Faith and Freedom Coalition founder Ralph Reed said activists fighting to end gay marriage can take a page from Civil War abolitionists.
During the organization’s annual “Road to Majority” conference in Washington, D.C. on Friday, Reed told an audience of about 40 people that contemporary conservative activists worried about judicial overreach should look to the 1857 Dred Scott Supreme Court ruling, which stated that African American slaves remained the property of their owners even if they traveled to or lived in free states.
“The battle looked like it was lost, but it really wasn’t,” Reed said of slavery in the United States. “And that’s kind of like where we are right now. Anybody heard lately that we’re losing the marriage issue? Anybody heard that argument? You notice some similarities? I’m not comparing slavery to same-sex marriage, OK? I’m just pointing out that when you have these fights, what’s interesting is that if you look at same-sex marriage, it’s now legal in 17 states.”
“Only six of them, six out of those 17, six out of 50 states, had done it by referendum or by state legislature,” he continued. “In every other case, it was imposed by courts. Just like the courts had to impose Dred Scott. Because they couldn’t do it on the country because the country didn’t agree with it. The country, by the way, doesn’t agree with same-sex marriage.”
According to Pew Research Center “long-term shift in the public’s views about same-sex marriage is unambiguous.”
A March 2013 poll found that 49 percent of Americans support same-sex marriage.
Reed told supporters that gay marriage advocates can’t win at the polls and they have to count on the courts for success.