Tonight, Amendment 1 in North Carolina was passed, with language that reads
Constitutional amendment 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 problem with this amendment is not that it was an anti-gay marriage amendment as its sponsors billed it. It was different. It states that the only valid relationship is heterosexual marriage. That means it has drastic effects on civil unions, domestic partnerships, partner benefits, the ability for straight couples to share insurance or even share it with their children, and has significant implications for domestic abuse laws in the state.
I see this as a precipice for our movement for LGBTQ equality. This is our moment to snag and run with until we reach victory.
What has happened tonight, and what the sponsors of this Amendment will not tell you, is that it was about all out homophobia, a misguided and irrational fear of gay, and hatred toward our community. Why? Because gay marriage was already banned in North Carolina’s books.
This was not a play to “protect” marriage. This was a play to strip any semblance of equality and humanity from the LGBTQ community in the state under the guise of protecting the kids. This was pure and simple hate, that will cause uncertainty and pain beyond the LGBTQ community, but in the straight community as well.
If we do not spread this message, capitalize on it, and move forward showing our opponents for what they really are, we will not move as fast as we possibly could towards our imminent equality. I don’t care about the proponents of this measure, they’re a lost cause and it will take quite a lot for them to come over to our side. We have to win the middle, the still (yes, they exist) undecided, and show them what is happening. Hate.
Fight hate with love. Fight hate with your stories. Fight hate by coming out now, tomorrow, and the next week; to that guy, to that woman, to everyone.