HRC Blog

Uniting African Americans Behind the Equality Movement

Post submitted by Dan Rafter, Former HRC Associate Director of Communications

Jonathan Capehart is taking a look at the impact Russell Simmons’ New Yorkers for Marriage video could have on the marriage equality discussion in Maryland. Anti-gay voices, like Maggie Gallagher and the National Organization for Marriage, have insinuated that marriage equality supporters in Maryland have played the race card against African Americans.

Opponents’ efforts to divide the equality movement by injecting racial tensions have largely failed. And in today’sWashington Post, Capehart looks at how Simmons’ video could further unite African Americans behind the marriage equality movement:

Sure, Simmons is lending his voice to the effort to legalize same-sex marriage in the Empire State. But maybe, just maybe, his voice and that of Whoopi Goldberg and Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe, will carry some weight with African Americans in Maryland. I’m thinking particularly of those in the General Assembly slated to vote on a marriage equality bill this week. Some of them are relying on backward arguments to oppose the measure or irrational fears of the impact it would have on black families.

You can watch Simmons’ message at Simmons joins other high-profile New Yorkers including Barbara Bush, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Whoopi Goldberg, Kenneth Cole, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Julianne Moore in calling for marriage equality in the Empire State. And for the latest on what opponents of marriage equality are up to, visit

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