cover image Straightforward: How to Mobilize Heterosexual Support for Gay Rights

Straightforward: How to Mobilize Heterosexual Support for Gay Rights

Ian Ayres, Jennifer Gerarda Brown, Ian Ayers. Princeton University Press, $35 (304pp) ISBN 978-0-691-12134-5

Every gay man and lesbian in America has at least two heterosexual allies willing to actively support their struggle for equality, hypothesize husband-and-wife law professors Ayres (Yale, and also a Forbes columnist) and Brown (Quinnipiac College). They argue that the hetero ally total is something like 20 million-all of whom would actively welcome ""pragmatic advice"" on how they can support their homosexual friends, which the authors are more than happy to provide. They propose strategies for dealing with hetero privilege-""the range of perks and incentives with which heterosexually identified persons are rewarded for conforming to the dominant sexuality""-exercising it, disabling it and renouncing it-and provide examples of each. They suggest that heterosexuals consider masking their own sexual orientation when doing activism. From the ""fair employment mark"" (a proposal that would allow consumers to purchase products bearing a mark that signals gay-friendly employment policies) to the ""The Vacation Pledge for Equal Marriage Rights"" (a Website designed by Ayres and Brown that will collect promises from individuals vowing to spend their tourism dollars in the first state to democratically extend marriage rights to same-sex couples), this practical primer delivers on its promise to provide a ""concrete guide to action"" by offering innovative economic and legal tactics for influencing public and corporate policy.