Press Room

May 19, 2004

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HRC Launches Ad Campaign: “Speak Now. Or Forever Hold Your Peace”

'President Bush and his extremist allies are trying to repeal the rights we're celebrating in Massachusetts,' said HRC President Cheryl Jacques. 'It's never been more important for us to make our voices heard.'

WASHINGTON&nbsp - The Human Rights Campaign today launched an ad campaign titled, "Speak now. Or forever hold your peace." The campaign will feature a series of ads to appear more than 85 times in gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community publications. The ads are intended to educate and energize the GLBT community in response to President Bush's support of an anti-marriage constitutional amendment, and battles to amend the constitutions in several states.

"President Bush and his extremist allies are trying to repeal the rights we're celebrating in Massachusetts," said HRC President Cheryl Jacques. "It's never been more important for us to make our voices heard."

Congressional sources have reported that the anti-marriage amendment would likely come up for a vote in Congress before August. So far, state constitutional anti-marriage amendment ballot measures this year will be fought in Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and Utah, with more expected in several other states.

"These ads shine a light on how some politicians, including the president, are trying to take away our rights," added Jacques. "We hope to see the community motivated to vote this November like never before."

Ads will appear in more than 30 publications, including: The Advocate, Genre, Ambush (La.), Bay Area Reporter (Calif.), Bay Windows (Mass.), Between the Lines (Mich.), Dallas Voice, Echo (Ariz.), Front Page (N.C.), Frontiers (Calif.), Gay People's Chronicle (Ohio), Gazette (Fla.), Houston Voice, In Newsweekly (Mass.), Just Out (Ore.), Lavender Magazine (Minn.), Lesbian News (Calif.), Letters from Camp Rehoboth (Del.), New York Blade, Orange County Blade (Calif.), Out &amp About (Tenn.), Out Front (Colo.), Philadelphia Gay News, Seattle Gay News, Southern Voice (Ga.), Texas Triangle, Vital Voice (Mo.), Washington Blade (District of Columbia), Weekly News (Fla.) and Windy City Times (Ill.).

The ad features an "un-vitation" from President George W. Bush and his extremist allies not cordially inviting us:

ᄡ&nbspto be fully protected by the U.S. Constitution

ᄡ&nbspto have guaranteed hospital visitation rights

ᄡ&nbspto adopt and care for our own children

ᄡ&nbspto have any of the 1,138 federal rights, responsibilities and protections of marriage - like Social Security survivorship

ᄡ&nbspor to ever have our relationships considered equal.

The second and third sets of ads will be released in the coming weeks. All end with the tagline, "Speak now. Or forever hold your peace," and urge viewers to visit www.hrc.org to learn more about how to get involved. There, supporters can join HRC's Online Action Network and send e-mails and free faxes to members of Congress and their state legislators about issues concerning the GLBT community. They can also download pamphlets that help them talk to their friends and family about marriage equality, and sign up to join equality supporters at Meetups nationwide.

ᄡ&nbspView the first of the series here.

ᄡ&nbspFind out how to speak now here.

The ads were developed by advertising agency Laguens Hamburger Stone.

The Human Rights Campaign is the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender political organization with members throughout the country. It effectively lobbies Congress, provides campaign support and educates the public to ensure that LGBT Americans can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.

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