Californians against Hate have done one of those things which we Brits can only dream of. In the land of the free (unless you’re gay) it’s still possible to find out – and *list* – individuals who’ve given money to particular propositions, in this case California’s Prop 8. And I’m just amazed at how much money people are prepared to hand over in order to impose their own morality on others.
Howard Ahmanson Jr? Never heard of him. But he was prepared to stump up almost $1.4 million to prevent gay men and women in California marrying each other.
And John Templeton? The man behind the John Templeton Foundation? $1.1 million is the price he puts on his own personal morality. (Incidentally, my alma mater, Cambridge, has their logo on the front page of the Templeton Foundation website. Did Templeton seek permission for that? Did Cambridge grant it? Are they happy to be associated with a free-spending right-winger with such a limiting view of human freedom that he believes others should be prevented from publicly displaying their love for each other? If they are, I’d like to make my own views known on their website, please).
Terry Caster & Family? (And how ironic is that “and family” bit – do they preach homophobia over breakfast?). $693,000, thank you very much.
Elsa Prince, whose dead husband invented the “lighted sun visor mirror” (it’s interesting how many of the big donors on the list are spouses or offspring of men and women who made a lot of money – they obviously need something to fill their time)? $450,000. Cheers.
Dorothy Nelson, a “retiree” in La Verne, CA? $150,000. Ta, you mad old bat.
William Bolthouse, who “was made wealthy through his family business, Bolthouse Farms, the 2nd largest producer of carrots in the world”, gave $100,000. It doesn’t say whether Billy founded Bolthouse Farms. But I’ll bet you a significant donation to an Aids charity of your choice that he didn’t.
All in all, there’s several millions of individual donations on the first page of the list. I feel obliged to point out that Take That chose to give their money to Children In Need. The world would be a significantly better place if this list of nutters, ne’er-do-wells and the undeserving rich found it in themselves to give money to causes that help people rather than causes that limit other people’s freedoms. And while that thought is trite and uninteresting, it is worth pointing out that seeing the names of these people and how much they contributed allows one to feel a more potent, and more real, sense of shimmering outrage.