Bold New Ads Aired to Oppose Texas Anti-Marriage Amendment

October 12, 2005

Houston same-sex couples and families speak from the heart about why marriage matters

Roberta Sklar, Director of Communications

HOUSTON, Oct. 12 — The Vote Against the Amendment Campaign, a project of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, today announced the release of seven broadcast commercials in opposition to Proposition 2, a proposed amendment to the Texas constitution that would prohibit any legal recognition of same-sex relationships. The measure will be on the ballot on November 8.

The seven television spots, which begin airing today, feature several Houston gay and lesbian families talking about their love and the need for, and importance of, marriage equality. While there have been many television ads opposing state anti-marriage constitutional amendments over the last few years, this new series is the first time same-sex couples have spoken directly about why marriage matters.

"These groundbreaking ads will introduce Houston voters to their gay and lesbian neighbors and underscore that this constitutional amendment will hurt real people and real families," said National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Director of Organizing & Training Dave Fleischer. "We think it is important to speak to voters openly and honestly about our lives and relationships. When voters know who we are, many more of them see the need for marriage equality for gay families and consider standing with us on the issue."

"It is imperative that Houstonians understand the negative impact this amendment will have on our lives and our families," said Rev. Carolyn Mobley and Adrain Bowie, who appear in one of the commercials. "We are not second-class citizens, and we need the same resources and rights available to heterosexual couples to protect our families."

According to the U.S. Census, there are 9,784 same-sex couples in the Houston metropolitan area, with a total of 42,912 same-sex couples in the state of Texas. The greater Houston metro area ranks 44th out of the 331 metropolitan areas defined by the Census nationwide.

The Vote Against the Amendment Campaign and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force are working in partnership with the coalition of state and local groups in Texas that are part of the No Nonsense in November campaign.

"Our opponents have vastly greater resources at their disposal and are relying on myths and fear-mongering to hurt Texas families. We appreciate the work of the Task Force to show the truth about who we are," said Glen Maxey, the No Nonsense in November campaign manager.

Proposition 2, which will be decided on November 8, prohibits marriage, civil unions and domestic partnerships for same-sex families. The Task Force has committed significant resources to helping the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community educate voters about the detrimental impact of these divisive amendments. This commitment includes training, voter identification, organizing key communities, as well as significant financial assistance.

To date, 18 states have amended their state constitutions to preclude the recognition of same-sex marriage, with most of the amendments also forbidding any legal recognition of same-sex families.

The ads may be viewed by going to

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The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Inc. ("NGLTF, Inc."), founded in 1974, works to build the grassroots political power of the LGBT community to win complete equality. We do this through direct and grassroots lobbying to defeat anti-LGBT ballot initiatives and legislation and pass pro-LGBT legislation and other measures. We also analyze and report on the positions of candidates for public office on issues of importance to the LGBT community. NGLTF, Inc. is a 501(c)(4) non-profit corporation incorporated in New York. Contributions to NGLTF, Inc. are not tax-deductible.

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The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.