Reading about Cary and Tara Leslie, evangelicals from Ohio who voted for George W. Bush [" 'It's a Victory for People Like Us,' " news story, Nov. 5], I was struck by how similar their lives are to mine.

Like the Leslies, we saw our household income decline after Sept. 11, 2001. We, too, often struggle to pay the bills. We pray, we eat at home, we shop at Wal-Mart, and, while the Leslies go to a nondenominational church, we're Catholic and occasionally attend a Methodist church.

In short, as Cary Leslie said of himself, "We're pretty boring people. Normal people." The only difference is that we're gay.

I wonder whether the Leslies would still vote the way they did if they were cognizant of the consequences their votes have on "normal people." The ballot initiative in Ohio and similar measures across the country are not just about gay marriage; they tear away at domestic partnerships and communicate that gay people are not equal citizens under the law.

By promoting such measures, Karl Rove formulated a brilliant strategy to get his boss reelected, but by promoting our differences through scare tactics, he and the president caused this country great harm.

CHRISTOPHER GOULD

Washington