Thousands of demonstrators in support of same-sex marriage rallied outside the Supreme Court in Washington as the high court began hearings Tuesday on whether gay and lesbian couples should have the constitutional right to wed. But that wasn’t the only show of support by gay marriage advocates.
On Facebook and Twitter, thousands of users changed their profile pictures to the image of a pink equal sign over a red background to show their support for same-sex marriage. The graphic was a take on the usual blue and yellow logo of the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights group that released the red image to mobilize supporters around the Supreme Court’s gay marriage hearings this week.
According to HRC, the new logo debuted on the group’s Facebook page on Monday at 1 p.m. ET and has since been shared more than 100,000 times. At least 70,000 of those shares came through followers of George Takei, a former “Star Trek” actor who is openly gay. On Tuesday, Takei changed his profile photo to the red logo and urged his followers to do the same.
The logo was also embraced by several elected officials, including Govs. Martin O’Malley of Maryland and Pat Quinn of Illinois and Virginia Sen. Mark Warner—all of whom changed their Twitter and Facebook avatars to the red graphic.
“It’s unquestionable that marriage equality has captured the imagination of Americans from all walks of life. You see that represented today by the amazing number of people that have shared their passion and enthusiasm for this issue through various digital platforms,” Anastasia Khoo, HRC’s director of marketing, said in a statement. “By harnessing the passion that equality supporters feel for the freedom of loving and committed couples to marry, the internet is awash in a sea of red—the color of love.”