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Massive Marriage Equality Rally in Cleveland Tomorrow Spearheaded by 17-Year-Old Activist: VIDEO


A rally that is "expected to be the largest rally for marriage equality in the Midwest" according to organizers, is taking place at the Free Stamp (aka Willard Park) at 9th St. & Lakeside in Cleveland tomorrow at 11 am.

OhioWrite the organizers:

This event and others that have preceded it in Columbus and Cincinnati are the brainchild of 17 year-old grassroots organizer and LGBT activist Adam Hoover.

“This is a cause that’s close to my heart. The vast majority of my generation, along with the one behind and ahead, are on the same page when it comes to equality: we want it and we want it now,” says Adam. “Think about it. Stonewall happened only 33 years ago. We’ve made so much progress in such a short time. This may not be the final frontier for LGBT rights, but it’s certainly one of the most important causes we can advocate for.”

“The evidence is there,” says Ed Mullen of Equality Ohio. “With each new generation, support for marriage equality rises. It is no longer a matter of if, but rather when, this will happen.  I believe it will be sooner than many think.”

Same-sex couples in Ohio will show that their love and commitment should be recognized by the state so that they will have the same rights and responsibilities as other couples and families.

“The marriage event concluding the day is a symbolic civil marriage ceremony,” says Zac Branstool, Communications Director for Equality Ohio. “We respect the sacrament of marriage in religious tradition, and we recognize the right of religious institutions to follow their own religious teachings on marriage. This is about the government refusing to grant civil marriage equality to same-sex couples, and we want the public to see the beauty and joy of people engaging in a legal ceremony that is unjustly denied to them.”

Watch Adam Hoover tell his story and read a list of speakers for the rally, AFTER THE JUMP...

Rally Speakers:

Ed Mullen, Executive Director for Equality Ohio
Autumn Leaf and Tom Morgan, Get Equal
Bishop Heckman, Reformed Catholic Church
Jacob Nash, TransOhio
Rev. George Baum, St. Patrick Episcopal Church
CPT Steve Snyder-Hill, Plaintiff in the McLaughlin v. Panetta Case
Dwayne Seward, Make it Better Foundation
Sherry Bowman, Movement in Black
Ian James, Ohio Freedom to Marry Petition
Judy Benson, Old Lesbians Organizing for Change
Max Blachman, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown’s office
State Representative Nickie Antonio
Green Party Senate Candidate Joe Demare
Pastor Robert and Joyce Strommen, Cleveland Stonewall Democrats and Cleveland PFLAG

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  1. I hope that's a typo. Stonewall happened 43 years ago.

    Posted by: JoeDE | Mar 23, 2012 11:04:53 AM

  2. Reading this story and the one previous, I wonder if our opponents are noticing the tremendous difference developing regarding the two sides. These pages are regularly peppered with stories of young LGBT activists, many still in high school, some standing alone, but all challenging the opposition head on with what I can only describe as incredible strength and courage.

    The opposing side seems to be made up entirely of vicious bullies who lie in ambush, which is quite cowardly to me, Brian Brown and shrieking pastors evoking God's wrath. Am I missing something here? Some voice of courage and reason on the right of which I am not aware?

    If my observations are correct, this bodes very ill for conservatives in this country, not only in this arena, but now also in regard to women's health issues, climate change (superstition is not evidence!) and the economy. I don't think I have ever encountered such an intellectually bankrupt, casually vicious group in my entire life.

    I realize that we of the left are not always admirable, but somehow we do seem to be doing something right.

    Posted by: Tim Tondreault | Mar 23, 2012 11:19:41 AM

  3. I'm thrilled to see people stepping away from their computers and DOING SOMETHING, going public, being visible. My hats off to Adam.

    Posted by: Gregoire | Mar 23, 2012 11:46:13 AM

  4. Tim, you have a very good point. Today alone I have read articles about the student body president in GA standing up for LGBT students, this rally organized by a 17-year old, and an article about teens organizing gay-straight alliances in the South. You hardly even hear of an anti-gay marriage rally organized by a teenager or even 20-something. It gives me hope.

    Posted by: KP | Mar 23, 2012 12:51:17 PM

  5. Sadly, I would only point out - in relation to Tim's very encouraging observations - that the same was thought of the wonderful kids of the 1960's who were going to remake the world in the beautifully progressive and optimistic spirit they were flushed with ... but that never happened.

    Young people of one day become the old people of the next. I just hope the spirit evident in today's youth survives the aging process better than it did for generations before them. But I'm not going to hold my breath.

    Posted by: Zlick | Mar 23, 2012 2:39:52 PM

  6. Sadly, the LGBT kids are more INVOLVED and active in making equality a reality than many LGBT adults (and that right there folks is precisley our problem.)

    Posted by: IonMovies | Mar 23, 2012 3:20:39 PM

  7. Damn, and we're supposed to have rain and thunderstorms all day in Cleveland tomorrow. Um, this is the first I've heard about this, which concerns me, considering I'm on EqualityOhio's email list! Haven't heard a single thing about the previous ones in Cincy and Columbus, either. Strange.

    @ IONMOVIES: well, it's about time the kids get involved and active! It's only right--it's their future, isn't it? Seems that for the longest time, once they hit legal bar age, the kids didn't do a whole helluva lot--including casting a simple VOTE (prior to the last election). Didn't hear anything out of the kids re: turning out for Gore or Kerry, or fighting against our state marriage ban amendment when it was on the ballot. I'm glad the kids recently are acting up, it's about time! A lot of us adults have been fighting the various fights for years now, some of us continue but are getting damned tired; it's high time the next generation comes onto the battlefield! I only hope they can keep their enthusiasm up for the long haul.

    Posted by: jim | Mar 23, 2012 6:50:26 PM

  8. "...the same was thought of the wonderful kids of the 1960's who were going to remake the world in the beautifully progressive and optimistic spirit they were flushed with ... but that never happened"

    @Zlick: I'm astonished that you think "it never happened." My parents were some of those kids who were trying to remake the world so that black people could drink out of the same drinking fountains and go to the same restaurants and schools as they did. The Lovings were a couple from the '60s who were working for a world where a person could marry someone of another race without being put in prison.
    Other kids of the '60s were working for a world where a man could even dance with a man, let alone have a romantic and sexual relationship, without getting arrested.

    We're not done yet remaking the world into a place where there is freedom and fairness for all, but the world has come A LONG, LONG WAY toward that goal since the 1950's, and in the developed world, a lot of the hardest work has been successfully done already.
    This generation has a lot of details to iron out, but we have become so used to our new-found freedoms that almost any American, if time-warped back to 1960, would be appalled at what the country was back then.

    Posted by: gregv | Mar 24, 2012 4:40:47 PM

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