The first time we used the "THEY LEGISLATE HATE IN OUR STATE" banner was March of 2004, during the session of the Minnesota Legislature after Sen. Michele Bachmann had introduced her anti-gay marriage constitutional amendment. Not yet being acquainted with the best places to stand and be seen with a sign at the Capitol, Bob Halfhill and I stood on the steps of the State Office Building, facing east. It was a sunny day , so there was a fair amount for foot traffic between the Capitol and SOB but most of it did not come directly by us. A few people stopped to express agreement with the sign, though. Former DFL party chair Dick Senese stopped to chat, briefly. I hadn't seen him for years since we worked together in Duluth. We laughed about the fact that I was still pissing people off. Also, someone who identified himself as DFL House staff came out to hurriedly snap our picture then fled back into the building. I guess he'd never seen such a thing.
When we were ready to leave and had rolled up the banner, as we were walking away down the sidwalk, we heard this female voice beckoning from behind us, "guys, guys...I don't hate you. " I knew who it was before we stopped and turned to see Bachmann click clacking after us in her fuck me pumps alongside what we thought was her burly bodyguard. He turned out to be the Senate chaplain. As we began walking toward Bachmann, she stopped and the bodyguard/chaplain continued coming toward us, stopping us to "introduce himself" about ten feet from where Bachmann stood. She said again, " I don't hate you." I said, "If you don't hate us then withdraw your awful amendment." She said, "I can't do that, I have to think about the children." I said, "What about the children of the thousands of gay and lesbian families across this state that will be harmed by your hateful amendment?" She began blathering about some religious thing and had to hurry off.
I was thinking about how she was trying to ravage our families out of nothing but pure bigotry while escaping being called what she is by her timid DFL colleagues or the Republican ass wipe local media. The gall of her saying she doesn't hate us considering what she's trying to do to all of us. As she left, I began screeming at her repeatedly, "YOU'RE A HATEFUL BIGOT" over and over again as she scurried up the stairs and ducked into the building with her bodyguard/chaplain in tow.
Bachmann was obviously put on the defensive by being confronted with the truth of her own malicious intentions. This is why I made this banner. We need to attack the right wing for their anti-social, bigoted behavior. We need to be on the offensive. I am so sick of queers constantly being on the defensive. We are always dancing to the tune of the Bachmanns or the Lindners or whoever. We need to turn this around ON THEM. If they are busy defending themselves, they will not be able to move forward on their destructive agenda.