This May 8th, less than a month away, voters will have the option to decide the future of many North Carolina residents. The state is working to incorporate a new state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, domestic partnership, common-law marriage and civil unions.
One of our homegrown talents, American Idol runner up Clay Aiken, is speaking out as a gay, North Carolina resident about the harms of Amendment One.
What does the amendment say?
The Amendment in question states: “Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State. This section does not prohibit a private party from entering into contracts with another private party; nor does this section prohibit courts from adjudicating the rights of private parties pursuant to such contracts.”
What does it mean?
No same-sex couples will be legally recognized under the eyes of the law. That means some residents who currently receive health insurance for their partners and children, will be uninsured.
Who else opposes Amendment One?
This amendment affects a broad number of people, not just members of the gay community. Former NC Governors Harvey Gantt (D) and Richard Vinroot (R) are also joining forces to educate people to the potential harms of Amendment One. See their message:
“89% of Fortune 500 companies prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation, including Bank of America, Lowe’s, Duke Energy, BB&T, and Reynolds American—the five largest North Carolina-based companies.” – ProtectNCFamilies.org.
Opponents argue that Amendment One may take health benefits away from thousands of children, put domestic violence laws in jeopardy, and that it is bad for business. President Obama has also recently voiced his opposition to this proposed amendment. Read more about President Obama’s views on Amendment One.
North Carolina is currently the only southern state without a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, and it Amendment One passes, it will be one of the most restrictive in the country.
Ultimately, the people of North Carolina will decide whether or not to oppose the amendment on May 8th. Be informed before you get to the polls. Get more info on this amendment here.
-Shannon Scarborough, Kiss 95.1/Charlotte