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February 08, 2012

The Rainbow PUSH Coalition Applauds Prop 8 Ruling

Please see below a statement, from Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, regarding marriage equality.

“Many years ago in the late 1970s’, I visited South Africa, then deep in the throes of apartheid system. I was asked by the media what I thought of the situation, and I said something very culturally challenging to them, “I believe in human rights for all human beings. We must measure human rights by one yardstick.” That principle – our moral center - still applies. Everything flows from this perspective. We all matter. Today let us fix the problem, not fix the blame – let us come together and build a broad coalition.

We stand together today as equal members of the human family; as consistent principled advocates for human rights for all people. We stand together today to uphold the principles of due process, of equal protection under the law, of fighting against discrimination against any and all people based on race, religion, gender or sexual orientation.

We applaud today's court ruling that supports Marriage Equality, striking down Proposition 8 as unconstitutional. Peoples' right to self-expression, self-determination be respected and affirmed. It's time to challenge ignorance, a time to break the silence and the chains of hatred, of divisive and discriminatory bigotry. Marriage is based on love and commitment — not on sexual orientation. Rainbow PUSH supports the right for any person to marry the person of their choosing..

If Dr. King and our civil rights movement has taught us anything, it’s the fundamental principle of that all people deserve Equal protection under the law. LGBT people deserve equal rights – including marriage equality – and equal protection under the law. Discrimination against one group of people is discrimination against all of us. The State – and the Courts - should not sanction discrimination.

To those that believe in and fought for civil rights, that marched to end discrimination and win equality, you must not become that which you hated. It’s past time to persist in hypocrisy and ignorance, and time to come out of the shadows and darkness to support unequivocally, equality for all people. Those that support civil and human rights cannot, must not, become perpetrators of discrimination against others based upon race, religion, culture, sexual orientation.

African Americans know too well the sting of legal, state sanctioned, constitutionally driven “second class” citizenship – from centuries of legal slavery and Jim Crow segregation, to classified as 3/5 of a human being in the U.S. Constitution, to facing anti-miscegenation laws that prevented Blacks from marrying whites.

Marriage is a fundamental right of all individuals. That principle was upheld today — for Blacks and Whites, for straight and gay, for ALL Americans. No group of people should be denied their fundamental constitutional liberties, like equal protection under the law, simply because of who they are

The Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a progressive organization protecting, defending and expanding civil rights to improve economic and educational opportunity. The organization is headquartered at 930 E. 50th St. in Chicago. For more information about the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, please visit or call (773) 373-3366.