Issue:  Rights and Privacy


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"How is it possible for a man to repeat the pledge of allegiance that contains these words, and then call his fellow citizens 'social misfits' when they are simply asking for liberty and justice?"

— Shirley Chisholm



Tell a Personal Story—The power to change hearts and minds lies in our personal stories. Do you want to help human rights in this country move forward? Tell stories of friends and family who are gay and loving—and ordinary.  People in many areas have little exposure to gay men and women. Help us evolve by demonstrating humanity, familiarity and you're own natural concern for the rights of another person who is more like you than not.


"We must remember that any oppression, any injustice, any hatred, is a wedge designed to attack our civilization."

—Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Bill of Rights

"...the Bill of Rights is the guardian of our security as well as our liberty"
 — John Kennedy

What's in a word? by George Lakoff


Equal Rights for Every American.  Civil Rights March, August 1963

Equal Right to Marry and a Right to Privacy

Position statement:  Democrats are the party of the Constitution, defenders of equal rights for all Americans.  We believe that all men and women are created equal and should not be discriminated against because of race, religion, creed or sexual orientation.  We believe it's not the Federal government's business to enter our homes and bedrooms to legislate against family rights and privacy.

By contrast, radical Republicans believe that they can promise anything to any special interest group as long as the promise gets votes.  Their priorities are to support corporate financial sponsors with favorable legislation.  They care little for making good on promises to religious groups to curtail citizen's rights or to fund promised faith-based initiatives.  Their interests are set square on maximizing power and wealth and not in pursuing the divisive promises made to special groups — until the next election.

Make "frame sandwiches" using any of these values:



  • Fairness

  • Equal Rights

  • Personal Freedom

  • Equal Protection

  • Patriotism

  • Respect

Repeat these ready-made frames:   "Domestic Rights" as civil rights;
Use these themes:   Civil rights; Full equality under the rule of law; Equal rights; Human dignity; All Americans are guaranteed equal rights under the law; right of people to form legal contracts
Reframe using these concepts:  "Do you want the government telling YOU who you can love or marry?"; "Keep Government out of our bedrooms!"; "Equal rights under the law"; The 9th Amendment guarantees our rights to privacy; "Why are gays treated differently than you and me?  That's discrimination and it's anti-American."; "You may not approve but it is un-American to deny any American his or her rights";
Contrast using these words:  "Callous Conservatism"; Anti-American; "Tyranny of the Majority in action"; Discrimination;
Avoid repeating these words:  
Know the tools in the radical Republican tool chest:  

1.  The Radical Republican Manifesto: The Integration of Theory and Practice: A Program for the New Traditionalist Movement by Eric Heubeck;

2.  Frank Luntz Republican Playbook — Searchable Text-Version

3. "14 Words Never to Use"

Quick facts*: 
  1. A legal denial of rights or benefits without substantive due process, proponents of marriage equality say, directly contradicts the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution which provides for equal protection of all citizen across classes.

  2. A fundamental concern is that the legalization of same-sex marriage will lead to a direct attack via lawsuits against religions to force them to perform marriage ceremonies of which they do not approve, and additionally that established churches could be bankrupted by these types of lawsuits. This is a realistic fear only in jurisdictions which fail to recognize freedom of religion.

  3. A typical definition of marriage proposed by those who support same-sex marriage is as follows:

    A socially sanctioned, voluntary, committed, legally contracted union, of two adult people, which the government and/or society recognizes by conferring certain rights, privileges and responsibilities, such as finances, taxes, and inheritance, child-raising, adoption, visitation, and medical decision-making.


Freedom to Marry Coalition

Federal Marriage Amendment (proposed ban on all forms of same-sex unions)

Religious Beliefs Underpin Opposition to Homosexuality


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