Regular readers know we like to deliver the news here and not be the news, so we don’t spend a lot of time touting our accomplishments or tooting our horns, but today is a pretty big day here at The New Civil Rights Movement. Four years ago today The New Civil Rights Movement was born.
Incubation time was a mere 15 days.
On November 4, 2008, Barack Obama won the presidential election. But also on November 4, 2008, voters in California decided to ban same-sex couples from entering into the institution of marriage.
In the days that followed, the outrage from the LGBT community created what many called “the new civil rights movement.” And so, I began The New Civil Rights Movement in response.
Perhaps you too have experienced a life-changing transformation — an event that was so earth-shattering, so soul-shaking that you literally became a different person. That’s what Prop 8 did for me.
The New Civil Rights Movement is and has always been an effort to educate people about marriage equality. At the time, this is how I explained it:
Like millions of other gay Americans, I was outraged on November 4th when California passed Proposition 8, and ended a basic human right, the right to love another person, to be accepted by another person, and the law. And like millions of other gay Americans, I was unaware that similar decisions were being made that same day in other states. In Florida, and in Arizona, the right for one man to marry another, or for one woman to marry another, was stolen from us too. Just as unconscionable, in Arkansas, the right of gay couples to adopt was taken away from us.
There are countless reasons why we lost these battles. Perhaps the greatest reason is the one I just stated: “I was unaware”. My ignorance about what was happening to me, a gay man who at long last has someone he wants to marry, and for the first time in his life sees marriage as possible, not only because there is someone I want to marry, but because the populace has become far more “tolerant” of gay marriage, my ignorance was worse than the ignorance of those who don’t understand gay marriage. My ignorance was easily avoidable. My ignorance was a lack of information; I was uninformed.
Ignorance about the concept, the essence of gay marriage by those who are morally conditioned to be in disagreement with it is in some respects understandable, although by no means acceptable or tolerable: You were told that it goes against the Bible. You have never seen a gay couple. You are intolerant of others. You are ignorant. You need to be educated and learn that there are others in the world who are built differently.
But, in the Information Age, to be ignorant because information is not readily available is inexcusable. Hence, the purpose of “The New Civil Rights Movement: A journal of news and opinion on gay rights and marriage equality.” This website is dedicated to keeping you informed of all the issues in the gay rights arena, especially gay marriage. Because weddings are bliss, ignorance is not.
That was four years ago.
Since then, we’ve maintained our focus on marriage equality, but we’ve expanded greatly, covering progressive news and politics, including issues that often most affect minorities and women — those who are now being called “the Obama electorate.”
Along the way, we’ve been graced to gain the support of almost three dozen amazing, excellent writers, who share with you, our readers, their thoughts as often as they can. I adore them, and I’m humbled by their passion, their desire to make the world a better place, and their ability to share themselves so fully.
What began as an attempt to learn and educate has grown into a major publication — a more-than-full-time-job, and an absolutely exhausting seven-day-a-week-effort — that I wouldn’t trade for the world.
Today, The New Civil Rights Movement is a well-read and well-respected voice on politics and civil rights, serving readers breaking news often well before the mainstream media, and insight and analysis they can find nowhere else. We go beyond the mainstream media’s cookie-cutter approach, and the blogosphere’s half-truth sensationalism, often interviewing those responsible for making the headlines, and taking the time to give our readers the bigger picture.
In short, where others give you clips, quotes, and quips, The New Civil Rights Movement gives you context.
Perhaps because of that approach, we’ve earned a good-sized audience – more than one million unique loyal, intelligent, challenging readers per month – and we’re getting on average 1.5 million monthly page views. In short, The New Civil Rights Movement has become the fastest-growing major LGBT-focused political site online.
The New Civil Rights Movement bridges the gap between LGBT blogs and mainstream news sites, which helps both LGBT and non-LGBT people see and understand our issues more clearly.
The New Civil Rights Movement has been cited repeatedly by Andrew Sullivan’s Daily Dish, Salon.com, and The Wall Street Journal, CNN, The National Journal, Salon.com, The Nation, NPR, and many more. Several times we’ve has been labeled “Best Opinion” by The Week, and recognized as “one of the smartest sites on the web” by the editor in chief of 365Gay.com, “a go-to blog for both reports and analysis of the most recent gay politics,” and “thoughtful, probing,” by Mediaite, and “very smart” by Joe.My.God., the 2010 winner of the GLAAD Media Award in the Outstanding Blog category, for which we were nominated last year. From Politico to The Washington Post to The Washington Examiner, The New Civil Rights Movement is often quoted nationally and internationally.
And earlier this month, The New Civil Rights Movement was featured on The Colbert Report, thanks to our exclusive reporting.
It’s been a pretty awesome four years, for us, for marriage, and for the progressive agenda.
If you’re new here. or haven’t had the time, I hope you’ll take a look around, sign up for our mailing list, and subscribe to The New Civil Rights Movement via email or RSS.
Because, to be quite honest, the only way we can survive is with your help. Every time you “like” one of our articles or editorials, every time you take the time to share our work via Twitter, Facebook, and other social media, you’re saying, “this is good.” And you’re sending more readers our way. And that’s how we pay the bills here. (Which, frankly, doesn’t cover even half of them!)
We promise to do our best for you — and we’ve got some big surprises coming your way next year!
Thanks, loyal readers, wonderful writers, and the same man I wrote about four years ago whom I want to marry, for all your support!
We invite you to sign up for our new mailing list, and subscribe to The New Civil Rights Movement via email or RSS.