GLAAD and Equality Matters Call on Media to Debunk Anti-Equality Ads in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota and Washington

Rich Ferraro
Vice President of Communications, GLAAD
(646) 871-8011
ferraro@glaad.org

Aaron McQuade
Director of News and Field Media, GLAAD
(646) 871-8026
mcquade@glaad.org

November 3, 2012

Share the blog post: GLAAD and Equality Matters asking media to debunk anti-equality ads in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota and Washington

New York, NY, November 3, 2012 - GLAAD, the nation's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) media advocacy and anti-defamation organization, and Equality Matters, a national watchdog that fights anti-gay misinformation in support of full LGBT equality, today called on the media in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Washington and around the country to bring attention to the falsehoods present in anti-LGBT "scare" ads running in the four states with marriage on the ballot next week.

Several journalists have already done this, like Bill Nemitz of the Kennebeck Journal in Maine, who wrote that the anti-LGBT ads airing in his state are "so short on facts it's scary." And the Seattle Times' "Truth Needle" column found similar ads running in Washington State to be "half true."

Many in the media have been content to leave the fact-checking to LGBT advocates, merely reporting what both sides of the debate are saying, as though both are equally rooted in the truth. The fact of the matter is that these anti-equality ads are misleading voters and spreading misinformation.

Here are the facts: Marriage equality won't affect school curricula, despite what the ads repeatedly claim. The Catholic adoption agencies named in the ads voluntarily ended their services, they were "not forced" to shut down. The lawsuits the ads talk about were filed over violations of non-discrimination laws and had nothing to do with marriage equality. The New Jersey church cited in those ads was able to keep its tax exemption, even though it denied services to same-sex couples.

Details for all of these facts are available on Equality Matters' website at www.equalitymatters.org/factcheck/201210100001

Letting one side of a debate get away with misleading voters is irresponsible journalism. We call on media around the country to take the next few days and inform voters about the truth behind these misleading anti-equality ads.

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About GLAAD: GLAAD amplifies the voice of the LGBT community by empowering real people to share their stories, holding the media accountable for the words and images they present, and helping grassroots organizations communicate effectively. By ensuring that the stories of LGBT people are heard through the media, GLAAD promotes understanding, increases acceptance, and advances equality. For more information, please visit www.glaad.org or connect with GLAAD on Facebook and Twitter.

About Equality Matters: Equality Matters is a media and communications initiative in support of gay equality. Through strategic communications, research, training and media monitoring we strengthen efforts for full LGBT rights and correct anti-gay misinformation. For more information, please visit www.EqualityMatters.org or connect with Equality Matters on Facebook and Twitter.