No Wedge 2012 Aimed at Uniting the Gay and Black Communities
“NoWedge 2012: A Memo to Black America” presented a unified, grass-roots movement among Black civil rights and faith leaders in response to right-wing tactics to “.” Launching at Covenant Baptist Church in Washington, DC, the Black community and faith leaders issued a national declaration regarding the need for an organized, unified response to combat attempts steered at creating tensions with Black and LGBT communities.
President Barack Obama’s recent affirmation of marriage for same-gender couples has sparked a nationwide dialogue. Black faith and community leaders feel the urgency to get in front of the dialogue and fight any conservative tactics to “divide and conquer.” Our community is sophisticated enough to hold nuanced positions on marriage equality and yet be unified in embracing progressive values that benefit the life and well-being of Black America,” says Pastor Joseph W. Tolton of The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries.
The campaign will strategically focus on educating voters on the strategy of organizations such as the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), which has intentionally targeted African Americans in the interest of fracturing the progressive base on the single issue of marriage equality. Black voters are urged to remain engaged throughout the election and remain aware of these “wedge” tactics. Recently, NOM’s ill tactics were publicized and brought to the fore by the Human Rights Campaign in an effort to elevate the national dialogue around the issue.
The number of Black faith leaders, activists and public figures who support President Obama’s position on marriage equality continues to grow. After Obama’s historic announcement, Rev. Al Sharpton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, the NAACP, Will Smith and Jay-Z all voiced support. In an interview with CNN, Jay-Z referred to Obama’s position as “the right thing to do as a human being,” he went on to say, “It’s discrimination, plain and simple.”
In a press release through the National Action Network, Rev. Sharpton delivers unwavering support: “I am prepared to fight, as I have since 2003 in the faith community, about the rightness of the position that the President has now taken.”
The “NoWedge 2012: A Memo to Black America” campaign will drive community members to NoWedge2012.com to expand the conversation among African Americans, the LGBT community and those living at the intersection. The campaign aims to be a catalyst for voter participation in 2012, creating alliances across faith, race, orientation and gender identity.