Sunday, December 05, 2021

Maggie Gallagher lost the fight against marriage equality, but is now back with another anti-LGBTQ group

Since losing the fight against marriage equality, Maggie Gallagher has stayed somewhat out of sight. But now, she's back with a new anti-LGBTQ group.

Last week,  People for the American Way's Right-Wing Watch alerted me to the return of an old enemy of LGBTQ equality:

The anti-LGBTQ American Principles Project has launched its first state chapter in the Lone Star State with the goal of mobilizing conservative Texas families in politics and fighting so-called “gender ideology” in schools. APP Texas’ first targets aren’t Democrats however; they’re Republicans. Gov. Greg Abbott and Republican legislators passed anti-trans legislation this fall that APP President Terry Schilling says doesn’t go far enough in discriminating against trans people.

Abbott signed House Bill 25 into law on Oct. 25, effectively preventing trans kids from playing on teams that correspond to their gender identity. The law requires kids to play on the sports teams corresponding to the sex assigned to them on their birth certificates, but it only applies to K-12 schools and does not include Texas colleges. That’s likely a result of an NCAA statement made this spring. In April, as scores of anti-trans bills were introduced in state houses across the country, the NCAA released a statement supporting trans athletes and said the collegiate conference would only have games and tournaments in states “where hosts can commit to providing an environment that is safe, healthy and free of discrimination.”

 In other words, the American Principles Project is going to be another one of those dreary 'traditional values' groups attempting to denigrate and stigmatize LGBTQ people (as if we don't have enough of those.) I caught a quick look at its webpage and saw a familiar face in its listing of staff members.

Maggie Gallagher is a senior fellow at American Principles Project, and a co-author of the APP reports, Building a Winning GOP Coalition: The Lessons of 2012 and The Case for Politics: Why Conservatives Must Invest Seriously in Politics. She has been a thought leader on life, religious liberty, and especially marriage for more than 25 years. Ms. Gallagher is the author of four books on marriage, including The Case for Marriage with University of Chicago Prof. Linda J. Waite, and her latest book, Debating Same-Sex Marriage, which she co-authored with Prof. John Corvino. 

After founding and running a think tank on marriage — the Institute for Marriage and Public Policy — Ms. Gallagher went on to co-found the National Organization for Marriage in 2007, which The Washington Post called the “pre-eminent organization” fighting the imposition of same-sex marriage. Her Weekly Standard piece “Banned in Boston” launched a national debate over the religious liberty consequences of same-sex marriage.

Allow me to give a short summary of just who Maggie Gallagher is in light of her return.

For those who don't know, Gallagher was the public figure and face against marriage equality during those tumultuous fight. She was very good in forming narratives against marriage equality, particularly the one which claimed that those who opposed it were the victims because they were being 'unfairly cast as victims' simply because of their religious beliefs. And she portrayed herself as someone who supposedly had no problems with LGBTQ people, but was concerned about how we were supposedly going to harm the " long standing traditional meaning" of marriage. Her side had a lot of success in winning statewide ordinances against marriage equality AND anti-discrimination ordinances. 

And she loved gloating about it:

But the success began to trickle away and part of it was due to Gallagher herself.