Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Thoughts on Amendment One

Homophobia won the day on Tuesday as NC voters turned out to cement bigotry and discrimination into the state constitution by a vote of 61% - 39%.

Maggie Gallagher and the rest of the trolls at NOM are gloating over their victory. Comment wars are raging on news sites all over the web and the culture wars have received a jump start in the lead up to the presidential election.

There are petitions making the rounds on the web calling on the Democrats to move their convention out of Charlotte to a more tolerant state. That's not going to happen. The hall has been booked, security checks have been done and Obama needs a swing state, even a bigoted one like North Carolina.

There was a lot of discussion from the Anti-Amendment side saying that the wording of the ballot measure was too broad and that people didn't understand what they were voting for. That may be so, but exit polling showed that the misinformation campaign waged by anti-equality side was successful. They were better funded by seasoned veterans like NOM, who receive a great deal of their funding from their founders in the Catholic and Mormon churches.

The White House released the following statement Tuesday night,
“The President has long opposed divisive and discriminatory efforts to deny rights and benefits to same sex couples," Obama's North Carolina spokesman Cameron French said in a statement.

"He believes the North Carolina measure singles out and discriminates against committed gay and lesbian couples, which is why he did not support it. President Obama has long believed that gay and lesbian couples deserve the same rights and legal protections as straight couples and is disappointed in the passage of this amendment," French said.
Sorry, Mr. President, but your words ring a little hollow your when surrogates like Joe Biden come out in full support of marriage equality, as you straddle the fence in your slo-mo evolution. We know you have an election to win, but the folks who would be swayed to vote against you if you came out in full support of marriage equality aren't going to vote for you anyway.

Evan Wolfson of Freedom to Marry released this statement Tuesday night:
“As momentum for the freedom to marry continues to grow in the rest of the nation, today’s vote is a painful reminder of what happens when a preemptive ballot-measure is stampeded through before people have had enough time to take in real conversations about who gay families are and why marriage matters to them.  This amendment is a last gasp of discrimination that will cause real harm to families, communities, and businesses in North Carolina, but says little about the prospects for a better outcome in battles to come in states where there has been greater visibility for loving and committed couples and those who get to know them.   And even in North Carolina, the long-term effect of this nasty attack will be to spur more conversations and open more hearts, helping more people rise to fairness and support for the freedom to marry.”
Evan, dear, pull your head out of your ass and take a look around, you self-serving, sanctimonious, toad. North Carolina does not live in a vacuum and the debate over marriage equality is hardly anything new. The Amendment One ballot initiative was approved by state legislators six months ago. Your organization could have provided much needed funding and led the charge in this fight, but you chose not to. You wrote it off as unwinnable and threw us under the bus. You don't get to say DICK about this loss!

We are down, but not defeated. We can take heart in the knowledge that California's Prop 8 is working its way through the courts and will hopefully be decided once and for all, with nationwide implications. Lower courts have already ruled that Prop 8 violates the US Constitution's guarantee of equal protection and due process. SCOTUS could hear the case within the next two years. All eyes are now on California.

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