Tuesday, July 12, 2005

COM: Glenn Maxey fighting hatred

Byron LaMasters (late of the Burnt Orange Report) sent along this note about a concerted effort by former state rep Glenn Maxey to keep hatred from being written into the Texas Consitution. I can think of no better cause, nor a better choice to lead the charge. While we seem to have succeeded in alienating a large part of the world by our greed, revenge, and blind ambition, we can still strive for minor victories in an effort to show that we still have some humanity left in us. Give this a read and offer support in whatever way you can, including the spreading of this release via your own blog or outlet.

(Thanks Byron for the heads up!).


July 12, 2005

AUSTIN, TX - Former State Representative Glen Maxey of Austin has been
named Campaign Director in the mounting effort to keep discriminatory
language out of the Texas Constitution.

"We are excited and pleased to announce that the search for a campaign
director to lead the coalition of Texans opposed to HJR 6 has been
concluded, and that one of the premier political organizers in Texas will
be at the helm," announced Jill Ireland and John Hintz, co-chairs of the
Board of Directors of the Lesbian/Gay Rights Lobby of Texas. "Glen Maxey
will bring his thirty-five years of experience to this critical civil
rights battle to stop the enshrinement in our state Constitution of this
unnecessary and discriminatory ballot measure."

Maxey will lead the effort to defeat the constitutional amendment
prohibiting recognition of civil marriage or civil unions between persons
of the same gender which the Legislature has placed on the November, 2005
statewide ballot.

"I'm eager to use my experience to bring a broad coalition of fair-minded
Texans together to say 'No' to this nonsense in November. With public
education, health care access, and rational and fair tax policy
languishing, the Legislature spent their time and our tax dollars enacting
this divisive, unnecessary amendment. They now are asking Texans to rubber
stamp their efforts to deny many Texans the basic civil rights to protect
their relationships and their family's property and inheritance rights,
hospital visitation, and the hundreds of other rights and responsibilities
brought by a civil marriage or civil union," said Maxey.

"This political wedge issue is a diversion from the real work the
legislature failed to address. Texans understand that same-sex marriages
are already illegal in Texas and that it is nonsense to, for the first
time in history, use the most sacred document of the State of Texas, our
Constitution, as a vehicle to deny rights, instead of protect people's
rights," continued Maxey.

"Most Texans are embarrassed that they are being asked to ratify this kind
of bigotry. We will mobilize them to act this November and vote to stop
this nonsense."

Maxey, 53, is a native of Baytown, Texas and holds a Masters Degree in
Education and a B.S. in Social Rehabilitation and Social Services from Sam
Houston State University. He has a 35 year career in political activism,
campaign management, and public policy. He has participated in hundreds of
electoral campaigns ranging from municipal, county and school elections to
Presidential campaigns and issue referendums. He was instrumental in the
historic grass roots effort that helped elect Governor Ann Richards in
1990 and was the Texas statewide coordinator for Gov. Howard Dean's
campaign in 2004. He has been an integral part of statewide campaigns for
over three decades. His leadership in 2004 resulted in a historic voter
turnout in Travis County local elections.

Long active in politics, he was a legislative aide to two state senators
from 1981 to 1986, followed by four years as the Executive Director and
lead lobbyist for the Lesbian/Gay Rights Lobby of Texas, where he led the
efforts to enact rational HIV/AIDS policy during the hysteria of the AIDS
epidemic in a hostile legislative environment.

He was elected to the Texas House in 1991 and made history as the first
openly gay elected official in Texas. He served six terms in the
Legislature before retiring in 2003. Serving on the Public Health, Human
Services, and Appropriations Committees, he earned a reputation for being
an expert on the legislative process, and he passed hundreds of bills
during his tenure. He earned Legislator of the Year awards from dozens of
organizations ranging from Common Cause and the Gray Panthers to the
Sierra Club and the Texas Nurses Association. He was recognized as the
House leader in the efforts to create the Children's Health Insurance
Program, which brought health insurance coverage to 500,000 kids, and for
his work on disability issues.

Glen was a founder of AIDS Services of Austin and the Texas AIDS Network
in the 1980's. Most recently, he serves as political director of Democracy
for Texas and has worked as a lobbyist in the Texas Capitol for health
care, environmental and municipal clients.

Glen Maxey and the campaign can be reached at:
512 E Riverside Dr Ste 203, Austin TX 78704



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