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November 11, 2012

NOM’s dangerous export of hate: ‘punishing’ pro-equality U.S. companies in countries hostile to gays

Posted in: Bigots,LGBT,marriage equality,religious right

Exporting hate when you’re down and out in the U.S. fits right in with the sociopathy of NOM’s Brian Brown.

I am almost at a loss for words to express the level of contempt I have for the National Organization for Marriage and its most high-profile purveyors of hate and intolerance, Brian Brown and Maggie Gallagher. Always couching their arguments as protecting “traditional marriage” and the family when crowing on the media, NOM most recently tried to work its magic working behind closed doors trying to drive a wedge between the black (and Latino) community and LGBTs in order to kill pro-marriage equality ballot initiatives.

Failing miserably at the voting booth in November, Brian Brown sees fertile ground in countries where existing as a gay human being is against the law and/or where culturally, the concept of someone violently beating, maiming or killing someone based on real or perceived sexual orientation is common place.

If NOM can’t win the culture war in the deviant U.S., then why not punish American corporations that embrace diversity and equality in these less progressive countries? Sounds peachy, Brian. The American Independent reports on NOM’s “global initiative,” outlined in a conference call NOM held on November 8.

During the call, NOM’s top leaders said they needed to greatly expand their fundraising efforts. They argued that Mitt Romney should have focused more on the same-sex marriage issue, and they blamed Karl Rove for allegedly pushing Republicans and outside groups to focus solely on economic issues.

NOM also suggested that opponents of same-sex marriage would argue in court that Tuesday’s election results were evidence that gays and lesbians do not constitute a “suspect class” and that the Defense of Marriage Act should therefore not be overturned.

The American Independent obtained an invitation to the conference call and dialed in.

During the call, one participant cited Starbucks, which endorsed gay marriage legalization in Washington, and General Mills, which spoke out against the proposed gay marriage ban in Minnesota. The participant asked what could be done “to stop the wave of corporate sponsorship of gay marriage.”

NOM President Brian Brown responded by saying that NOM was targeting the international business of companies that support same-sex marriage such as Starbucks, which NOM also hit with a national boycott effort this year. Brown said the aim is to make these companies’ political stances known in countries in the Middle East and elsewhere that generally do not support same-sex marriage, or homosexuality in general.

To say this is irresponsible is an understatement. NOM spent a ton of money in North Carolina to win in that amendment battle, leaving it weakened when fighting the four initiatives it lost on election day. This movement to foment hate represents not only desperation but a complete disregard to the safety of LGBTs in these foreign nations and employees of businesses like Starbucks who work overseas. Think Progress:

The broader Middle East is home to three out of the five countries in the world where homosexuality is punishable by death. Though Qatar specifically isn’t one of them, its government defends other countries’ right to execute LGBT persons and, according to the State Department, “there was an underlying pattern of discrimination towards LGBT persons based on conservative cultural and religious values prevalent in the society.”

Brown sees it as his mission to get the “tidal wave of support for same-sex marriage to stop.”

“Their international outreach is where we can have the most effect,” Brown said. “So for example, in Qatar, in the Middle East, we’ve begun working to make sure that there’s some price to be paid for this. These are not countries that look kindly on same-sex marriage. And this is where Starbucks wants to expand, as well as India. So we have done some of this; we’ve got to do a lot more.” — NOM’s Brian Brown

“A lot more.” What more do they need to do to show they are 1) not worthy of getting a dime’s worth of support, and 2) more than just a garden-variety hate organization, but an entity evolving into a movement fomenting terrorism in the name of NOM’s religious and cultural belief system?

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