A public service: Names of Proposition 8 supporters

I’d be fine with it.

If the people who donated money to Prop. 8 believe they did the morally correct thing in supporting the proposition, how can you shame them by telling others what they did?

Yes, that’s pretty much unavoidable when the majority of society decides that a minority doesn’t deserve equal rights under the law. You can’t really have a law like Proposition 8 without the rancor, hostility, and pain. That is, let’s face it, the point behind the proposition in the first place: to remind gays that we are not as good as straight people.

Kind of hard to stay friendly in the face of something like that. The hostility is baked into the debate. Quibbling about donor lists isn’t going to make it go away.

Then I’d recommend that gay Mojavian not donate money to gay causes. If he’s that afraid of his neighbors, he’d be better off saving up his money so he can afford to move some place where he can live openly and honestly. In the long run, that’d do more good for gay rights than any monetary contribution he could make.

Taking a financial hit is a good one.


If there were people wanting to reinstate Jim Crow laws, I’d sure want to know who was paying this so I could avoid doing business with them.

Until they donate money to make their religious beliefs into law. That’s very public

One way the bigots tip their hands is by giving money get Prop 8 passed.

No one ever said that.

I do. Going back 50 years or so, wouldn’t it have been productive to ostracize KKK members?

Depends on the specific time and place, but in some, absolutely.

Going back 50 years or so, wouldn’t it have been productive, from their POV, for the KKK to publicize which white people were “nigger-lovers,” and which blacks were getting “uppity?”

The concern is not that the tactic is ineffective; the concern is that it WILL be effective, causing the other side to use it in a bigger and better form.

Well, that’s that, then.

Can’t argue that it was okay for one side to do it, but not for the other to retaliate. This should pretty effectively silence complaints about the OP.

Good point. And in that thread:

I thought it was contemptible then, and I think the reverse tactic is also contemptible.

You thought the original was worthy of disdain, too.

It’s not a “reverse tactic”. Yes on 8 was trying to extort money from SSM supporters by threatening to publish their names. SSM supporters are not trying to extort money or blackmail anyone, they’re just looking to publicize the names of folks who supported Yes on 8.

As an analogy, I have a picture of a certain swimmer sucking on a glass device that, if made public, may or may not cost that swimmer millions of dollars in endorsements.

If I contact said swimmer and ask him to “donate” money to my cause, or I’ll release the picture, that’s called blackmail and it’s a crime. If I give the picture to a newspaper because I think his behavior is reprehensible, and everyone should know what kind of asshole he is, that’s not a crime.

If and when somebody actually attempts to engage in the reverse tactic, do let us know. Be sure to include the text of the associated letters (at least, the specific portion of the text that demands a payoff in return for inaction) to document the fact that it is, in fact, equivalent to the Yes On 8 extortion tactics.

Edit. Ninja’d, I see. Really, it’s a bit embarrassing for two people to immediately recognize a lawyer’s ignorance of a basic legal element of what does and does not constitute “extortion”.

Well - I don’t have to like the methods of the Yes on 8 people to find the methods of the No on 9 crowd similarly wrong. But even apart from all of that - it seems to me that what drives all of this is an unintended consequence of finance disclosure.

Gigi Brienza gave money to the Nader and Edwards campaigns - and then the nutcases at Stop Huntington Animal Cruelty publicized her name and address on their website. The unfortunate thing is that she didn’t work at Huntington and didn’t even know her company did business with them - she worked for Bristol Meyers Squibb.

That didn’t stop her from living in fear for years - SHAC firebombs the houses of people even tangentially connected to their target. And again, while this information could have been obtained anywhere, in this specific case it was obtained through donation records.

Can I ask, a question?

In Ireland, political belief is protected from discrimination to the same degree as race or gender - does America have the same protection?

Because if it does (and I assume it does, I can’t imagine a first world country without it), and the boycotts are aimed at getting people fired, or creating a constructive dismissal situation, where a person has no option but to quit, due to the damage to the company, should the person discriminated against not be able to sue the organisers of the boycott?
If some white-power group was doing the same thing to a business that employed a black person who donated to Obama, i would assume the person could sue the organisers for effectively forcing them out.

So your position is that we shouldn’t make donation records public because they make it a tiny little bit easier for extraordinarily lazy criminals to find people to harrass in a criminal way?


Ms. Brienza will, in the future, structure her donations to stay under federal reporting limits. This seems reasonable, and should be instituted by state governments to ensure maximum citizen participation in government while providing a balance between openness and privacy.

Large donations to a single campaign will be reported. Small ones will not be.

But the caps aren’t new, are they? And everyone on the Prop 8 list made donations larger than the cap, right? So perhaps I’m being dense or missed something (entirely possible, I’m skimming a bit), but I don’s see how her story is especially relevant.

This is a good point. One of the big problems I have with these organizations circulating a list of names is that people could end up being targeted on completely false grounds.
How would you like it if someone who just plain didn’t like you inserted your name, phone number, workplace and home address on a list of anti-gay donors and then sent that list to everyone on the SDMB to try to get people to cause trouble for you?

But again, someone who just plain doesn’t like you and wants to make trouble for you will find some way to do it. Transparency in political donations is well worth making it infinitesimally easier for some asshole to make your life difficult.


Give up privacy so its a little bit easier for an asshole to operate?

I do, and although I think that the names of the larger contributors should be available, I am concerned that some dudes in the “No on 8” crowd will also take things too far.

Try to keep up honey. There is currently no right to privacy for donations over a certain amount. If you want to keep your donation private, keep it under that amount. Easy peasy.

You give up privacy because it is in society’s best interest to have an open political process, where large cash donations are not kept secret.

That some malcontents can use that information in a negative way is a unfortunate side effect, but not one that justifies changing the rules.

No, they wouldn’t. Our constitution guarantees the right to freedom of speech, and to freedom of association. You can’t force someone to patronize a business that employs black people, and you can’t force them not to talk about why people shouldn’t patronize a business that employs black people. They might be able to sue their employer for caving to the boycott, but I’m unsure if that would work. The employer might be able to protect himself by pointing out that he fired the employee not because of his race, but because the employee was costing his company money.