why I’m voting against amendment one.

When we named our son Atticus, we said we did so because it’s important to stand up for what is right. So I am going to wade into the contentious waters of politics to talk about something that is happening in North Carolina that I believe is very wrong.

On May 8th, North Carolinians will be voting on amendment one. What will appear on our ballots is this: “Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state.”

It is clear to me that amendment one will harm more families than it “protects.” This amendment will cause some unmarried couples (gay and straight) and their children to lose their health care coverage. Family law professors from every law school in our state believe that the language of the amendment could cause custody issues and problems with domestic violence protections. The state attorney general agrees that this is a strong possibility. If this turns out not to be the case, it will only be established after lengthy and expensive battles in the courts. Even a framer of the amendment believes that, if it passes, it will be overturned in 20 years.

Those would be enough reasons to vote against this amendment, but they are not all of my reasons. I have lived, worked, and worshipped with gay and lesbian friends for all of my adult life, and I believe that they deserve the same rights that Mike and Atticus and I have. Far from threatening my marriage, these relationships have strengthened and supported us.

If you believe that gay marriage is wrong for our state, we can simply agree to disagree. But we are not just voting on an amendment about gay marriage. If it does not pass, gay marriage will not suddenly be legal. None of our laws will change. If it does pass, it will hurt a lot of unmarried people, gay and straight.

There are many different kinds of families in our state. I don’t understand why the kind that I am in should be the only “valid” one. And, truthfully, no amendment can invalidate a family, because families are bonded by more than just legal documents. But this amendment will take away many families’ rights and benefits, and that is wrong. Our state constitution should be amended to expand rights, not to take them away.

We are past the point where it’s okay for me to take my stand by quietly voting my convictions. I cannot tell my son that I stood by and said nothing as my friends’ rights were eroded. That’s not who I want to be as a parent and a person of faith.

I love North Carolina. I was born here and I am proud to raise my son here. I hope I can tell him that we successfully fought against amendment one because we in North Carolina care about the rights of women, of children, and of unmarried couples. We care about the rights of all families.

North Carolinians, please vote against amendment one on May 8th. Early voting continues through this week. If you haven’t yet registered, you can register and vote during early voting.

Vote against amendment one.

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  1. […] I have been surprised by how many friends have taken a stand and publicized their position, like my friend Kari did on her blog. That’s a lot more gutsy than my ringtone. Most of them are promoting a civil dialogue with […]

7 Comments

  1. Courtney

    Atticus is very blessed to see such a strong example of conviction and love in his home.

    Posted 4/29/2012 at | Permalink
  2. brandi

    Well said.

    Posted 4/29/2012 at | Permalink
  3. such a fantastic post. Thanks for this.

    Posted 4/29/2012 at | Permalink
  4. Michaeline Parrish

    I am proud to work with Atticus’ Daddy and grateful that he has you as a Mommy. Your words are straightforward and clear. I hope many, many people read them and consider the impact of their vote.

    Posted 4/29/2012 at | Permalink
  5. I must respectfully disagree. Marriage is a sacrament, invented by God, defined by the Bible, and authorized by the church. It is none of my business as a citizen if two people who have gay feelings want to be close, live together, or be a couple. But MARRIAGE is between one man and one woman. It’s not entirely semantics. Gays don’t care to “gay baptize” or “gay communion” so why marriage? You cannot redefine a word someone else invented. God designed marriage, so we must live by the rules he lays out.

    Posted 5/1/2012 at | Permalink
  6. Debbie

    The bible also defined marriage to include polygamy. Should we do that as well?

    Marriage is a civil union. If people choose to also make it a religious one, that is their choice. But for a group of people to try to make their religious beliefs a LAW, governing those who do not share those same beliefs, is arrogant and wrong.

    Posted 5/1/2012 at | Permalink
  7. Rachel

    Ginger,
    I do agree that “marriage is a sacrament invented by God, Defined by the Bible, and authorized by the church.” However, If a non believing man and woman decide to get married, they have not asked Christ to enter into that marriage, therefore making the above facts irrelevant. Marriage is a beautiful bond between two people, but it also comes with legal rights and privileges. If we feel that a non believing man and woman can share in those privileges, why can’t two men or two women share in them as well? It does not have to be an issue of faith, but one of human rights.

    Posted 5/1/2012 at | Permalink

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