I gave to a group fighting Proposition 8 in California because it struck me as a really good opportunity to make a difference with a donation. This is about as far from our normal focus as it gets, and I don’t have nearly the knowledge of political advocacy that I would like to have, so I’m not going to go into this much. But in a nutshell:
- The polling on this issue looks close. Unlike the Presidential election, it may be close enough that some extra advertising could make the big difference.
- I’d also guess that it’s relatively easy to translate dollars into votes for something like this. A lot of people will be turning out primarily to vote for President; a well-done ad or phone call, or just a reminder, could be enough to get them to vote No on Proposition 8.
- As such, I don’t really need to be convinced that the people running this organization are particularly brilliant or have amazing advertising abilities; as long as they’re using money to do things like run ads and make phone calls, it’s probably money well spent. (And there is enough content on the website that I don’t fear fraud.)
- I feel strongly that gay couples should be able to get legal marriage licenses. I think most political issues are more complex/two-sided than advocates recognize, but not this one. If you feel differently, this post doesn’t apply to you, and that’s fine.
I hope that sometime in the future, we’re able to learn more about the conditions under which advocacy money matters and the conditions under which it doesn’t. With what little I know, and even without an ability to remotely quantify it, this seemed like too good of a buy to pass up, so I’m passing it on.