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Monday, April 13, 2015

Buying supporters, $32.78 each

English: National Organization for Marriage Ex...
English: National Organization for Marriage Executive Director Brian S. Brown at Madison rally. Summer for marriage tour (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hemorrhaging money since 2012, the National Organization for Marriage is begging for alms. Mad financial genius Brian Brown, the advocacy group's president, wants you to send him your money to give poor marriage defenders in big cities within about 250 miles of Washington DC a free ride to his anti marriage aggro at the Supreme Court April 25. He's begging for $40,000 to pay for buses to take poor haters to DC for the festivities with a GoFundMe campaign sporting a fetching pink background:
We have one remaining opportunity at the March for Marriage in Washington DC on April 25th to show the justices of the court that we want them to respect our votes and our values and uphold the right of states to preserve true marriage.
"I doubt they mean that the way it reads," Waldo snorted.

Brown continues,
[T]here are thousands more who wish to come, but lack resources for transportation. This GoFundMe campaign will raise money to subsidize buses from throughout the country, many of which will originate in urban communites. 
"Communites?" Waldo asked. Are they illiterate? Never mind."

Brown continues,
Nobody should be denied the opportunity to march for marriage due to finances. The campaign will subsidize at least twenty buses. Additional funds raised beyond our goal will be used to support more buses of marriage supporters.
Charter buses hold from 38 to 61 passengers, so the most Brown can hope for is somewhere between 760 and 1220 extra attendees. This would be a big boost: last year's march only drew about 2,000 outraged marriage defenders, and many left before the rally was over and the march began (The Washington Times, the events media sponsor, dutifully reported "thousands of marchers" attended).

No details are given for the field trip, but, based on one charter company's rates, 20 buses for $40,000 means a two-day rental:

But if people are too poor to get to DC on their own, how will they afford housing and meals overnight? Or will it be a long, one day round trip with a handy 100% profit? The latter seems the more likely, as the rally/march begins at 11:30 am and ends at 2 pm.

As of today, the outraged marriage defenders have paid for two buses and change: 54 of them have given $4,548: an average of $84 each. $2500 came for two anonymous donors; Brian Brown, who pulls down $500,000 a year as NOM president, pledged $100.

The GoFundMe campaign is in addition to a campaign the March for Marriage site is running to match a $50,000 pledge to meet expenses. As of today the outraged marriage defenders of America have only stumped up $18,665. A previous $100,000 goal was 80% reached on March 24, NOM claims. While the current $50,000 goal is listed as "additional" NOM did not issue a press release announcing the $100k goal being met. Cynics might wonder if the "additional" campaign is just a continuation of the "original", with the $100,000 goal still $335 off. 

There is no word whether the Pizza Martyrs of Indiana ($842,000) of the Flower Martyr of the Tri-Cities will be dropping any of their GoFundMe haul in NOM's tin cup. As of this date, the florist Barronelle Stutzman, has soaked the 4,525 of the credulous for $165,437 to cover her $1,000 fine and $1 in court costs. Since Waldo's last look, the Stutzman trawl has slowed significantly: only 314 people have stumped up $11,667 since April 9. NOM is clearly trying to tap the thousands of moon-calves who threw away over a million dollars on the self-styled victims of gay haters in the Glenn Beck-led crowdfunders.

You can march for marriage free by not going at all: to take part in NOM's Virtual March, you just have to sign their scripted message. 2,548 of the poorest- or busiest- of America's outraged marriage defenders have gone for the Virtual March Option as of today.

Need to know what you think, in case a sneaky reporter hitches a lift? There's downloadable talking points, and instructions for bus captains, too. 

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