Tuesday, July 20, 2010

New Haas Jr Gay Marriage Poll;

No Town Hall Meeting

Ah, gay-ja vu all over again. Just yesterday I blogged about the lack of public forums with the influential Matt Foreman of the Haas Jr Fund of San Francisco, in general, and in conjunction with his daytime press conference in June where he released different polling his org paid for. I won't be surprised if in August, another Haas Jr Fund poll is released at a press conference without an open meeting planned for the gays.

Seems Matt and the orgs he funds are keeping on with the losing strategy of not holding an evening town hall for the at-large gay community to have the polling presented to them, and for the funders and activists to use the data to empower the movement. Nope, these folks are only interested in milking the media. Respectful community engagement is not on their gay agenda.

New gay related polling underwritten with Haas dollars will be released at a presser on Wednesday in Southern California.

BTW, a search of Matt's org's web site shows that the Public Religion Research Institute received $107,500 in 2009 from the Haas Jr Fund to "survey California religious communities and help develop religious education strategies supporting gay equality." That figure, in keeping with the opaque nature of the fund and its polling operations, is not disclosed in the release excerpted below:

A new survey of over 3,000 Californians being released on Wednesday, July 21, finds only one-in-five Californians believe passage of Proposition 8 is a “good thing” for the state. The results are being released as California voters await U.S. District Court Chief Judge Vaughn R. Walker’s decision on whether Proposition 8 violates the U.S. Constitution.

The survey is the most comprehensive breakdown by religion of where Californians stand on same sex marriage since Proposition 8 was approved nearly. The report, which will be released in its entirety at 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 21, 2010 in the Crocker Room at the Omni Los Angeles Hotel (251 South Olive Street), examines the role of religion on attitudes about a number of gay and lesbian issues including: marriage, adoption, gay and lesbian people serving in the military, and workplace discrimination.

The report highlights shifting attitudes within the African American community, deep divisions within the Latino community, the influence of clergy on parishioners, and insights about the role religion plays in the Proposition 8 debate. Reporters can also join the media conference by phone by dialing: 1-800-895-0231; ID: Public Religion Research Institute / Proposition 8.

The bilingual (Spanish and English) poll was conducted by Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) and funded by the Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund with additional support provided by the Ford Foundation. Over a two week period at the end of June, PRRI surveyed 2,801 Californians and additional oversamples of African Americans and Latino Protestants to allow for in-depth analysis of these groups. [...]

Someone should tell Matt Foreman and the Public Religion Research Institute that there's a gay community center in Los Angeles where they could schedule a public forum with gay people, and engage with folks other than reporters. That is, if Matt and his funding recipients are ever going to show us how they're doing organizing differently to repeal Prop 8, versus their disastrous operations in 2008 that lost us gay marriage in California.

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