Protecting marriage, a costly affair

Tatiana Gee

During the last election season, California’s Proposition 8 stole the spotlight and took center stage.

After an intense battle on both sides, the Yes on 8 campaign eventually prevailed. Now, John Marcotte is pulling somewhat of a media stunt, in the best way possible.

Safe-keeping the sanctity of marriage was the whole purpose of Proposition 8, to protect traditional marriage and to protect the children. Marcotte doesn’t think proposition 8 went far enough, saying ” Prop 8 wasn’t about gay marriage, it was about protecting marriage in general.” He decided to take it one step further. On September 1st, 2009, Marcotte filed paper work to get his cause on the next ballot. His cause? Banning divorce in California.

When he began his journey he says that he very quickly put it all together, including a website, t-shirts, and volunteers.” I didn’t start with any realistic goal, and I didn’t predict all the media attention, but now it has turned into a small movement”. His website,, was put up in only a few hours. The website displayed their purpose, which he says they basically copied off of the Yes on 8 website. In the beginning, I asked him if he was being serious. He sarcastically replied, “people always ask me that, but all I’m trying to do is protect our marriages and our children, the way the Bible wants us to.” The campaign to get it on the ballot is so far going very well, having tens of thousands of petitions handed out. The deadline for the signatures is nearly approaching. By March 22nd, he will need 700,000 legal signatures, which is about 1,000,000 signatures in total. Marcotte thinks that getting this on the ballot would be great for California, and that it would “define morality for the second time in California. We will be the most morally upright state in the union.”

I think that what Marcotte is doing is hilariously effective. Obviously being a tongue-in-cheek publicity stunt, he is grabbing attention from the left and the right, having supporters and haters on both ends. Because of this he believes he has a very middle of the road ideology. If the Proposition does get on the ballot then Marcotte and his supporters believe it should be a landslide. His Proposition has the same standards that the Yes on 8 campaign had, so if he has all those votes, plus the people on the left that support him, they all believe they should win no problem.

When speaking with him, you almost get convinced and pulled into the idea that he really does want to ban divorce. No matter what his responses to me was, the truth is obvious. He is trying to point out how hypocritical banning gay marriage is. He is using their same morals and same strategies against them, and pinning them into a corner. If the people that voted Yes on 8 don’t vote for this then, they are being complete hypocrites. Marcotte made the excellent point of saying that gays are not held responsible for all marriages, seeing as such a few amount actually do/did get married compared to straight couples. Making them take the fall is completely unjust, and we should all take responsibility and share the burden, if we even really want to repair marriage as we say we do.

Marcotte was once called the poster child for ballot abuse, but he does not see it that way. He believes that his idea is the most pure of the bunch. All the workers are volunteers, they do not take money handouts from any religious organizations or companies of any sort, and there is no money being pumped in.

The campaign is all based online, and so are majority of the volunteers and such. There are t-shirt sales and donations as well.

I think that Marcotte is a media genius. His idea is branching out more and more, and I hope he succeeds with getting it on the ballot. He proves many good points, and I think that he has a good faith with his cause. Marcotte knows he has come far, farther then he ever did imagine, saying, “Got to tell yeah, its been one heck of a ride “, and I hope he succeeds with getting his message out.

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