National Equality March
The 14th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified on July 9, 1868, and granted citizenship to “all persons born or naturalized in the United States. In addition, it forbids states from denying any person “life, liberty or property, without due process of law” or to “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of its laws.” By directly mentioning the role of the states, the 14th Amendment greatly expanded the protection of civil rights to all Americans and is cited in more litigation than any other amendment.
On October 10-11, 2009, we will gather in Washington, D.C. from all across America to let our elected leaders know that now is the time for full equal rights for LGBT people. We’ve had a moment thrust upon us by the election of President Barack Obama and the spirit of hope and change, and also by the sense of entitlement in the new generation of grassroots organizing. This march is a vehicle to a larger goal. We want to work to bridge the gap between the national organizations and the grassroots community organizers. We will gather. We will strategize. We will march. And we will leave energized and empowered to do the work that needs to be done in every community across the nation. This is only the beginning.
Our single demand: Equal protection in all matters governed by civil law in all 50 states.
Our philosophy: As members of every race, class, faith, and community, we see the struggle for LGBT equality as part of a larger movement for peace and social justice.
Our strategy: Decentralized organizing for this march in every one of the 435 Congressional districts will build a network to continue organizing beyond October.
This is our single message as we march on Washington on October 11, 2009. We seek equal protection in all matters governed by civil law in all 50 states.
Click to learn more about the 14th Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause and how it applies to our fight for full equality.
“We will continue this fight in every state, in every county, every city and every town, but we are now determined to take this fight to the federal government, to our President Barack Obama, to the Congress and the Supreme Court of the United States.”
Cleve Jones, May 31, 2009, Fresno, California
The demand is simple, full equal protection under the law:
* Repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) so that every marriage in every state has the same federal rights.
* Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell so that LGBT persons may serve in the military openly and with the same rights as their straight counterparts.
* An end to workplace discrimination for everyone with an Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) that protects everyone.
* The right to adopt children and raise families like any other parents.
* Hate Crimes legislation that includes LGBT people and protects us like any other targeted group.
* Immigration reform that recognizes same-sex couples and ends the needless separation of families.
* A comprehensive anti-bullying policy in our schools via the Safe Schools Improvement Act.