A woman sitting on her desk announces that she's been a school teacher for 24 years. She grimly explains that she loves her work and she's "never been afraid. Until now."
She continues, "You see, I believe, as you do, that what people do in the privacy of their own homes is their business. Well if Measure 9 passes, I could be fired just for saying that. And under Measure 9, we would have to teach discrimination. We would teach what the says is 'perverse' and 'abnormal.' Imagine first and second graders learning words and ideas like that. Do we want extremists telling us what we should teach and what we should read? How we should live and raise our families? Is THAT what Oregon is coming to? Well not if I can help it."
The closing line is, "Vote No on 9, it's a danger to us all."
The group behind this commercial, Basic Rights Oregon, was able to create a number of commercials to fight the measure, which ultimately failed by a narrow margin.
Like commercials from other states in the political battle for protecting gay civil rights, this ad never mentions the words "gay or lesbian." It was a decision that proved controversial to some, who felt that the ads were too vague, while others felt that a broader approach was necessary to avoid turning off many voters.
Either way, during the heated environment in states that debated gay rights measures, reports of anti-gay violence increased dramatically.
Another effort from the OCA behind Measure 9 returned in 2000 to prohibit schools and community colleges from encouraging,
promoting or sanctioning homosexual and bisexual behavior.