Campaign for equality with Drupal-based Friendfactor

Did you know that in the United States, you can only get married in 5 states if you're gay? I think that's insane.

That's why I'm proud to say that Friendfactor is a Drupal site. Friendfactor is an organization that makes it easier for friends to help their LGBT friends achieve full legal freedoms and equality.

Anyone, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, can create a profile that explains why the cause is important to them, and ask their friends to support them in their individual fights for equality. Friendfactor also gives details about the legal inequalities in each home state, and provides tools that friends can use to make change.

For example, in New York, Friendfactor realized that state senators will decide whether LGBT New Yorkers will have the freedom to marry. To connect constituents and friends who care about the issue with state senators, Friendfactor created Friend-setter pages.

Friend-setter pages are a new innovation in online advocacy. The pages act like marathon fundraising pages, except instead of asking friends for a donations you ask friends for a call to a New York state senator. In one click and in under 1 minute, your friends will be connected to their state senator's office.

There is only two weeks left to pass marriage in New York. Calling is one of the most powerful ways someone can exercise their voice as a constituent. Thousands of New Yorkers have already taken a stand in support of the freedom to marry and I have joined them by setting up my own Friend-setter page.

Friendfactor is what I believe the next generation of advocacy organizations will be: technology-focused in a smart and human way. It's rewarding to see how Drupal enables such a cause.

Comments

Christopher Jam... (not verified):

I salute your taking a stand toward freedom and open-mindedness.

Also, critically, (instead of simply delineating a problem) the that fact that you recommend and provide a "single" and clear action for your audience to take is the most effective way to for you to effect change.

Please, if you have time, consider the train-wreck that d.o is; and do something similar and singular for that community.

- Chris

*Drupal 8 is gonna be great*

PS: I know you won't; but Don't post this.

Oh,.. and if she lives, give your mom a hug for me. She's got a great son, and she deserves to see him often.

June 9, 2011
Senu (not verified):

The main problem is "contributing back". In Drupal society one is expected to contribute back if you have received something.

If your parents were gay you would not be here. Will you? So every human being has a moral or otherwise obligation to keep the lamp-fire remaining lighted. Take this example, if you are entitled to being gay, then 100% of the population are also legally entitled to be gay. And if they choose that, that means end of civilization.

June 9, 2011
Sam Tresler (not verified):

Your reasoning is insane. To start, being gay isn't a choice. Second, if such a moral obligation exists, then you are defacto saying that every person has an obligation to have as many children as possible in any way possible. That's ridiculous. And finally, really? You think *LOVE* is going to be the end of civilization, and *HATE* will help it. Ok. We are not in the same boat on this one.

June 9, 2011
Joel Stein (not verified):

I'm a long-time Drupal developer, but I'm very sorry to learn that the founder supports same-sex marriage. God made marriage an institution between man and woman, a relationship that celebrates the complementary of the sexes, and multiplies the human race.

That will never change, and those who participate in or otherwise promote anything to the contrary will eventually work out their own self-destruction.

Whether you agree with me or not, for the sake of the Drupal community, I hope you unpublish this post, so we can focus on technical issues, not social ones.

June 9, 2011
Josh (not verified):

So sorry you can't find compassion for all people they way they were born.
Perhaps something can lead you back to a intelligent and righteous path.

Good luck un-patching all that gay code.
Core is bi you know.

June 14, 2011
Anonymous (not verified):

This is a mistake. Marriage is a privilege and gift, not a right or some political agenda that everyone can pull at to make sure they have their fair share. God ordained marriage and He alone can dictate how the gift can be used. He has revealed that marriage is for creating families, not for companionship, solving loneliness, or for partners to have a sexual toy. Please stop this culturally mainstream desecration. It's time for real heroes to stand up amidst the masses, the same confused masses who are busy saluting open-mindedness, to show the way to freedom. Freedom can only be attained through obedience (Galatians 5:1), not through autonomous fulfillment of mans every desire.

June 9, 2011
jules Assata (not verified):

Interesting that someone who is so strongly attached to his ideas of what God says and means, putting them for as the only truth possible, has done so anonymously... There's something significantly unheroic about bashing others-- to say nothing of speaking for God!--without using your name.

June 11, 2011
Thomas Hoover (not verified):

It is simply not true that "you can only get married in five states if you're gay". You can get married in all fifty states if you're gay, but in order to marry, you have to marry a member of the opposite sex. Everyone has the same, equal right to do that.

Why should a gay person marry a member of the opposite sex? For the same reason everyone else does--to carry on his family bloodline by producing legitimately-born heirs. That's what marriage is for, and gays can do it just like everyone else.

June 9, 2011
Ray Saltini (not verified):

Good job Dries. I was your first FF caller. I know I won't be the last. Thank you.

June 9, 2011
Ryan Schwab (not verified):

Senu thinks that if we allow equal rights to LGBTQ identified people, everyone will be LGBTQ. Poor Senu, I encourage you to choose to be yourself no matter what that is.

Joel and Anonymous are telling us what their magical sky friends told them. Its too bad their magic sky friends haven't updated their magic book in a thousand years, or it may be more in line with modern thought.

June 9, 2011
Anonymous (not verified):

I think some of the comments here demonstrate the point of the website perfectly.

June 9, 2011
Sue Beckwith (not verified):

I'm a project manager who has just begun to look at Drupal for relaunching our site. I like what I see so far - tools that are geared toward involvement of visitors. Involvement, not obedience. Autonomy, not dependence. From my plebeian view, this is the essence of Drupal and it matches my view of the world. I am a free person. I am an out lesbian. I am part of the masses and I am not confused. We all have our right to speak - to say truth as we know it to be.. including the founder of Drupal. Heros are seldom obedient.

June 9, 2011
Anonymous (not verified):

Thank you for supporting marriage equality!!

June 9, 2011
Sam Tresler (not verified):

Wow. Good for you Dries. I'm a little amazed at the commentary this generating, but you have my full support on this. I have Hilary on speed dial (for real, I try to call about issues that are important and I live in NYC) and will try to call today.

June 9, 2011
Ninja (not verified):

Dries, I just want to thank you for taking a stand for equal rights for everyone regardless of who they are. Too many people in this world judge those who are different from themselves for no other reason than their own ignorance to the great diversity of life, love, and thought in the world.

You clearly are one of the few brilliant minds of our time. And it means a lot to hear that you support such a fundamental right as being permitted to marry the person you love.

It is sad that so many in our world still would go out of their way to prevent others from living a happy fulfilling life being who they are and not what others want them to be. Isn't it difficult enough to organize and keep track of one's own life? Having to worry about what others are doing in their personal lives seems like a tragic waste of energy and time.

Anyway, thanks for spreading the word. And, thanks for Drupal!

Best wishes, Ninja

June 9, 2011
arianek (not verified):

Dries - I think that it's really fantastic that you're so publicly standing up for equality, and for the rights of so many of our valued contributors. Each and every one of them deserves the same rights to happiness, marriage, and being recognized as spouses as any of the straight community members.

If more leaders of social, business, spiritual, etc. communities spoke up and stood up for these extremely important rights, maybe we wouldn't even see so much resistance as we do now.

Frankly, I'm surprised at some of the comments here. Obviously (and sadly), there are people who use Drupal who think that some of the biggest contributors don't deserve to have equal rights to them, that they are somehow a less privileged member of society. It's a shame that people can be filled with so much hate and negativity towards two humans having love for each other.

Thank you for posting this.

June 10, 2011
Jennifer (not verified):

Happy to see this post. Thanks Dries.

June 10, 2011
Joel Stein (not verified):

For the record, I'm not anti-anybody. I'm pro-marriage. To borrow Archbishop Nienstedt's recent words:

"To uphold that traditional definition, to strengthen it and to defend it is not a posture of bigotry or bullying. Nor is it a denial of the 'right' of anybody. As the philosophers remind us, in a civilized, moral society, we have the right to do what we ought, not to do whatever we want. Not every desire is a right."

Honestly, when people put words in my mouth, saying that I'm hateful, or trying to repress someone's free speech, or any of that nonsense, I feel like I'm talking with a four-year-old, who, when unable to come up with a sound argument, resorts to kicking, screaming, and pulling hair.

I'm all for happiness, and I hope everyone who reads this blog is happy. I also know that true happiness comes from living in harmony with the way God made us. That's why none of us eat shopping carts, jump out of planes without parachutes, or walk on molten lava... to do so would be to ignore what is so obviously against our human nature. I truly hope that everyone on this blog spends less time throwing sand in my face, and more time considering what this means, and how to live in harmony with God, others, and themselves.

Oh, and Ryan Schwab: you don't have to agree with me. You don't have to subscribe to my religion. I show you respect by giving charitable rebuttals; please have a little respect for those of us who are Christian, too. And don't forget, modern thought stands on the shoulders of ageless wisdom. One could easily commit the sin of "pride" by forgetting this.

June 10, 2011
David "Lefty" S... (not verified):

"...please have a little respect for those of us who are Christian..."

You'd be on firmer ground with this request if you'd started out by showing a little respect for those who aren't heterosexual, Joel.

June 12, 2011
Paul Mazurek (not verified):

Dries, I benefit from having two web sites developed on the Drupal platform. The technology that you have helped bring into existence creates value in many ways. Thank you for making that possible.

In the realm of technology, success comes from overcoming current obstacles, planning for what could be possible tomorrow, working hard to develop advances, and bringing them into reality. This often takes place after technology that was useful only a short while ago has been left behind and forgotten. Progress in technology is keenly dependent upon doing that which is unprecedented.

Fundamental human progress, however, follows a different pattern. Because our species hasn’t changed physically, we continue to have the same basic experiences as human beings did millennia ago. Societies develop new knowledge and use it to their advantage. They grow economically, expand their influence, and spread their cultural norms. This has happened many times before now. Once a culture reaches a certain level of wealth and influence, however, development slips into decline. An aggressively militant form of feminism calls for men to behave more like women and for women to behave more like men. Self-indulgence through crime, drugs and promiscuity becomes widespread. Homosexuality and infanticide become morally acceptable to most. The concept of family becomes “outdated” and fades in importance. These social “developments” precede the subjugation or absorption of the society that has been depleted by them. Does any of this sound familiar? America has been moving towards these “developments” with a pace never before seen in human history. Rapid advances in technology have had a great deal to do with America’s rise to super power status, but like any other tool, technology can be used to destroy instead of build. One example is the decline of marriage in our country, fueled by the desire to “enjoy” life’s many technology-enabled comforts and escapisms. As a result, America has only grown through immigration in the past decade because we do not have enough children to replace ourselves. Other industrialized countries are suffering from the same malady. In light of this problem, why would it benefit us to fight for gay marriage when it only accelerates these trends?

If marriage is claimed as a right but is actually reduced to feelings and economic gain, the fundamental building block of every human culture is stripped of its cultural weight-bearing capacity. With the direction of American trends in such matters, developing nations will not need to conquer us militarily. They need simply to grow and wait as we voluntarily abandon our cultural base and slide into a state of impotence.

The legacy of the Drupal development environment is an enviable one. I would submit for your consideration, however, that it is not as admirable to promote a proposal that weakens the fabric of our society and will hobble our nation in the years to come.

June 11, 2011
brunodbo (not verified):

Are you on drugs? How do you put "homosexuality" and "infanticide" in the same sentence like that?

June 11, 2011
Reinette (not verified):

You do realize that our current conception of marriage is not culturally or historicaly universal, right? Just ask the Hutterites. Or the Mormons. Or the Romans. Or the Greeks. You know the ones I mean.

The right being claimed is a legislative and tax one, and the right to speak as one voice in medical and financial matters. And the right to privacy. There are all basic, solid rights that the US claims matter. Granting them to all equally regardless of gender sure hasn't done my country, Canada, any harm (friends who are wedding photographers report being pleased at an uptick in business, mind you. Oh, and my gay friends get married! ZOMG!)

Your buried premise breaks down to "everything is shitty because it's different" which is either trivial or banal. England was once a great empire. Things change. A long justification that breaks down to "but everything was fine in 1950" doesn't wash - just ask anybody from the black community, anybody with two X chromosomes, or any any anybody who valued any kind of individuality and choice. Things *were* different. There was the red menace, and a generation of soldiers back from war, and the banks hadn't just screwed the world. There is just no evidence that gay marriage "accelerates" social breakdown - every generation says the same thing about social advances of the next generation. Go tie an onion to your belt, mister.

You know what really accellerates social braakdown? An outrageous gap between the rich and poor. THAT accellerates social breakdown. Empirically. Why don't you fight that? I guarantee you'll be doing something much more actually useful. Also, I hear Jesus was big on helping the poor. It was like his THING.

June 11, 2011
Dee-Ann LeBlanc (not verified):

Not to mention that even the history of western marriage has little to do with what it looks like today. People who go on about tradition really need to look up what the traditions were.

Btw, wife beating used to be a tradition too. And slavery. Shall we go back to those?

June 11, 2011
Mike Cantelon (not verified):

The cool part of accepting other human beings as they are is you benefit from their efforts and perspective. This is why tolerance and acceptance isn't just an ethical imperative, but an economic one. Countries that treat women decently, for example, tend to have higher standards of living than countries that don't.

Drupal is a great example of how promoting an inclusive and healthy culture in a project increases the odds of success. Many open source projects are neckbeard-dominated and unbalanced. Drupal, however, encourages everyone to contribute and as a result has a community that is considered by many to be a values "feature" of Drupal.

Regarding the argument that opposing gay rights is some kind of religious imperative: that doesn't wash. My guess is if Jesus were around today he'd likely champion the rights of gays.

June 11, 2011
Mike Cantelon (not verified):

@Paul Mazurek Sounds like you're confident that the Drupal's culture of diversity will eventually lead to its ruin. I assume you're working on a fork that will re-implement the Drupal API without the "malady" of immigrants, gays, and feminists?

June 11, 2011
Bill Fitzgerald (not verified):

Dries,

Awesome post.

We should all have the right to love as we want, and we should all have equal protection and rights under the law.

Thanks for drawing attention to this issue, and to this site. I'll be joining it later today.

June 11, 2011
Lev (not verified):

Wow, really folks? Dries is just pointing out the obvious, that all people are entitled to equal rights, and another great drupal implementation. Spare us the religious and homophobic diatribes. Thanks for sharing dries, FF seems like a great advocacy platform, which we clearly need more of.

June 11, 2011
mansspams (not verified):

I'm with Dries

June 11, 2011
Joe Brockmeier (not verified):

Dries - fantastic post, it's good to see people standing up for LGBT rights and equality.

June 12, 2011
Joe (not verified):

Couldn't have expected anything less than this from someone who hires openly homosexual people to work closely with him. I disagree with his stance about gay marriage, but it's not going to stop me from using Drupal. Keep up the good work Dries!

June 14, 2011
Brock Boland (not verified):

To those trying so desperately to claim a moral high ground, don't worry: I went ahead and made a donation to Friendfactor for you. If it weren't for all your Biblical pissing and moaning, I probably wouldn't have bothered - so, thanks guys!

June 14, 2011
Lindsay Ogden (not verified):

Thanks for posting this Dries.

June 15, 2011
Sean (not verified):

I'm with Dries, I can't believe there's people mentioning "God" and "Religion" and then discriminating against the Gay community. A Gay couple getting married doesn't negatively affect anyone. If you want to quote religion how about dealing with something that does affect people: "approximately 4% of priests during the past half century have had a sexual experience with a minor" (Source: A Perspective on Clergy Sexual Abuse by Dr. Thomas Plante of Stanford University and Santa Clara University)

June 15, 2011
Ninja (not verified):

It happened! New York has taken a big step towards equal rights for everyone regardless of their gender or sexual orientation. And, I'm happy to say Drupal helped make that a reality.

Thanks again Dries for letting people know how powerful Drupal can be when it is used for Good. Hopefully we will continue to see Drupal used for all kinds of causes that matter.

Best wishes,

Ninja

June 25, 2011
Lisa (not verified):

I was just realizing how amazing Drupal is going for our green music fest and I come over this article. Thank you and congratulations

June 30, 2011

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