Today’s e-mail alert from the National Organization for [Heterosexual-Only] Marriage offers a glimpse of the organization’s efforts to merge religion with partisan politics — and to subject civil marriage to control by conservative Christian political activists.

Here’s an excerpt from the end of the alert, which was signed by Brian S. Brown, executive director:

More news: This Sunday NOM president Maggie Gallagher will be speaking at the first annual Celebrate Marriage and Family Day sponsored by our Rhode Island chapter. This day is not intended to be a political event; it’s an opportunity for husbands and wives and their families to come together for an ice-cream social, listen to a nationally-recognized Christian band, renew their vows with pastors standing by, and celebrate the vision of marriage as the union of husband and wife.

But when gay-marriage advocates found out, what did they do? They organized a boycott against a company that donated a few hundred cups of coffee to the event. All Canadian media was agog! Give coffee to bigots!?! (Translation: by “bigot” they mean people like you and me and the majority of Americans, who support and promote marriage as a union of husband and wife.) On the one hand this kind of thing is small potatoes, more bemusing than outraging. …

Then again, here’s what I keep wondering: What kind of movement would threaten to hurt people’s jobs for a few cups of coffee donated to an event to celebrate traditional marriage?

We expect a great event on the beautiful Narragansett Bay on Sunday. But for people who think gay marriage is just about helping two individuals lead their own private lives the way they choose, this kind of thing is a real eye-opener, isn’t it? If gay-marriage advocates act this way while marriage in Rhode Island remains a union of husband and wife, how will they treat traditional faith communities and other marriage supporters, if they succeed in getting the power of the law on their side?

Here, we see a supposed defender of marriage protesting against gay couples who don’t want to consume coffee served by a company that would support discrimination against them and their children. Brown seems outraged that gay couples might make their own decisions about the businesses that they determine to be ethically operated.

That sounds political to me. But if any doubts remain about the intent of NOM’s rally, take a look at the main topic of this very same e-mail. The e-mail begins:

Does the Republican Party in New York want to commit political suicide? Is the national party going to help them?

ACTION ALERT! Go right now and tell GOP chief Michael Steele: No backroom deals promoting pro-gay marriage politicians to Congress! Not without GOP voters’ consent!

Here’s the background:

New York’s 23rd Congressional district has a special election. NY 23 is what Manhattanites would think of as “way upstate NY”–the northeastern corner. The sitting Congressman, John McHugh, is a Republican whom Obama just named to be Secretary of the Army.

We are talking solid GOP territory. But for some reason (a deal with Tim Gill?) some New York Republican leaders decided that out of all the people they could choose to carry the GOP flag, they would pick Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava, one of the very, very few Republicans who have ever actually voted for gay marriage. (Oh, and she’s pro-abortion too, naturally.) This makes the New York Daily News describe her as a “moderate” Republican. But really, is “moderate” the word for a GOP politician who passionately advocates for gay marriage as a “civil right”? (Fight back by donating to NOM’s New York PAC!)

Most of the e-mail alert is a call-to-arms among NOM’s Catholic and Mormon Republicans to write letters to GOP leaders in opposition to GOP chairman Michael Steele — and to “fight back by donating to NOM’s New York PAC!”

In the view of NOM, it sometimes seems that gay couples aren’t the only people who are treated as second-class citizens: Democrats and independents appear to be kicked to the sidelines, too.