This past weekend, the wedding community was set ablaze by a blog post written by Atlanta wedding photographer Anne Almasy. The blog post, “An Open Letter to Weddings Unveiled Magazine,” details Anne’s experience with purchasing a half page ad in WU, submitting an ad which included a beautiful photograph of two brides leaning in for a kiss, and being rejected because the magazine editor doesn’t “feel comfortable publishing an ad featuring a same-sex couple.” Go ahead and read her post, and then come back here and read my response.
(Editor’s note: By the time my post was published, the magazine has since apologized for it’s initial response and offered to run the ad, and the photographer agreed. I’m happy this tale has a happy ending. Since my post was already written and this is an issue I feel very passionately about, I decided to still hit publish.)
After reading your blog post about your experience with advertising in Weddings Unveiled, I felt compelled to share my own opinions on this matter. As I’m sure you are aware, I am not alone. This past weekend, hundreds of Facebook and Twitter users shared your story with their own comments of outrage/sadness/disappointment. I am just a tiny piece of that, but we saw that hundreds of tiny voices can become a giant roar.
Like you, I believe that love is love, and all love should be celebrated. Like you, I believe Wedding Unveiled‘s position is archaic and absurd. Like you, I believe “the time is always right to do what’s right” (- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr).
It is a shame that these types of conversations are still happening. In the last ten years, 11 countries have made same-sex marriages legal. The United States recognizes same-sex marriages in nine states and DC. Many other states recognize civil unions. Recent polls show over half of Americans support legalizing same-sex marriage. For the first time in history, a US president has come out in support of same-sex marriage. In March 2013, the Supreme Court will review the Defense of Marriage Act (and, hopefully, strike it as unconstitutional). Times are a’changing and it’s going to be tough to stop the momentum. Wedding professionals need to either adapt or move out of the way to avoid being steamrolled.
It is interesting that the Wedding Unveiled‘s editor told you that their decision is not based on their personal beliefs. If this is true, then they are making decisions based on fear and complacency. It seems they are more concerned about alienating some current readers instead of embracing new ones. It is a shame. If WU doesn’t start embracing this shift in momentum, they are going to be left behind (if it’s not too late already).
I wanted to write to you, Anne, to let you know that not all wedding publishers agree with WU. Some of us think same-sex weddings are awesome. Some of us believe that ALL weddings are awesome. Weddings and marriage are about love, plain and simple. When there’s so much hate and anger in the world, why would anyone want to deny someone their love? How could anyone look at such a beautiful picture of two people obviously so in love and think, “BOO, I do not approve!”
Anne, I contacted you privately but I am going to put my offer here also: I would be happy and honored to run your ad for you here on my blog. My blog is new, and small, but growing every day in part because I am honest and true to myself and my beliefs, and not just in the frou-frou things like twinkle lights and pink tulle ballgowns, but in the bigger issues of tolerance and equality. I think you would be a good fit here. Just let me know.
And to all those wedding professionals who have not yet accepted that same-sex marriages are becoming the norm, keep one eye on that steamroller. It is quickly approaching.
(February 20, 2013 – Update – Anne has happily agreed to let me run her beautiful ad, and you can now find it in our sidebar through at least June. Yay!)