The Mozilla fiasco was about far more than “gay marriage”

I went on Howie Kurtz’s Sunday morning, which is now on Fox News, to talk about Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich stepping down following the controversy of his having donated $1,000 to the Proposition 8 campaign in California.

As you know, Prop 8 was the ballot measure that repealed the rights of gay couples in California to marry, and it was also intended to repeal the 18,000 legal marriages that had already taken place between gay couples in California.

Because of the outrage from, among others, Mozilla employees, including half of the organization’s board of directors resigning, Eich finally stepped down last week.

I’d written a few days ago that while I’m still glad that Eich stepped down, I definitely thought through whether it was right to challenge Eich over his Prop 8 donation (and I do think it was right). As a result of that piece, Kurtz asked me on his show.


Well, it was three against one.

I don’t like to get heated on shows like this, but it’s hard when three people are taking you on, from literally all sides of you, to not let your temper flare a bit.  So mine flared, a bit. :)

But before we get to the video, a few issues with the discussion:

1. This isn’t just “about gay marriage.”

Prop 8 was about repealing a civil right that already existed.  And while the conservative guest on the show kept talking about it being only some right a “judge” made, well, so was Loving v. Virginia, the Supreme Court case that made it legal for blacks and whites to inter-marry.  That was only “some judge’s” decision.  It’s also referred to as the law of the land, and one of the most important moments in American history.

Prop 8 was an exceptionally vicious move, and it was an exceptionally vicious lie-ladened campaign from the religious right, the Catholic church and the Mormons.  You have to understand it in that context in order to appreciate why a $1000-donor to Prop 8 would so enrage gays and our allies.

2. This was about attempting to repeal the 18,000 marriages of gay couples that were already on the books.

Fortunately, the religious right didn’t get away with it.  The court refused to let Prop 8, once passed, repeal the existing 18,000 gay marriages.  But the religious right wanted it to.  And they tried to get a judge to agree.  So when folks talk about this “just being about gay marriage,” and it “just being his opinion,” it was neither.  It was about attempting to delete the marriages of 18,000 Americans with whom Brendan Eich disagreed.

A “difference of opinion” is writing a letter to the editor – not giving $1,000 to some of the biggest bigots on the planet to rip the civil rights, and marriages, away from gay families.

3. Obama did not have the same position as Brendan Eich.

One of the top talking points among conservatives on this issue is that President Obama had the same position as Brendan Eich.  No he didn’t.  First, President Obama may not have been for gay marriage in 2008, but he was against Prop 8, and said so publicly.

Second, while Obama wasn’t good on marriage, Obama was good on every single other gay rights issue in the book.  Can you say the same about Brendan Eich?  I got a kick out of Republicans on Twitter yesterday who asked me why I voted for Obama in 2008, since he wasn’t in favor of gay marriage.  Right, so if you care about gay rights, and the Democrat is bad on one gay rights issue, but none others, vote instead for the Republican who’s pretty much bad on all gay rights issues.

Third, this isn’t about 2008, it’s about 2014.  And President Obama supports gay marriage now, that’s why I’m no longer criticizing him on the topic.  I, we, did however criticize him, quite strongly, on a variety of gay right issues, including marriage equality in the past.  It was AMERICAblog’s deputy at the time, Joe Sudbay, who looked President Obama in the eye and basically scolded the President for not being better on gay marriage. Joe got the President to say that he was “evolving,” a word that dogged the President until he finally came around and endorsed same-sex marriage.  But there’s been no indication that Brendan Eich was evolving, he never even explained his donation, let alone apologized for it.  That suggests a lack of evolution.  And it’s why, in 2014, we’re no longer beating President Obama up on this issue: because the President evolved.

4. It wasn’t just the gays.

Mozilla’s own employees were outraged, and half the board of directors resigned. Under those circumstances, it’s hard to hold on as CEO. Painting this as just “gay activists” demeans the real anger, and efforts, of Mozilla’s own staff and management.

In the end, I’m not entirely sure if Brendan Eich would have lost his job had he simply “not agreed” with gay marriage.  Prop 8 really was an extraordinarily vicious move, and Eich supported it with a sizable donation.

Then again, same-sex marriage is now the law of the land (again) in California, and some of Brendan Eich’s own employees are likely gays who are married.  It would be an awfully uncomfortable work-environment to have a real, legal marriage that your boss not only doesn’t accept, but one he actively tried to get rid of.   That’s not a boss committed to equality.

Below is the video of my discussion on Fox.

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CyberDisobedience on Substack | @aravosis | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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124 Responses to “The Mozilla fiasco was about far more than “gay marriage””

  1. Sam Staskiewicz says:

    “BUT, to expect the rest of the world to understand, give you the same consideration that normal people are given”

    The “same considerations” are those considerations rights or are they privileges? Privileges are granted by tyrants and can be pulled for no reason. Rights are inherent. Sometimes they need to be adjusted or mitigated, but the general thing about a right is that the person with a right did not need somene to grant them their right.

    There is a reason people want the same considerations.

    If gay marriage is an arbitrary, unrecognized thing than gay life is eternally at the whim of tyrants. Gay people don’t need an endorsement from anyone and they don’t need to be liked. They do need a standing in some matters that is stable, as opposed to randomly valid and then randomly invalid. Can someone make medical decisions for their incapacitated partner? Can someone share their insurance and benefits with partner. Can someone have that sort of co-life in a legal and recognized way?

    Many opponents of gay marriage would grant some of these things. But it would be transitory, revocable and completely unable to provide any sort of foundation.

    The pushing for rights isn’t about making anyone compromise themselves. Its about gaining a solid platform on which some of us could live, without random and ever mutating recognition of our status.

    But a big part of the problem though is that a lot of people want no status for gays because gays should just cease being homosexual.

    Whatever gay people’s status is it should be consistent and have some meaning that sn’t changing from day to day.

  2. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    No, I guess you didn’t. This is what you first asked: “Now, do you think that people ought to be able to express their personal opinions without losing their jobs?”

    I said I did believe someone had the right to express their opinion. I still do, but this evening you changed the wording to advocate. I don’t believe anyone has the right to pay to have someone else’s rights taken away. It’s even fouler when one thinks that the Yes On 8 people wanted to put and end to 9,000 marriages. That’s using one’s money to hurt 18,000 people. To me, that’s sadistic.

  3. edbarbar says:

    Oh, now you are angry. I thought the guy donated $1000 to the Yes on 8 campaign. Did I miss something?

  4. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Check your “facts” dude. I really assumed you knew what you were talking about. At least, take the time to carefully read John’s post.

  5. edbarbar says:

    First, I didn’t skirt the issue. I stated it clearly: “People raising the next generation deserve to have lesser taxation obligations.”

    Second, Eich didn’t do more than that. He advocated for a position. Isn’t that what free speech is all about?

  6. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Yes, I do, but Eich did more than that, didn’t he?

  7. edbarbar says:

    Yes, I do.

    Now, do you think that people ought to be able to express their personal opinions without losing their jobs?

  8. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    You really skirted the issue. Do you feel the children of same gender couples should receive those financial benefits? A simple yes or no will suffice.

  9. edbarbar says:

    I think you are misunderstanding. I’m saying who in their right mind would argue against the non-financial marriage values, such as seeing a lover in the ER. I suspect those came form marriage as a shorthand, and from a time when it was difficult to document identities, etc.. That’s fine to me: I don’t care about the word marriage. What I care about is not providing incentives for childless able bodied people to obtain the financial benefits that were designed for children. As I said, migrate them to those who have and have had children. They aren’t there because people fell in love, but marriage as the shorthand for having or going to have a family. What, you are lucky to have fallen in love, and so the government should reward you financially? What about all the lonely schlubs in the world.

    Regarding my post to PattyMo, as I recall that was a discussion about immigration. It turns out the demographic indicators for illegal immigrants are poor across generations. My argument was we ought to encourage immigration to fill valuable STEM jobs, and that’s good for the US. It’s not good to import poverty into the US when that poverty costs government coffers more than it generates, not to mention a host of other issues.

    Finally, I think I said already what I meant about children. They are extremely expensive to raise. People raising the next generation deserve to have lesser taxation obligations. Childless people will benefit in their old age from the productivity of the new generation.

  10. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    “Who cares about the non-financial values to marriage, and then we can dispense with all these fairness arguments.” How naive. Gays would find themselves in the same place. The people who have been fighting against marriage equality will not treat us fairly. They would make laws protecting heterosexuals, but not apply them to homosexuals. We need laws protecting us from hospitals not allowing us to see our loved one. We need laws allowing us to make funeral arrangements for our loved ones. That’s not going to happen in such places as Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, or Wisconsin

    I have a question for you. My husband and I adopted two children. They are adults now, but would those benefits have migrated to us? I live in a suburb of Minneapolis that is well known for its number of same gender couples. Many of those couples have children. These children came from adoptions, artificial insemination, surrogacy, and even the old fashion way. Would those children receive the same financial benefits as children of straight couples?

  11. edbarbar says:

    “Now here are some more “utilities”. A gay man and woman may be denied access to their partner in a hospital, because the rules say that only family may visit. That occurs in ERs and ICUs. There are also many tax advantages.”

    Right, so let’s stop the state providing any monetary benefit for being married, and migrate it to those that have or have had children. Who cares about the non-financial values to marriage, and then we can dispense with all these fairness arguments.

  12. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Obviously, you believe there is no “utility” in a man and a woman who meet in their twilight years marrying. They won’t be producing children. What about a younger couple marrying even though they knew one was infertile? Should we give every straight couple four years to produce an offspring, and require an annulment if they haven’t?

    Now here are some more “utilities”. A gay man and woman may be denied access to their partner in a hospital, because the rules say that only family may visit. That occurs in ERs and ICUs. There are also many tax advantages.

    It’s also important in death. In many states, one partner can not make funeral arrangements for the deceased partner. Estranged families have also been known to come into the residence of their relative with whom they refused to have anything to do, and claim the contents of the residence be given to them.

    You need to find a copy of the DVD, “Bridegroom”. Then you need to watch it. Maybe you are as stoney hearted as you sound, and you won’t be affected by it.

  13. edbarbar says:

    I was hanging out at my boss’s apartment when his roommate called home and said he had been beat up in SF because of “gay haters.” Well, that’s really horrible. Isn’t it also horrible to take away a man’s job because they have an opinion?

    I don’t understand, and will never understand, the utility of gay marriage. Marriage is for the children, not in a religious way, but in the sense marriage is the institution that has popped up all over the world thousands of years ago to facilitate child rearing in a diverse environment, between a man and a woman.

    I don’t condone the group think associated with religion, but the thinking here is no better, in my view.

  14. Moderator3 says:


  15. Fred Flintstone says:

    Look If you want to be queer, that’s your business. If 2 homos wont to live together that to is YOUR BUSINESS! BUT, to expect the rest of the world to understand, give you the same consideration that normal people are given, and to act the same is expanding logical rational! The intelligent thing to do is to do what you want and keep your mouth SHUT and for the most part truly decent genuinely patriotic Americans wont bother you. I could go on and on about pedophiles, queer school teachers etc. etc. etc, but hey, both sides of the fence, that are TRULY honest, know what the statistics are and the problems that come from said issue, so there is no need in discussing it even. Hey, if the gay community is just an alternative lifestyle, then I would strongly suggest you seek out and destroy by whatever means necessary, the despicable people within your community. and have the intelligence and decency enough to avoid occupations that you know good and well before you ever enter into them, people are going to have issues with and are (in the case of their children) justifiably going to be against you.Perhaps even violently so! Hey, this worked well for hundreds of years and there was rarely ever a problem. The problems came about when the gay community began to try to ram down the throats of the rest of the world their “lifestyle”.

  16. Westen says:

    I know your side likes to play it that way, but this was nothing at all like that. His own company booted him out.

  17. Westen says:

    They made absurd arguments. All you did was get a bit riled when they deserved a slug to the chops.

  18. Norman Dostal says:

    John, you did a very godo job! I was especially shocked that a black woman was arguing with you, as if she was completely unaware that millions of American still think blacks are less than whites!!

  19. DreamingVertebrate says:

    I saw a $10 million golden parachute claim. Not bad returns on a $1000 donation.

  20. cambridgemac says:

    Ok, I’ll take the bait. Let’s make it illegal for Eich to marry! And nullify his marriage. :)

  21. cambridgemac says:

    Hard to tell if you know the facts of the case, e.g. half the Board resigned and huge numbers of employees flamed him. But don’t let facts stand in your way.

  22. emjayay says:

    With people like you are referring to I always think I hope you work through all these issues and grow up someday.

  23. emjayay says:

    See your doctor.

  24. emjayay says:

    What if you capitalize it, plus random other nouns? Doesn’t that make it true?

  25. emjayay says:

    Wow, I assumed you would get scale or something.

  26. silas1898 says:

    It’s at least 7 figures and probably 8 figures now.

  27. silas1898 says:

    HBO and Maher don’t pretend to be “news”.

  28. Hue-Man says:

    Eich was appointed the CEO of Mozilla which meant that he ultimately approved hiring and firing, promotions, demotions, compensation of all the company’s employees. In many corporations, as CEO, he could have directed that new hires be recruited solely from Liberty University!

    Obama is not the CEO of the USA. With the (broken) government structure, he must negotiate with Congress on what his administration can and can’t do. His control over personnel is limited to his political appointees who serve at his pleasure; beyond that the backlash of the Bush Jr. administration hiring of law graduates from sub-standard law schools shows how little “CEO” power the POTUS has and U.S. Senators even less.

    Bringing Obama and Clinton into the Mozilla story is completely inappropriate and irrelevant.

    This story has caused me to reflect on the lack of retribution directed at Canadian politicians who voted against marriage equality in June, 2005 – the Conservative Party, then in opposition, voted 93-3 against equal marriage. The law was enacted and less than 18 months later under a newly elected Conservative government, a motion to re-open the same-sex marriage debate was voted down by 175-123. After the vote, Conservative Prime Minister Harper said “I don’t see reopening this question in the future”. No Manhattan Declaration or purity pledges for Canadian evangelicals.

    I’m sure that there are a large number of Conservative MPs who are still against marriage equality but they know that that position is toxic to voters who have moved on. Similarly, lesbian and gay Canadians are happy to get married if they wish and haven’t expressed a wish to collect “scalps” (perhaps because the replacement probably wouldn’t have views substantially different from the victim).

  29. Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher features 2-3 liberals for every conservative.

  30. He didn’t piss off the “free market,” he pissed off a bunch of stupid activists that claim to speak for the entire gay community when in reality they only speak for themselves. John Aravosis is not the King of the Gays, you know.

  31. So if Chick-Fil-A fires someone for donating to a pro-gay marriage cause, you’re OK with that? Sure, maybe if you’re a libertarian that supports discrimination from the private sector, you will. But you guys aren’t libertarian, you’re LIBERALS, and liberals only support freedom when it benefits them, and only for themselves. Besides, this has nothing to do with the free market, people were not dropping Firefox in droves over Eich donation, this was POLITICAL CORRECTNESS RUN AMOK. Frankly, I’m not even against same-sex marriage, you want to kiss the ass of the state for a stupid license? Go ahead. But your jackboot tactics are not gonna win you any friends.

  32. Julien Pierre says:

    Six finger ? I think you mean six figure ;) An awful lot of people in the valley make that, it’s a high cost of living area. Median household income is $90k for Santa Clara county for the period 2008 – 2012.

    I’m sure he is hurt, but he had options to avoid getting hurt this much. Refusing to talk about his donation was not a good choice.

  33. Julien Pierre says:

    If he had apologized on the issue, I would have forgiven him. Unfortunately that didn’t happen.

  34. JB says:

    Does President Obama support bisexual marriage or is he still “evolving” on that issue?

  35. EyeTee says:

    yes, that’s what I said :

    ” the EXPLICIT effort to nullify was a post-election thing, and not brought up much as an argument during the election”

    I have no doubt they intended it but they managed NOT to mention it before hand. (in any of the ads, etc). They more or less ignored us–probably because they realized that arguing to take marriage away from all those happy couples would not be good ad copy. Thus, the argument in their ads was largely about children.

    Our side made a big mistake not to personalize the consequences — EQCA et al were just so afraid to put gay people in their ads….so they got away with mostly not mentioning us. And then, as you say, they unleashed Starr’s brief for the court challenge.

    Their December filing was AFTER the election, and they certainly DID go after us in late 2008/2009. But prior to the election, they said very little about us. And in 2010, at first they said they wouldn’t try to revoke our licenses in federal court, but then of course they did argue that way in that case too.

    Just mean SOBs all the way around. It was a vicious, vicious campaign and obviously the bad feelings still linger. I still see yes on 8 bumper stickers on occasion.

  36. TheAngryFag says:

    Nicely done. Once again, my hat’s off to you for not saying the probably numerous things going through your head. And kudos for owning both those stupid wenches.

  37. Ninja0980 says:

    Exaclty John, people seem to forget Prop 8 was unique in the fact it took away rights that had already been granted to a minority group.
    And it used ads comparing us to pedophiles, zoophiles and destroyers of religions to do so.
    And once it was passed, they tried to nullify the marriages that had been performed and made it clear they would also go after the domestic partnerships as well.
    The damage done to us can’t be overstated and that is why I have no pity for those who have been subjected to boycotts or anger over this.
    That’s what happens when you target a minority group and take away their rights.

  38. On this site? Sure, so long as you’re polite.

  39. Multiple reasons. I’d have preferred had his show remained on CNN. But now that he’s at Fox, I need to keep showing CNN and the others that I can do Tv so that hopefully they’ll get me on too. I will say, that during the Dr Laura days in 2000, it was quite helpful going on Fox, we won a lot of conservatives over, includin O’Reilly himself

  40. BeccaM says:

    I’m happy to forgive when forgiveness is asked and amends are made.

    Eich never asked for forgiveness, never expressed regret for his position against marriage equality or his donations for Prop 8 and for nothing but radical wingnut GOP politicians.

    Indeed, among his supporters on the conservative right, including a few drive-by trolls on this blog, they insist Eich shouldn’t feel regrets or apologize for being against gay rights. Indeed, nearly all of the “Leave Brendan alooooooone!!!” defenders themselves make the assumption — refuted not at all by Eich — he was and still is anti-gay.

    Personally, I’m more fascinated by his donation to Pat Buchanan’s presidential campaign in ’92. I still want to know what if any of Buchanan’s rabid-right positions Eich did not or does not agree with.

  41. But as the article I link to makes clear, that was the intent of the gay-haters – they even went to court and argued that that was the intent behind Prop 8, to repeal the 18,000 marriages.

  42. Sean says:

    I agree with your point, but I used the word “bigots” to describe hard core gay haters who refuse to change. We all have a little bigotry inside, and education is the key to overcoming that. I think we need to be realistic when we assess where people are coming from. It will help us craft an appropriate response.

  43. Lawerence Collins says:

    Where’s Fraud News on the conviction of Jessica Dutro? Where’s their outrage?! These DSSRZS, are so self righteous and sanctimonious that gay people are worthy of death. Why are they not coming to her defense!?

  44. judybrowni says:

    Why is it always the “free market” proponents whining when someone actually earns something?

    The Mozilla CEO earned his resignation: he pissed off both the free market and his own employees.

    The market — and his employees — were free to tell him they didn’t need Mozilla, as long as he was attached.

    But it’s always the Right Wing whining like preschoolers: whine, whine, whine; it’s not fair, mommy! He hit me back!

  45. Bill_Perdue says:

    While that’s formally true it ignores the reality of Obama’s bigoted politics for over a decade and his approach to the 2008 elections. Obama repeatedly pushed his bigoted opposition to marriage equality on superstitious grounds on MTV and at bigot Rick Warrens election debate. He opposed marriage equality and Yes on 8 used his bigotry to turn the tide against us, insuring the passage of Prop 8. “I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. I am not in favor of gay marriage.”

    We were winning when Obama played his bigot card and Yes on 8 played their Obama bigot card. launching a last minute barrage of leaflets, posters and radio/TV ads quoting him. Relatively late in the campaign as Yes on 8 pushed Obama’s statement harder and harder the polls changed and eventually we lost.—44-Yes.php

    We wouldn’t have lost if Obama has kept his vile bigoted views to himself but he didn’t. The two evangelical ministers who helped him, Leah Daughtry (1), DNC COO and Josh Dubois (2), who ran his ‘religious’, read bigot, outreach program, with the help of rightwing bigoted scum like Rick Warren (3) and Donnie McClurkin (4) succeeded in winning a lot of bigot votes, mostly white catholics and even some evangelicals. In California, Arizona and Florida, that bigotry mobilized mainly white catholics, mormons and evangelicals to vote against marriage equality. “President-elect Barack Obama made a concerted effort to reach out to people of faith during the 2008 presidential campaign, and early exit polls show that this outreach may have paid off on Election Day. Among nearly every religious group, the Democratic candidate received equal or higher levels of support compared with the 2004 Democratic nominee, John Kerry. My emphasis

    “Barack Obama doubles support from evangelical Christians… Barack Obama has made significant inroads into the white, evangelical Christians vote, detailed exit polls have revealed… The breakdown offers Democrats encouragement that they can make lasting gains among a voting bloc that has been largely off-limits for decades. He… received an extra five per cent across the whole born-again Christian population, which is described as quarter of the electorate.” My emphasis

    (1) Daughtry, who chaired the 2008 Democrat convention in Denver and was head of the DNCs day to day operations for years lost a lawsuit pursued by the DNCs LGBT outreach staffer who claimed, rightly as it turned out, that her decision to fire him was based on bigotry, christian bigotry. She also used DNC money to fund anti-gay and anti-abortion groups.

    (2) Dubois was rewarded by being appointed as the head of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

    (3) Rick Warren got a huge career boost when Obama chose him to deliver the incantations at the Inaugural before billions. Warren went on to play a big role in the passage of anti-gay legislation in Uganda. Obama has not ordered his arrest on charges or crimes against humanity or pulled his passport.

    (4) Donnie McClurkin is active in South Africa where he preaches about the need to ‘cure’ gays and lesbians and where there is a campaign of mass rapes to cure lesbians. Obama has not ordered his arrest on charges or crimes against humanity or pulled his passport.

  46. maggie says:

    So are all ideologies welcome on here?

  47. Bill_Perdue says:

    It became the key issue because it was the wedge issue of choice for right wingers in the Democrat and Republican parties. They all wanted to appeal to the bigot vote and used attacks on marriage equality for that purpose.

  48. BeccaM says:

    Sorry, I lived through it, too, and the explicit intention before the election was that even the 18,000 marriages would be nullified. And while I’m no lawyer, I know enough to know that lawsuits take time to prepare, usually weeks.

    The lawsuit by the pro-Prop 8 groups was filed the very next day, and it sought an immediate injunction to stop any further marriage licenses from being issues, and also stipulated the existing marriages were to be declared null and void. Their argument was that since California no longer recognized same-sex marriages at all due to Prop 8, it was to be judged moot (and they sought a summary judgment on this point) that the issued licenses were therefore invalid.

    It took the California Supreme Court six months to get around to upholding those marriages.

    Anyway — congratulations. This is our first year, too, of joint tax filings, after 15 years of unofficial marriage.

  49. BeccaM says:

    Plus Mozilla’s 3rd party partners, threatening to bail…

    Keeping Eich would’ve been a disastrous business decision.

  50. 2karmanot says:

    “Many if not most Holocaust survivors forgave.: The hell they did.

  51. 2karmanot says:


  52. Richard says:

    It’s typical that Fox would line up three right-wingers to go toe to toe with one liberal…. That’s the only way they know how to do it…. gang up on a guy and try to out shout their fellow right-wingers. Liberals and progressives ought to realize the fox crew is singing to the choir…… so why bother trying to educate them… not possible.

  53. 2karmanot says:

    I say this with the utmost respect and sincerity: ‘eat your diaper.’

  54. 2karmanot says:

    Don’t forgive or forget—–retaliate by every means possible!

  55. 2karmanot says:

    You go John! Good job!

  56. WilmRoget says:

    It is not retaliation until the measure of harm approaches the amount of harm imposed in the first place. Retaliation would mean making it illegal for Eich to marry, it would mean forcibly divorcing him (if he is married) and it would mean subjecting him to a months long campaign that portrayed him as a sexual predator who threatened children.

    None of that has happened, or is likely to. He was held accountable, ever so slightly, for his actions. He has been making a six finger salary for at least a decade, he’s not anywhere near as hurt as the people he hurt.

  57. Butch1 says:

    I suggest you read the Constitution. This is NOT a theocracy; it is a democratic-republic. Sacraments belong in religions and churches and not in governments and laws. Do not mix them. You should know better than that. If you want to live under a theocracy then you should move to Iran or Saudi Arabia where you would be more comfortable.

    Gays have equal rights as straights; or at least they should. Today in at least seventeen states they do and are able to marry. You are on the wrong side of history. Those states that are still discriminating against gay citizens regarding marriage rights will be corrected soon enough by law whether you approve or not. The Constitution guarantees that. There will NOT be second-class citizens in this country. You can remain a bigot and a homophobe if you like; you are free to choose that. You do not have the right to deny others their right to marry whom they love. That is NOT your right and you cannot use your religion or anything else to do it. Whether you think there are more of you and that gives you some sort of right or not is incorrect. The law protects minorities. You should know that by now. Gays are a minority.

  58. JohnVisser says:

    I agree with you John. Prop 8 was not just a simple little debate about some arbitrary law. It was hateful. And as I have said before, if you want to do things like support repealing civil rights (and in such a nasty campaign as Prop 8 was), then you shouldn’t complain when you get blowback. Actions have consequences.

    That said, I do think we would serve ourselves better to forgive than to retaliate.

  59. jomicur says:

    You’re forgetting that “God’s in the mix.”

  60. jomicur says:

    The media outlets regard us (and virtually everyone else) as “product,” something to fill their airtime with. Matt Lauer (to pick one host at random) is quite capable of doing a segment on a topic like gay teen suicide, and bringing to it a level of earnestness and professionalism. Ten minutes later, he’ll be doing another segment, this time on new recipes for Jell-o salad or some such, and bringing to it that same level of earnestness and professionalism. Over time, everything gets reduced to the same level: filler. Or, as they always call it (when they think we’re not listening), “product.”

  61. EyeTee says:

    Actually, they didn’t much mention our marriages during the campaign– they went after them in the legal challenge afterwards. There was lots of legal talk before the election saying that since the Proposition did not have language specifically addressing those marriages, then it wouldn’t act retroactively (which is the argument that held). I think they didn’t go after us so much because they didn’t want to put faces on TEH GAYZ — it would have humanized us to show pictures of happy gay couples getting married, much more effective to argue about THE CHILDREN while showing footage from pride parades. That’s the argument they won with. I think a huge failure of our side inthe campaign was also to “de-gay” it . There were almost no real gay people in the anti-H8 ads….very impersonal.

  62. Butch1 says:

    You bet.

  63. dcinsider says:

    Sometimes you fight people who don’t like to chat.

  64. jomicur says:

    I’ve been saying for years that the surest way for a gay person to gain status in the mainstream media is to bash the gay community. Andrew Sullivan is the number one example. (Remember his article in the NYT Magazine back in the 90s in which he announced the the AIDS crisis was over, so the gay community should just shut up about it? And keep in mind the he is HIV+. Go figure.) There have been any number of others. Bruce Bawer, Tammy Bruce, Camille Paglia, Paul Rudnick and on and on. If you can find a copy of Richard Goldstein’s The Attack Queers, I think you’d find it fascinating. He gives a thoughtful analysis of the phenomenon, complete with numerous quotes from the attackers.

  65. dcinsider says:

    Bullsh*t. Don’t lecture me on forgiveness, who are you Christ? F$ck off.

  66. dcinsider says:

    I think most gays and lesbians agree with that. But we have the ones who will NEVER fight along with the one who will ALWAYS fight. The “never fights” don;t need much encouragement. They are the ones who wag their finger at us, and call us intolerant, by not recognizing that our opponents are entitled to their “opinions.” They are the morons.

    The “always fights” on the other hand perceive everything as a slight. Paranoid is more apt to call them. On this list — and here I go inviting trouble — are the sexual identification police. “I am not female, I identify as cis gender female to male pre-op questioning!”

    I like to think that the rest of us hover in between.

  67. 4th Turning says:

    Authentic forgiveness like authentic love must be unconditional.
    Many if not most Holocaust survivors forgave in order to move on-
    with only belated apologies, if any, like those from late to the party
    southern states, corps, etc. re post 300 yrs. of enslavement.

  68. jomicur says:

    Marriage is a sacrament? Really? I’d suggest you get out your marriage license and give it a good thorough perusal. It was issued by the state in which you reside, not by any church. When you applied for a marriage license, you applied to the state, not your church. If your marriage was performed by a clergyman, he was licensed to do so (and to issue the license) by the state. It is a legal, sociopolitical construct. If you and your friends choose to think of it as a sacrament, that’s just fine. But calling it a sacrament doesn’t make it one, not for anyone but you and your pals.

  69. EyeTee says:

    One note (speaking as one half of oone of the 18,000 marriages that occurred before Prop8). The full text of Prop8 was:
    Section I. Title
    This measure shall be known and may be cited as the “California Marriage Protection Act.”
    Section 2. Article I. Section 7.5 is added to the California Constitution, to read:
    Sec. 7.5. Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.

    That’s it. It did not specifically address the marriages that had already occurred, and there was some discussion before the election whether our marriages would survive. The general consensus amongst legal types was that they were likely to be upheld, because the Proposition itself said nothing retroactive.

    The election season was awful, full of lies and hate. People screamed out of cars and spit at us, when we were demonstrating on street corners. Someone dumped glitter glue all over the back of my car–I can’t prove it but was pretty sure it was due to the big no-on-8 sticker in my back window.

    it is true that upon the State Supreme Court challenge in 2009 that the proponents DID file briefs to challenge our marriages–and it was like a kick in the gut when they did. Fortunately the state upheld our marriages, even as it prevented further marriages from occurring, and the presence of multiple classes of gay people (those who had married, and those who hadn’t and couldn’t) helped set up the federal case argued by AFER. The proponents also tried to argue to nullify our marriages in that federal case.

    So my recollection, having lived through it, is that the EXPLICIT effort to nullify was a post-election thing, and not brought up much as an argument during the election.

    Six years later, and finally we got to file our federal taxes as “married” this year!

  70. 4th Turning says:

    Closely resembles the ransom note school of composition and grammar?

  71. Indigo says:

    So it took three of them to wrestle you in debate and you managed to survive to tell the tale. They must be afraid of you if they had to have three on one to protect their Ship of Fools. Good job, John!

  72. Naja pallida says:

    There are times when I miss the downvote button.

  73. 4th Turning says:

    Any way of knowing how many have been reinstated or had their
    “discharges” raised to honorable?

  74. Naja pallida says:

    So what, you go on with the hope that they’ll plug your blog for half a second, and the free coffee in the green room? I’m not sure that’d be enough to get me on Fox Noise. I’ve done a couple local morning show appearances with my animals, and I guess it’s kind of the same. They want you to be entertaining and engaging, but not offer you anything in return.

  75. Houndentenor says:

    It’s like battered spouse syndrome. They think if they are nice enough and good enough that they won’t get beat up any more. The problem is that the problem is the abuser, not the victim. Maggie Gallagher is a hateful person. No amount of reason or logic or acts of kindness is going to change her into a loving, decent person full of empathy for other people. It’s not going to happen. It’s worth debating people like her not because Gallagher’s mind will be changed but because if we don’t there are people who will never hear her lies and irrational arguments refuted. But the purpose is not to change her. It’s to convince good, decent people that we are people too. They certainly aren’t hearing that at their local fundamentalist church. Sadly there are a lot of gay people who suffer from this abuse syndrome. If we are just nice enough to the people who hate us, they’ll come around. Instead they just use them as “useful idiots” for more propaganda against us.

  76. 4th Turning says:

    President Obama has appointed more than 250 openly-LGBT individuals to positions throughout his administration, including: John Berry, Director of the Office of Personnel Management; Nancy Sutley, Chairperson of the Council for Environmental Quality; Kristina Johnson, Under Secretary of Energy; Fred Hochberg, chairman of the Export Import Bank; Jenny Durkan, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Washington; Chai Feldblum, commissioner, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; and David Huebner, Ambassador to New Zealand.

    The President has also nominated numerous openly-LGBT people for positions in the federal judiciary, including: Emily Hewitt, Chief Judge, U.S. Court of Federal Claim; J. Paul Oetken; judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York – the first openly gay man on the federal bench; Alison Nathan, judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York; and Michael Fitzgerald, judge, U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

  77. BeccaM says:

    The ‘Mozilla fiasco’ was also about several more things:

    – Eich giving several really bad interviews, including one where he tried to excuse anti-gay animus because, apparently, if Indonesia doesn’t like gay people, it must be okay.
    – He also has a messianic streak, and used some of his interview time to insist that he and he alone had the business skills to lead Mozilla.
    – It was about his refusal to say he had any regrets or had evolved in his position since 2008. Indeed, he kept saying he’d support Mozilla’s current policies of non-discrimination and inclusiveness, but would not say he shared those values.
    – In my opinion, most importantly, his resignation came immediately on the heels of the Guardian interview, where they learned Eich had donated to the campaigns of Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul in the 90s and to far conservative-right GOp politicians as recently as 2010. And when asked to explain why, Eich refused to answer.

    Again, at this point, it stopped being about only Prop 8 and gay marriage. It was becoming questions as to why Eich supported politicians who were not only against LGBT civil rights, but who — in the case of some of them, including Buchanan and McClintock, whose positions are that being gay should be illegal. In Buchanan, we have a Hitler-admiring Holocaust denier, a xenophobe, race-baiter, and misogynist. And in McClintock, a politician whose position on gay rights would be right in line with someone who wanted Prop 8 to pass so much, he’d given $1000 to help make it happen, a politician who wanted a nationwide Prop 8 in the form of a Constitutional amendment to ban and repeal all same-sex marriages in America. Moreover, if it’s anything even vaguely resembling a progressive position, McClintock is against it.

    Those questions, especially the Buchanan donations, were coming to light, and while I do have some respect for Eich’s unwillingness to lie about having changed or ‘evolved’ on his personal political positions, his statements about supporting and upholding Mozilla’s inclusiveness and non-discrimination policies rang false. Especially when as CEO, it would’ve been within his power to water down or gradually begin ignoring those policies.

  78. BeccaM says:

    Yes, but he did remember to capitalize nouns at random, another time-honored wingnut gibberish technique. ;-)

  79. FLL says:

    Yup. That has to be said over and over until it sinks in. The Protestant countries (including the American Colonies) made marriage an institution controlled by the secular government back in the 17th century. The Catholic countries followed suit during the French Revolution and Napoleonic Era. The nut case to whom you’re responding is centuries too late. People like that don’t seem too edumacated, do they? We need better edumacation in the public school system!

  80. StraightGrandmother says:

    Over the course of the scandal I made about 2 dozen tweets. Always on point, never vulgar or name calling. Mozilla & Brendan is who I directed my tweets to.

    We fought Dan Cathy at Chik-Fil-A didn’t we? We shouted him down on Social Media then shunned his business. It worked, he recently said he is no longer going to talk about the Civil Marriages of sexual minorities and he stopped donating to anti gay groups. All except for one Christian Athletic org.

    It is shameful that Andrew Sullivan and Johnathan Rauch want to be seen as the “Good Gays” while others fight the ground war.

    1:05 Woman Moderator: “Johnathan you had talked about the importance
    of this being a gradual imperfect process that it’s important that
    States, that even though it is messy you think it’s good there there’s
    not some kind of decree from on high from the Supreme Court or the
    Federal Government that this gets worked out kind of place by place I
    wonder if, to me that seems a little bit in contrast to what you just

    Johnathan Rausch: I’m not sure I get the contrast but my feeling on
    this is that the Courts have their place and defending civil rights is a
    very very important part of that place, I’m not one of these people who
    says the Courts should always stay out of everything, Courts should do
    their job.

    But we get married in the eyes of our community not just the law and
    Courts can’t give us that. We want as gay people is to be viewed as
    married by our communities and faith communities and I worry that
    jumping in prematurely with some kind of national mandate, will set back
    the real process of institutionalizing gay marriage which is convincing
    people showing them that we’re the real thing. That we mean it that we
    can be married and getting their community behind us. I’ll be happy, I
    don’t know how many years it will be but the time will come when most
    gay couples will be getting married in churches and synagogs and

    I just listened to Maggie Gallagher speak on Catholic Radio, an hour interview about 2 weeks ago. Maggie put it this way and I agree with her. “The law is a teacher” It is. For when the law says something is illegal we can morally say it’s wrong because it is illegal. Indeed the law is a teacher and when you have a Johnathan Rausch saying stay out of the Courts, grow your acceptance organically he denies is the value of the Law being a Teacher.

    What is wrong with these guys? It appears to me they simply want to suck up to the Haters and be fawned over as the “Good Gays.”

  81. FLL says:


  82. Silver_Witch says:

    Thanks PeteWa, I will have to go look at Hiltzik’s article. Still betting money though he is still getting a good “please go away” check, shares or distribution.

  83. PeteWa says:

    he left Mozilla voluntarily.
    there are a few things to note here, and I think Michael Hiltzik makes the case very well in the LA Times especially that there was already friction from the get-go with Eich’s appointment to the CEO position – three board members resigned before the Prop 8 issue was even raised, as they felt he was the wrong man for the job.
    and then the point I touched on which Hiltzik also made (better):
    “The CEO of a company isn’t just any employee; he or she is the face of the company, the standard-bearer and very much the standard-setter. As CEO, Eich had the power to heavily influence corporate policy at Mozilla, and although he publicly stated that he would uphold Mozilla’s existing standards of inclusiveness and equal treatment in human relations, plainly these were at odds with his personal views.”

  84. Silver_Witch says:

    You really believe that people should be foreable removed from Office, duly elected officials. You know the President was legally elected Yes?

    And then you go on to declare 8 NOT LEGALLY elected people rule over the government. Your words not mine….

    Phase 3 – Those with the principles of a West, Cruz, Dr. Ben Carson, Lee, DeMint, Paul, Gov Walker, Sessions, Gowdy, Jordan, should comprise a tribunal and assume positions of authority to convene investigations, recommend appropriate charges against politicians and government employees to the new U.S. Attorney General appointed by the new President.

    So only what YOU believe is right? I do not stand with you or this tripe. This sir is treason.

  85. Houndentenor says:

    As someone who regularly performs live (though from memory, thankfully) I do know what you’re talking about. These sorts of shows are notorious for people saying outrageously untrue things and there you are (sometimes with no clue what they are talking about…how could you…they just made it up!) trying to rebut something that would require a good deal of homework to discuss. I thought you came off well and thank you for being the source of sanity there. Someone has to do it and I’m glad it’s not me.

  86. StraightGrandmother says:

    That is right, sometimes you have conversations, and sometimes you stand and fight.

  87. Silver_Witch says:

    Exactly PeteWa….he is still employed and probably very well compensated!

  88. Of course. Employees are speaking up, and then half the board of directors quits? You can’t stay.

  89. StraightGrandmother says:

    That is why it is so important for you to do these shows, because you don’t have to “think” you know where all the bodies are buried and can respond to their slams without hesitation.

  90. PeteWa says:

    yeah I can imagine that would be the case, especially when you are being assaulted by nonsense on all sides.

    there’s also this ongoing bs from those on the pro-Eich side that they ignore completely the accepted culture of Moxilla – and how (obviously with half the board of directors threatening to resign and discord among the rank and file) Eich, with his position on prop 8, love for Pat Buchanan, etc. would be untenable as leader of the company.
    I also find it curious that they keep framing it as Eich being forced out of the company, when all that was at issue was his leadership there, not his employment (which he’s decided to leave voluntarily to “take a rest, take some trips with my family”).

  91. As I’ve argued before, there’s a time and place for both. I;ve spent more than 20 years trying to change the minds of Americans, educating them. And that’s my job. But it doesn’t mean you don’t sometimes stand up and fight back. The thing is, you don’t ALWAYS fight back, which is what I’ve been trying to tell some other progressive communities. It’s your job to fight back WHEN APPROPRIATE (read: appropriate does not mean always), and at other times to EDUCATE.

  92. Silver_Witch says:

    Why isn’t anyone bringing up the fact that Eich is no longer the CEO and no longer serves on the Founder’s Board, but is most probably still “employed” by Firefox for coding creation and most probably got a most excellent Golden Parachute with which to abandon the plane.

    How many teachers who have been out and out fired never got a penny, probably will have a hard time finding another job and were publicly humiliated and shamed by their employer?

    I would like to see ENDA enacted…anyone have President Obama’s phone number (direct line that is)?

    Well done John – very well done!

  93. Houndentenor says:

    There was a very clear strategy shift among the religious right in the early 2000s to move away from fighting against all gay rights (which they saw was a losing battle for them) and to focus on marriage (where they were consistently winning. Hawaii was the beginning, then Vermont passed the civil unions law. It was bleak for the most part. We lost ballot initiatives in what seemed to be every election. What they didn’t foresee is that the mean-spiritedness of their attacks would backfire on them and now gay marriage is polling in a slight majority and doing very well among young people. They won a number of battles but are now losing the war. They really didn’t see this coming and are therefore bitter and angry. You can see it in every comment. And how dare gay people expect to be treated as equals! So they try to project onto us the anger and venom with which they attacked us. I have no fucks to give about this Eich guy. I’d never heard of him before all this. But I’m not using a service (and therefore helping them make money) run by a bigot. So I switched browsers and made a comment or two. The very idea that a few blog posts and a statement or two from a gay rights group caused him to resign is ridiculous. There’s a lot more to this story than just that. (Like, this wasn’t a popular move inside the company apart from this.)

  94. StraightGrandmother says:

    Perhaps it rose to the top becasue specific Civil MRRIAGE laws were targeted t them and passed by the electorate. If 50 States started passing laws that specified, “In our State anyone in any venue, commercial enterprise, or any setting at all are perfectly free to deny products and services to homosexuals”

    Perhaps if those specific laws were passed like the specific Marriage Laws were passed, ENDA would have made it to the number one issue. The other point is that the anti gay marriage laws are Constitutionally invalid. There is no clause or amendment in the United States Constitution that orders citizens and business to *not* practice Discrimination if they want to. We have passed laws to stop Discrimination, but the right to *not be discriminated against by your fellow citizens* is not a Constitutional right. That battle cannot be won in the Courts, it can only be won politically, legislatively.

  95. Yep, he didn’t explain or apologize because he hasn’t changed his mind – that’s the only plausible explanation I can think of.

  96. And it became “the” issue the same way DADT became “the” issue. Organically. We had a new DADT horror story practically every day. Beautiful young patriotic Americans losing their careers – it was a great story. Same thing with marriage. STarting in 2004 we had those gorgeous adorable photos coming from SF of these “normal” loving couples who just wanted to settle down. It was a GREAT story. And it touched the public. On ENDA, where is the daily drip of horror stories to catch the public’s eye and ire?

    These issues don’t rise up on their own.

  97. dcinsider says:

    I believe it became THE issue because of the very real impact lack of these rights had on so many, AND it was an issue that made people see us in an entirely new way. So, as an issue, it had the benefit of changing minds and changing hearts, and the evidence of this is overwhelming.

    It was also a good political strategy (even though some gay politicos thought it was not). Once you kick over the marriage hurdle, equal rights in the workplace becomes a more attainable goal.

    ENDA is important of course. As was repeal of DADT.

  98. LOL I don’t even remember what that was! It’s very strange doing these tv debates as you’re so in the thick of things, you really don’t have time to think, and dont’ recall exactly what you said after the fact. Oh, the 7m, right!

  99. PeteWa says:

    it’s not surprising that Kurtz’s show would consist of a three against one panel, especially now that he’s on Fox.
    you did good, John.

    I especially liked when you called the fox pinhead on her “under no circumstances” and then shut her down when she attempted to move the goal posts.

  100. dcinsider says:

    Apologies accepted but forgiveness is earned.

  101. You accidentally left the caps button off.

  102. Thanks Butch

  103. Sadly there was neither love nor money involved :) People often think I get paid for these appearances – never. The only people who get paid are the actual employees, or people called “Fox contributor” or “CNN contributor”.

  104. Rambie says:

    I somewhat agree Hound, in the mid-90’s when Hawaii was considering passing a gay marriage law (which ultimately failed) the far right thought up DOMA. Since gay marriage polled very low at the time, they jumped on it.

  105. PeteWa says:

    we’ve all seen the contract on America your ilk has taken out in the past.
    no thanks, nut job.

  106. StraightGrandmother says:

    “Marriage is a Sacrament”
    You are conflating Holy Matrimony with Civil marriage.
    Holy Matrimony ≠ Civil Marriage.

  107. BSORaiderErie says:

    Liars! The court used a legal maneuver and not law to defeat Proposition 8! And as for DOMA there is always more than one way to skin the cat! Proposition 8 everywhere won and the people had spoken but as I write States are beginning to take their Powers back!
    States have Rights over the Courts!
    The numbers are with Marriage is between a Man & Woman and we no longer even believe the Netwok Media that will tell a lie or be on talking points with the lowest Democrapts like Wiener and how that Pelosi? Marriage is a Sacrament and is about Family and Not about PC BC or votes and lawyer fees. The only reason this is even political is because everything is for sale in American Politics just like in History before Most Superpowers fall! America is so much different and we can take a complete view and do what’s right for a Country instead of small groups full of money, your taxpayer money, and the politicians want that money given back to them now in the form of a Contribution! Sleep no more, awaken from my imagination, as I look around the resemblance is far from original and as some call it growth other’s see fault lines which can split! Don’t allow them to do this! We need a Contract With America again and anyone that is willing to sign it should be looked at hard for your vote but the Contract needs ideas? Like School Choice which will end so much Social Injustice while defeating the Union and Democrats push at making our schools into Civic Centers!
    16 MAY 2014
    Bring your ideas for a true American Contract!

  108. Fernan says:

    Obama oposed Prop. 8:

    “I oppose the divisive and discriminatory efforts to amend the California Constitution, and similar efforts to amend the U.S. Constitution or those of other states.”

  109. Sean says:

    I like your point about the definition of victory here. For year’s I’ve encountered well-meaning people who focus exclusively on changing the minds of bigots. This impossible goal leads to a kind of defeatism. It’s not worth protesting because “you’re not going to change their minds,” or you attempt to win over the bigots by never pissing them off. And oh boy, that sure works!

  110. Houndentenor says:

    Also, three against one, those of us who live in Teabagistan would be very happy to have such odds.

    Seriously, good job, John. I can’t imagine going on Fox News for love nor money. Thanksgiving with my relatives is bad enough.

  111. Houndentenor says:

    I’m not entirely sure how marriage became the single gay rights issue but I suspect it was a concerted effort on the right to shift the focus. ENDA is popular. In fact most people already think it’s the law and are surprised to learn that there is no legal protection for gay people in the workplace in most states. Republicans didn’t want to talk about ENDA and DADT so they switched the subject to marriage where Democrats weren’t much better than Republicans, at least at that time. Marriage is important, but it’s not the only gay rights issue.

  112. Henson says:

    I agree with what you write here, and with what you said on television. Why is the reaction to California’s Proposition 8, intended to ban gay marriage in the state, so visceral and over the top? Because that specific proposition was just as over-the-top in its mean-spiritedness. I was there when it happened. I was in San Diego as that atrocious ballot measure passed, and watched from the TV in my dad’s living room as people in another living room a couple miles away cheered, laughed, and drank champagne over the prospect that the state we all lived in would return to treating me like a second class citizen. What made Prop 8 so bad was two things – it was the constant dehumanizing TV ads, which you wouldn’t have seen if you weren’t there, and it was the premise of repealing existing marriages. I had friends who WERE MARRIED in California at that time, and this measure was specifically intended to forcibly annul their marriages, their happiness, and their lives together. Excuse me for not getting bent out of shape when your donation to the campaign to “accomplish” this comes home to roost, and costs you a cushy job as CEO of a non-profit. Screw you, Mr Eich. You’re not a victim of anything but your own evil.

  113. Butch1 says:

    When they cannot win the argument on gay rights they inject the KKK and religion, abortion and everything else they can think of to change the subject. One has to get the argument back on the subject and that was what John did. It was brilliant and threw both of them off their diversion game playing.

  114. Butch1 says:

    One cannot be very polite with people who will talk over you and interrupt you. John did well in pushing right back and stopping the nonsense the one on the left was trying to do to mess up him dispensing his information to the public. Even Howie had to tell her to stop. She’s very rude and used to getting her way.

  115. FLL says:

    Chick-fil-A has a homophobic CEO, Dan Cathy, and his antics are well tolerated by his company. So the board members and employees of a different company, Mozilla, feel differently. Tough luck, that’s how the private sector operates, that’s the way cookie crumbles, etc. If Brendan Eich doesn’t like it, he can be the CEO of a company like Chick-fil-A. Below is Dan Cathy’s hateful tweet after the Supreme Court struck down DOMA.

  116. 2patricius2 says:

    John, you did good. You got your points across despite the nonsense from those who wanted to whitewash Eich’s actions.

    To me, the telling point about Eich was that not only did he support by his money a campaign of lies that stopped same sex marriages for several years, and was intended to annul all the legal marriages that had taken place before Prop 8 passed, but that he has refused to apologize and say that he was wrong. That tells me that he not only does not regret his past position and actions, but he has not changed his mind and would do the same thing all over again.

    I was about to comment that I could only begin to feel how it would be to be an employee of a company headed by a CEO with such a history and current opinions. But then I realized I worked for the Catholic Church and knew how it was to be an employee when the popes and bishops attacked same sex relationships and demonized gay people, and that is why I left. Fortunately the employees of Mozilla have more freedom to speak out and they have more power to effect change.

  117. dcinsider says:

    In the end, what really frightens the homophobes and right wingnuts is that we are getting very good at what we do.

    Thanks to this Interweb thing, we can gin up a campaign in minutes, advertise the inequity, and focus on the mission. Years upon years of organizing, political outreach, and simply sheer talent places the gay community in the unique situation of being a force to be reckoned with, both in the provate sector, and to some extent in the political world.

    This scares the crap out of the right.

    Other groups are looking to us to see how we did it. And the Eichs of the world simply don;t understand quite yet (though i suspect he gets it now) that you can no longer be publicly homophobic and get away with it. If you are a public figure who chooses to engage in anti-gay conduct, there is a very real price for that “opinion.”

    This does not mean that avowed, hardened homophobes will change their tune. That is not the goal. What it accomplishes is to make it very inconvenient for those who would like to gain a political benefit from gay bashing to get the benefit. When these opportunists see that there is no value to attaching their wagon to a homophobe, or that, in fact, it is both politically and economically detrimental, they will not do it.

    That is the victory in the Eich matter. That remains the goal.

  118. Bill_Perdue says:

    Not for me. I think apologies by those who did little damage are one thing, but apologies by those who did great damage are another.

    That’s not a problem with most politicians though. Biden never apologized and considering the scale of the damage done by Clinton and Bush I wouldn’t accept their apology in any case.

  119. HeartlandLiberal says:

    I have to give John kudos for having the grit to even appear on the air with these mendacious talking heads, who are operating on instructions passed to them by their oligarchic masters. It is like trying to “debate” with a creationist. It is not a debate, because you are talking apples, and they are talking fantasized oranges. This is NOT a news channel. It is NOT a journalism event. I could not do it. I would want to go across the table and rip their ()&*(*&(&* throats out. Just sayin’. But I am old, and have seen too much of the world, and human beings, and I have just flat run out of patience with evil and stupidity.

  120. StraightGrandmother says:

    Bill just be be clear, apologies ALWAYS accepted. Amnesty granted.

  121. Bill_Perdue says:

    I agree. I think we have to call an enemy an enemy.

    And I think we want to put the fear of being exposed in the minds of bigots thinking about acting against us. That was the best outcome of this situation. Naturally the scum at NOM and FRC won’t be afraid but their reaction indicates that they deathly afraid that their donor base might shrink. Then they’d have to get real jobs.

    The only exception I’d ever consider making would be in the case of closeted LGBT legislators or judges who apologized for acting against us and even then I’d want to assess how much damage they did. I know that for some it’s difficult to come out but probably millions of us have in the last few decades in spite of the difficulties.

  122. bkmn says:

    For me the issue at core was whether Mozilla’s actions lived up to their supposed support of inclusion and diversity. Eich stepped down as CEO because his history (not just the prop 8 donation, but also support for Buchanan and other full on bigots) did not synch with a company that wants to strive for diversity and inclusion.

    Eich is free to continue to work at Mozilla, but he should never have been given the key to the big office.

  123. Bill_Perdue says:

    What matters is that we won another victory on our own without relying on Democrats or Republicans to help us out. They don’t often ‘help’ us in terms of passing laws and on those rare occasions when they do it’s not because they have principles but because they want votes, our money and our time.

    The question of marriage equality is illustrative. First it dawned on Bill Clinton, who elbowed DOMA, through Congress, signed it in the middle of the night and then boasted about his bigotry on redneck radio, that he might be branded as a bigot for all time. So, without any apology, he began to question DOMA. Then Obama, fearing the effects of unemployment and poverty on the vote, rebranded and he in turn was followed by a number of other Democrats and even a few Republicans.

    And then we began to win in the courts, which is good because neither party in Congress was going to repeal DOMA. What finally won marriage equality in the courts was the continued mass pressure exerted through demonstrations and intervention in the courts that finally wound their way to the Supremes, who knocked down a big chunk of DOMA but didn’t rule state DOMAs unconstitutional, although that will likely happen soon (in legal time, which from the human perspective is not so different from geological time.)

    As for our enemies who donated money to Yes on 8, or Clinton who gave us DOMA, or the Bushes, who claimed they weren’t bigots because they opposed marriage equality, or Obama, who attacked us on superstitious grounds (‘gawd’s in the mix’) in 2008, many of us will never forgive them, second thoughts or rebranding or not.

  124. StraightGrandmother says:

    I think you did REALLY GREAT!!!
    It is different when you say, “Well I don’t agree on Gay Marriage” than from actively giving MONEY to deny Equal Civil Rights. I for one will not pinkwash this to mere *Political Speech* I will always hold fast that the issue is a *Civil Rights* Issue.

    Were the white segregationists of my youth practicing mere politrcal speech or where they engaged in a war to keep black people separate and UNEQUAL? Our cause is the same, Equal Treatment Under the Law. No Pinkwashing this as mere political speech hold fast to what you know it is, a fight for Equal Civil Rights.

    I’m glad this happened and I will be very frank about it. This shows anyone who has aspirations fr higher corporate leadership that if you are FOR Discrimination against sexual mnorites, this won’t fly in the Board Room or in the Corporate Suit. What this does is it Chills anti gay speech, and I like that. I want fewer and fewer people to feel comfortable taking an Anti Gay Equality stance. I want that kind of public speech (public donations to anti gay actions) chilled. Anti Gay Speech by Corporate Leaders will now be chilled because they will not want to experience the social pressure we put on Eich for his Public Speech (His Public Donation). Using Social Pressure is a perfectly acceptable form of protest, we boo-ed him essentially. Eich got on a Soap Box with his donation and in 2014 in 2014 when he did *NOT*t say that he *NOW* respects the Fourteenth Amendment he got boo-ed off the stage.

    Notice I did not say I want to STOP Free Speech, but I will not privilege anti gay speech from criticism. No Pinkwashing what is going on here, it’s not *Political Speech* it is Civil Rights. The Right to be treated By Your Government Equally to every other Citizen. Nobody was trampling on Eich’s Freedom of Religion, we were not forcing HIM, to get Gay Married against his religious beliefs, were we? He was trampling on the Religious beliefs of others when he made that donation, pushing for his orthodoxy to be Priory. And they WON! For a while they won, they won until it was righty challenged as a Constitutional Right issue.

    I am not granting Amnesty to anybody until the War is won. The day the Government ends this despicable Discrimination through the Power of the State is the day I will grant Amnesty, not before. Why grant Amnesty while the War is still being fought? That is a dumb battle plan if you ask me. How does that work in all these States that are fighting for anti gay I can Discriminate based on my Religion Laws do we just keep our mouths shut and not make waves? Not hold Bigots accountable for their Bigotry when they are voting and advocating for these laws? Anti Gay animus is no different than racism because it is based on Status, the race of a person or the sexual orientation of a person and this has no bearing on a persons ability to be a good citizen or a good spouse. I’ll shout down a racist every time, yet gay people are supposed to carry their hat in their hand and look the other way and not say anything since in some States they have won? We haven’t won everywhere so no Amnesty. And no Pinkwashing either.

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