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Louis Marinelli, the former National Organization for Marriage tour director who announced his opposition this month, said president Brian Brown directed him to make rival LGBT campaigners look as "crazy" as possible, even when that required distortion of the facts.
Marinelli writes about the experience on his blog, where he said that NOM president Brown instructed him "to specifically take 'crazy' photos of gays and lesbians," with one e-mail from July last year that said, "I need crazy pictures of our opponents."
According to Marinelli, "The National Organization for Marriage's culture war/crusade against same-sex marriage is all about image and when it comes to the image of the LGBT community, it's all about painting them in a negative way. That is why during the summer for marriage tour, a project of my doing which I organized with NOM last year, each of the rallies were presented in a good v.s. evil type theme."
As one example of distortion, he recalls silent counterprotesters at a NOM rally in Albany, N.Y. The NOM blog described their quiet opposition as "intolerant, inconsiderate bullies who shout down and insult anyone who disagrees with them, including women and children.
In Marinelli's view, the deception makes NOM worthy of classification as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, which applies the label to the Family Research Council and the American Family Association because of their misrepresentation of facts. SPLC did not list NOM among the hate groups last year, but Marinelli called that a "mistake."