13 April 2011

NOM Leader Changes Mind, Supports Gay Marriage

Big news this week: Louis Marinelli, of the NOM “One Man One Woman” 2010 summer bus tour has publicly apologized for his earlier comments about gays and stated his support for gay marriage.

His website post is remarkable. I have to hand it to him and enormously respect that he can admit when he’s wrong. Some highlights:

“...I have come to this point after several months of an internal conflict with myself. That conflict gradually tore away at me until recently when I was able to for the first time simply admit to myself that I do in fact support civil marriage equality.

...If there is an issue of shame, it is a result of acknowledging the number of people I have targeted, hurt and oppressed...it was in Atlanta that I can remember that I questioned what I was doing for the first time. The NOM showing in the heart of the Bible-belt was dismal and the hundreds of counter-protesters who showed up were nothing short of inspiring...For the first time I had empathy for [gays and lesbians] and remember asking myself what I was doing...

...many of [the articles I wrote] I would now categorize as propaganda filled with strong and unnecessary rhetoric. This is especially true of the YouTube videos I made.

...I really came to understand that gays and lesbians were just real people who wanted to live real lives and be treated equally...

I was largely taken aback by the fact that the [Facebook] page I created had become such a hateful place. My comments and rhetoric paled in comparison to what that place had turned into. I began to understand why the gay community was out there claiming opposition to same-sex civil marriage was all about hate.

I soon realized that there I was surrounded by hateful people; propping up a cause I created five years ago, a cause which I had begun to question...

My name is Louis J. Marinelli, a conservative-Republican and I now support full civil marriage equality. The constitution calls for nothing less.”

In another interview at Towleroad, Marinelli further says:

“I want to make myself available to whatever organization needs my help in any way that they need it to do what I can to a) reverse some of the things I've done in the past and to b) help progrss to help ensure that there is the freedom to marry in the future."

Let’s take him up on it!

-Maura McGurk

Maura is an artist whose work is about LGBT issues. Dan Savage owns one of her paintings, and you can see what all the fuss is about here.

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