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Jun 20 2014

A New NOM Rises From the Ashes?

Jeremy Hooper reports that most of the people involved in forming the National Organization for Marriage have now formed a new organization, The Princeton Group. This has not been made public and it doesn’t appear to have official non-profit status, but could this be a new NOM rising from the ashes of the old one?

Little did we know that just about fifty miles away from our NYC home, over in Princeton, NJ, Maggie Gallagher (NOM cofounder and past president), Robert George (NOM cofounder and chairman emeritus), Brian Brown (current NOM president), John Eastman (NOM’s current board chair), and a number of other individuals who were responsible for creating NOM back then (like founding board members Luis Tellez and Chuck Stetson, for instance) and are responsible for maintaining NOM now (like Sean Fieler, a key funder, and Diego Von Stauffenberg, NOM’s current development director) were holding a secret, invite-only meeting focused on “developing and deploying an action plan to protect marriage and preserve religious liberties.” It certainly seems like some sort of secret, shadowy version of NOM (Super NOM?) is going on behind the scenes.

This was their third meeting. Hooper managed to get a copy of the invitation to the meeting, which says:

Princeton Group

I’m always amused at this claim that if we let gay people get married, marriage will be “redefined out of existence.” What does that even mean? Straight marriages will suddenly not exist? It’s just such a moronic claim.

25 comments

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  1. 1
    Modusoperandi

    Who knew that “one of the most important societal challenges in US history” would’ve been gay marriage? I was pretty sure it would’ve been anything else.

  2. 2
    Sastra

    “Redefined out of existence?” I didn’t know that was actually possible. When people try to do that sort of thing in real life they’re generally only trying to get out of an argument (or win it, if they’re very wicked indeed.)

    These folks must be real intellectuals. They ought to acknowledge that. The “Princeton Intellectual Group.” That has a nice ring to it. PIG.

    Fitting, too.

  3. 4
    Jasper of Maine

    and preserve religious liberties.

    Maybe we should have a Randi-esque million dollar prize to anyone who can prove that any religious liberties are put at risk.

  4. 5
    Menyambal

    Whenever I see “leaders”, I get really suspicious.

  5. 6
    dingojack

    Completely OT, but if NOM fails in it’s objectives and Chuck Stetson is forced to have a homomarriage to Dutch Sheets, will it be Chuck Sheets or Dutch Stetson? (and will Deigo Von Stauffenberg attempt to blow up the wedding reception?)
    Sorry my mind wandered on less idiotic things than Super-Secret Agent NOM.
    :) Dingo

  6. 7
    Doug Little

    I’ll give them a +1 for not including Marriage or Family in their new organisation’s name.

  7. 8
    pixiedust

    @7 Maybe they’ve finally learned what a tell that is.

  8. 9
    marcus

    @6 Nuthin’ like splittin’ the Sheets whilst sportin’ a Stetson.

  9. 10
    dogmeat

    Oh great, zombie bigots, and you can’t shoot them in the brain. *sigh*

  10. 11
    busterggi

    Right-wingers just love to belong to multiple organizations that are clones of one another. It gives them the ability to advertise speakers from a dozen organizations at one of their events while allowing one person to do all the speaking.

  11. 12
    eric

    “reinvigorate a flourishing marriage culture”???

    Somebody decided to go overboard with their dictionary. If it’s flourishing, you don’t need to reinvigorate it.

    Anyway, here’s my action plan: refer to your religious ceremonies using some phrase that distinguishes it from civil marriage. “Baptist marriage” or “Evangelical marriage” or heck even “True marriage.” I’ don’t really care. That way, you can have all of the feeling of satisfaction that comes with excluding people you don’t like, with none of the court battles and inevitable losses.

  12. 13
    Doug Little

    pixiedust @8,

    Yep, thought exactly the same thing.

  13. 14
    Moon Jaguar

    Eric @ 12:

    I think the phrase “holy matrimony” would satisfy all christian sects. It’s both old-fashioned and supernatural-specific. If that floats their boat let ‘em trademark it.

  14. 15
    eric

    @14 – yup that’ll do…hard to make it into a verb or adjective though. “They may be married but they aren’t….” in a state of holy matrimony?

    Doesn’t have a good ring to it. Ba da bing! :)

  15. 16
    Steve the Drunk Unicyclist

    Maybe it’s just my conspiracy-theory addled brain, but I wonder if this is the first step to avoiding the hit they took in Maine, where they’ve been fighting tooth-and-nail to keep their donor list hidden?

    1. Form a new group.
    2. “Sell” the donor list from old group to new group, thus infusing old group with some much-needed cash to pay the lawyers.
    3. Let old group go belly-up, conveniently “losing” the donor list in the process.
    4. Continue to operate as new group, unemcumbered by any pesky legal things like fines, or disclosure requirements, etc.

  16. 17
    John Pieret

    eric @ 15:

    I’m sure they’ll be happy to say that they are “holier married” but, in the end, I’m guessing that they’ll just say they are “married” and those others folks are “gaymarried” (one word).

  17. 18
    cptdoom

    I think the phrase “holy matrimony” would satisfy all christian sects. It’s both old-fashioned and supernatural-specific. If that floats their boat let ‘em trademark it.

    The Catholics have been doing this for ages. I remember a priest in our high school talking about how, if he thought a Catholic couple was unlikely to have a successful marriage, he would advise them to get civilly married by a judge and then only have a Catholic ceremony (aka “the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony”) when they were sure the marriage would last. That way, if they did divorce before getting the Church blessing, both parties could marry again in the Church without any penalty. This is exactly how Newt Gingrich was able to get his third marriage recognized by the Church – the first two were not valid according to Church teaching (either the “wrong” kind of Christian church – like Baptists – or were only civil in nature).

  18. 19
    Kalli Procopio

    It would seem to me, that having more people get married would spread it around and help it to thrive. Most clubs and organizations realize that the best way to insure the organizations continued prosperity is to recruit more people into it.

  19. 20
    D. C. Sessions

    They’d have to trademark it to keep the Unitarian Universalists and other heretics from using it.

    And then there’ be the question of who wons the trademark and has the legal power to license it — which would have to be expensive enough to pay for enforcing the restriction on using it to only those sects which are Theologically Correct. For instance, if the Anglicans were to change their doctrine to allow SSM, the HMLEA would probably have to bring a lawsuit against them to enjoin their use of the term.

    I can see some interesting disagreements over who gets that particular doctrinal authority. And income stream.

    And all I ask from someone who actually gets rich writing that story and turning it into a screenplay is mention in the credits.

  20. 21
    democommie

    “They may be married but they aren’t holymatrimoned.”

    If I was married I would be pissed that my marriage had been defiled or negated by someone gettin’ gaymawwied and I might go medieval on somebody’s ass. But it would prolly be some asshole from NOM or NeoNOM–New and even more bigoted and deranged.

  21. 22
    Erp

    Marriage has already been redefined and far more radically when the two people in it ceased being seen as lord and wife (and in some languages such as the Hebrew of the Old Testament the usual word for husband was ‘lord’, ba’al). The English law concept of coverture where the wife’s legal identity was subsumed by her husband (independent of her husband, she could not own property, could not enter contracts, could not sue though he could do all of those independent of her) is mostly gone. In addition the view of English law (and others) that a wife hitting or killing her husband was far more serious than a normal battery or murder, the latter was petty treason punished by drawing and quartering or burning alive (vice versa a husband had some legal rights to physically chastise his wife and murdering his wife was about as serious as murdering most other people).

    Admittedly many NOM members are probably in favor of returning to the lord/wife view of marriage.

  22. 23
    dingojack

    ” In addition the view of English law (and others) that a wife hitting or killing her husband was far more serious than a normal battery or murder, the latter was petty treason punished by drawing and quartering or burning alive (vice versa a husband had some legal rights to physically chastise his wife and murdering his wife was about as serious as murdering most other people).”

    Citation please.

    Dingo

  23. 24
    laplanck

    dingojack @23:

    The Treason Act 1351 (25 Edw 3 St 5 c 2). The concept of wife-on-husband murder as “petty treason” was abolished in 1828. (Note that before the Treason Act 1351, a wife attempting but failing to kill her husband was also considered petty treason.)

    Other things were also considered petty treason, of course. But a wife killing her husband (no matter what awful things he may have done to her, and no matter if she was trying to defend herself) was one of them.

  24. 25
    left0ver1under

    The “Princeton Group” isn’t so much rising from the ashes as rising from the debts.

    The NOM ran up debts it couldn’t pay off. By abandoning the NOM name and starting a new group, they are trying to divest themselves of the NOM’s debts and failures, to avoid their responsibilities to those to whom they owe money. It’s like filing chapter 7 bankruptcy but not having the taint attached to any one person’s name, starting fresh.

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