Warning – political post ahead.
Okay, you were warned. If you follow me on Facebook, this is your official warning that from now until May 8th, there will be a bunch of posts decrying Amendment One, the ballot measure that NC will be voting on to outlaw gay marriage. I’m staunchly against this, as I am in favor of equal rights for all people, and taking away someone’s right to stand in front of a justice of the peace, put their fifty bucks on the counter and say “Til Death Do Us Part” seems wrong to me. I would like to think that my stance on gay rights doesn’t influence my writing too much, but I’m sure it’s pretty apparent to the readers of Back in Black that I’m all in favor of gay marriage. Or as we like to call it amongst my friends – marriage.
I’m not going to debate all the pros and cons of the issue here, but suffice to say if you see me at a con and I’m wearing a shirt that says something about equality, and I have several, that’s what is being referenced. I was loathe to use my modest notoriety as a bully pulpit until I realized that the opponents of civil liberty in our country don’t share my reticence. So I’m speaking out, in no uncertain terms, about my opposition to any constitutional amendment, or law in general, that reduces freedoms. And this is the first one that hits home for me, because it impacts so many of my friends.
I’m a straight white southern guy, happily married for over sixteen years. So why is this important to me? Because I think that all of my friends should be able to declare their love for each other openly without fear of reprisals from society, government or anyone else, as long as both parties are of legal age. Because I think it’s stupid that one couple that’s been together for ten years can have visitation rights in the ICU, and another one can’t. Because I think that it’s stupid that if Suzy and I adopted a kid, and something happened to either one of us, the kid stays with the other one, but a committed lesbian couple can be together for decades and have their children taken away from one mother if the other one dies. And this isn’t a random possibility – these are things that happen. And it seems unfair to me. So I’m speaking out. I’d like to think that my readers will mostly agree with my positions on this issue, but if not, that’s okay. I have friends and relatives that I disagree with too. But I just wanted to warn you that I think this amendment is bullshit, and you’re probably going to hear a lot from me about it for the next few months.