Pro-family groups are trying to defend traditional marriage as homosexual rights activists launch demonstrations across the United States for their "equal rights" on Valentine’s Day.
A leading California-based pro-family organization Campaign for Children and Families (CCF) has initiated a state-wide tour in 11 California cities to "defend the sacred institution of marriage" between one man and one woman, according to a press statement.
On Monday, anti-same-sex marriage activists held a news conference outside the San Diego County Administration Center and urged support of a proposed anti-gay marriage amendment to the state constitution, Associated Press (AP) reported.
According to CCF, Proposition 22, approved by voters in 2000, declares that only a marriage between a man and a woman is recognized in California. However, because Proposition 22 was only a statute and not a constitutional amendment, Californians are encouraged by CCF to support the amendment by supporting the Voters' Right to Protect Marriage Initiative (VoteYesMarriage.com).
The Initiative protects everything about marriage - marriage licenses, marriage rights, and marriage under law - for one man and one woman with a clear and strong statement.
CCF President Randy Thomasson’s speech at the news conference also reminded Californians of "the beauty, exclusivity, and necessity of honoring marriage for one man and one woman."
Illinois Family Institute (IFI), a group closely associated with Focus on the Family, kicked-off today the campaign to put the "Protect Marriage Illinois" (PMI) referendum on the November ballot calling on the state government to constitutionally preserve marriage as "one man, one woman," according to Christian Wire Service.
PMI states: "To secure and preserve the benefits of marriage for our society and for future generations of children, a marriage between a man and a woman is the only legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state."
"Valentine's Day is the perfect day to announce the progress of the PMI campaign," IFI Executive Director Peter LaBarbera said in the statement, "because Illinois citizens on this special day, like every day, believe that liberal, activist judges have no right to redefine marriage and family - the bedrock institutions of society for the raising of children. Illinois is not the Massachusetts of the Midwest."
Illinois' six Catholic Bishops, over 100 legislators and pro-family leaders have overwhelmingly endorsed the PMI, Christian Wire Service reported. Currently, the campaign needs to gather 283,111 valid signatures of registered voters by May 8 to qualify for the November ballot.
Meanwhile, gay couples across the United States were applying for marriage licenses at their city and town halls on Valentine’s Day as part of an annual campaign sponsored by the Metropolitan Community Church, the nation's largest predominantly gay Christian church, AP reported.
It is expected that more than 1,000 same-sex couples from 237 churches in 47 states will participate. Connecticut's legislature was the first in the nation to legalize civil unions whereas Massachusetts allowed gay marriage and Vermont accepted civil unions.