Examiner reports "racial divide," ignores Ward 8 vote
Related Links

Battle over gay marriage in D.C. raises questions of racial divide (Washington Examiner) 05/18/09

Will gay marriage cause blacks to divorce the Democratic Party? (Washington Examiner) 05/18/09

Pannell statement to Ward 8 Dems on Marriage Equality 05/18/09

Talking points on D.C. marriage equality - pdf format 05/17/09

Ward 8 Democrats endorse civil marriage equality 05/16/09

Bad Shepherd (Metro Weekly) 05/14/09

Where D.C. Officials Stand on Marriage 05/13/09

10 Points for D.C. Council Members on Marriage Equality 05/11/09

Victory on marriage recognition 05/05/09

Anti-gay radio ad running in DC 05/04/09

Action Alert: Urge D.C. Council to reaffirm marriage recognition on May 5 04/30/09

Marion Barry opposes marriage equality at anti-gay rally 04/28/09

A Timeline on Marriage Recognition in D.C. 04/19/09

GLAA thanks Councilmembers for marriage recognition vote 04/07/09

Examiner reports "racial divide," ignores Ward 8 vote

From:Rick Rosendall
Sent:Monday, May 18, 2009 10:13 AM
To:bmyers@washingtonexaminer.com
Subject:Examiner reports "racial divide" over marriage

Bill,

I read with interest your story in today's Examiner titled, "Battle over gay marriage in D.C. raises questions of racial divide" (link below). A few comments:

1. Notably missing was any mention of the decision on Saturday by Ward 8 Democrats to support civil marriage equality in D.C., which was reported on Sunday by The Washington Post (link below). Considering that this development goes directly against the racial-division theme, I certainly hope that the Examiner will report it.

2. I realize that reporters are not responsible for headlines, so please convey to your editors my objection to the blaring front-page headline, "Great divide on gay marriage: D.C. splits along racial, cultural lines." This is contradicted by facts that I pointed out to you when you interviewed me, including that there are black people of faith on both sides of the issue, and black leaders in the local effort to win marriage equality (and BTW, "marriage equality" is not just spin, it is an accurate description of what we seek--not some separate legal institution called "gay marriage").

3. As was noted in the Washington Post story yesterday, what was noteworthy about the 2006 polling results from the Foundation for All D.C. Families, as far as race is concerned, was that a substantial minority of black voters OPPOSED an anti-gay initiative. In addition, a majority of black voters supported some form of legal protection for gay families. To report a "racial divide" as if black voters are all on one side and white voters all on another puts a false spin on the available information.

4. My comment about a "red herring" was specifically in reference to the claim by our opponents that civil marriage equality would lead to the government forcing churches to conduct and accept same-sex marriages. This is confirmed by GLAA's talking points (link below). Your article gave the impression that my comment referred to the idea of there being a racial divide. That doesn't even make sense; I do say that the portrayal of a racial divide is a falsification by Bishop Jackson and his allies who seek to stoke such a divide, but the term "red herring" is simply inapt and I did not raise it in this context.

The blaring front-page headline, which again I realize is not your responsibility, gives the impression that the Examiner is itself seeking to play up the alleged racial divide. That sort of sensationalism is irresponsible journalistically on the part of your editors, and is a disservice to the people of Washington, D.C. Please convey this objection to your editors.

Sincerely,

Rick Rosendall
Vice President for Political Affairs
Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance


Related Links:

Battle over gay marriage in D.C. raises questions of racial divide
by Bill Myers
Washington Examiner
May 18, 2009
http://tinyurl.com/otn4ae

Related item:
Will gay marriage cause blacks to divorce the Democratic Party?
by Bill Myers
Washington Examiner
May 18, 2009
http://tinyurl.com/pdhue5

A Vote for Same-Sex Marriage
Ward 8 Democrats Act Ahead of D.C. Council Legislation
By Nikita Stewart and Tim Craig
The Washington Post
Sunday, May 17, 2009
http://tinyurl.com/q2uwdy

Report to GLAA members:
Ward 8 Democrats endorse civil marriage equality
May 17, 2009
http://www.glaa.org/archive/2009/ward8demsendorsemarriage0516.shtml

Pannell statement to Ward 8 Dems on Marriage Equality
http://www.glaa.org/archive/2009/pannellonmarriage0516.shtml

GLAA: Talking points on D.C. marriage equality
http://www.glaa.org/archive/2009/talkingpointsonmarriage0517.pdf

Bad Shepherd
Commentary by Richard J. Rosendall
Metro Weekly
May 14, 2009
http://www.metroweekly.com/gauge/commentary.php?ak=4236


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