The People's Victory

Stories from the Front Lines in the Fight for Marriage Equality

by Marriage Equality USA, Christine Allen, Fred Anguera, Shelly Bailes, Matthew Baume, Kirsten Berzon, Michael Boyajian, Billy Bradford, Kate Burns, Marvin Burrows, Geoff Callan, Joe Capley-Alfano, Frank Capley-Alfano, Beau Chandler, Sean Chapin, J.Scott Coatsworth, Michael Farino, Stuart Gaffney, Tim Garcia, Mike Goettemoeller, Baltimore Gonzalez, Carmen Goodyear, Tracy Hollister, Mark "Major" Jiminez, Davina Kotulski PhD, Kitty Lambert-Rudd, Cheryle Lambert-Rudd, John Lewis, Amos Lim, Zack Lyons, Cathy Marino-Thomas, Michael Markiewicz, Brian Maschka, Alex McCord, Martha McDevitt-Pugh, Molly McKay, Peter Mesh, Colleen Mewing, Jolene Mewing, Joy O'Donnell, Gender Offenders, Ellen Pontac, Mir Reyad, Michael Sabatino, Charlie Scatamacchia, Will Scott, Mike Shaw, Del Shores, Brian Silva, Scott Smith, Leslie Stewart, Stephanie Stolte, David Cameron Strachan, Roland Stringfellow, Robert Sullivan, Jamila Tharp, David Thompson, Jan Thompson, Sam Thoron, Anne Tischer, Simon van Kempen, Joseph Vitale, Robert Voorheis, Jokie X Wilson, Edie Windsor, Laurie York

"“The People’s Victory is a mirror for each of us to see our own power to fight for justice and create the change we want to see in our world.” – Gavin Newsom, Lieutenant Governor of California

In 1996, a small group of Americans from all walks of life banded together to create one of the most miraculous political victories in modern American history. Opponents attacked the issue of marriage equality as amoral and a direct threat to families. Allies warned that it was a generation away from being practicable and a selfish drain of precious political capital.

A stirring oral history told by those who almost inexplicably found themselves fighting on the front lines, The People's Victory recounts the successes – and the setbacks – that only served to strengthen everyone’s resolve to resist, fight, and bring equal marriage rights to an entire nation. Through it all, these love warriors found their voice and home in Marriage Equality USA, the nation’s oldest and largest grassroots organization of its kind. While high profile books, articles and documentaries have covered the judicial and legislative machinations, this book puts a human face on the people who made the everyday personal sacrifices to keep the movement alive.

The People’s Victory shares deeply moving personal testimonies of over sixty people, from Marvin Burrows, who was forced out of his home and lost many treasured possessions after losing his lost his partner of fifty years; to Kate Burns, who risked arrest for the first time when she stood up for her relationship; to Mike Goettemoeller, who pushed his mother in a wheelchair with Marriage Equality USA to fulfill her dream of marching in a Pride parade.

Edie Windsor, the triumphant lead plaintiff in the Supreme Court case United States vs. Windsor recounts shouting down a major LGBTQ organization with “I’m 77 years old and I can’t wait!!” when they attempted to belittle marriage as a critical issue. Writer and producer Del Shores shares the touching moment his young teenage daughter used tears and laughter to console him after the passage of Proposition 8 in California dealt a blow to the cause.

The People’s Victory is an inspirational roadmap for anyone who has felt passionately about an issue, but has questioned whether one person’s contribution can make a difference. These candid accounts once again prove that every movement for important social change must be built on the acts of everyday. In fact, that is the only way the people have ever been victorious.

In his introduction, California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom writes: “I hope these stories inspire you to resist, to fight, to win and in the end write the next stories in our continuing push for a more just and perfect union.”

  • Marriage Equality USA; August 2017
  • ISBN: 9781495639067
  • Read online, or download in secure ePub format
  • Title: The People's Victory
  • Author: Marriage Equality USA; Christine Allen; Fred Anguera; Shelly Bailes; Matthew Baume; Kirsten Berzon; Michael Boyajian; Billy Bradford; Kate Burns; Marvin Burrows; Geoff Callan; Joe Capley-Alfano; Frank Capley-Alfano; Beau Chandler; Sean Chapin; J.Scott Coatsworth; Michael Farino; Stuart Gaffney; Tim Garcia; Mike Goettemoeller; Baltimore Gonzalez; Carmen Goodyear; Tracy Hollister; Mark "Major" Jiminez; Davina Kotulski PhD; Kitty Lambert-Rudd; Cheryle Lambert-Rudd; John Lewis; Amos Lim; Zack Lyons; Cathy Marino-Thomas; Michael Markiewicz; Brian Maschka; Alex McCord; Martha McDevitt-Pugh; Molly McKay; Peter Mesh; Colleen Mewing; Jolene Mewing; Joy O'Donnell; Gender Offenders; Ellen Pontac; Mir Reyad; Michael Sabatino; Charlie Scatamacchia; Will Scott; Mike Shaw; Del Shores; Brian Silva; Scott Smith; Leslie Stewart; Stephanie Stolte; David Cameron Strachan; Roland Stringfellow; Robert Sullivan; Jamila Tharp; David Thompson; Jan Thompson; Sam Thoron; Anne Tischer; Simon van Kempen; Joseph Vitale; Robert Voorheis; Jokie X Wilson; Edie Windsor; Laurie York
  • Imprint: Marriage Equality USA