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Debunking NOM’s Bigotry/Biology Ad


By Matt Baume

Well the National Organization for Marriage has a new video and it’s full of the usual crazy claims.

Of course, we debunked all this during the Prop 8 trial, so it’s easy to call call them out. Starting with their comparison of same sex couples to drug dealers and pedophiles.

What do loving, committed gay and lesbian couples have to do with drug dealers and pedophiles? Nothing. This is just demeaning people for no reason. Words like these do serious long-lasting harm, particularly to gay and lesbian kids.

And then there’s this: “natural marriage.”

This term is nonsense, because marriage doesn’t come from nature. It comes from people. It’s a set of laws. During the trial, Harvard History Professor Nancy Cott testified, “the state is involved in granting …a status to that institution that no informal marriage has ever approximated.”

Not to mention, with this term, NOM calling gay people unnatural. It’s just more name-calling.

It’s not surprising that NOM gets their terminology so wrong, because their definition of marriage is defies reality. Here’s what NOM thinks marriage is:

“Natural marriage creates children.”

No, sex creates children. There’s a difference between sex and marriage. You don’t have to be married to have children. And you don’t have to have sex to be a parent.

“It best raises children.”

No. This has been debunked by one medical organization after another. NOM knows that this claim isn’t true.

“It’s protects women. It civilizes men.”

At least, to NOM’s credit, they’re equally sexist against both men and women. This is a hard claim to debunk because it doesn’t even make sense. But what NOM seems to be saying is that if gay people can get married, then suddenly men will start impregnating women and then leaving to go commit crimes. This is offensive to just about everyone, but most of all to reality.

“It lowers crime, poverty, and welfare.”

That’s actually true. Marriage has a stabilizing social influence. But not just for straight couples — the same holds true for gays and lesbians. If NOM really cared about reducing crime, poverty, and welfare, they would want us to have the freedom to marry.

So, what have we learned? That an organization calling itself “The National Organization for Marriage” apparently doesn’t know what marriage is or how it works.

“Same-sex marriage offers no benefits for society as a whole.”

This is another crazy claim that we could spend all day debunking, because as everyone knows — including NOM — there are thousands of legal rights and ancillary benefits that accompany marriage. And the last time we checked, gay and lesbian couples are a part of society.

“Same-sex marriage merely validates sex partners.”

It takes a lot of nerve to make such an offensive statement. NOM’s talking about families here. They’re dismissing loving, committed couples as “mere sex partners,” which goes beyond civil debate and enters the realm of invasive personal attack. It’s unacceptable.

“We know, statistically, that natural marriage creates the best possible family for children.”

This isn’t true either. NOM may claim to know this “statistically,” but they don’t cite any actual data. That’s because those statistics simply don’t exist. They’re made up.

“Your business and taxes fund homosexual relationships.”

This is another weird claim. Businesses are aren’t funding anyone’s relationships. It’s true that in some states, companies may have to do business with gay couples. But that’s has nothing to do with marriage.

And as far as taxes go, gay and lesbian couples have to file extra returns and pay extra taxes because the government won’t recognize those relationships.

“The law already treats everyone equally. Every citizen can marry someone of the opposite sex.”

That’s cute, but NOM knows that’s not really what’s at issue here. Yes, everyone can marry someone of the opposite sex. But only straight couples have the freedom to marry the person they love. Only straight couples can form a complete legal family unit with the person of their choosing. Gay and lesbian couples are out of luck. That’s not treating people equally.

And this is the same argument that people made for racist anti-miscegenation laws. “These laws treat people equally,” the argument went, “because everyone is free to marry someone of the same race.” That didn’t make sense in 1967, when the Supreme Court ruled in Loving v. Virginia. And it doesn’t make sense today.

“But only the union of one man and one woman should be promoted because it alone is the foundation of a civilized society.”

More name-calling: now NOM is saying that gay and lesbian couples aren’t part of civilized society. That they’re uncivilized. That’s bad enough, but look what comes next.

“That’s not bigotry. That’s biology.”

So let’s see:

NOM just compared an entire minority group to criminals, called them unnatural, said they’re less fit to raise children, demeaned their relationships, and called them uncivilized.

And then they say that’s not bigotry?



  • 1. davep  |  October 26, 2012 at 10:12 am

    I'd like to know what NOM is doing with their new video. Sending it to their own followers in an email? Is it on Youtube? On TV? I'm interested because if it is in any public forum, we should all be there debunking it with an audience. If it is being sent to anyone, we should be sending our response video to all the same people.

  • 2. RepublicanLutz  |  October 26, 2012 at 9:54 pm

    Yes, it is on YouTube. It currently has many more dislikes than likes (no surprise for a NOM ad). No idea if they are sending it in an e-mail or running it on TV, but the description does specifically ask people to share it with their family and friends in the four states that are taking up the issue in November.

  • 3. Oncoming Train  |  October 26, 2012 at 10:26 am

    Are we doing are usual "deer in the headlights" strategy, like Obama's first debate, as a reaction to these ads?

  • 4. Mike in Baltimore  |  October 27, 2012 at 5:03 am

    I'm seeing ads on Baltimore TV taking apart the nom ads point by point.

  • 5. Seth from Maryland  |  October 27, 2012 at 10:50 am

    i know right , our ads have been so good , still im trying not to get my hopes up , this last week we have coming up, we got step on the gas an throw everything at them,

  • 6. Seth from Maryland  |  October 26, 2012 at 11:05 am

    really good interview about the 4 state marriage equality battles

  • 7. sfbob  |  October 26, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    On the contrary, business and taxes fund EVERYONE'S relationships, whether legally sanctioned or not. Wages, used to buy goods and services, which keep businesses going. And the last time I checked, gay people pay taxes and participate in the economy. It's really tough to form relationships absent some means of livelihood. Unless NOM is seriously suggesting that gay people do not deserve to be employed or to spend money or to in any way be part of our society, what they are saying makes no sense whatsoever.

    The "equal right to marry someone of the opposite sex" argument was pretty much debunked in Loving vs Virginia. Is NOM suggesting that Loving be overturned and that states should have the right to ban interracial marriages? Never mind, don't answer. I'm sure some their supporters believe precisely that.

  • 8. Steve the Second  |  October 26, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    It was debunked even earlier in Perez v Sharp by the Californian Supreme Court. In 1948(!). They repeatedly stated that the right to marriage has to mean marrying the person you love. In re. Mariage Cases was based on that decision.

  • 9. Seth from Maryland  |  October 26, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    [youtube aepSlHv3R_U youtube]

    New Minnesota Ad 🙂 very good

  • 10. Gin  |  October 27, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    This is so touching. I had to play it twice and I cried the second time like I was hearing it for the first time. Very good ad.

  • 11. Rich  |  October 26, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    A fabulous ad!

  • 12. RepublicanLutz  |  October 26, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    I love how people who seem to hate science in other contexts claim to love it when they think it justifies their bigotry.

    My favorite bit is when some of these people try to use science to justify laws against sodomy. "Homosexuality is against nature" they say.

    The reality, of course, is that many animals do participate in homosexual activity. They often reply with some silly comment along the lines of, "Well, cannibalism is found in nature too, so should we legalize that?" This totally ignores that the "homosexuality is natural" fact was only used as a response to their claim that it was unnatural. No one is suggesting that our laws be based on what animals who lack the brain to even think of concepts like gay do or don't do.

  • 13. RepublicanLutz  |  October 26, 2012 at 10:16 pm

    To clarify: I didn't mean to suggest that the study of other animals never plays a role in the formation of our laws, but obviously the notions of liberty and "mind your own business" are not based on the habits of penguins. My point was that the anti-gay side likes to respond to an argument that no one on the gay-friendly side is making. This is ultimately a conversation about people, not lesser animals.

  • 14. bythesea  |  October 26, 2012 at 10:32 pm

    Shut up asshole. I know this will be be deleted, but sooo needs to be said to you, asshat.

  • 15. RepublicanLutz  |  October 26, 2012 at 11:13 pm

    Excuse me? What exactly did I say to merit such a response? Did you perhaps not understand my comment?

  • 16. Fluffyskunk  |  October 27, 2012 at 2:28 am

    Thanks for debunking it to the choir. Now go and do likewise on TV.

  • 17. RepublicanLutz  |  October 27, 2012 at 9:49 am

    BTW, there is something particularly "amusing" about NOM saying, “Same-sex marriage merely validates sex partners."

    In Lawrence v. Texas, Justice Kennedy wrote:

    " To say that the issue in Bowers was simply the right to engage in certain sexual conduct demeans the claim the individual put forward, just as it would demean a married couple were it to be said marriage is simply about the right to have sexual intercourse."

    Given the above, I certainly hope the anti-gay side makes the NOM claim during oral arguments. One can just imagine the response from the bench.

  • 18. SHOES THROWER  |  October 28, 2012 at 11:28 am

    Here are some of the arguments made by the pro-SSM side.

    Civil unions deny the "social recognition" that comes with marriage. Amicus brief of GLAD, Opinions of the Justices to the Senate, SJC-09163, at 24 (Mass. Sup. Jud. Ct.) , they would “mark [same-sex couples] as inferior to their heterosexual counterparts and diminish their status in the community”regardless of whether they provided “the same benefits, protections,rights and responsibilities under law as are granted to spouses in a marriage” Amicus Brief of Civil Rights Organizations, Opinions, at 12, and that civil unions “would not constitute equality, because their relationships still would not be recognized by the rest of society as being as valued as heterosexual relationships.” id. at 13

    And in Li v. State of Oregon, 338 Or 376, 388, 110 P3d 91 (Or. Sup. Ct. 2005) plaintiffs had argued that civil unions would be “inherently stigmatizing and "inherently separate and unequal” Reply Brief of Plaintiff-Respondents/Cross-Appellants, Li, at 10.

    And in Jackson v. Abercrombie , the plaintiffs are suing because of the "special status" of marriage, not just
    the "bundle of rights" which the civil union law would allow them. See Complaint in Jackson v. Abercrombie, CV11-009734-ACK-KSC, at 13, quoting Kerrigan v. Commissioner of Public Health, 289 Conn. 315 at 289, 957 A.2d 407 at 416 (Conn. Sup. Ct. 2008)

    So i wonder where NOM got the impression that “[s]ame-sex marriage merely validates sex partners."

  • 19. ddwa  |  October 27, 2012 at 11:50 pm

    A link to the NOM ad came up in my facebook feed twice. I marked it as offensive both times and wrote to facebook saying that if I see it again, I'm deleting my account.

    I'm a Washington State resident, but I would think facebook would be able to deduce from its data harvesting that I would not be receptive to this.

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