The Human Rights Campaign has hand-delivered an online petition that approximately 46,000 users signed to the Washington, DC offices of Kirkland & Ellis where Ken Starr is of counsel. Starr argued before the California Supreme Court to both uphold Proposition 8, which bans marriage between same-sex couples, as well as to strike down the 18,000 marriages performed when marriage equality was legal in this state. HRC Director of Marketing Anastasia Khoo said she wants to thank everyone who signed the petition. â€śThe law offices of Kirkland & Ellis assured me the petition would be personally handed over to Starr,â€ť said Khoo.
The petition drive was featured on EndtheLies.org, a new HRC action-based website launched to confront the lies and distortions repeatedly used to defeat LGBTQ equality measures. Also, four new profiles have been added to the interactive site: Colorado State Senator Scott Renfroe (who called LGBT people â€śan offense to Godâ€ť), right-wing radio personality Rush Limbaugh, GOP Chairman Michael Steele, and the Washington Values Alliance.
Starr has referred to the struggle for marriage equality as â€śseizing and hijacking the marriage relationship in order to achieve apartheid-type values.â€ť This was the siteâ€™s first target of the grassroots action. EndtheLies.org launched on March 5, the day of the California high court arguments.
â€śThis kind of response to the lies repeatedly used to block our equality demonstrates that many Americans have had enough,â€ť said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese. â€śGrassroots tools like EndtheLies.org will be critical to our communityâ€™s upcoming legislative battles, including passing the Matthew Shepard Act in 111th Congress.â€ť
The four additions to the site include Colorado Sen. Renfroe, who gained notoriety when he compared homosexuality with murder during a legislative debate. Limbaugh has repeatedly made anti-gay statements, including a comment accusing LGBT students of â€śtrumpetingâ€ť their sexuality and â€śinviting dissent.â€ť Steele, who once chaired a political action committee urging the Republican Party to be more inclusive of LGBT people, has apparently abandoned those efforts and recently called civil unions â€ścrazy.â€ť Although he did state that homosexuality was NOT a choice any more than being black was â€“ an opinion that sent shock waves throughout the Republican camp. The Washington Values Alliance has been spreading lies about a Washington State bill that would establish equal benefits for couples registered as domestic partners, including that children will not be safe in schools because it will be illegal to speak against marriage for lesbian and gay couples.
The EndtheLies.org interactive wall includes videos, audio, pictures, and quotes from the anti-gay figures it highlights. By clicking on the individual panels of the wall, users can access more information about those on the wall; watch videos; add comments on multimedia discussion boards; and learn how to take action to counteract their misdeeds.
Along with Starr and the four new additions, the wall currently features the full range of liars, including the American Family Association (AFA); the elders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints; Oklahoma State Representative Sally Kern, who said â€śthe homosexual agenda is destroying this nationâ€ť and called LGBT people terrorists; Pat Boone, who also equated Prop 8 protesters with terrorists; and Pope Benedict XVI calling homosexuality â€śa deviation, an irregularity, a woundâ€ť and saying same-sex marriage is â€śa destruction of Godâ€™s workâ€ť â€“ to name just a few of the outspoken phonies.
Visitors to the website are heartily encouraged to nominate their own candidates for inclusion on the wall.