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By Julia Rosen

With the news out that the grassroots efforts to get a repeal of Prop 8 on the ballot has failed, it increases the importance of Perry v Schwarzenegger and by extension the media coverage of the trial. Going back to the ballot in 2012 is still very much a potential option, but we will absolutely have a verdict in District Court and who knows where we will be at in the appeals process by November of 2012. There are a lot of unknowns.

But there is a lot of exciting organizing going on in California, including around Perry v Schwarzenegger.

Today we released this statement from Rick Jacobs:

We applaud the dedication of grassroots activists who organized across the state this year to try to bring California law into compliance with the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. No American should have to wait one minute for equality, especially when it comes to love. That’s why the Courage Campaign’s focus is on the Proposition 8 federal trial — and it’s why this trial is so important.

With three recent polls now showing a majority of Californians support marriage equality, it is clear that the court of public opinion is increasingly rejecting the lies and hollow arguments that were used to deceive voters in 2008. That’s why the backers of Proposition 8 are working so hard to keep the ongoing federal trial from public view, and why the Courage Campaign remains committed to ensuring the evidence that’s been presented can be heard and judged by all Americans.

Meanwhile, Media Matter’s Karl Frisch was on PBS’ In The Life to talk about the trial. As usual, California native Karl makes some great points about the role of the media.



  • 1. Kathleen  |  April 13, 2010 at 11:23 am

    Just wanted to say thank you to Julie, Brian, et al, for keeping this site going while we wait for a conclusion to the trial.

    Would Brian, or someone, be willing to write a post covering the topic of the discovery dispute currently playing out? I know a lot of people are trying to understand what the delay is and I think a post on this topic would be appreciated.

  • 2. couragecampaign  |  April 13, 2010 at 11:28 am

    Hi Kathleen, thanks for sticking around.

    We have written about it in the past, but I'll see if we can get something up in the next few days.

  • 3. Kathleen  |  April 13, 2010 at 11:36 am

    Thanks! I've been trying to keep people updated, but a post by CC would be far superior to my somewhat piecemeal and sometimes incoherent comments. 🙂

  • 4. cc  |  April 13, 2010 at 11:57 am

    Oh thank you, I too would love to see another post on that topic!

  • 5. Straight Grandmother  |  April 13, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    Yes please do start a topic on the Discovery issues that are happening now. And as this topic shows, your main mission is about THIS trial. My perception is that there should be more topics posted that are about the trial. I know we are all sitting around waiting but still -there has been motions and hearings and answers filed and you don't write about them. We more or less rely on Kathleen to keep us posted, and this notification comes by her replying in non Prop 8 related topics.

    Get back to your mission is all I'm saying, and I hope I am saying it in a nice way because that is what I intend. We come here to read about the trial and to be kept current on it. Please post topics about the trial.

  • 6. David Kimble  |  April 14, 2010 at 2:16 am

    @draNgNon – Responsibility is a two-way street. Yes, frequently, is behind the news the rest of the community has been writing about here for sometime. Yet in the real world we find ourselves engaged in daily, there are obstacles to instant reporting – I still remember, when TV news replaced much of the newspaper reporting, since it was usually more timely and people gravitated to televisions, as the new media source. Now we have the Internet, where news is spewn at incredibily fast rates. However, not all the news on the Internet is reliable or factual.
    When I was in high school, a friend wrote an article for the school paper – she had some very acute obversations – one I recall, went something like, "When you or I take for fact what is said by Walter Chronkite on the evening news, we are throwing democracy in the dumpster." This applies to the entire world, since in many countries, the media is controlled by the government, who carefully monitors what news should be avaiable and what news should not. When we tune into the tne news daily on TV sets – I always seek other sources to substantiate the news purported. I never take for fact something that is said on a news program, simply because it is purported to be fact.
    In the small community, where I live in California, the local newspaper frequently mixes news with opinion and purports it as all fact, which I find irreprehensible.
    I am sorry this is so long, but wanted to respond to the "timely" comment, I have seen posted here and on other stories at this website. <3 David

  • 7. Andrea  |  April 14, 2010 at 2:16 am

    I'll plead guilty to being snarky sometimes. Sorry.

    +1 on articles going into what's so bad about the discovery precedent and why it's being fought, etc. – if people are being asked to wait, they need to know why. "It's important" isn't a reason, it's a handwave. The natives are getting restless.

    +1 on staying on-topic in general. I know where to find world news, general GLBT news, and the latest information on Lady Ga-Ga. It's the Prop 8 stuff that can't be had anywhere else.

  • 8. David Kimble  |  April 14, 2010 at 2:35 am

    One other further point, I neglected to make is this – this site sprang-up, as a result of the fact the trial broadcasts were blocked by SCOTUS and I am thankful I was able to follow the trial using this website – thank you for keeping us in the loop! <3 David

  • 9. Monty  |  April 14, 2010 at 2:39 am

    Yay censorship!

    I am glad this site exists, though. Gives me something interesting to read so I don't go insane at work.

  • 10. draNgNon  |  April 14, 2010 at 8:44 am

    hello, I just wanted to say, it shouldn’t be up to us who check this site for trial updates, to have to slog through the trolls and snarky comments to find that information buried in day-old posts.

    Thanks to Kathleen for posting what she knows, but please if CC could put this information in the blog posts, not the comments, it would have more visibility as well.

  • 11. K!r!lleXXI  |  April 15, 2010 at 3:28 am

    Since there are requests here, I'd like to request, or rather ask if there is someone who somewhere boiled down everything that was shown on the trial into some good readable talking points with proof presented on the trial?

    If we can't show the trial on the TV, and if the majority of people wouldn't waste all that time to watch re-enactment being bigoted and not invested in the whole civil rights of "them damn gays" fight, we need to have some quick points presented and defended on trial to let those people read and see everything for themselves, at least get them interested and let them see that their position could be wrong, so they would go back to re-enactment and have a set of napkins ready to cry listening about those atrocities our people had to endure.

    I keep waiting that someone would do that, professionally, on the point, etc. This is the stuff we really need to print on leaflets to give out on the streets! This is the stuff we really need to get the people acquainted with! This is the stuff that has credit and merit, unlike those lies from pro-8 side! This is what it's all about — changing the world one person at a time.

    Isn't there anyone who did that?
    Are we just burying this essential information from becoming a public knowledge?
    Are we helping Haggie win this game?

  • 12. Richard A. Walter (s  |  April 13, 2010 at 11:30 am

    Thank you so much for this post today, and actually, thank all of you at Courage Campaign for this site period and for keeping us up to speed on the trial. This has really given me a new community and a family in my life. It has also given me the courage to come out of the hermitage and take some action. See the FB page "Let's All Unite for Equality and Ride to Washington DC at One Time." Come on, folks, let's do this for Constance and for Lt. Dan Choi!

  • 13. Carvel  |  April 13, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    This may be a little off of the subject but I ran across a website called and after reading some of their stuff on which I was doing some research, these people are crazy. I was trying to see if people wrote any serious papers on reorientation therapy.

  • 14. Kathleen  |  April 13, 2010 at 2:48 pm

    Narth is well known around here. I liken them to The Klan, only instead of doing the hanging, they arrange it so that you do your own. They're a seriously sick organization.

    There was testimony during the trial from someone who'd been sent to one of these organizations.

    You should also check out some of the "ex-gay survivors" groups – made up of people who've been subjected to these groups. Here's one.

    There are more, but if I post more than one link, my post will go into moderation and not post till morning. Some of the founders of these "cure the gay" organizations are now some of the most vocal critics of the process.

  • 15. Kathleen  |  April 13, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    Read, especially, this:

  • 16. Bob  |  April 13, 2010 at 4:15 pm

    Carvel, your quest, for serious papers on reorientation therapy is enlightening, and I think an exercise in futility, the links Kathleen offers are great, Somehow, this quest could be made more public, like I mentioned before, real scientists could be dualling this out.

    And we need to ask people where are the people who benefitted from such therapy, if there are any, they need to come forward.

    More publicity could be brought to this farce, that the religious right, hangs their argument on.
    Because we were removed from the psychiatric manual of illnesses, they suggested homosexuality is a choice.

    To make that leap from illness to choice, is bizarre, if they were happy with it as an illness, how could they say a person chooses an illness. Many religions for that reason, still claim it as an illness, and attempt treatment similar to addicition, their goal being to abstain from the behavior, again this may work for those who are asexual, or some success with celibacy, but unless someone comes forward who feels they have achieved success from this therapy, we'll never know, and it only poves Kathleens point, and their likeness to the clan.

  • 17. fiona64  |  April 14, 2010 at 1:20 am

    Over at, there is a man called Josh Johansen who claims that ex-gay therapy saved his life. He says he's still gay, but that Evergreen and NARTH "delivered him" of his obsession and helped him "manage to develop a sexual attraction for his wife." Now, as Ronnie once put it, he does make it sound as those this last was a pretty onerous task … but nevertheless he has posted his story there.

    I do ask that people not "dogpile" on him; his story/reality is his. I think he's probably bisexual (or delusional), but that's my opinion. I'm not in his head.


  • 18. David Kimble  |  April 14, 2010 at 1:43 am

    Thanks for the link to the story fiona64 – I read the story with an open mind and came away with questions he never addressed in his story. Things like, how did he make the change (other than God's direction). You are of course correct, when you say, "it is his reality". I am happy for him and wish him the best, yet like you, I cannot help wonder, if he is not bisexual. For me, there has never been an attractioin to women – ever. I have women friends, who are delightful and provide support for me (as a gay man), but I do not ever want to marry one. <3 David

  • 19. Kathleen  |  April 13, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    Did anyone else catch the April 4 New York Times Magazine article "Can Animal Be Gay"?

  • 20. David Kimble  |  April 14, 2010 at 1:12 am

    Thanks, Kathleen for the link to the article. No, I had not seen the article before now. With that said, I am aware in nature, homosexual pairings are considered normal and do not carry the stigma they do in human relationships. Only mankind's arrogance would assume we are the most important species to exist on Earth ever! Among whales and dolphins, which also mate for life, homosexual pairings are very common. <3 David

  • 21. mattymatt  |  April 13, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    Glad to see Courage Campaign applauding the efforts of Restore Equality 2010! Any intention to meet with them to talk about the 2012 effort, or is that still too far in the future to make any plans?

  • 22. Sagesse  |  April 13, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    One of many articles discussing the failure of the 2010 ballot initiative.

    John Henning,Love Honor Cherish Executive Director, is quoted "There hasn't been a successful, all-volunteer signature-gathering effort since the early 1980s."

    This fact about ballot initiatives often gets lost in the media coverage. It was raised by the expert on ballot initiatives in the Prop 8 trial, and I've seen it occasionally elsewhere. Successful ballot initiatives are sponsored by well funded interest groups, starting with paid professional signature gatherers, and followed up with media and voter contact and recruitment campaigns. They are presented like grassroots movements… direct voting (the people have voted and they don't want….), rather than indirect, representative (legislative) government. It's a myth, because the question is being framed, and voters are being 'driven' by the wording of the question and by expensive, paid campaign messages pro and con.

    The 2010 initiative failed because it truly was a grassroots campaign without marriage equality groups funding behind it. Marriage equality groups in California had a hard decision to make… what was the best way to use scarce money and people resources to win marriage equality, and they felt the Prop 8 trial and 2012 were the best use of scarce resources.

    Politics is the art of the possible. However, the initiative process is flawed. Somehow, in DC, they can refuse to put minority rights to a popular vote… they've done it repeatedly in the last year, and pushed back against all the challenges so far. It seems simple… minority rights cannot be decided by direct vote, it's unconstitutional. Can someone explain what it is about the California law that ballots on minority rights, even constitutional amendments, can't just be rejected before they ever hit the ballot?

  • 23. Andrea  |  April 14, 2010 at 12:36 am

    Can someone explain what it is about the California law that ballots on minority rights, even constitutional amendments, can’t just be rejected before they ever hit the ballot?

    The California Courts can't rule (or even comment) on a law's constitutionality in advance, because if they did, they'd be helping to formulate a proposed law, which is strictly the role of the Legislature. (In a ballot initiative situation, the People take on the role of Legislature and Executive so the Court can't publicly comment.)

    Thus, the only way to find out if the ballot initiative is constitutional or not, is to let it pass, so the Courts can then rule on the law's constitutionality. If the initiative doesn't pass, there's nothing to rule on so it's a moot point anyway.

    I just wonder whatever happened to the "suspect class" declaration that the CASC handed down. Shouldn't the "strict scrutiny" standard called for by CASC control this Perry case? Our CASC ruled us a "suspect class" and the first case that comes along we go right back to "rational basis" instead of "strict scrutiny" as ordered by CASC. That's the part I don't get.

  • 24. Bill  |  April 14, 2010 at 12:56 am

    The CA Supreme Court in the trial AFTER Prop 8 passed said that the only thing that changed was that gay people couldn't call their marriage a marriage.

    They said that we still have all of the rights, but that we can not have the 'name' marriage.

    It was really an embarrassment for the CA Supreme Court. For when they ruled months BEFORE that the Constitution DOES in fact, guarantee gay people the right to marry, their written opinion went on to state just how important the name marriage is. And how important it is to NOT create a group of second class citizens by calling gay marriage something else in order to create a stigma toward it.

    Then they upheld Prop 8.

    Makes perfect sense, right?

  • 25. Andrea  |  April 14, 2010 at 2:45 am

    Judges are elected by the same 50%+1 that passed the initiative; they could do nothing else.

  • 26. Monty  |  April 14, 2010 at 2:53 am

    I was under the impression that SC justices were appointed by the governor.

  • 27. Andrea  |  April 14, 2010 at 3:02 am

    They are appointed to 12-year terms by the Governor. They then have to be re-appointed by the voters at ballot every 12 years.

    California voters have ousted sitting Justices en masse in the past, notably the ones who opposed the death penalty. Now the CASC is notoriously voter-shy.

  • 28. Sagesse  |  April 13, 2010 at 11:48 pm

    This is a rather long article, but it highlights a new effort from the Yes on 8 crowd, this time to run a slate of conservative judges against incumbents seeking re-election to the San Diego Superior Court.

    "In what has been described as an attempt by right wing religious conservatives to "pack the courts" with judges who will oppose Separation of Church and State and "uphold traditional moral beliefs," an organization created by former Prop 8 activists is working to shift the San Diego Superior Court further to the right with a slate judicial conservative candidates to challenge four moderate incumbents of San Diego County's Superior Court in the June primary.

    "The candidates of the organization, Better Courts Now, were vetted on issues of Separation of Church and State, abortion, same-sex marriage and "traditional moral values," according to the group's web site and BCN leaders."

    Can the California residents comment on whether this is a serious threat?

  • 29. David Kimble  |  April 14, 2010 at 1:18 am

    @Sagesse – To answer your question – Can the California residents comment on whether this is a serious threat?
    I don't believe so, however there are ways to get our voice herad, like writing "Letters to the Editor" to your local paper or blogging about this issue on various websites. The other way would be to contact your local representatives in Sacramento and voice your opposition to their theocratic approach to government. <3 David

  • 30. NetAmigo  |  April 14, 2010 at 12:34 am

    Even if Prop. 8 can be removed at the ballot box, it is best that it be invalidated by the courts. When the courts do it, this reaffirms basic constitutional protections which in this case say that a religious majority may not force their beliefs upon everyone using the political process.

  • 31. Bill  |  April 14, 2010 at 12:41 am

    Back to the ballot box???


    Until LGTB Americans come to understand and BELIEVE that OUR RIGHTS HAVE NO BUSINESS BEING ON ANY BALLOT, and until we DEMAND that the courts perform what they are there to do – PROTECT PEOPLE – we will continue this cyclical torture of gaining rights only to have our fellow citizens later take those rights away.


  • 32. truthspew  |  April 14, 2010 at 3:13 am

    I've read all the transcripts of the trial that were posted on this site.

    Just reading it gave me a glimpse into the manner in which Olson and Boies were proving their case. The pro-8 people really have no defense. In fact many of their own witnesses when questioned in depositions and on the stand pretty much made the case for the plaintiff.

    I'm anxiously awaiting closing arguments.

  • 33. Chamisaguy  |  April 20, 2010 at 5:11 am

    Over on Joe My God, here's what he has to say about Maggot Gagger stepping down as NOM's president:

    Slaggie Gilamonster Steps Down At NOM
    The National Organization for Marriage announced today that Maggie Gallagher will be stepping down as president. Brian Brown, their executive director, will assume the title.
    Brian has not only "overseen" — he has instigated and created (under God) NOM's incredible growth in less than three years: from one donor to 35,000, from no activists to over 500,000, from zero public profile to the recent public acknowledgment by the Washington Post that NOM has emerged as the "pre-eminent national organization fighting the legalization of same-sex marriage." In less than three years, NOM has compiled an incredible record of victories (forging coalitions and working with many others who also deserve the credit, we never forget): putting Prop 8 on the ballot in California, overturning gay marriage in Maine, blocking gay marriage bills in New York and New Jersey, fighting in court to protect marriage activists from legal harassment, helping turn "scozzfava" into a verb. (To "scozzfava" a politician is to inform GOP primary voters that he or she is pro-gay marriage).
    Gilamonster assures us that we "shouldn't worry," she'll still be infesting the rancid hallways of NOM's offices as a member of their executive committee while she takes time to write her coming memoir, Debating Same-sex Marriage (Or How I Had A Bastard Child, Married An Invisible Hindu, And Saved America By The Blood Of Jeebus.)

  • 34. Chamisaguy  |  April 20, 2010 at 5:15 am

    well, I'm not sure why this isn't appearing — so you'll have to go view the NOM blog for yourselves, I guess

  • 35. GAYGUY  |  April 20, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    AWSOME VIDEO!!! I wish CNN or some other news would even just show that one nite!

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