As gay marriage advocates prepare to expand their fight into more red states, White House Down director Roland Emmerich on Tuesday offered to match $250,000 in financial contributions before midnight to the Human Rights Campaign, which helped wage the successful court battle against Proposition 8.
"HRC won’t stop until discrimination against LGBT Americans is eliminated," Emmerich told The Hollywood Reporter. "With last week’s Supreme Court rulings, they proved it can be done, but we still have a long way to go in establishing equal rights for everyone. I support them every step of the way.”
The Washington-based Human Rights Campaign has become the nation’s leading organization working to secure equal rights for gays and lesbians. Its current president, former Hollywood media and political strategist Chad Griffin, was a prime mover in organizing and raising money for the federal court suit that overturned California’s anti-marriage equality initiative.
In an e-mail Tuesday morning, Griffin told potential donors that the justices’ rulings "have brought us two enormous steps closer toward unfastening the stranglehold that discrimination has on our nation's laws ... And as we jump from this history-making moment to a new chapter in the fight for full equality, I'm thrilled to announce a new matching gift challenge."
Griffin pointed out that the Human Rights Campaign has no intention of confining its efforts to so-called blue states, where consensus on equal rights issues is easier to reach. Next week, Griffin said, he plans to visit Mississippi, North Carolina, Virginia, and Arkansas to meet with local groups, legislators and community members.
"With all of the media attention on our historic wins at the Supreme Court, we can't afford to lose sight of the new reality: There are two tiers of equality in this country, where some LGBT Americans have protections and access to equal rights and others simply do not," he said.
"Our streets will never be completely safe for a gay couple as long as most states bar them from something as basic as marriage," Griffin said. "Our schools will never be completely safe for a transgender student until our laws protect their unimpeachable right to live and work without fear of being evicted or fired."