Civil Rights Leaders Confront Institutional Bigotry

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingPam of Pam's House Blend and Matt Hill Comer over at Interstate Q each have pointed posts about bigots wearing the robes of cultural conservatism.

Matt has earned the ire of UNCG College Christorepublican, Jason Crawford, who writes,

"However embarrassing it is for me to have to mention Matt by name - and it is - it does not compare to the humiliation he will endure when he discovers his activist lifestyle has been predicated upon an elaborate web of self-deception. No one should think I have unfairly singled him out. Matt is every bit as zealously aligned with the homosexual movement now as I was with the conservative movement three years ago. And whenever a man prostitutes his soul for a man-made cause, particularly an immoral one, true love demands somebody get in his face."

This 'hate to love' strategy is also on display in the General Assembly as our lawmakers again attempt to enshrine division in the NC Constitution. S.B. 13 was filed Thursday:

"Marriage is the union of one man and one woman at one time. This is the only marriage that shall be recognized as valid in this State."

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingOn the subject of Jason Crawford's attack on Matt Hill Comer, Pam writes,

"Can these people ever defend their prejudice, bigotry and support of attempts to deny LGBT citizens rights on secular grounds at all? It's so weak, tired and inappropriate when we are talking about civil rights of tax-paying citizens."

And it is in this context of denying people civil rights based on covert religious agendas that Pam writes,

"Yes, it's that time of year again. A group of scared, middle-aged white men (and this year, one woman) is so threatened by my relationship with Kate that they've gone back to the drawing board to write discrimination into our state constitution."
"It's all or nothing folks, because if they truly believe this is the case, then I want the right to vote on the marriages of the rest of me fellow neighbors and a whole host of other rights, including placing some restrictions on religious fundamentalism. But the answer to this question should be "no." The civil rights of a minority of people should never be determined by the majority."

Go read Pam and Matt for news from the front lines of the civil rights battle.


the amendment

I am participating in this conversation (at the NCDP Progressive Bloggers Conference) and thinking about the prospect of a marriage amendment bill coming to a vote (and most certainly passing). Appalling.

What a tragedy it would be that committee reform under Dem rule would result in gay Tarheels' civil rights tossed aside, particularly because of the amount of time, effort and money that gay and lesbian North Carolinians have given to elect Democrats in this state.

An education campaign (for our legislators and voters) is necessary, and addressing the religion head-on is absolutely part of it -- there are progressive people of faith who can speak out on this issue. Also, we live in a state with a massive number of employers with progressive policies that include anti-discrimination measures and partner benefits for their gay employees. Discrimination is bad for recruitment, bad for retention and bad for business. A marriage amendment in NC will drive business away.

Those with little exposure to a sane discussion about marriage equality (please, folks, refrain from using "gay marriage" -- that's part of the GOP framing) are behind the times, and clearly unaware of how to begin an honest debate.

What it boils down to is a lawmaker's ability to answer the question, as I said my earlier post:

Is it appropriate for the people of North Carolina to determine the civil rights of their fellow citizens by direct vote at the ballot box?

My two cents.

How to address the marriage amendment advocates

Counter with a bill that will curl their hair (from a commenter at my blog):

Apparently the Secretary of State in Washington has approved the wording of a proposed referendum for voters called the Defense of Marriage Initiative.

When the Supreme Court of Washington last year issued their bogus little decision that the state had the right to regulate marriage in the interest of procreation, some gay activists got together to codify that into law. This initiative, if enough signatures are gathered to put it on the ballot, would limit marriage to only those people who are capable of procreating, and those who fail to procreate within three years will have their marriage annulled.

Similarly, any unmarried couple who create a child will be considered "married." The group also plans to introducing a referendum banning divorce or separation of any "married" couple when there are children.
Pam Spaulding
Durham, NC USA

Pam's House Blend

Pam Spaulding
Durham, NC USA

Pam's House Blend


that is a hardcore response. they are not pulling any punches.

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"