For years, state senator Ed Murray has been telling Seattle's marriage-equality supporters to get out of their little urban bubble and change the minds of conservative lawmakers around the state. However, now that just six of Murray's undecided colleagues hold the future of Washington State gay rights in their conflicted, wringing hands, Murray is begging his Seattle constituents to think—and choose their words carefully—before contacting them.

"We need to respect those people who oppose us," Murray says, invoking the legacy of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. "We need to treat them with love, no matter how hateful they may be toward us." Immediately sensing that his last sentence could be misconstrued, Murray clarified that none of the six undecided senators are haters and added: "We also need to treat them with love, no matter how undecided they are."

Okay. So what, exactly, is a Seattle gay-rights supporter supposed to say to Senators Fain, Hatfield, Haugen, Hill, Kastama, and Shin?

First of all, says Josh Friedes, director of marriage equality for Equal Rights Washington, consider getting someone else to speak for you—because that may be way more effective. "Legislators listen very closely to their constituents," Friedes says. Think about people you know who live in these six key districts and then call them, Friedes says, whether they're friends or family—and ask them to speak to their legislators.

(Friedes has one exception to this rule: "When a legislator is seeking a statewide office." Which means it's fine to contact Senator Jim Kastama, who's currently running for secretary of state. "He is very interested in where people are in Washington State," Friedes notes.)

Still wanting to do more talking? Volunteer for Washington United for Marriage, the campaign coordinating the statewide lobbying effort. Get involved in one of its Seattle or Tacoma phone banks, which regularly call into the districts of the undecided senators and alert marriage-equality supporters that they need to pick up the phone. "We know that people don't contact their legislators unless they're asked," Friedes said.

Still have a thing or two that you want to share with those undecideds in your own words?

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"Our power is our stories," Friedes advises. "Everybody has a story to tell, whether they are gay or straight, about why marriage matters to them. That is the most important thing that we can share with legislators. So tell those stories—about yourself, about friends and family—stories that get at the question: Why would we deny marriage to gay and lesbian couples?"

And don't get too emotional. "Always pretend that standing next to you, when you are talking to a legislator, or sending an e-mail to a legislator, is a 65-year-old, middle-of-the-road person who you want to be impressed by you," Friedes says. "Ask yourself: Will this person think that I am respectful, persuasive, and kind?" recommended