David Blankenhorn, star witness for the pro-Prop 8 side during trial, has said North Carolina’s proposed constitutional amendment goes too far and should be defeated.
The proposed amendment states that “marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state.” That’s a big mouthful, and it goes well beyond the issue of same-sex marriage.
For one thing, it means that North Carolina could not, now or ever, take any step or devise any policy to extend legal recognition and protection to same-sex couples. No domestic partnership laws. No civil unions. Nothing.
That’s mighty cold. If you disdain gay and lesbian persons, and don’t care whether they and their families remain permanently outside of the protection of our laws, such a policy might be your cup of tea. But it’s not our view, and we doubt that it’s the view of most North Carolinians.
Blankenhorn, a “personal friend” of National Organization for Marriage founder Maggie Gallagher, was one of the only witnesses the pro-Proposition 8 side produced who was willing to testify. It didn’t go that well for Blankenhorn however, and in the end he actually ended up admitting that gay marriage bans probably do harm same-sex couples and that there is no proof that gay marriage actually weakens marriage as an institution as the pro-Prop 8 side had claimed.
However, consistent with his assertion that same-sex couples should be given the state rights of marriage, Blankenhorn has felt moved to come out against the over-reaching Amendment 1.
Indeed, the pair go on to admonish:
If you wonder why the push for gay marriage is so rapidly gaining ground across our nation, especially among young people, we don’t think you need to look much further than this tragic social dynamic, in which support for mother-father marriage appears to many to have merged with either overt antagonism or cold indifference regarding the actual lives and needs of gay and lesbian couples and their children.
GOP lawmakers have been heavily criticized in running an anti-gay platform to support the amendment, with the bill’s key sponsors saying the legislation is necessary for child welfare while they have also been caught likening gay marriage to allowing incest and bestiality.
However, the push back against Amendment 1 has been strong.
The North Carolina Psychological Association went as far as to release a position statement against the 2012 ballot, listing a number of reasons against codifying the state’s existing statutory ban and pointing out the harmful effects of so aggressively disfavoring a particular group.
Celebrated lawyer Ted Olson, having been a key player in the legal push to overturn California’s Proposition 8, recently attended a rally in opposition to Amendment 1. Read more on that here.
Voters will decide on Amendment 1 at the May 8 ballot.
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