Here are news stories about the rallies:
- In Midtown, Opposing Rallies on Same-Sex Marriage by Sewell Chan, New York Times City Room Blog, May 18, 2009
- Opposing Rallies Over Issue of Same-Sex Marriage by Jeremy W. Peters and Mathew R. Warren, New York Times, May 17, 2009
- Gay marriage battle draws huge rallies for and against; Mayor Bloomberg senses 'history' in making by Erica Pearson and Bill Hutchinson, New York Daily News, Monday, May 18th 2009
- Dueling Rallies Over Same-Sex Marriage by Arun Venugopal, WNYC
- Rallies battle over same-sex marriage, Philadelphia Metro - May 17, 2009 (includes some specific info about the opponents)
- Gay-Nuptual Rallies Clash by Perry Chiaramonte and Sally Goldenberg, New York Post, May 18, 2009 (includes some specific info about the opponents)
- Rabbi rage at anti-gay marriage rally, Polit Bureau, May 18, 2009
- Anti-gay protestors treat Sen. Ruben Diaz like a god [video], GaySocialites, May 18, 2009
- 'Ugly Betty' star Ana Ortiz takes on NY state Sen. Ruben Diaz [video], GaySocialites.com, May 18, 2009
- Guv, Mayor Headline Marriage Equality Rally by Paul Schindler, Gay City News, May 18, 2009
- Major Rallies For and Against Marriage Equality Ring Out in New York - Towleroad, May 18, 2009
- Critics, Proponents Of Gay Marriage Hold Competing Protests In New York, AHN, May 19, 2009 (includes details about anti-gay rally, e.g. that it was organized by Radio Vision Cristiana International)
- Thousands of NY Christians Protest Gay Marriage by Jennifer Riley, Christian Post, May 18, 2009
- Marriage Rallies Take Manhattan by Judy Bolcer, The Advocate, May 18, 2009
What's noteworthy here is the leading role of Hispanic Pentecostals. In years past, here in New York City, our local religious right wing consisted primarily of the Catholic hierarchy plus ultra-Orthodox Jews. Pentecostals and other Protestant evangelicals did not play a major political role around here, as far as I could tell. That seems to be changing.
An even more ominous new (as far as I am aware) development is the direct involvement of a Democratic politician, State Senator Rubén Díaz Sr. in organizing an anti-gay rally. Politicians, even Republican ones, don't usually take a direct leadership role in activist organizing for or against specific political causes. Usually they'll only lend their name to a cause that's already well-organized and popular among their constituents. Evidently there must be lots of well-organized homophobia in Rubén Díaz's neck of the woods.
P.S., May 19, 2009: Religious right wing in Nassau County
In the following new story:
- NY Assembly to support gay marriage; protest looms by Michael Gormley, Associated Press, New York Newsday, May 11, 2009.
State Senator Kemp Hannon, a Nassau County Republican, is quoted as saying, "The surprising thing is the amount of concern in my district -- it's been considerable." Evidently there has been quite a bit of religious right wing activity in Nassau County. The Newsday story adds, "He said he's not hearing arguments against gays as much as he's hearing support for the 'traditional definition of marriage.'" Yeah, the standard religious right wing line these days.
It would be interesting to find out what political activist organizations and what religious bodies are behind this in Nassau County.