Monday, April 30, 2012

New York Times: "Bigotry on [North Carolina's] Ballot" - "driving “a wedge between gays and blacks.”

"...lawmakers got careless with the wording of the measure, known as Amendment One.

It would constitutionally prohibit recognition not just of same-sex marriages, but of other legal arrangements like civil unions and domestic partnerships.

That could harm all unmarried couples, imperiling some children’s health insurance benefits, along with child custody arrangements and safeguards against domestic violence.

...One of Amendment One’s most vocal opponents is the Rev. William Barber II, president of the state chapter of the N.A.A.C.P.

Mr. Barber draws a strong link
between the proposed amendment and struggles against racial unfairness,
an appeal with special resonance
following the publication in March of memos from the National Organization for Marriage,
one the most prominent groups fighting same-sex marriage,
about driving “a wedge between gays and blacks.”

...public opinion continues to move steadily toward marriage equality.

In 2001, Americans opposed same-sex marriage by a margin of 57 percent to 35 percent.

Today, 47 percent are in favor and 43 percent opposed...

Opponents of marriage equality have never been able to show any evidence
that any harm is caused to heterosexual marriages
by granting all American adults the right to marry as they choose
— because there is no such evidence.

With little more than a week to go before the May 8 contest,
and early voting already under way,
North Carolinians need to consider
whether they really want to inflict this gratuitous bigotry
on their fellow citizens and their children."


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