This Is About Our Lives: WE DOBy
From May 9 – 11, LGBT couples in small towns and cities across North Carolina will request marriage licenses, knowing they will be denied. Clergy, friends, and family will stand with them. Every step of the way, we will be sending a simple message: the South is our home, we are equal, and discriminatory laws must change on the federal level. At every turn, we will approach those who oppose our rights with love and empathy.
As you probably know, these actions will begin the morning after North Carolina votes on Amendment One, a proposed amendment to the state constitution that would ban marriage equality, civil unions and domestic partnerships. Current polling shows that 58% of voters plan to support this discriminatory measure.
One of the main reasons we have timed the action to begin immediately following the May 8 vote is because we want to send a message to LGBT youth across our state, a message that they are fully equal and that there are adults across our state who are ready to take public action to make things better.
For several months now, we’ve been traveling the state preparing for these actions. If you haven’t ever been here, I hope you will soon because there is nothing like driving across North Carolina with the windows down and the radio on as spring rolls in. It’s hard to put into words how moved I’ve been by the conversations we’ve had with LGBT people and allies – over dinner tables, at public libraries, in churches. The tremendous hope I feel comes from the strength of our community and something I hear people express again and again: achieving full legal equality is inevitable and will also take risk, hard work, and a hell of a lot of queer moxie.
Last night, driving along narrow mountain roads in Mitchell County, we passed countless signs supporting Amendment One in the front yards of homes, churches, and businesses. Imagine what it would be like to be a gay kid growing up in Mitchell County, sitting on the school bus day after day and seeing those signs through the window, knowing that they were, in effect, directed at you, saying you are less than equal.
That’s what’s at stake here.