Wayne Besen writing about last night's heartbreaking defeat in Maine...

It is time we wake up and acknowledge that the GLBT fight for equality is the world’s first “Civil Likes” movement. Each year, a popularity contest is held somewhere on the map and if the locals find us likeable our families are protected. If the natives have a negative view of gay people, we remain second-class citizens.

Given this reality we have to make a major choice.

We can declare the current process a disgusting and humiliating insult to our humanity and opt out of all future referendums. The movement would make the case to the nation why such votes are anathema to American values and in the process educate people about our families and quest for equality. A powerful campaign of continued and sustainable civil disobedience would have to supplement this strategy.

Or, we can continue to participate in degrading referendums. But, if we do so, we have to stop pretending that the majority of the American people understand the U.S. Constitution, much less the notion of equality. Those who vote against GLBT rights simply do not like gay people and their antipathy, often masked by religious bigotry, overrides the idea of equal protection.