Is it intimidation or a conversation starter? “It” is an Internet service, Google Maps, that provides the names, donation amount and location of anyone who donated to the successful California Proposition 8 initiative establishing a constitutional amendment that defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman.
Ruth Schneider, under the column headline “OUTspoken” in the Olympian newspaper in Washington state, argued the identification “should be an invitation to have an open conversation.”
She cited Toni Broaddus, executive director of the Equality Federation group of “60 state-based lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocacy organizations,” who said she certainly has “hope there are no threats against people for taking a particular political position.”
But leaders of Protect Marriage.com, the group that organized the amendment campaign, said it hasn’t worked exactly like that.
“There has been a systematic effort to intimidate and harass donors to the Prop 8 campaign,”
said Ron Prentice, chairman of ProtectMarriage.com, at a time recently when amendment supporters were asking California courts to halt enforcement of state campaign reporting laws mandating the release of such donor information.
“The latest example of this is the publication by our opponents of ‘Google Maps’ showing the home or office location of Yes on 8 contributors.
“The message of this harassment is unmistakable – ‘support traditional marriage and we will find you,'” Prentice said.
The lawsuit seeking the protection of the identities of some who donated lesser amounts to the Prop 8 campaign noted organizations such as “Californians Against Hate” now “exist for the primary purpose of identifying and taking action against supporters of Proposition 8.”
The organization cited “numerous examples of threatening and harassing e-mails, phone calls and postcards suffered by supporters of Proposition 8, including death threats.”
The courts ultimately refused to provide the protection.
Learn about the intimidating tactics and brilliant marketing techniques being used by “gay rights” activists – read David Kupelian’s controversial blockbuster, “The Marketing of Evil: How Radicals, Elitists, and Pseudo-Experts Sell Us Corruption Disguised as Freedom.”
According to the Sacramento Bee, a federal judge found that the state requirement that donors of $100 or more be disclosed was constitutional.
U.S. District Judge Morrison C. England Jr. found the state, by requiring disclosure of the information, “is not facilitating retaliation.”
According to Schneider, Eightmaps.com is a “mash-up of Google Maps and everyone who donated more than $100 to pass the Proposition 8 campaign.”
A check of the map, however, reveals donors identified who gave less than $100.
Donors, she wrote, “can be found in our state, our county, our neighborhood, our backyard. I zoomed in on that map and found two people with addresses in DuPont who donated to the campaign. And a project manager with a Tumwater address donated $100. I called him. Tobin Faucheaux called me back. While he was unaware the Web site listed his location and name, he wasn’t surprised by it. Nor was he upset. ‘I made that decision when I made the donation,’ Faucheaux said of the public disclosure.”
ProtectMarriage leaders said their challenge to mandatory release of donor information focused on “ensuring that supporters of traditional marriage can do so without fear of intimidation and harassment.”
“The United States Supreme Court has held that when there is a reasonable probability that disclosure of contributor information will result in harassment of contributors to a political organization, the organization can be exempted from further disclosure of contributor information,” Prentice said.
The group said it was only challenging the disclosure of donors who contributed between $100 and $1,000, since donors above that level already were disclosed.
The release of the information violates the donors’ rights to privacy and freedom of expression, the group explained. Some of the victims of harassment already “have been forced from their jobs. Others have seen their businesses targeted. Still others have had their personal information put on signs and flyers and distributed throughout their communities.”
Among the messages to Prop 8 donors:
- “Burn in hell.”
- “Consider yourself lucky. If I had a gun I would have gunned you down along with each and every other supporter.”
- “I just wanted to call and let you know what a great picture that was of you and the other Nazi’s [sic] in the newspaper….Don’t worry though, we have plans for you and your friends.
Also cited were cases of vandalism and property destruction.
WND previously reported on the threats from homosexual activists against worshippers in San Francisco at the time of the vote.
A group of Christians had been singing and praying in the “gay” district for several days, and the reactions are shown in the following video:
(Warning: Video may contain offensive language)
The worship group began singing “Amazing Grace” while an estimated 500 “gay” advocates sang “We Shall Overcome.”
A woman in the worship group said she and her friend were doused with hot coffee. One man took a Bible from her friend, hit her on the head with it, pushed her to the ground and began kicking her. People began lunging at the Christian group, blowing whistles in their ears.
“They started saying, ‘We’re going to kill you,'” the woman said. “They started taking our pictures and saying, ‘We’re going to kill you. We know who you are.”
The woman said her group had merely organized a peaceful fellowship and wasn’t there to condemn homosexuals.
“We hadn’t preached,” she said. “We hadn’t evangelized. We worshipped God in peace, and we were about to die for it.”
“Their rights were respected,” Joe Schmitz, an opponent of Prop. 8, told San Francisco’s KTVU television. “They got a chance to go ahead and pray on the sidewalk, and I had the opportunity to express my freedom of speech, which is telling them to get out of my neighborhood.”
WND also has reported on lawsuits filed by homosexual advocates against the constitutional amendment and the arguments that have been submitted to the state Supreme Court.
Seven justices in Supreme Court courtroom in Sacramento, from left to right: Associate Justice Carlos R. Moreno, Associate Justice Joyce L. Kennard, Associate Justice Kathryn Mickle Werdegar, Chief Justice Ronald M. George, Associate Justice Ming W. Chin, Associate Justice Marvin R. Baxter and Associate Justice Carol A. Corriga
The Supreme Court earlier rejected a stay on Proposition 8, allowing it to remain in effect and preventing more homosexuals from exchanging vows until the case is decided. Approximately 18,000 homosexual “marriages” have taken place since June 2008 when the court ruled 4 to 3 to legalize same-sex unions.
In response to the court’s decision to hear the challenges, Randy Thomasson, president of Campaign for Children and Families, said the court must consider the will of the people.
“The court is playing with fire by threatening to destroy the people’s vote on marriage,” he said in a statement. “The California Constitution clearly says that the voters have the right to alter the highest law of the land. It’s the beauty of the American system of government. The four Supreme Court justices who unconstitutionally invented homosexual ‘marriages’ – Ron George, Joyce Kennard, Kathryn Werdegar and Carlos Moreno – seem to be ignoring the fact that the people get the last word, not the judges.”