Sometimes there is not much to say other than to get right to the point. In the next few weeks, the people of California will decide if we will put Marriage Equality back on the ballot in 2010, or if we will allow Prop 8 to stand and ask the LGBT community to wait at least another two years for full equality.
We must deliver 1.2 Million signatures by April 12 if we are to return to the ballot. And frankly, we are behind schedule. If I could share a proven message that moves even Republicans on the subject of marriage equality would that inspire the support we need to make this happen? A week ago Friday this ad was chosen by judges like George Stephanopoulos, Roger Stone, Chuck Todd, Christine Todd Whitman, Robert Traynham, Joe Trippi and more as the Best Television Ad for a Ballot Initiative at the Reed Awards, watch it now and then see what the focus group results were:
Does this messaging really work?
Yes! The focus group study of this ad by HCD Research reported the ad was considered effective by 83% of Democrats, 77% of Independents and 58% of Republicans. "Happiness" and "Inspiration" for both Democratic and Independent voters, were the most often reported reactions to the ad studied by HCD. Republicans reported feeling "Disturbed" (24%) with "Happiness" (20%) being a close second. Complete study details here.
More proof: The ad was featured in the January 18 cover story in the New Yorker Magazine which detailed the state of Marriage Equality efforts in America with a focus on the Federal case. I am quoted on page 7 of the article, while on page 8 Glenn Kessler of HCD Research expands on just what those numbers in the study reveal:
This fall, the spot was tested by H.C.D., a New Jersey-based advertising-research firm, and Republicans were surprisingly receptive: fifty-five per cent of them called the ad "effective," even though only twenty-nine per cent of them supported gay marriage. Glenn Kessler, the head of research for H.C.D., told me, "That suggests a useful dissonance." The ad didn’t change many minds after one viewing, he noted, but the reaction "suggests that if you tell that kind of story over and over you could get some movement." Hedlund said, "TV allows us to have a silent conversation with people who may be having a conversation within themselves already. Maybe they have family in the room that they can’t even share their doubts with. And what we’re doing is giving them permission to have those doubts."
So here is the bottom line: We are short on time, but not on hope. I believe there is a massive untapped well of support for an effort to repeal prop 8 now, not in some distant future. We need your help to build awareness for this campaign so we can tap into that support. Nothing can inspire like the right cause and well founded belief that we will carry the day. I believe that if you help us return to the ballot, we will execute a campaign based on messages like the video you just saw that will result in a "Yes" vote for equality, something never before done, and like the breaking of the four minute mile it will literally change the world.
Join us right now on the front lines of this vital effort. We need to raise $25,000 by Sunday to put this ad on television. Even a small buy here in California will send the clear message that we are running a serious campaign that will change hearts and minds. A campaign that will Restore Equality in 2010.
A little more evidence? In response to the New Yorker article and image from our video, the National Review posted a four page response which Maggie Gallagher herself reposted on the NOM Blog. What would inspire such an overt response, but the fear that we have hit upon the right message which will inspire voters to their better instincts and support of equality for all.
Will you help us spread this word? Do not allow Prop 8 to stand one day longer. You have the chance right now to help us air the most impactful television ad in support of Marriage Equality made to date. Your contribution toward our $25,000 goal will help insure that Equality is restored in 2010.
After chipping in what you can share, please share this diary and video with others in support of equality and join us at Restore Equality 2010, come join the effort to gather signatures and ensure a place for equality on the ballot in California before another two years of injustice passes by.
Thank You for all that you do,
Restore Equality 2010