What Is the Red Equal Sign All Over Facebook and Twitter?

The Human Rights Campaign has been promoting a symbol of equality to mobilize supporters as the Supreme Court begins hearings on gay marriage

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Human Rights Campaign / Facebook

Have you noticed that Facebook and Twitter users are changing their profile pictures and avatars to an image of a red equal sign?

That’s because the Human Rights Campaign, which advocates equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, has been promoting an image of a pink equal sign over a red background in lieu of its blue-and-yellow logo to mobilize supporters online as the Supreme Court begins hearings on gay marriage today in Washington. A symbol of equality, the photo has racked up more than 25,000 likes and 78,000 shares on the group’s Facebook page in the past 24 hours. In fact, Mashable reports that since actor George Takei changed his profile picture to the red equal sign, the post has received more than 40,000 likes from fans.

(LIST: 13 Parodies of the Human Rights Campaign’s Red Equal Sign)

Today, the court is deliberating California’s Proposition 8, which bans the right for same-sex couples to marry. Tomorrow, arguments will be heard regarding the national Defense of Marriage Act, which has legally defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman since 1996.

While the court’s favorability rating is at an all-time low, some supporters have taken to social media to add to the weight of public opinion. On Twitter — where Supreme Court ranks in the top 10 in the world’s trending list — supporters like actress Sophia Bush have changed their icons to the equal sign:

(MOREPride and Prejudice: An Interactive Timeline of the Fight for Gay Rights)

Other followers, however, are skeptical about the efficacy of this social media tactic:

MORE: Senator Mark Warner Endorses Gay Marriage. Who’s Next?

534 comments
abaton7
abaton7

Nope, not doing it.  I do not support homosexual marriage.  Why?  A child should be raised by a male, and a female. 
End of story.  And, no, I'm not sorry.

neversink
neversink

Wish people would get on the bandwagon of more important issues. Let's see. Let's all change our profile pictures to elephants as they are getting brutally slaughtered by poachers working for the Chinese and East Asians who don't care about destroying nature. Let's all put on burkas and cover our facces in support of all the women in the Islamic nations who have no rights and are treated like crap and are often considered criminals if they are raped. 

Come on. why is it that this issue has taken on more importance than the destruction of our environment, than child and sexual slavery, than the lack of rights and freedoms of people throughout the world.

I don't care if gays get married or not. Some of my neighbors are gay and married and have kids one way or the other. I'm not a divorce lawyer. If i was a divorce lawyer I would be thrilled about this issue and fighting for gay marriage. I have no problem with gay marriage. i just have a problem that this issue takes on more importance than other issues, and that once this issue dies out, the same people who thought up the equal sign will go back to their boring mundane and selfish lives and not fight for the rights of those who are really in desperate situations.

THE_TRUTH
THE_TRUTH

@neversink couldn't agree with you more! There are so many more critical and worthy causes in the world that affect millions more ... than what amounts to nothing but a deviation of nature and 'alternative lifestyles.' 

alkluttz
alkluttz

@neversink I agree entirely neversink. I think that people should openly be willing to give equal liberties to everyone who lives in this country, that it should not be such an issue. Nevertheless, people make it this way. If everyone had your view on it, then we could move on from this issue. Therefore, we won't until that happens, as it did with slavery. 

alkluttz
alkluttz

@neversink Also, how about walking in someone else's shoes, eh? How about I say you never can get married? While I will not say that there might be bigger issues to discuss, I will not discount the severity of this issue-as you can so easily. The very reason that people can so easily discredit it, is the reason why it must be pressed so heavily. People are so blind, so inconsiderate, that they say it is not a big issue. The question you must ask is what makes you think its not? If it weren't a big issue- would people be discussing it?

TonyConnelly
TonyConnelly

Abolish all legal rights associated to marriage and replace them with declaration documents that state the person's wishes and relationship for legal purposes. Government should stay out of our relationships.  Grandfather in all those who are already married. Plus, more weddings are good for the economy. And more divorces mean more money for the judicial system; it's a win/win financially.

TheLogician
TheLogician

You supporters should realize that marriage is a state issue. The federal government cannot force states to accept gay marriage. Many states have marriage restrictions in their state constitutions. If it were violated, say, in Texas, that would be grounds for secession, since the government infringed on their rights as a state. I am not against gays or civil unions or whatever, but it is NOT A FEDERAL DECISION! Plus we have economic issues that, frankly, are more likely to sink us than 10% of the populace being unable to wed.

TheLogician
TheLogician

Oh, what you people in support of this don't realize is the fact that marriage is a state issue, so the fed can't impose ANY laws on marriage. Many state constitutions have marriages exclusively reserved for heterosexuals, so the Feds can do nothing.

mimibirdss
mimibirdss

I gladly support gay marriage. Why should the pain of losing everything in a divorce be reserved exclusively for naive heterosexual people? I had a friend tell me he was gay and I didn't believe him. He just wouldn't give me a straight answer. Also, this. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gDL7fN8mS4A

aboutbebout
aboutbebout

Woolsey:  Lovers before gay marriage were just as viable as "two people in love" today.  How gay live morphed into "family land" is a creation of today's  self entitled generation.  And who made you the thought police, cheerleader and disciplinarian?  Your comments reflect a bitchy queen -- as old as time.  

TheodoreHyczko
TheodoreHyczko

Why I will not support gay marriage we all sin and fornication is just as much a sin as gay marriage but to support marriage to gay people is to honor sin you saying God word doesn't count I may sin but I will not honor sin

Georgieh
Georgieh

interesting when you read how narrow minded some people are, makes me laugh how someone else can decide on whether you can be happy or not.....marriage is a human right-not a heterosexual privilege-get over yourselves

apoeticverse
apoeticverse

To all religious American's who are against equal marriage; do not hide your bigotry behind your God. The fear and misinterpretation of your God should not override someone else's civil rights. I was raised catholic and I do not interpret our God to be a bigot. If marriage under God is between a man and woman; the marriage of a man and man, or a woman and woman should be observe by the state to give rights to all Americans. The state is separate from God, is it not?

NealClay
NealClay

I'm gay 22 and wanna get married someday. Didn't choose to be like this. I dont see why people care at all, it's helping reduce overpopulation which is a giant problem. Many gay couples adopt kids who would normally never have a chance at a good life. I don't really see what the big deal is. I'd make a fine parent. Many people in my generation of for gay marriage. Listen to the youth, times are changing, we have to evolve as a human race. Older customs doesn't necessarily better customs. In my opinion people just fear change.

JohnSziecheDavis
JohnSziecheDavis

To anyone opposed to same-sex marriage legalization: I've seen one floating around with two vertical bars - one blue and one pink. I can't find it now, but if all else fails you can make your own.

To their detractors: The "fascist" stuff is not helpful. If you're afraid of there not being enough support for gay marriage, well, that's not the problem of anyone who opposes it.

nancy_17
nancy_17

is there any image we can use to show that we are against gay marriage???


AmberDodson
AmberDodson

Honestly I dont understand why theres even an argument. Like why do people care what other people do if it doesn't affect you in any way shape or form. Like if I marry my girlfriend who am I harming? And for the people who go out of their way to make it so another person cant be happy and do what they want I think that there is something wrong with you. I honestly do. 

AaronN
AaronN

The definition of the word marriage is "the formal union of a man and a woman, typically recognized by law, by which they become husband and wife." The definition of the word smile is "form one's features into a pleased, kind, or amused expression, typically with the corners of the mouth turned up and the front teeth exposed." It would be silly if we tried to change either of them to say something different. Instead, come up with a new word. How about gayiage "the formal union of two same-sex people, recognized by law, which they become partners."  People can be married and gayied. I love that people are standing up for their beliefs. Stand strong! 

I have a strait friend with an identical twin. That twin is gay. Therefore, people are not born gay. I do believe that people can be born with medical complications where maybe they should have been a boy or girl but came out the opposte or both, so perhaps that can confuse the body for some cases. However, the end point is that no matter what your first sexual experiments may be, it comes down to an orgasm. I haven't heard of people not enjoying one. So whether you try one in a boy/girl/animal/object. You can develop an affinity toward it. Since love is a choice, you may choose to love that entity. Now, if a brother and a sister decided all of these things, shouldn't they be allowed to enjoy the things of a regular married couple? There comes a point where you have to stop. Most people stop at gay's. Sorry, but it's just the way it is. Less than 3% of the population is going to be let down. Sorry. 

Personally, I have more important things to worry about. Like Benghazi, why is the media putting the spot light on gay's when much larger problems need attended to. 

JonathanGrossman
JonathanGrossman

The whole Marriage thing should stay Marriage, the traditional man & wife deal. Marriage is marriage.

Would you expect a mosque to make a Christian-friendly Baptism counterpart?

That said, I'm all for civil unions or whatever they're called. As long as the homosexuals are consenting (or at least get just as much right as heteros), they should have their equivalent. Still, making a Jewish-friendly Vesākha (Buddha day) is a little ridiculous, don't you think? Just like how Easter Eggs are now referred to as "Spring Spheres." Instead of making everyone accommodate the few, why not give the few the option/fair treatment. That's like making every single entrance/exit in a facility be wheelchair accessible. As long as there is entrance or exit that is wheelchair accessible, we don't need ramps (or what have you) on every side door, et cetera.

I'm all for discussing this, but not arguing. Good for you if I'm missing something and you enlighten me.

jrp77sen
jrp77sen

I support marriage equality and I will always remain intolerant towards people who seek to deny rights to others.

Amish people don't eat pork, but they don't make it their life goal to make pork illegal for everyone. They aren't impsiong their beliefs on others.

Now let people get married!

AshleyRose
AshleyRose

Fact: I'm Christian, and I don't hide behind my religion as a basis for ignorance. I'm astounded at the number of selfish people who posted below, proudly expressing their prejudices. You have every right to your opinion (just as I have the right to say your opinion is stupid), but the difference is that today, opinions like yours are interfering with the rights of hundreds of thousands, rights that are protected by our Constitution. Last time I checked, making a choice to squash an institution simply based on the fact that you don't like it sounds a lot like the quality of a dictator. As in, congrats, you have that in common with Adolf Hitler.  In fifty years, people will call you bigots, idiots, and worse, and we will remember your true nature: blind, pitiful, and utterly selfish.

It's not just about equal rights, people. It's about HUMAN rights. 

“It takes no compromise to give people their rights...it takes no money to respect the individual. It takes no political deal to give people freedom...” -Harvey Milk

TravisJones
TravisJones

No matter what governments will do for or against the concept of gay marriage, the concept will still seem ridiculous to most people from most cultures throughout the world. Just thinking of gay marriage makes me imagine it as a Monty Python sketch - its sort of like when the Yippies had a pig (Pigasus) nominated for President of the United States. It's just as well that I don't really value the institution - I think that for many men, getting married is simply a way of formalizing a happy relationship in order to initiate family life as children may soon follow. I'm sure it will be a boon to the catering industry.

KaylinGomez
KaylinGomez

You know what? I understand some of the reasons why people refuse to accept gay marriage. But some of the arguments the people on this thread are using are absolutely appalling. How DARE you compare homosexuality to bestiality or pedophilia? Marriage is, or should be, the union of two adult, consenting, unrelated human beings. Last time I checked, animals and children could not consent to marriage or sign a marriage license.


Homosexual people aren't as different from straight people as you bigots would like to believe. Several of my best friends are gay, and their relationships have been NO DIFFERENT than my own with my boyfriend. Why should I get to marry my boyfriend while they can't? 


Marriage is a LEGAL institution. Everybody should have equal rights under the LAW. If you want your marriage to be religious, then fine, make it so. But don't enforce your religion on others, especially in a country that was founded on religious freedom. A gay couple having the right to be married does not affect your life or marriage at all, so get over it.

BrandyBill
BrandyBill

Marriage should continue to be between a man and a woman! Everyone does have the right to be with whom they choose, but in my opinion, the definition of marriage, in the eyes of God is between a MAN and a WOMAN! The government should keep it that way!

ThomasB
ThomasB

God, the thing I hate about the internet is it gives a safe platform to the idiots who decide to stain us with the moronic assertions they consider an argument. 

if you are going to try and use the bible as some form of support for your ideals then there are a number of things you really should do. Read the bloody thing and actually look at how many of the laws contained within it you are actively breaking, because I can guarantee you that you are breaking a lot of them. Not a few, a lot. Also, you don't get to decide based on your faith, what rights people of other faiths, or none, are entitled to. In short, shut up about the bible.

If you are going to try and use procreation as an argument, then look at heterosexual couples who are unable to have children. If same sex couples can be denied the right to marry because they cannot have children, then the same argument could be made to deny those hetero couples their rights. Also the idea that same sex couples cannot reproduce is a stupid fallacy in itself, being homosexual does not make you sterile.

The slippery slope argument, that granting rights to homosexuals will mean we will also end up granting those same rights to paedophiles or zoophiles, is just ridiculous. That argument is an insult to the intellect of the person you are conversing with, that's how stupid it is. 




EugenePatrickDevany
EugenePatrickDevany

It is one thing to argue that society should not punish sodomy (or other adult extra marital sex) and quite another to argue that it should be rewarded. The legal benefits and burdens of marriage are part of our common law and all the rules evolved to promote procreation and protect the parties in the event of death and divorce. Marriage is no longer the best vehicle for promoting sex as is evident from the increasing delay and avoidance of marriage by both young people and prominent politicians. 

As the cultural influence of marriage diminishes and the legal status becomes easily voidable with no fault divorce; it is only fair to ask why the implied financial safeguards of marriage should not be available to gay partners. The implied promise of lifetime financial support and health care complements the procreation and child rearing objectives and the long standing rule that a marriage may be annulled if not consummated (as in sexual intercourse). The implied support for spouse (as distinct from adopted or step children who are protected through other laws) does not serve the same legal purpose in a gay relationship. Indeed, most believe society is better served by at will relationships that can be formed and dissolved easily; and that most long term commitments should be spelled out in writing rather than implied in law.


Xenoranger
Xenoranger

The first problem I see with the "equality" being requested is that it's not requited. 


Lets start with my websites. When I write a blog using the Bible as my basis that is not in favor of homosexuality, I get threats and my site has been shut down multiple times by my host. I never condone violence against homosexuals. It's strictly against the New Testament. 


So, where's the equality when I have to be tolerant of homosexuals promoting their lifestyle as something good, but they can shut me down for my views? Am I not entitled to freedom of speech and by extension freedom to disagree in a public forum? 



The second issue I see is to what end will they push rights? 


Today, it is one man + one woman. If the homosexual agenda passes, it will be one person with another person regarless of gender or sex. Still, if a person wanted to marry within their own family, it's outlawed. So next, will inbreeding be allowed? These are people who also love one another deeply. 


Suppose inbreeding becomes permissible, then what? Do we drop age limits? Can an adult marry a child? In other cultures, girls can be married off as young as 4 years old. Why not allow it in the US? It's about love, isn't it? Or will you discriminate against 13yr olds who love their boyfriend/girlfriend (who may or maynot be under 18) and feel they're ready for marriage? 


What if a person loves someTHING else? There are historic accounts of people having sexual relations with animals. If a person really loves the animal, why shouldn't they be able to marry? Animals have feelings too. Some say they can love just as deeply as humans. It's about love, isn't it? 


Yes, someone will say I'm going overboard, but homosexuality is nothing new. Neither is inbreeding, nor pedephilia, nor bestiality. The question of sexuality and marriage demands an answer. Where do we draw the line? 



The final issue I see is that homosexuality is being treated as a birth trait. 


Let me break this down before I go further. I'm not talking about tendencies, but rather, the pursuit of a homosexual lifestyle. Everyone is born with a lean to something. Some people are naturally athletic while others are more intellectually minded. I agree that homosexuals have certain tendencies. Males can have femanine tendencies just as females can have masculine tendencies. I'm not going to argue that. 


What I will argue is the action taken upon those tendencies. It's a choice. I'm Latino. I don't choose to be Latino. I can't choose to be another race. It's in my genetic makeup. 


I can choose to speak Spanish. I can choose to speak English. I can choose to eat burritos and rice. I can choose to eat pizza. My birth as a Latino does not change how I choose to live my life. 


Despite their tendencies, homosexuals are choosing to pursue same-sex relationships. Yet we are protecting them as if their actions are beyond their control. They choose their partner in the same way I chose mine. They find someone who they think will make a compatible partner. The issue is still the choice. Regardless of what the choice is based on, it's a choice. 


So, why are we protecting people's choices from scrutiny? As in my first issue, if my choices can be scrutinized, why can't I disagree with the homosexual's choices? I am not condoning violence against homosexuals, but merely disagreeing with their actions and lifestyle. Those who disagree with homosexuals are shutdown and attacked (verbally and physically).


Where is the equality?


Rawrface
Rawrface

Glad to see the love thy neighbor is a value many practice.

Stop the Hate and learn to live together is the only way the human race will survive.

HELP SUPPORT GAY MARRIAGE:  http://snip.ps/GJW

and VOICE YOUR OPINION:http://snip.ps/GJq

Immanuel
Immanuel

There are three logical and practical problems here that, in all honesty, I have never seen discussed properly.
-which rules would be generic enough to protect the "feelings and love" of people without being discriminatory? If two people can obtain some non-better-specified benefits only on the basis that they "love" each other, what prevents me from doing the same with, for example, my grandmother or my father?
-why limit yourself to two people? If you are adding this exception in gender to natural marriage, why not in number? Wouldn't that be, uh, "racist" or "homophobe" toward three people, or four people that love each other?
-and lastly, natural marriage is protected because, through children, provides an invaluable contribution to society, and the economical and practical benefits it receives form the state are in exchange of the hardships and costs that the family spends to grow them.
It would be extremely unfair to provide the same rights to unions who are inherently sterile.

JodiJodipheonixBritten
JodiJodipheonixBritten

I'm not lesbian , nor am I bisexual , but I support the gay lesbian and bisexual friends and family that I have. 
I hope that they will be seen as EQUAL when it comes to marriage , after all- it's ok for straight people to get married for love , why not gay/lesbian people ?

DiegoCazares
DiegoCazares

I have nothing against gay people but eh, I'll just marry my girlfriend. 

live_and_let_gay
live_and_let_gay

important: hey everybody, it's ok! god told me that it's ok to be gay.  i wrote it down and i have a printer, so help me spread the word! and for those of you who say i don't have the right to speak for god....welp, yeah, i guess you're right.

JSarahLee
JSarahLee

I embrace human equality but when it comes to switching up our economic system by providing marriage rights a free for all- it's totally irrelevant of who marriage rights were intended for. Sorry so vulgar but... Butt holes and strap ons ≠ repopulation nor the means of any possibilities of natural reproduction. Why is this so misunderstood? It's nothing personal. 

DylanMitri
DylanMitri

this is going to be as effective as the whole kony 2012 thing, just another band wagon the moral super-kids can jump on to get as much attention and acclaim as possible.

and to the people who really care about change and acceptance, i commend and support you fully, but know that two litte white lines wont change anything

SimonSzeto
SimonSzeto

LOL then, why did you bring up those countries? You are the one mentioning ancient times for those countries. And if you do know about China, then you should know that its a strict and conservative country. They did not accept homosexuality 100 years ago so why 1000 years ago? Your returning argument is flawed.   And i accept your comment about worship, because i understand everyone has a different opinion of what worship means. However, responding from emotions to someones comment is....... and then try to make a comment with nothing to back your statement up is even more...... 

CarlaMoyer
CarlaMoyer

The real issue here is whether we, as a people, should give the government a little more, or a little less control over our lives. I don't like giving the government control over any of my decisions, including who I forge a legal partnership with. If I were only interested in partnering with a man, I would still vastly prefer to have the option to marry a woman too. Likewise if I were an unwavering lesbian, I would not want the government to tell me I couldn't marry a man. I have an instinctive sense that it is unwise to draw lines around our actions, whatever they might be, as long as they don't harm anyone. 

buzen247
buzen247

Marriage is between male and female, man and woman...Same sex can live together if they wanna or perhaps invent some name for their union...

aboutbebout
aboutbebout

Being adept at design, gays are big on logos and symbols.  Unfortunately, I don't think graphics will save them on this issue.  It's the Supreme Court justices who will decide.  One Justice said that gay marriage was newer than "the Internet and cell phones."  He's right.  The impatient may just get to experience that real "wrong side of history" they love to boast about.  I do hope the "Pink Triangle" is also remembered as the symbol gays had to wear, to be identified in Nazi prison camps.  Those graphics were employed not so long ago either.  It can take years to earn rights --, as unjust as that may seem to some young gays, who can't understand why they can't simply get married tomorrow.  A lot of gays came  before you.

MaiseeYaj
MaiseeYaj

Why does it matter who I marry? The government cannot choose who I can love or want to love.

RobertoLopez
RobertoLopez

I am not gay, but I always RESPECT and SUPPORT who's gay and lesbian that right! I'm still love care my friends and family gay and lesbian. :)

jeffwbrown
jeffwbrown

So if the voting public voted this in, and the side that lost can constantly sue and overturn, then really, the government is going against the will of the majority.

I don't care who you marry.  The bigger issue is a government that avoids the will of the people.  If you want it overturned, get it overturned on the ballot and get more voters to the poll.  At least then it is the will of the majority.

Spare me the electoral college crap and majority as well.  That is another one that the government seems to refuse the will of the general public on.