“SAN DIEGO — A $125,000 donation in support of an anti-gay marriage initiative by a San Diego hotelier has drawn the ire of gay and lesbian activists and local labor unions who are now calling for a boycott.
“Organizers held a news conference in front of the Manchester Grand Hyatt, near Seaport Village, on Thursday. A coalition of LGBT community leaders and the labor movement spoke out against Doug Manchester, who contributed a donation in support of Proposition 8, which would allow only men and women to marry in the state of California. The group opposes the ballot measure because it threatens the recent state Supreme Court decision that allows marriage between men and women.”
Gay Activists Urge Boycott Of Manchester Grand Hyatt. Hotelier Donated To Fight Gay Marriage,
NBC SanDiego.com, July 10, 2008
People of California: You see why it’s important to get registered to vote no later than October 20, 2008 for the November 4 election? I don’t have $125K to donate to the pro-gay marriage side for this election, I only have some pocket change and my vote against the gay hater’s constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage in California FOREVER. So get with it, folks, all right-thinking people in California, gay or straight, need to vote against this craziness. /sermon
Comic Con SD is next week. I never stay at the Hyatt because I can’t afford it, but that’s never bothered me. The homophobe fanboys will have it all to themselves this year. Not. There’s more on this SD guy’s donation and reaction to it behind the jump.
“In a previous interview with the San Diego Union-Tribune, Manchester said that he decided to donate to Proposition 8 because he had heard that schools that teach that marriage is between a man and a woman could be sued for discrimination against homosexuals. He also told the Union-Tribune that he was motivated by his strong Catholic faith to believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.
“To that, activist Nicole Murray-Ramirez said, ‘I am Catholic also. I think for him to use his faith is disrespectful to a lot Catholics who believe in fairness and who believe in equality and who believe in non-discrimination. We’re all brothers and sisters and we’re all God’s children. That’s what the Church teaches.’
“The group’s message Thursday was to urge residents and tourists to stay at other hotels. The boycott call comes at the height of the summer and just one week before the start of the 2008 Gay Pride festivities in San Diego, during which 200,000 attendees are expected to attend, according to festival organizers.
“‘San Diego is united in its outrage at the Manchester’s funding of the initiative to outlaw marriage equality,’ said Todd Gloria, candidate for San Diego City Council. ‘I believe that all fair-minded San Diegans should take a stand against discrimination and boycott the Manchester Hyatt.’
“Brigette Browning, president of San Diego’s Hotel Workers Union, also stood in support of the boycott.
“‘We believe it is pure and simple discrimination,’ she told NBC 7/39. We believe equality for workers is just as important for gay and lesbians.’
“Browning also accused Manchester of discriminating against his gay workers and discriminating against women by ‘forcing housekeepers to clean more rooms that housekeepers do at other Hyatt hotels.’
“The group said it sent letters to Manchester and Hyatt asking for responses. Browning said no response has been made. NBC 7/39 has also put in a request for a comment.
“The 1,625 room Manchester Grand Hyatt earned $3 million in 2007, according to the boycott’s organizers. The coalition is asking Global Hyatt Corporation to take action because of the company’s support of gay rights.
“‘How can Mr. Manchester say that he doesn’t mean to offend anybody?’ asked Murray-Ramirez. ‘With that contribution he’s offended myself as a Catholic, myself as a Latino and myself as a gay man. Now, think of that in millions across the country that will be hearing about this, that are supportive of equality in marriage. So he’s offended a lot of people,’ he said.”