The Rise and Fall of the National Organization for Marriage

‘Victory’ at any cost

December 01, 2011, by Jeremy Hooper, Guest Contributor

Maggie GallagherAs you might have noticed by the Thanksgiving video I first teased and then exposed right here on N-E, Maggie Gallagher has launched yet another side project. Joining her silly, misguided, offensive, and going-nowhere “Marriage Anti-Defamation Alliance,” the NOM co-founder is now also spearheading something called the “Culture War Victory Fund,” an effort she’s launched under the auspices of the American Principles Project, fellow NOM co-founder Robert George’s other organization.

Maggie and Co. describe the “Fund” like this:

At the Culture War Victory Fund, a project of APP, Maggie Gallagher uses the experience and insight she has gained in winning “impossible” victories to offer insight into the culture war we now face –and to chart new pathways to victory. CWVF’s goal is to find the Americans who want to do two things: to think and to act in defense of core American principles: life, marriage and religious liberty.

Cultural power is above all the power to “name reality.”

Are two men in a union just the same as a union of husband and wife? Or is there something special about the unions we all depend on to make new life and connect children to their mothers and fathers? That’s the culture war over marriage.

Can government really redefine traditional Christian beliefs as the moral and/or legal equivalent of racism? Or is the power of government limited by the moral principles of America’s founding? That’s the emerging culture war over religious liberty.

At the Culture War Victory Fund, we see these issues not as distractions but a core– fundamental to our future as a civilization.

And our ultimate pathway to victory against those who would redefine American culture is a deep commitment to a simple idea: truth matters.

So yet again, we have Maggie Gallagher focusing her energy on flipping the script. It’s what we saw from Maggie all during the past, transitional year. Realizing that the future is headed in one decided way, Maggie has become far less enthusiastic about telling America why her heterosexist view in regards to marriage (and by extension the world) is the one, right way to think. Instead, she’s all about telling America why we on the equality side are wrong, mean, aggressive, liars, deceivers, militants, or just about any other label that she thinks will help stem the growing tide of equality.

This is exactly what the “Anti-Defamation Alliance” was and is about: Casting the long-shunned gay population in the antagonist role. And now with this so called “Victory Fund,” we have an in-tandem effort. With the “Defamation” project, she’s trying to to paint us as a vicious monolith, out to steam roll over anyone who simply holds a “traditional marriage” view. With this newer “Victory” project, she’s trying to spin us into fibbers who want to name a false reality. The shared goal: To move the burden of discrimination off of her side. Oh, and of course to keep the paychecks coming in as long as possible.

Maggie’s newer work, while less aggressive on its face than something like a ballot campaign or street march on the very day same-sex couples begin marrying, is in some ways more insulting. With something like Prop 8, we have Maggie working to convince our neighbors that we are unsupportable under the law. But with these ramped-up attempts to recast the civil rights narrative, Maggie is quite literally (and personally) going to battle against our character.  In the Prop 8 conceit, one can truly support Maggie’s position and still not see LGBT people as nasty or negative, their vote against us stemming more from misinformation rather than animus. But with these latest projects, Maggie is asking our neighbors to sign on to the idea that the large and growing equality movement is a dangerous lie. Forget politics — Maggie is casting aspersions against our humanity!

Though judging by the terrible reaction to her Thanksgiving video, Maggie’s new, responsibility-shirking ideas are going to have a tough time gaining traction with an increasingly clued-in public. But that she’s even trying these new tactics says so much about the NOM mindset and its low regard for the human beings at the heart of this so-called “culture war.”