June 19, 2014 | by Michael K. Lavers
Same-sex marriage opponents rally at U.S. Capitol
NOM, National Organization for Marriage, gay news, Washington Blade, same-sex marriage

Many of the estimated 2,000 people that attended a National Organization for Marriage rally held signs that defined marriage as between a man and a woman. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

The sponsor of a proposed U.S. constitutional amendment that would define marriage as between a man and a woman on Thursday conceded opponents of gay nuptials are losing ground.

“We are falling behind in the struggle,” said Kansas Congressman Tim Huelskamp during the National Organization for Marriage’s March for Marriage that took place on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. “Those who seek to destroy marriage by redefining it to mean anything — and thus mean nothing, are hard at work.”

Many of the estimated 2,000 people from across the country held NOM signs that defined marriage as between a man and a woman. Others carried posters reading “each child deserves a father and a mother” in Spanish.

“When we hear time and time again from some in the media that the fight to protect marriage is over, we are here today to say no,” said NOM President Brian Brown. “We are here to say that no matter the circumstances, no matter how difficult it may be, we will stand in and out of season for the truth of marriage.”

San Francisco Roman Catholic Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, New York state Sen. Ruben Díaz, Sr., Leanna Baumer of the Family Research Council and Bishop Harry Jackson of Hope Christian Church in Beltsville, Md., are among those who spoke during the rally.

Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, who is the papal emissary to the U.S., also attended.

“Marriage is the union of a man and a woman,” said Santorum, who unsuccessfully ran for president in 2012. “It is a union between a man and a woman for the purpose of taking two people in unity as one and secondly to have and raise children. No other union can accomplish those two purposes.”

Cordileone said the majority of those who support marriage rights for same-sex couples are people of “goodwill” that he categorized as “misdirected.”

Jackson rejected the argument that same-sex marriage is a civil rights issue.

“Gender rights and sexual orientation cannot trump the rights of the masses of people who believe in personal liberty and what we want to call natural and biblical marriage,” he said.

Gays and lesbians can legally marry in 20 states and D.C.

More than a dozen federal and state judges have ruled in support of marriage rights for same-sex couples since the U.S. Supreme Court last June struck down a portion of the Defense of Marriage Act.

Same-sex couples in Canada, Mexico City, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Iceland, England, Wales, France, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, South Africa and New Zealand are also able to tie the knot.

Luxembourg lawmakers on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved a bill that would extend marriage rights to same-sex couples. A referendum on whether to allow gays and lesbians to tie the knot in Ireland is slated to take place next year.

Ludivine de la Rochère, who led efforts to oppose France’s same-sex marriage law that took effect last May, said during the NOM rally that she feels the fight against nuptials for gays and lesbians is not over.

“We will never surrender,” she said.

Tomás Henriquez of Chile held a sign reading “every child deserves a mom and a dad” as he and his friend who are visiting D.C. stood on the West Lawn.

“We believe in traditional marriage between a man and a woman,” Henriquez told the Washington Blade.

Marlene Trump of Lancaster County, Pa., attended the rally with a group from the Family Institute of Pennsylvania. She was holding the same sign that Henriquez had as she spoke with the Blade about why she opposes marriage rights for same-sex couples.

“It’s God’s will,” said Trump. “Families, children growing up in a family where there is a mom and a dad is much more of a healthy environment than having two moms or two dads.”

A handful of LGBT rights advocates held a large banner that read “love not hate” and a Bible with a sign saying “use me not for your bigotry.”

NOM, National Organization for Marriage, gay news, Washington Blade, Brian Brown

National Organization for Marriage President Brian Brown (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Michael K. Lavers has been a staff writer for the Washington Blade since May 2012. The passage of Maryland's same-sex marriage law, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the burgeoning LGBT rights movement in Latin America and the consecration of gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson are among the many stories he has covered since his career began in 2002. Follow Michael

31 Comments
  • Good, not much of a crowd, but more than showed up for the ex-gay rally.

  • Yo, Brian Brown, you could only get an estimated 2,000 to your 'little' rally. You know the one that you had hoped for over half a million to attend. I really think you should bury the horse and stop beating it, some may think you are into necrophilia.

  • If Rick Santorum really thinks marriage is for the purpose "of taking two people in unity as one and secondly to have and raise children," he might want to alert some of his GOP colleagues about that – like Gingrich, Guiliani and Sanford.

  • I wonder. How many people could these dear rally participants feed, clothe and house with the collective money spent on travel, food, lodging, etc. to attend this rally. The recipients of such support would experience compassion – a concept well worth more practice by each rally member.

  • Reid Antonacchio

    Ironic that they have so much latino support considering their race baiting tactics.

  • Scott Hutcheson

    The Latinos were bussed in by Ruben Diaz. They weren't told what the event was, he advertised it as a free sightseeing trip to DC (I'm not kidding).

    • You know your cause is a losing one when you need to lie to people to get them to show up.

      It will be interesting to see if NoM photo shops the pictures of today’s event to add thousands of people that weren’t there at all, like they have done in the past.

    • OH PLEASE every race has homophobes including Latinos

  • If they think that all children deserve moms and a dad, then why don't they stop getting divorced

  • So then the majority of those that follow the preaching of Catholicism are servants of "God's Will" to conditionally conform and would be categorized as "misguided!"

    [San Francisco Roman Catholic Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, said the majority of those who support marriage rights for same-sex couples are people of “goodwill” that he categorized as “misdirected.”]

    Those Misdirected Folk Seem to Be The Majority These Days Winning Equality!

    Reality Check!

  • You think they could have ponied up more money for extras. They really need to have a firm talk with their casting agency.

  • Scott Hutcheson True, he's done it before. it's amazing such a hateful man could live in NYC.

  • Scott Hutcheson True, he's done it before. it's amazing such a hateful man could live in NYC.

  • LOLOOLOOOOLOLLOLOLOL-omfg-"estimated 2,000 people that attended"-LLOLLLOLOLLOLLLOLOLLOLOLOLLLLOLOLOLOLOLLOLLOLOLLLOLL-I'm so frightened by your ever dwindling numbers!-LLOLLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!

  • Gay marriage is not a threat to anyone. You can have your biblical marriage if you like. There is no reason that you need to have a monopoly on marriage.

  • All the ones with signs in Spanish took the free buses organized by hatemonger cowboy hat wearing Diaz in NYC. After having the box lunch they will go to the Air and Space museum (probably not the National Gallery).

  • All the ones with signs in Spanish took the free buses organized by hatemonger cowboy hat wearing Diaz in NYC. After having the box lunch they will go to the Air and Space museum (probably not the National Gallery).

  • Dieter Zerressen

    Two thousand people? Seriously? Watch when Denver holds its Pride Fest tomorrow – there will be between 200,000 and 300,000 attendees. More than 2,000 people will be on the floats of the parade alone. And that's just one modest sized city in just one modest sized state in the US. These NOM supporters are up in the night if they think they can stop equality in this country or even in the world.

  • Dieter Zerressen

    Two thousand people? Seriously? Watch when Denver holds its Pride Fest tomorrow – there will be between 200,000 and 300,000 attendees. More than 2,000 people will be on the floats of the parade alone. And that's just one modest sized city in just one modest sized state in the US. These NOM supporters are up in the night if they think they can stop equality in this country or even in the world.

  • Dieter Zerressen

    You forgot "Mr Fourth Wife and still no Kids, Limbaugh".

  • Dieter Zerressen

    You forgot "Mr Fourth Wife and still no Kids, Limbaugh".

  • Of course you're losing the "struggle" because it's a stupid struggle to be in. What is it with these people? Oh, for Pete's sake, pick another hobby or better yet, do some good…..rally against violence and war, raise money for the poor, adopt a disabled child. I dunno, pick something productive to do that will benefit others and leave the gays alone. Your god will smile and give you a pass on your failure to harrass people who have every right to have your every right. I promise.

  • And lest we forget, these same 'religious' people want to ban birth control and abortion. End result – more children without a mom AND a dad!

  • 2,000…that's all they got? I am sure a number were also hired. What a joke.

  • I think that being this group is saying that children should have both a mother and father, then they need to ban divorce. They need to define a marriage "as a union between two people" and have it mean between two consenting adults. According to Mr. Rick Santorum “Marriage is the union of a man and a woman,” said Santorum, who unsuccessfully ran for president in 2012. “It is a union between a man and a woman for the purpose of taking two people in unity as one and secondly to have and raise children. No other union can accomplish those two purposes. Well, slick Ricky what about all the children that are in foster care or are in the custody of the state they live in? What about all the children that are up for adoption? I have news for you Rick, gay marriage would also give these children a chance to a better life! You need to wake up and smell the coffee Sir! The support for gay marriage is rising day by day. Get over it! There are many more things for the American federal government to worry about other than gay marriage. These people who were at this rally, you need to suck it up cupcakes because gay marriage will soon be legal in ALL 50 states, and the district of Columbia!

  • “misdirected'
    Is the other side of their darker side – reparative therapy for LGBT peeps
    and to apprehension of children from same sex married peeps?
    NOM is “misdirected.”
    Thanks for the article Michael K. Lavers and keeping our 'new direction' on course.

  • Dieter Zerressen Gingrich on #3 and a serial adulterer

  • teh catholic church of the endless hidden molestation of kiddies thanks to its stupid celibacy policy wants more kids – To keep their 'celibate" priests happY?

  • According to Santorum it's better for children to be shuffled through the system rather than be adopted by people who want to give them love, a room to call their own, and a chance at not aging out of the system.

  • So Bishop Harry Jackson says “Gender rights and sexual orientation cannot trump the rights of the masses of people who believe in personal liberty and what we want to call natural and biblical marriage."

    Bishop Jackson's ignorance of the U.S. Constitution in this matter is utterly astounding.

    Not only do gay and lesbian couples — whose relationships were fully decriminalized by the Supreme Court in Lawrence v. Texas in 2003 — have the same Fourteenth Amendment right to marry that interracial and interfaith couples have, but the Establishment of Religion Clause of the First Amendment — as well as the Religious Test Clause of Article VI — prohibit the government from making "biblical marriage" the law of the land.

    In fact, social conservatives already have tried — and failed — to pass a constitutional amendment to bar gay and lesbian couples from marrying in 2005. The amendment failed to muster anywhere near the two-thirds majorities in both houses of Congress required for passage — and has absolutely zero chance of passage now or in the future. It might come as a shock to Bishop Jackson to know that a century ago, a similar constitutional amendment to ban interracial marriage was attempted in Congress –and it, too, failed to pass.

    Give it up, Bishop Jackson. The constitutional separation of church and state will thwart your efforts to impose a anti-gay religious tenet on the whole of society through the power of the government — and there's absolutely NOTHING you can do about it. Nor is there anything that Ludivine de la Rochère — who led efforts to oppose France’s same-sex marriage law that took effect last May — can do about it. She said during the NOM rally that she feels the fight against nuptials for gays and lesbians is not over.“We will never surrender!” Newsflash! You may never surrender, but you will never win. Did you notice the near-total absence of young people at that rally? Young people support marriage equality by overwhelming margins, according to opinion surveys –and their minds are not likely to change as they grow older. The fight IS over and your side has lost. You're just too stubborn to realize it.

  • Just look at the face of Brian Brown ranting

    the lips of disgraced ted haggard – gay gay gay

    in some ways femininity shows – usually a sign of a bottom

    Here is the big thing – he was a quaker became catholic. Almost certainly went to the churches fix the gays "child abuse " program

    All they do is wear you down with eg 32 hours of continuous sermons, terrorize you with going to hellfired and then promise their death insurance which if you dont collect, you cant do anything about it

    Brown claimed to get a honorary doctors of letters degree recently – from a non existent university

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2013/03/01/nom-leader-to-get-honorary-degree-from-non-existent-university/

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