FILED IN: GLBT

North Carolina's Amendment 1 bans Gay marriage

Online attempts at stopping the amendment. - Via Photobucket
North Carolina already had laws in place to prevent gay marriage, but Tuesday, May 08, 2012, they took it a step further. Voters went to the polls and decided 61 to 39 percent to become the 29th state to add an anti-gay amendment to the North Carolina constitution. Now it isn’t just marriage that has been banned for the GLBT community, but civil unions as well, taking away even the few benefits available to same-sex couples until this vote.

Former President Bill Clinton and President Barrack Obama both urged the voters of North Carolina to not make this change, which makes it more difficult for any future politicians to return these most basic of rights to same-sex couples.

Those that opposed this amendment raised more than $2 million in their attempts to sway the voters through education and television ads, most of it from individual donations. Those in favor only raised $1 million, all of which came from corporate sponsors.

According to a public policy voting poll, only 46% of the voters would have voted in favor of the amendment if they had known it would also be taking away rights to civil unions. Marriage between a man and a woman is now the only domestic union allowed in this state. A point has been made; uneducated voting has brought about an amendment that will change North Carolina for years to come.

President Evan Wolfson, founder of Freedom to Marry has this to say: “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 the 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. 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.”

This November during the Presidential election, Minnesotans, who historically vote liberal, will have their chance to vote for or against gay marriage. At the same time, activists will be giving the people of Maine a second chance, after they banned gay marriage in 2009.

Many people on the Freedom to Marry website are leaving comments, calling for the boycotting of any and all goods from and vacations to North Carolina within the GLBT community, as well as from those compassionate to the cause.

Sources:
Cameron Tolle, Freedom to Marry
Liz Goodwin, The Ticket