I spent much of the spring working on defeating anti-gay Amendment 1 in North Carolina. It's been my habit, after major wins or losses, to reflect on what went right and what went wrong, and offer some thoughts. Here are some of those along with some analysis.
I would gladly never step foot in North Carolina again, and if it weren't for the fact that I do have relatives and a few friends there, I probably wouldn't. Why would I waste my money to support the economy of a state that clearly sees me as unworthy of any level of respect?
Let's take a page out of Harvey Milk's book: if you don't mention "at least one old queer" in your campaign ads against an anti-gay initiative, you've already lost the battle. Perhaps the vote in North Carolina was a foregone conclusion.
No vote will change whom I love or whom I call my family. I will still be here regardless, living my life openly and honestly. My husband and I are still your neighbors. We are still taxpayers. One day, very soon, the margin of victory will shift in the favor of equality for my family.
On May 4 my partner and I took our two boys with us to vote early against North Carolina's Amendment 1. We were not prepared at all for the drama that we encountered as we approached the early voting location.
As of yesterday, May 4, my friend Dominique Beaudry and I are walking from the International Civil Rights Museum in Greensboro to the State Capitol, a four-day journey of over 85 miles, wearing sandwich boards that encourage North Carolinians to vote against Amendment 1.
The momentum is on the side of those opposed to the amendment. The numbers show a clear shift away from support of this odious amendment that started even before the Protect ALL NC Families campaign's new ads made it on the air in the state.
No matter how hard I squint, I cannot figure out what's so threatening about this little life of ours. I believe in compassion and accepting people different from me, so I have spent a lot of mental energy puzzling over the motivations of people who would vote to invalidate our family.
Last week Amendment One even drew the ire of the president, who voiced his opposition to the ballot measure. But arguably the most telling national endorsement of North Carolina's anti-Amendment-One efforts came on March 19 from the California Democratic Party.