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  • The Grooms

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    “Public Advocate of the United States” Steal a Kiss – And it’s Gay

    Today, I received an email from Jennie, a friend of mine from college. Last week she was reading the NY Daily News when she came across an article “about some politician’s attack ad on his opponent.” In her email she included a photo taken with her iphone of an image which accompanied the article. I searched and searched but was unable to locate that article, but came across another which included the same image written by reporter Lynn Bartels at The Denver Post.

    See for yourself:

     

    Here is the original image before it was stolen, defiled, and mailed to thousands of people:

    Photography by Kristina Hill Photography

    We learned from Bartel’s article, that “this mailer was paid for by Public Advocate of the United States, a conservative Washington, D.C., group and targets Sen. Jean White for her vote last year and this year in support of a bill allowing same-sex couples to form civil unions. (handout).”

    First off – I want to share what this picture means to me. It represents my first home away from home, my beloved NYC, which at the time this image was taken (2 years ago) did not allow same sex couples to marry. It represents my longterm relationship with my best friend, my partner, and now husband – the love we share and obstacles we have overcome. It is a reminder of the happiness I felt the day he proposed to me and of the excitement I had all throughout our engagement. It represents hope and it represents love. Or at least it did…

    Now I see it faded and brown with a big red, blood-emulating slash across our bodies.  It cuts us in half just below our hearts. How do I feel? I’m in shock and I’m angry and I’m hurt and I’m flabbergasted and I’m livid.

    And, I can’t help but feel the need to warn other LGBT couples that hey, even after you overcome your fears of coming out to your families and friends and coworkers; even after you graduate and leave that hell-hole of a high school, where every single day you feared for your life; even after all the letters to your senators and the countless marches that eventually won you and your state the mariage equality you deserve; even after you find your soul mate, get engaged and then married… someone, a stranger, will seek out your image on the internet, perhaps on a site like this one which was created to document our journey down the aisle with the hopes that our experiences would benefit other LGBT couples… steal it and use it in an attempt to destroy others who support you.

    I tell you what – I never saw that coming, would you?

    Don’t worry friends – this is not the end of this story.

    Brian

    “Ugh” created by Kristina Hill

    Comments

    Comment from anne
    Time June 27, 2012 at 11:20 pm

    This picture will always be a symbol of your love… No amount of Photoshopping can diffuse it. This is a teaching moment, and I support you in sharing this lesson loud and clear.

    Comment from Rosa Lovejoy
    Time June 27, 2012 at 11:21 pm

    Brian- I am totally disgusted by this. I hope that there is something you and Tom can do about this. I’d send your post to all of the media outlets ASAP. But I’m a bitch. We love you both-
    Rosa & Ron Lovejoy

    Comment from Kristina Hill
    Time June 27, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    Thia, on so many levels, is heart breaking. Im completely prepared to fight the fight right along side of you two. xoxo

    Comment from Shannon
    Time June 27, 2012 at 11:38 pm

    Brian- this is a disgusting misuse of a beautiful picture. Stuff like this makes me crazy! If we can do anything, let us know! We’re behind both of you!

    Comment from Jennifer
    Time June 27, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    Is this not copyright infringement?

    Comment from cristina
    Time June 28, 2012 at 12:00 am

    OMG! This is blatant thievery! I am so sorry you and Tom have to go thru this…it is truly unbelievable in this day and age that ignorance is tolerated!

    Comment from Mike – you don’t know me
    Time June 28, 2012 at 12:29 am

    My wife showed this to me. Speak with a copyright lawyer. Also, under Article 50 of the New York Civil Rights Law (a misnomer to be sure, but that’s the title), you may have a claim because someone used your image to raise money. Several years ago, a rock star (possibly John Cougar Melloncamp) stopped a politician from using his songs at campaign events.

    Comment from Shannon Fitz
    Time June 28, 2012 at 1:57 am

    I am shocked, angry & heart broken that this happened to you!! Politicians on either side of the isle who have to reduce themselves to lies, theft & Personal Injury should be jailed! I would call Gloria Allred! Keep me updated. Praying for you Tom, my old Friend..& Your loving hubby Brian. P.S. Below is her info!

    Gloria Allred
    Allred, Maroko & Goldberg
    6300 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1500
    Los Angeles, CA 90048
    Phone (323) 302-4773
    Fax (323) 653-1660

    Comment from Joel Hudson
    Time June 28, 2012 at 2:17 am

    She was the Republican incumbent and lost the primary Tuesday. Interesting commentary on conservative hypocrisy the fact her opponent had a sex offender who failed to register living in his home: http://www.craigdailypress.com/news/2012/jun/27/baumgardner-wins-republican-senate-district-8-prim/

    His supporters politicized her vote on civil union’s to distract from that story. Then once he’d won the primary he tries to downplay it in the hopes both stories will go away before the general election. It’s a pretty red rural district. Still though I am halfway tempted to donate to his opponent http://www.emilytracy.com/
    How great would it be to see her pull off the upset and have something good come out of this?

    Comment from Lynn Bartels
    Time June 28, 2012 at 2:59 am

    Brian and Tom’s image was used in at least two attack fliers in Colorado. The Denver Post has the story:

    http://blogs.denverpost.com/thespot/2012/06/27/gay-couples-engagement-picture-attack-ads-colorado-statehouse-races/75130/

    Comment from Lisa
    Time June 28, 2012 at 6:43 am

    OMG!!!!!! This is an OUTRAGE!!! I am disgusted. I’m sorry, honey. This awful woman can not get away with this, damn it. How dare she.

    For what it’s worth, the original version of this picture remains one of my absolute favorites of you and Tom. That evil woman will never change that for me.

    Love you!!!

    Comment from Adrian
    Time June 28, 2012 at 7:09 am

    This is a clear and blatant breach of copyright laws. Sue the pants off them. But don’t loose sight of the bigger picture. With the legal campaign, this image could become the image of a generation! You are part of something big here!

    Comment from Gigi
    Time June 28, 2012 at 8:43 am

    No matter how hard they try they’ll never be able to take the joy and love from your lives. I know it must have been upsetting to learn that they’d used your photo is such a deplorable way but maybe you can use turn it around on them to get the word out that marriage equality should be available to all people. (Btw, love the pic of the two of you under the umbrella!!!!) Enjoy your lives boys. :)

    Comment from Strepsi
    Time June 28, 2012 at 8:55 am

    Three words:

    SUE. SUE. SUE.

    I don’t know about U.S. specific laws, but here in Quebec this usage of a person’s own image is actually illegal under not copyright law, but Privacy law — even a newspaper here may not publish a person’s own image (even if taken in public) without consent.

    P.S. I am married too, and truly NOTHING can take away your memory of that day being the best of your life. Cheers!

    Comment from Dara Burleson
    Time June 28, 2012 at 9:05 am

    WTF???? I hope you can feel the steam radiating off my body from all the way down in NC; b/c I’m freaking seething right now from this intrusive, blatant, disregard for people’s privacy & this bitch stole your beautiful image of a moment of true blissful celebration of your engagement to tommy. This is illegal and down right despicable… She should be ashamed of herself and the people following her and donating money should be also! You know I have your back, have had it since 94, so please let me know what I can do to support you and tommy during this! So help me god, if I have to fly up there and march, protest, have a demonstration at their offices or whatever~ that bitch will be sorry she ever messed with you, tommy or any other of our comrades in the LGBT community across the US. Don’t make me get all YC from NC on her ass!! SUE them all!! Love you always!

    Comment from Strepsi
    Time June 28, 2012 at 9:09 am

    ALSO: In my opinion Eugene DelGaudio is a hate group leader and inveterate liar — sign up for his emails (hold your nose) and you can PROVE he is using it to raise money. His quote ” “We are a non-profit and make no money from any photos, postings, references…” is an obvious falsehood. of COURSE Non-Profit companies make money! bitch doesn’t do a thing without asking for cash.

    Comment from sandee
    Time June 28, 2012 at 9:18 am

    So sorry this has happened to you. Please know there are people – good people in this world who love and support you even though they may not know you personally. My heart and prayers go out to you. May your love always shine brightly.

    Comment from Naomi
    Time June 28, 2012 at 9:49 am

    Horrified. Just shows you how low some politicos will go to pander their point of view. So sorry for the couple – but they have love and this org is filled with hatred and deceit.

    Comment from Scot Colford
    Time June 28, 2012 at 11:28 am

    I am so angry right now, I can’t see straight. This is so reprehensible. And I guess I can’t even form the words for an intelligent comment. But I wanted to let you know that I sympathize deeply with you. At least know that the love you and your husband share is quite evident to me looking at that picture, big red slash or not.

    I will be following along for updates. Stay strong and don’t let the haters win.

    Comment from rosanne krisanda
    Time June 28, 2012 at 11:59 am

    please sue these jerks–stealers–i cannot think of a word bad enough to print about these poor excuses of a human..please know i love you two guys and am very happy for you in finding love and being married…

    Comment from Kel Munger
    Time June 28, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    Sue that guy’s butt off. He makes his living raising money from frightened people by sending out those emails. He needs to apologize and pay up. Seriously, fellas, find a lawyer.

    Comment from Matt Ray
    Time June 28, 2012 at 1:06 pm

    I guess I don’t get what the big deal is. My answer to the question on the ad would simply be: yes. It’s one idea of family values anyway. It’s not like they put devil horns on the picture or something. Even in its new condition the photo is lovely and romantic. I don’t understand what the ad is supposed to be showing. I guess that two guys are gross? Fail. Maybe I’m just seeing it from different eyes, but seems like an ad for this candidate, not against them. Like, yay, let’s celebrate a happy wedding. I’m sure they must not have meant it that way though.

    Comment from fr. neil, c.s.e.f.
    Time June 28, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    Hey guys;
    Your love is bigger and better and more Holy, than anything these sad, unhappy and unchristian people can ever do to you.

    Peace & Joy in your new life together!
    +neil & Toshi

    Comment from Katherine Helms Cummings
    Time June 28, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    Matt-I think you have completely missed the point of the mailer. It is clearly intended to help defeat Jean White because she had the courage to speak up for the civil rights of gay and lesbian couples. And the photo has been defiled. It wasn’t anyone’s to use or alter except the couple and the photographer (if she retained the rights).

    I hope Kristina Hill is flooded with requests for business. Her work is excellent, an din fact cearly good enough for a group advocating inequality to hijack and use in their smear campaign.

    Comment from Deborah Miller
    Time June 28, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    I think the main point here is that the picture was taken for another purpose…and…permission was not instigated in order to use it. It doesn’t matter what it was used for at that point because that’s called stealing. And in most places punishable by law. So besides the message and the intent of the image, we must first stand up and say “hey, you don’t have permission.” And that’s NOT ok. There’s way too much theft online. And it saddens me that it was also used for propaganda. My heart goes out to the couple in the picture and I really hope you go after them for it.

    Comment from Phil in CA
    Time June 28, 2012 at 2:53 pm

    this is an outrage and disgusting! your love is your love and no one should be allowed to get away with using your special, loving day for anything without your permission. you have support and love everywhere around you. do what you feel you should. i am so sorry you two have to go through this. let your love lead you through this.

    Pingback from Public Assholes for the United States « franklyrebekah
    Time June 28, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    [...] I was doing some angry food shopping at Trader Joe’s yesterday.  But then I saw a link to this on my Facebook feed.  The basic gist, for those of you who are either (1) too lazy to read about [...]

    Pingback from Gay Couple’s Wedding Pic Used In Anti-Marriage Equality Mailing | DanNation.org
    Time June 28, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    [...] Edwards did not find out about about the anti-gay mailer and their use of his photo until Wednesday night. Edwards wrote on his blog called The Gay Wedding Experience: [...]

    Comment from jessey
    Time June 28, 2012 at 6:20 pm

    They can not use your image and claim it as their own or your image at all. That is a copyrigt issue right there my friend. I’m sorry this happened.. I”m sorry that there are people out there who want to try and ruin love. you and your husband are so very lucky to have eachother :)

    Pingback from This Couple’s Wedding Photo Was Turned into an Anti-Gay Political Smear Ad | Con Games
    Time June 28, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    [...] did not find out about about the anti-gay mailer and their use of his photo until Wednesday night. Edwards wrote on his blog called The Gay Wedding Experience:   First off – I want to share what this picture means to me. It represents my first [...]

    Comment from Lisa
    Time June 28, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    just saw this in a knitting forum! Everybody is outraged at what they did with your photo. And we all hope you are all lawyered up and going after them on copyright infringement issues, if nothing else. Much love and support from a bunch of people, LGBT and straight that you don’t even know.

    Comment from Jam
    Time June 28, 2012 at 6:41 pm

    I’m so sorry you two had to be the target of some jaded, childish fiend who calls themselves a politician. You two and your story are beautiful, and made me cry, gosh darn it! Once can only hope the majority of voters will ignore these paid-for public displays of hate crimes, and they will someday go away, be rejected, and looked down upon. In my world, they already are…now if everyone else could just feel the same…haha. Well, you two keep on being the beautiful people you are, and know that you have so many supporters around you, who haven’t even met you, who love you. Have a fantabulous day! ^_^ <3

    Comment from Holly Atkinson
    Time June 28, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    I really have no words for this. Obviously nothing I can say will adequately express my outrage, or begin to relate it to what you and your husband have experienced. sincerely hope you get your pound of flesh. This is more than appalling — it’s a spit in the face of common decency.

    Comment from Jill
    Time June 28, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    On one hand, I am so sorry that they did this to you and your husband. Go get ‘em! On the other hand, as a matter of fact, yes, this is my idea of family values. Family values are all about people loving and respecting each other. I wish the two of you a long and happy life together.

    Comment from Kristin
    Time June 28, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    Hey guys – I am stunned beyond words right now (and since Tom knows my mom so well he will be shocked!). I can’t even begin to describe how angry and hurt I am for you both. Besides the fact that Kristina is an amazing photographer, the original picture is the very symbol of love and family. Funny how a group so in love with “morals” has the balls to be so IMmoral and steal!! I will be following this very closely and supporting you however I can. Just, please – don’t call Gloria Allred – she is a nag! ;~)

    Comment from John
    Time June 28, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    Sue the bastards. Copyright infringement criminally, and personal injury civilly.

    Pingback from The Gay Wedding Experience » A Message from Tom and Brian
    Time June 28, 2012 at 11:30 pm

    [...] Brian’s Response [...]

    Comment from Christopher Leidenfrost-Wilson
    Time June 29, 2012 at 12:18 am

    The photographer and the couple both have HUGE legal standing to sue for damages on copyright infringement, illegal use of their likeness and emotional distress. Bring those bastards down and God Bless you for it…

    Comment from Lynette Cowper
    Time June 29, 2012 at 12:35 am

    As an Unfundamentalist Christian, I would like to take this opportunity to apologise for the hateful defilement of your treasured memories by those who claim to represent Christ. I am sorry for your loss.

    Pingback from This Couple's Wedding Photo Was Turned into an Anti-Gay Political Smear Ad |
    Time June 29, 2012 at 6:31 am

    [...] did not find out about about the anti-gay mailer and their use of his photo until Wednesday night. Edwards wrote on his blog called The Gay Wedding Experience: [...]

    Comment from StraightGrandmother
    Time June 29, 2012 at 10:10 am

    You have my FULLEST Support. Sue the Bastard!!! Don’t worry we out here DO SEE your REAL and DEEP Love for each other. He.Did.Not.Win!!!

    Comment from Fritz Liess
    Time June 29, 2012 at 10:37 am

    While that hate group did not intend this result, your photo has warmed my heart. I wonder how many others will find there way here and be filled with admiration, joy and hope. The haters have succeeded in introducing a beautiful and important love story to the entire world. In that way, they have already lost.

    Comment from BJ Lincoln
    Time June 29, 2012 at 11:06 am

    You are such cute couple. I hope you take her for every dime she has and then some.

    Comment from Jake Tommerup
    Time June 29, 2012 at 11:52 am

    What a great picture (the original, of course, not the photo-shopped abusive one)! I wish you much happiness.

    I hope you guys and the photographer get the ratbastard who put this together and receive more-than-generous settlements.

    And when either Maine or California finally get their respective shit together, my partner and I will get plane tickets to Portland or scamper off to San Francisco.

    Comment from RK
    Time June 29, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    Why aren’t you suing these bigots all the way into bankruptcy. They used your image without permission. You realize you have legal recourse here. I hope that you and your husband do not sit quitely and let his go! You must teach these haters a severe financial price for their hate. And how utterly and totally disrespectful that they you used someone’s private wedding picture for a public political ad. YOU must do something for equality’s sake! Please do not let this slide…the LGBT community is counting on you and your husband to take them down.

    Comment from Stuart R
    Time June 29, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    As I mentioned when I first saw this on the Joe.My.God site, it’s hard for me to add much substance to what’s already been said. So I’ll just add my support and I can’t believe Eugene did this. I really REALLY hope that you do follow-through with the lawsuit because, as a photographer, I can’t think of any legitimate legal defense she’d have. If you haven’t already, you should also contact your photographer (who I assume is also LGBT-friendly, otherwise they wouldn’t have done the photos) and see if they’ll join you in the lawsuit.

    Comment from homer
    Time June 29, 2012 at 12:39 pm

    I’m so sorry your beautiful wedding photo was used by that creep.

    Comment from Rem C
    Time June 29, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    The answer to the ad’s question is, “Yes, this is a FABULOUSLY prime example of family values.”

    Comment from Mark
    Time June 29, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    As a photographer, I’m disgusted with the theft of a photo. Copyright infringement for sure (if not approved by yourselves or your photographer). As a gay man, even more disgusted. As a human – can’t politely say how I feel. In the end you’ll still find this photo to represent what it originally did! Nobody can take that away from you both.

    Comment from Dave
    Time June 29, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Stealing a beautiful moment and using it to smear hate in the faces of innocent Americans is a wretched, despicable thing to do. I am so sorry you have had to go through this.

    Comment from Lauralyn
    Time June 29, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    This really is outrageous. I hope the end of the story includes a win in court for you against this so-called advocate group.

    Comment from Joe
    Time June 29, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    I would be very ticked off too! I hope you sue the for all they are worth! Just wrong!

    Pingback from Q News | Friday, June 29, 2012 | My Q Planet
    Time June 29, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    [...] angry and I’m hurt and I’m flabbergasted and I’m livid,” Edwards wrote on his blog, The Gay Wedding Experience. Full story @ [...]

    Comment from Bill
    Time June 29, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    I BEG you to sue them. PLEASE!!! You could easily find a pro-bono lawyer to take this on, and I’m sure Lambda Legal would love to take a case like this. People that would use a wedding photo in a political attack ad need to be punished and our legal system affords us that opportunity.

    Comment from Diana
    Time June 29, 2012 at 4:11 pm

    That’s completely outrageous! They not only used your photo, but it’s clear that they took time to photoshop Colorado-style landscape around you, to try and change the photo, and make you both the center of the ad. I”ve never been a sue-them kind of person, but this definitely calls for a legal remedy against the hate group that did this. Your wedding pic is so sweet, btw! :)

    Pingback from PDN Pulse » Blog Archive » Wedding Photog Might Sue for Copyright Infringement Over Anti-Gay Attack Ad
    Time June 29, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    [...] the men in Hill’s photograph, Brian Edwards, was notified by a friend about the ad. Edwards minced no words about it on his blog called The Gay Wedding Experience: “How do I feel? I?m in shock and I?m angry [...]

    Comment from Jams Bauguess
    Time June 29, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    I am sorry y’all are having to deal with this ugly hate group like this.

    Please know that there are many, many, many people out there who support you two and your marriage. I really felt the love radiating out from the picture, strong couple and great photographer to capture this moment.

    Keep your heads up and sue, sue, sue…

    Comment from Mindi
    Time June 29, 2012 at 5:23 pm

    Your photo is beautiful, and I do support same-sex marriage. However, I hope that you will sue for another reason – to help the rest of us fight our own hate groups. My son has Down Syndrome so I know that there are haters who peruse website looking for photos of children with Down Syndrome to deface and repost as part of their hate message. So when you ask “Would you [see this coming]?” My answer is, “Kind of.” Every time parents post pictures of their kids with Down Syndrome we worry about where it will show up. So, hopefully, a somewhat high-profile case like this will set a precedent, deter others, and help the rest of us go after our own haters.

    Comment from Gabryyl Pierce
    Time June 29, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    I read their tag about family values & thought “same as my idea of family values – love.”

    Because the only thing I saw when I looked at the picture was love…nothing will change that, no matter what.

    Comment from Holly Steen
    Time June 29, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    To Brian and Tom! I hope that you both know that this one photo STILL represents love. It re-invigorates the fight for same-sex rights and awareness. It shows that same sex couples even if exploited can still bond together, share a healthy idea of what family means and the value of love. Please keep believing and don’t give up in your love or fight for rights.

    Comment from Regan DuCasse
    Time June 29, 2012 at 6:44 pm

    Hi Brian! I just wanted to say hello and that I wish you continued happiness with your husband. You’re a handsome couple and no one should be disrespecting you and your love.
    Most of us who know Eugene Delgaudio and what he stands for, understand how mean and frankly nuts, he must be.
    So take heart and do what you must to protect the beautiful and loving image of you and your husband.
    Love, can prevail in this.
    xoxo

    Comment from Katie
    Time June 29, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    Don’t let the haters get you down! Your original photo made me, and I’m sure many others, smile. Today is the day someone tried to knock your love, but hundreds (thousands?) of strangers stood up to celebrate it instead.
    All they’ve done is shown how vile it is to jump into someone else’s love life just to proclaim disapproval. I’m sure that when a lot of on-the-fencers realize that this is a real wedding photo that was stolen and defaced for the purpose of spreading hate, it’ll be a decisive moment in favor of “other people’s love and commitment is none of my business.” They’ve turned the tables on themselves.
    For what it’s worth, I hope you sue the crap out of them.

    Comment from rowan
    Time June 29, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    their actions are so disgraceful. To those fantastic men in the photo, it is my hope that you can channel the anger and shock that you feel into education and awareness. I also hope that you can heal from this and see in that photo the love and commitment, stregnth, courage, passion, and effort that you have within your beautiful relationship. I hope that eventually you will smile at the very thought of anyone even trying to make it less than what it is, a BEAUTIFUL photo of love. the truth is, and always will be, that love overcomes. and your love for eachother is inspirational and appreciated all over the world. I am so glad that I have the privledge to see the photo, of which I’m sure I would not have, if this incedent hadn’t happened. a silver lining is that your beautiful photo of deep and wonderful love is shared with those of us who would have never seen it. I am sending love and support your way. May they get what they deserve. and may you live happily ever after!!!

    Comment from Bill
    Time June 29, 2012 at 8:40 pm

    I feel so sorry for you guys, I believe legal action is the way to go. If they do this to both of you, they could very well do it to a straight couple. This is not right. I do think your photo is beautiful before it was altered.

    Comment from Dan
    Time June 29, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    I have never been opposed to gays, as a longtime family friend of over 3 decades is a lesbian in a committed and loving relationship…and my wife’s brother is gay and similarly off the market; add to that the fact that I was mistaken (by Oklahoma redneck classmates) for gay when Anita Bryant started this whole ruckus back in the day. So I’ve had occasion to taste the hate directed at gays, and it tastes worse than excrement…I’m also experienced/talented with Photoshop and, as such, view this as no less a violation of responsible ‘Shop skills than those fake nudes of celebrities floating about cyberspace.

    SUE THE B@ST@RDS!

    Comment from Brion Hanlon
    Time June 29, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    I think one positive here is that the people who perpetrated this offense (evidently with no consideration that the couple in the photo would become aware and respond to the unlawful use of the image) are now fully aware that you (and we by extension) actually exist inside their same world. I think your photographer is probably entitled to some usage fee on every postcard, etc that was printed. I would love too see more of the postcards delivered wrapped with checks made out to organizations that support the cause of marriage equality

    Pingback from The Gay Wedding Experience » Checking In – Two Days After Realizing Our Photo Was Turned Into Attack Ads
    Time June 30, 2012 at 12:33 am

    [...] Brian’s Response [...]

    Comment from Carletonart
    Time June 30, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    I am desperately struggling to comprehend. Good luck in your cause to seek justice. Also, I have a point of clarification with regards to the well intended information provided by @Strepsi. Copyright laws are covered in the Canadian Constitution and therefore enforced at a federal level. Happy Canada Day Weekend to you @Strepsi my fellow compatriot.

    Comment from Ash
    Time June 30, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    I am sorry this happened to you, its a wonderful photo. I am so glad your here in our city and hope things work out well.

    Pingback from Hate Group Swipes NYC Couple’s Photo For Anti-Gay Ad In CO / Queerty
    Time June 30, 2012 at 7:16 pm

    [...] by the Southern Poverty Law Center, found a cute picture of the guys smooching on their big day on Edwards’ blog, the Gay Wedding Experience, and thought it’d be a great way to scare voters in Colorado against voting for State Sen. [...]

    Comment from Keri
    Time July 1, 2012 at 12:18 am

    Just disgusting that anyone could take such a beautiful image of love and tarnish it like that. I hope you are able to get justice for this.

    Pingback from This Week in Assholes | Crasstalk
    Time July 1, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    [...] Advocate of the United States. These folks stole a romantic photo of a gay couple in New York and used it for an anti-gay attack ad. Brian, one of the men in the picture, writes about his experience on Gay Wedding Experience.com. [...]

    Comment from Jo
    Time July 1, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Brian:

    This is who you want to sue:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugene_Delgaudio

    “Eugene Delgaudio is an American social conservative politician who currently represents the Sterling District on the Loudoun County, Virginia, Board of Supervisors. He is also the executive director of the controversial conservative organization “Public Advocate of the U.S.”, designated in March 2012 as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.”

    He is not rich, nor does the “group” appear to be much of anything except him, his loony agenda – and a means to dodge taxes.

    SIC ‘em!!!

    Comment from Summer
    Time July 2, 2012 at 2:35 am

    You may not have a lot of ground for copyright infringement, but your photographer sure does. As the owner of your images, she has the sole right to see how they are used (including giving them to her clients or not). As a professional photographer myself, I would know. If nothing else, she has the right to charge them WHATEVER she wants for the use of the image. They are completely out of their league.

    Comment from Crystal
    Time July 2, 2012 at 7:47 pm

    This is just disgusting! I hope you and your husband can stay strong through this together. Even our local paper is aware of this but even as close as we are to DC, there are still people who are not as accepting. Delgaudio has caused a lot of uproar in our area. You should know by now that this world isn’t perfect but there are people in it who support you. Many blessings to you both. You will be in my thoughts and prayers. http://www.loudountimes.com/index.php/news/article/Gay_couple_considering_lawsuit_against_Delgaudios_Public_Advocate/

    Comment from Lucy
    Time July 2, 2012 at 9:44 pm

    It makes me boil! The hate perpetuated and how they robbed you.

    The first commentator is right – this picture will always symbolize LOVE and JOY.

    don’t back down, don’t let them continue without a fight.

    Pingback from Why I removed my Creative Commons license
    Time July 3, 2012 at 2:21 am

    [...] a professional level, in addition to ‘the greater good’. Until the other day. I read the story about a gay couple whose wedding picture was used by a conservative group as part of a cam… (ᔥ). It’s like a weird version of this British couple (who I by the way wish a [...]

    Comment from Mark
    Time July 4, 2012 at 10:26 am

    This is disgusting. Taking ur beautiful moment and using it for their homophobic agenda. Kinda makes u think before posting pictures. Don’t let it sour ur moment.

    Comment from Laura Horowitz
    Time July 4, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    Dear Brian and Tom,

    I was horrified to read the story of what was done to your beautiful engagement photo. Please know that my family sends our support to you and we take joy in your marriage. People like Delgaudio are in a frenzy because they know that views like theirs are fast disappearing from civil discourse in this country. The weight of history is on your side, Brian and Tom, and it’s going to crush people like Delgaudio.

    My husband, our son and daughter and their partners, my two (gay) brothers, and my mom join me in wishing you a long and happy lifetime together, filled with good health, contentment, and happiness.

    Love-

    Laura

    Comment from Anthony Loreno
    Time July 12, 2012 at 4:04 am

    Wishing you both all the best…my heart goes out to the 2 of you, may you find peace and comfort in the Lord and know He would not tolerate this sort of defamation. Continue to love, and know that YOU ARE LOVED!!!
    ~Straight guy helping to fight for marriage equality and the rights you deserve!

    Comment from Molly
    Time July 13, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    A simple answer to what should be a simple question – Yes. And I will keep hoping and praying that someday everyone will acknowledge and appreciate the value of EVERY family, and every expression of love. My love goes out to you both <3

    Comment from Kata
    Time July 14, 2012 at 8:57 am

    You two are cute as buttons. I wish you many, many decades of love together.

    Comment from Chris
    Time July 14, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    I’m sorry this happened to you, but I’d say other than the uber-homophobic audience this ad is intended for, I think this image is beautiful and inspiring. Yes, this is my idea of family values :) . Peace to you.

    Pingback from What if someone stole your engagement photos for a political attack ad? | Hotspyer – Breaking News from around the web
    Time July 14, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    [...] “Public Advocate of the United States” hate group swiped their photo off their blog The Gay Wedding Experience, which they’d posted for the enjoyment of their friends and [...]

    Pingback from What if someone stole your engagement photos for a political attack ad? | FavStocks
    Time July 15, 2012 at 3:19 am

    [...] “Public Advocate of the United States” hate group swiped their photo off their blog The Gay Wedding Experience, which they’d posted for the enjoyment of their friends and [...]

    Pingback from What if someone stole your engagement photos for a political attack ad? – Online Political Blog
    Time July 15, 2012 at 6:00 pm

    [...] “Public Advocate of the United States” hate group swiped their photo off their blog The Gay Wedding Experience, which they’d posted for the enjoyment of their friends and [...]

    Comment from Barbara
    Time July 21, 2012 at 11:32 am

    I just read about this at Huffpost and was so touched that I had to send you a note. I am so sorry that you were put in the middle of this hatefulness. You and your husband deserve to live a happy and wonderful life together! Just know that many, many people (who you have never met – like me!) care about you and wish you a more tolerant world. PS I love the name Higgins!

    Pingback from Anti-Gay Group Sued Over Use of Couple's Photo – NYTimes.com
    Time September 26, 2012 at 6:37 pm

    [...] shock and I’m angry and I’m hurt and I’m flabbergasted and I’m livid,” Mr. Edwards, 32, blogged on June 27.Public Advocate sent a similar mailing in opposition to Jeffrey Hare, a Republican candidate for [...]

    Pingback from Gay Couple Sues Conservative Group, Saying It Stole Their Kiss | News from around the world
    Time September 26, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    [...] “I’m in shock and I’m angry and I’m hurt and I’m flabbergasted and I’m livid,” Mr. Edwards, 32, blogged on June 27. [...]

    Pingback from The New York Resource
    Time September 27, 2012 at 3:20 am

    [...] “I’m in shock and I’m angry and I’m hurt and I’m flabbergasted and I’m livid,” Mr. Edwards, 32, blogged on June 27. [...]

    Comment from manhattanite
    Time September 27, 2012 at 10:51 am

    Amazing photo and a beautiful family. Wishing you many years of happiness together!!

    Comment from Ann
    Time September 27, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    Your image of you and your husband in love is a beautiful one and I find it simply repulsive that someone would steal it and misrepresent everything that initial photo stood for. Fight this tooth and nail! We are all behind you-good luck!

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