Brian Edwards and Tom Privitere sue after engagement pic used in Colorado hate mailers

Categories: News

Thumbnail image for gay engagement image.jpg
Big photos below.
In this year's campaign, Senator Jean White and state House candidate Jeffrey Hare, both Republicans, were attacked via mailers featuring a gay couple kissing and slogans suggesting that the image represented their version of family values.

Turns out that the couple in question, Brian Edwards and Tom Privitere, weren't asked if their photo could be used in this way -- and now, they and the photographer who snapped the pic are suing the outfit that used it. Details and the images in question below.

Here's the original photo, as captured by photographer Kristina Hill to mark Edwards and Privitere's engagement. Note that it features the New York skyline in the background:

gay couple original photo.jpg
And here's a mailer attacking White. As you can see, the NYC scenes have been replaced by snowy trees, presumably meant to suggest the couple lives here.

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Finally, here's the version used against Hare, which, once again, features a different backdrop -- mainly a cloud-filled sky.

jeffrey hares vision for weld county.jpg
According to the lawsuit, filed on behalf of Edwards, Privitere and Hill by the Southern Poverty Law Center (we've included it here), the mailers were funded by Public Advocate of the United States, a Virginia-based 501(c)(4). We Googled the group, and the key-word-loaded item that topped the search boasted that the organization's head man, Eugene Delgaudio, is fighting "Liberals Tyrants Elitists Homosexuals Barack Obama pornography gay marriage same-sex marriage high taxes over-regulation."

Where did Public Advocates find the shot? Likely on a blog Edwards and Privitere established to keep in touch with loved ones about their nuptials, which took place in September 2010. They learned the image had been co-opted this past June, when the New York Daily News ran an article about Senator White and featured the mailer; a friend recognized Edwards and Privitere in the shot.

Continue to read about reactions to the hate mailers and to see the lawsuit.

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I hope the douches have to pay dear!!

Rossi Smith
Rossi Smith

That's interesting. An orginization sharing hate had to steal an image of two men kissing. Irony is that they prolly couldn't find someone to pay for a pic like that because of the hateful message they were sharing with that image. Wonder if that ever crossed their minds as they were stealing the image?

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