic partnership laws, a coalition of social conservative groups proposed a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. In California, constitutional amendments can be initiated either through the legislature or through petition. The marriage amendment failed to pass the House or Senate, and amendment proponents filed paperwork to begin a voter initiative. A constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage is expected to be on the ballot in June of 2006. Pam Chamberlain is a researcher with Political Research Associates, an independent non-profit research center that studies social conservatives. Chamberlain said that the Massachusetts case that established samesex marriage happened because the lawyers involved in the case chose a strategic time to make their arguments. "Whenever there is an attempt by a social group to advance, according to social movement theory, there is always a backlash, that is part of the process," Chamberlain said. "Abortion used to be the touchstone issue that could unite disparate segments of the right," Chamberlain said. "But it turns out now plenty of people who might have an abortion are still against same-sex marriage. Homophobic messages really resonate now." Religious groups divided Religious groups were divided over AB 19. The California Council of Churches, which represents 31 mainstream and progressive Protestant denominations, has been supportive of AB 19 and of the right of churches to support or refuse marriages. Elizabeth Sholes, communications director for the Council of Churches, said that California's domestic partnership laws established secular rights for same-sex couples and that marriage is a faith issue that should be left to individual congregations. Sholes said that the Council of Churches believes that the Bible rails against abusive relationships, not gay relationships, and that committed relationships strengthen society "Religious support for same-sex marriage has not received much media attention, Sholes said, because it makes better news when people speak with venom." Carol Hogan, communications director for the California Catholic Conference, said the attempt to pass AB 19 was a "fool's errand," because of Prop 22 and California's law against overturning voter-enacted legislation. Hogan said that the Catholic Church was not the lead organization opposing AB 19. She said the church opposes discrimination against gays and is not averse to domestic partnership benefits. Hogan said that the Catholic Church believes that the state should have a role in defining marriage. The conflict between religious and civil rights perspectives on same-sex marriage was exemplified during the Assembly vote by the struggle of Assembly member Alberto Torrico (D-Newark), a born-again Christian and civil rights lawyer. Torrico was initially among those who abstained from the vote, but after intensive consultations with religious groups and direct lobbying by a gay family from his district Torrico ended up voting for AB 19 in the final round. "Render onto Ceasar that which is Ceasar's. Render onto God that which is God's," Torrico said in explaining his vote. Ford boycott bombs By EARTHA MELZER Less than a week after the American Family Association, a Mississippi-based social conservative organization, declared a boycott of the Ford Motor Company, it called it off, saying that it would put the boycott on hold till December pending talks with the company. The boycott was started on May 31 in response to Ford's support of gay groups, advertising in gay publications, inclusive workplace policies and sponsorship of Pride festivals. According to the AFA, Ford has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to gay civil rights groups such as the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force and the International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Campaign. On a Web site created for the boycott the AFA argued that people should not buy Ford products — including Lincoln, Mercury, Mazda, Volvo, Jaguar and Land Rover — because profits from those sales would go to organizations that favor samesex marriage. The boycott suspension was declared soon after the owner of a Ford dealership in Dallas, Jerry Reynolds, was alerted to the boycott and grew concerned that it might effect his business. Reynolds contacted AFA Executive Director Tim Wildmon, arranged a meeting between AFA and concerned dealers and struck a suspension deal. An article in the online Automotive Business Review, which ran while the boycott was in effect, said that the AFA boycott was unlikely to generate a problematic level of negative publicity for Ford and might even increase sales by gay customers. Dan Sturgis of Pride at Work, the gay and lesbian caucus of the AFL-CIO which represents the United Auto Workers, said that when the boycott was announced, workers were reassured about their own standing. Sturgis said Ford officials told him that they -were receiving an equal mix of support for and against the company's gay policies. The Human Rights Campaign and the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force released statements celebrating the quick end to the boycott. "Ford has made it very clear that they will not respond to AFA demands and the AFA has backed down," said Roberta Sklar, communications director for the NG&LTF. "We have no reason to be concerned about Ford having a conversation with the AFA."
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