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Pepperdine Prof
Back in New Yes on 8 Ad

Pepperdine Prof
Back in New Yes on 8 Ad

The campaign to ban gay marriage in California is running a television ad starting Wednesday featuring a girl telling her mother she learned in school that she could marry a princess. Back in the ad is Richard Peterson, a law professor at Pepperdine University, despite the university's demanding last week that all references to Pepperdine be removed from the ad.

The campaign to ban gay marriage in California is running a television ad starting Wednesday featuring a girl telling her mother she learned in school that she could marry a princess.

Richard Peterson, a law professor at Pepperdine University in Malibu, appears on-screen asking, "Think it can't happen? It's already happening. When Massachusetts legalized marriage, schools started teaching second-graders that boys can marry boys. The courts ruled that parents have no right to object."

An announcer then says that California would also require schools to teach children about same-sex relationships if gay marriage remained legal in the state. Opponents of gay marriage are backing Proposition 8, which would amend California's constitution to nullify the state supreme court decision that gave same-sex couples equal marriage rights.

Last week, Pepperdine president Andrew Benton ldemanded that the organization behind the commercial, Protect Marriage, remove all references to the school in another ad featuring Peterson. "The reference to Pepperdine must disappear," Benton told the Los Angeles Times on Friday.

This week's ad has a small disclaimer below his name that says Peterson's title is for "identification purposes only."

"The first thing the Yes on 8 people did was remove Pepperdine [in last week's commercial]," Jerry Derloshon, Pepperdine's executive director of public relations, told The Advocate on Thursday. "What the campaign has done is put in a disclaimer. Many people have accepted that this was a faculty member speaking a position and his employer was identified. The disclaimer underscores that Pepperdine remains neutral."

Equality California executive director Geoff Kors told reporters Tuesday that the Yes on 8 campaign is raising more funds than the opposition and that poll numbers are tipping toward support for the ban. (Michelle Garcia, The Advocate)

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