Cyclist Launches Cross-Country Ride for Freedom to Marry
Richard Carey to Raise Awareness & Funds for State Campaigns
Portland – On June 15, 2012, Richard Carey, 53, will climb onto his bicycle in Vancouver, Washington for the beginning of a 53 day, 3,667 mile ride across America with the goal of having conversations along the way about why the freedom to marry matters to gay and lesbian couples. The ride will also raise funds for Freedom to Marry’s Win More States Fund, which is supporting the campaign in Washington and other contested states.
“Americans are currently engaged in a conversation about whether same-sex couples should be able to share in the freedom to marry. I'm going to join that conversation in a rather direct way, by riding my bike across the country and talking with people I meet along the way,” said Carey. “I’ll talk about the cause with anyone and everyone who’s interested.”
Carey’s ride begins in Washington State, one of four states expected to vote on the freedom to marry in November; later along his journey he’ll ride through Minnesota and Maine, two of the other November ballot states.
“Freedom to Marry is putting its shoulder to the wheel to win November ballot-measure campaigns in Washington, Minnesota and Maine, and now Richard’s putting his feet on the pedals to turn up more funds to get us across the finish line," said Evan Wolfson, founder and President of Freedom to Marry, the campaign to win marriage nationwide. "We talk about Freedom to Marry’s Roadmap to Victory – the three-track national strategy of winning more states, growing the majority for marriage, and ending federal marriage discrimination. How neat to have someone hit the road to make a personal difference and get us further along.”
By self-funding the cost of his ride, Carey will ensure that 100% of all funds contributed by his supporters will go to state campaigns. Carey says, “My route includes Washington, Minnesota and Maine, all of which face ballot measures on the freedom to marry this fall. Freedom to Marry is focused on winning the hearts and minds of the voters in those states, and I want to help them.”
The father of a 20 year-old son, Carey’s primary motivation concerns the message sent to young people. “Denying same-sex couples the opportunity to make a lifetime commitment to each other through marriage tells young people that gay people are second-class citizens,” says Carey. “Everyone, gay or straight, should be able to dream the same dream, of marrying and taking care of the person they love, through good times and bad. I’m riding to help bring about that change.”
Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage nationwide. The Win More States Fund is dedicated to raising and spending at least $3 million dollars to secure and defend marriage, and stop anti-gay amendments, in five battleground states: Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and Washington. Visit Richard Carey’s personal Ride Across America page at freedomtomarry.org/richardcarey.
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