Monday, November 30, 2009

Courage Campaign withdraws from 2010 repeal campaign

From their press release
The Courage Campaign today called for more research and time to change hearts and minds before returning to the ballot to restore marriage for gay and lesbian couples in California....

Jacobs hailed the work being done in the field by grassroots activists, saying, “We must build our ultimate victory from the lessons of our recent disappointments,” continued Jacobs. “We know that we can change hearts and minds through real conversations with our friends, family, co-workers and neighbors. This takes time and has to be built to scale — so we can’t delay. When we go back to the ballot, we must be strong, clear and embracing.”

Equality CA is also focussing on 2012.

Painful as it is, I think they are right. But that doesn't mean we won't get out there to start the conversation. Because waiting for justice is just not enough.

And why is this taking time? Here's a great article from The Democratic Strategist:
We are losing because we are not persuading swing voters, yes. But that does not mean they cannot be persuaded. People change their views on this issue all the time, as family members and friends respond to a LGBT person’s coming out, or as church congregations vote to become open and affirming. Sometimes it takes years and sometimes it takes weeks. Rarely does it happen without a mixture of love, pain and patience. In these more intimate contexts, we call it transformation rather than “persuasion” and it doesn’t happen due to canvassing and phonebanking. It happens when the truths of someone’s life transcend the doctrine they believe in. Some parts of this process we can map and some remain mysterious to us. It is, after all, the work of the heart we are talking about here....
First, an election cycle is not long enough to completely change someone’s mind about a deeply-held belief, or a conflicted one.

Second, we rely on ineffective methods for persuasion. Scripted, one-off interactions with strangers are simply not going to change people’s minds.

Third, in our strategies and national rhetoric, we make the mistake of treating swing voters, in both subtle and explicit ways, as if they are bigots.

Fourth, we present swing voters with a falsely dichotomous choice – vote no or yes – and then we abandon efforts to personally communicate with swing voters in the final month of the campaign, the period of time during which they are actually making up their mind.

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