Backers of the Ban, Part 2: Wisconsin Marriage Defenders

Last week, we launched a new series examining the groups behind the civil unions and marriage ban. With the final Assembly vote looming, it seems especially relevant to take a closer look at the activities of these groups.

Our first entry focused on Ralph Ovadal and Pilgrims Covenant Church. The focus this week is on an Oshkosh-based group called the Wisconsin Marriage Defenders.

As far as I know, they're the only group on the other side that produces a blog. At first glance, it might appear that they are at the fringes of this debate, but one of the lead sponsors of the ban spoke at their rally in 2004. (More on that below.)

The author of the blog is Teno Groppi, who apparently has connections to Ralph Ovadal. The two groups teamed up for outreach in Oshkosh this past December:
Wisconsin Marriage Defenders has arranged to team up with Pastor Ralph Ovadal to do a literature distribution and picket on 12-17-05. Doing this in the dead of winter will certainly catch the militant homosexuals asleep and unable to mount a counter attack.
This entry features a chilling take on a popular Christmas carol. Instead of "Santa's Coming to Town," it's "Ovadal's Coming to Town":
You'd better watch out,
You're going to cry,
Get ready to pout,
I'm telling you why,
Ovadal is coming to town.

He hears your lisp,
He knows of your vice,
He knows that you've been naughty, not nice,
Ovadal is coming to town.

The gay boys in the bathhouse fear,
The Ovadal mystique,
And now they fear another foe,
Called WMD (double-you em dee)…
Groppi caused a stir with his testimony at the Joint Judiciary Committee hearing in November. One of his primary claims: "They will NOT stop at just homosexual marriage, they’ve admitted they want prostitution, incest, pedophilia, and other perversions to follow."

The Wisconsin Marriage Defenders held a rally for the ban in 2004. Rep. Mark Gundrum (R-New Berlin), the lead Assembly sponsor of the civil unions and marriage ban, was one of the featured speakers. The executive director of the Family Research Institute of Wisconsin, Julaine Appling, and Rep. Carol Owens (R-Oshkosh), were also there. Owens is a cosponsor of the ban.

The photo from the rally was provided to us by our supporters in Oshkosh. That's Rep. Gundrum on the far left sitting next to Appling.



At 1:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talk about a slippery slope. Step one: pass constitutional ban on civil unions and marriage. Step two: exterminate all homosexuals.

Makes you wonder what else is on Gundrum, et al.'s to-do list.

At 4:25 PM, Blogger Mike Fitzpatrick said...

Congratulations on your level-headed assessment of the Wisconsin Marriage Defenders (WMD), Josh.

What I find most amusing about the WMD blog site is their of purples, lavenders and pinks... You know what they say about closet cases -
some of our worst enemies are those who really know they should be with us...

As for the overall feel of the site, wasn't it Shakespeare who wrote "she protests too much"?

WMD also reminds me of Matthew 12:33 - "...for a tree is known by its fruit." (KJV) WMD overall is kinda fruity, doncha think?

The rest of the site is actually rather unremarkable for those who have toiled long in the fields of LGBT equality. WMD's regurgitated "sodomite" rhetoric reveals their leadership's long relationship with Rantin' Ralph Ovadal.

However, first time mainstream viewers will likely be revolted by the stridency of the WMD rhetoric -
score one for "our side."

One final aside: I remember their Homo-Fascism signs as they stood on the fringes of the first anti-amendment rally in Oshkosh a couple of years back, back before they became WMD.

At 11:55 AM, Blogger Lisaben said...

I think that's our man Teno to the right of "John Wayne the Baptist" on the podium. So much for God is Love, apparently. My ASSembly Represenative, Carol Owens, also spoke at their rally and stated that "the only way gay people can even have children is if they have sex-change operations."

I also find it interesting that Appling has suggested that she isn't in the Dobson camp, yet comfortably attends events hosted by people just as crazy, if not more so.

I believe you're on the right track when you say that voters (and I think, especially, normal Christian people), need to see who is supporting the Amendment. I have previously sent the link to the WMD page to many Oshkosh people and the response has been everything from tears to anger, which makes me almost hope that they continue their door-to-door activity here. I think everyone they visit who is in the "movable middle" section is another vote in our favor.

Kay Springstroh

At 3:48 PM, Blogger T.G. said...

I think that's our man Teno to the right of "John Wayne the Baptist" on the podium. So much for God is Love, apparently.

Yes Kay, that IS an exhibition of God's love. According to the Bible you are a lost sinner on your way to hell (as were we all prior to receiving Jesus Christ as Saviour). Not only that, you are living a DEATHstyle that kills most sodomites before age 40. Someone who is silent, or enables, condones, or supports your deadly "choice" and lets you risk killer diseases, early death, and eternal hell doesn't love you at all. They are the worst enemy you could ever have. Those of us who are willing to plainly point out the TRUTH to you are the ones who are concerned with your physical and spiritual well-being, even if you revile us for it.

At 4:29 PM, Anonymous Matt B. said...

Yes, T.G., posting words in CAPITAL letters makes your otherwise terrible argument all the more puersuasive. Maybe next week you'll learn bold, or, gasp, italics. Keep up the good work.

At 1:31 PM, Blogger T.G. said...

Wow, you don't like my use of CAPITAL letters. That really demolishes every point I made. You must be a debate champion, no?

At 10:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just because you don't like--or don't approve of--someone's behavior doesn't mean you get to take away their rights.

This ban writes discrimination into the constitution, and it endangers the rights of all unmarried couples. It imperils domestic violence laws and will hurt our state's economy and reputation. It's unjust. It's unfair. It's wrong.

And please remember that there are many, many religions and belief systems that are welcoming and which honor the dignity of every person. Not all religions are like T.G.'s. Mine isn't.

At 12:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm ashamed to admit this, but i've gotten his phone number and I'm going to call him, but I personally know Mark Gundrum and at one time in my youth, i helped elect him into office. I am beyond ashamed. I cannot believe that it has come to this.


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