This is so awful and we totally hope this couple is granted justice!
Brian Edwards and Tom Privitere are suing an anti-gay group called Public Advocate of the United States because their private photo — featuring them kissing at their engagement party — was used in the hateful organization's homophobic political ad!
Public Advocate lifted the image from the New Jersey couple's website and featured it in an advertisement (above) attacking Republican Colorado State Senator Jean White for supporting gay unions.
The couple's lawyer calls the despicable act "nothing short of theft" and we can't help but agree!
Not only did the backwards organization not ask for permission to use the picture, but they didn't pay for it either.
Although we're sure the couple wouldn't accept ANY amount of money for their image to be used in such a derogatory manner, we bet they wish the photograph wasn't a tainted reminder of the intolerance that still pollutes this great country.
"I cringe every time I look at what once was one of our favorite photos. All I see now is the defiled image used to attack our family and our community. All we want is justice for the pain that Public Advocate has caused us."
Privitere explained how he felt "ashamed" as a result of its misuse when he added:
"We are heartbroken that our images may have been seen by gay and lesbian youth in Colorado and were left feeling ashamed of their sexual orientation because of it. We hope that this group is held accountable for its reprehensible and hateful anti-gay attacks."
Even worse than their own feelings being hurt is how the ad may have hurt others. Privitere continued:
"This sort of thing has a trickle-down effect. I think of all the closeted gay high school students who got mail that day and felt disheartened that they would never have a family and the parents on the fence about whether to accept their gay child for who they are. That hurts."
So true! More people than just a senate candidate were hurt through this ignorant act.
The couple hopes to take advantage of their misfortune and educate the public by showing that gay couples "can and do have loving relationships."
On top of damages and attorney fees, Edwards and Privitere are seeking a court order stating that Public Advocate broke the law by using the photo without permission.
Good luck, guys!