North Carolina gets ready for amendment one vote
Amazingly enough North Carolina is the only southern state in America which doesn’t have a constitutional amendment banning same-sex unions. May 8th, however, will see residents go to the polls on Bill 514 (2011), also known as amendment one. If it were to pass North Carlina would join the list of states that limit the types of domestic unions it recognises.
- prohibit same-sex marriage;
- prohibit North Carolina from ever passing legislation that would grant civil unions;
- bar the state from instituting domestic partnership rights;
- strip the domestic partner insurance benefits currently offered to employees by a number of local governments.
Clearly this would be a major step backwards in the fight for equal marriage rights which is gaining momentum worldwide. The title of the bill says it all…”An Act to Amend the Constitution to Provide That Marriage Between One Man and One Woman is the Only Domestic Legal Union That Shall Be Valid or Recognized in This State.” The second point above is particularly galling, stopping civil unions from ever being voted into law shows that these people want every avenue closed.
As always the gay community has banded together and, in addition to the Vote Against Project, countless videos have appeared on line with people who support an increase in rights in the state rather than this horrendous measure to go backwards. You can have a look at this YouTube channel for some examples, they include City Council members, US Senators, Mayors, religious leaders and activists like Zach Wahls. It truly is uplifting to see people from all over the spectrum come together to try to fight this bill.
Sometimes the best people to speak are those directly affected and one of my favourite videos on the subject comes from a couple who have been together for over 45 years, tell them how it is Pearl and Lennie
As usual some vile anti gay crap is making the rounds, such as pastor Harris who recently said parents should punch their gay acting kids, but how are the surveys looking with less than a week to go? Unfortunately it seems the tide is not turning as fast as we need it to, at least according to a Public Policy Poll on opinion, you can see the full survey here. The yeses lead 55% to 41% as of April 29th, what is worrying is that means that the shift in votes from the previous week is virtually none existent. Do the community activists have enough time to continue to educate people in the state about the magnitude of this amendment, lets hope so.
You can get involved here.