Guest Post – A Student’s Request to “Family and Friends”

It is important to remember in this debate that the vote on May 8th will affect real people, and that many of them have a simple request.
This post eloquently expresses this request.  It is a brave request, courtesy of Cole Hammack, a Charlotte native and student at UNC Chapel Hill.  
I am proud of Cole for what he has to say and his courage to say it.  I hope you will carefully, prayerfully, consider his request.    
Family and Friends, 
It is common knowledge that politics are never a good idea to bring up in conversation, however, due to the upcoming vote on Amendment One, I feel that I must. Before I go on, I want you to know that I am simply offering an opinion and I in no way mean to offend.  I only ask that you come to this with an open mind. 
On May 8th, the citizens of North Carolina will vote to either pass or reject a Constitutional Amendment that states verbatim: 
“…marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State.”
Besides the fact that the legislation of North Carolina spent time and money to push through an amendment based on the rejection of rights in the middle of an economic crisis with unemployment at it’s highest level in decades, this amendment is in nature detrimental to our state and our society. 
As a gay individual, this amendment severely limits my rights to experience what everyone dreams of. It rejects my right to marry whom I love. In a more practical sense, it rejects my right to tax exemptions and visitation. 
However, I do not want this to be about me. I want to look at the bigger picture of this amendment and provide two arguments. 
From a liberal perspective, it is easy to see why Amendment One is wrong. It takes away the rights of people, and continues a level of inequality between our citizens. Gay marriage is already illegal in the State of North Carolina, this amendment only makes it more difficult for it ever to become legal. What a good use of time…
From a conservative perspective, this amendment goes against the most basic conservative principle of “small government.” Conservatives work tirelessly for a reduction of government interference in our everyday lives and Amendment One is a giant step backwards. Conservative members worked hard to push this Amendment through in the legislature, which I find entirely hypocritical. 
Also, this amendment has many other side effects not seen on the surface: 
– It takes away legal protections for the children of unmarried people. 
– It takes away domestic violence protections for all unmarried people. 
– It strips health benefits from unmarried people whose coverage is through their partners. 
– NC will face substantial legal costs to defend it in court, if it should pass. 
And lastly. this Amendment directly takes away rights rather than grant them. 
Why would a government spend time and money to take away rights, or to prevent something that is already illegal? 
I am not asking for gay marriage to be legalized, I am only asking that this backwards amendment not pass. I ask that you consider, on May 8th, voting against Amendment One. If you do not feel comfortable doing so, I ask that you simply refrain from voting. Again, I am in no position to tell you how to exercise your democratic right, so please forgive me if I come across that way. 
I want to thank you for taking the time to read the above, and ask that if you have any questions or comments, feel free to email or call me (both are below). I think that everyone eventually hopes that we can live in a society where every single person is granted equal rights, and not marginalized due to factors outside of their control, I hope that you do your part to work towards that this May, and vote against Amendment One. 
Thanks for your time,
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5 Responses to Guest Post – A Student’s Request to “Family and Friends”

  1. Melissa McClure says:

    Cole…I am so proud of your views, opinion and courage to write with such conviction. I am going to vote against Amendment One and am honored to stand behind you and support your beliefs.

  2. Stephanie Peele says:

    Well written Cole…Good Luck in your efforts.
    I am going to vote against Amendment One.
    Stephanie Peele- Chapel Hill, NC

  3. Elaine Levi says:

    Thank you for sharing this Cole. I respect and appreciate your honesty and knowledge that you bring to those who maybe haven’t even considered all the points that you so thoughtfully highlighted. I too will vote NO.

    Proud to be a friend,
    Elaine Levi

  4. Linda Love Talmadge says:

    Thank you Cole for your eloquent voice.I, along with many others, am proud of you for your stance. I will vote no and encourage others to do so also.
    Linda Love Talmadge

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