That “single political event”, in case you hadn’t guessed, was the trashing of same-sex marriage, thanks to a lot of religious influence, and money, supporting Proposition 8, the change to the State Constitution in California to make marriage strictly a man–woman affair.
The writer of the passage above in the Mercury News in California, Mary Ann Ostrom, continues:
While leaders of the No on 8 campaign say the grass-roots activities underscore the deep resentment gays feel in losing the right to marry, backers of Proposition 8 say they have become the target of an ugly, anti-democratic witch hunt. They say printing the names of people who donated to the yes cause and circulating “blacklists” on the Web unfairly penalize small donors who believe in the sanctity of traditional marriage.
She quotes Assemblyman Mark Leno of San Francisco, a leader in the gay-marriage movement: “We’re in the midst of a social change. Remember the riots, the dogs, the fire hoses when they tried to integrate the public school system. It was tumultuous. That’s what happens when you go through social changes, and there’s going to be quite a bit more tumult.”
Backers of gay marriage can’t fully explain the aggressive response, but some suggest a newfound spirit of activism, fueled by the organizing capacity of the Internet, is at work. And a poorly organized No on 8 campaign, mostly run by Sacramento insiders, has prompted gay activists and others to take matters into their own hands.
Perhaps those who oppose equality for all are about to live in interesting times.