Amendment One – Is it a Shotgun Wedding or a Shotgun Target Practice?

You know the story.  Young couple gets pregnant in the backwoods of somewhere.  Daddy gets his shotgun out and there is a marriage under the nearest oak tree.

In this little Hatfield and McCoy drama, everyone at the wedding is uncomfortable.  Daddy ain’t happy about all the misbehavin.  Momma is crying about Daddy’s shotgun aimed in the direction of her little girl.  Daughter is embarrassed and confused.  And the new son-in-law has that sort of “shell-shocked” expression on his face.

The shotgun wedding tale is a bit like the Amendment One vote.  Daddy Paul Stam and Daddy Tom Tillis thought it would be a good idea to drag all North Carolinians under the nearest voting booth oak tree for a ceremony of sorts.  And just like the shotgun wedding, no one is happy.

In the Amendment One version of the Shotgun Wedding, everyone is in favor of weddings, but there is massive discontent.  Some present are angry that others have been misbehavin and want to help Daddy Paul and Daddy Tom steady their shotguns.  Some present are not comfortable because even though they like weddings, they are confused about why we have to drag people to them.  Some are anxious and embarrassed and some are just downright shell-shocked that someone could do this to them.

The politicians of this State should be embarrassed by their “initiative”.   Amendment One is not a matter of letting the voters decide on marriage as much as it is a matter of forcing them to decide under strained circumstances.

And worse yet, Amendment One is not just about marriage, but just try telling that to someone who is pointing their figurative shotgun in your direction.

And even worse yet, Amendment One has sparked emotions that didn’t need to be sparked.  Vandalism by both sides.  Name calling by both sides.  Bigotry.  Cynicism.  Tears.

And because of all this, we have an idiot mentality developing in the minds of some North Carolinians.

Exhibit A to this idiocy is another shotgun story, but one that suggests we have lost our bearing in this debate.

At the link below you will see a video of a NC man firing shotgun shells into a yard sign like the one I have in my front yard.  He loads, fires and then laughs about it, all in the name of marriage between one man and one woman.

Here is the story, as reported on

Video of a North Carolina man firing a shotgun at a sign against the state’s proposed amendment banning same-sex marriage has gone viral, even after he removed it from YouTube.

“Right now there is this amendment trying to be passed, Amendment One, and it’s going to state that marriage is between one man and one woman, which is how it ought to be,” the man who identifies himself as Alex Wiles opines in the video.

“So, somebody decided it would be a good idea to put this sign near my house,” he continues as he puts on a pair of amber shooting glasses. “They ought to know not to put stuff like that near my house.”

With that, Wiles pumps a shell into what appears to be a 12-guage pump-action shotgun, takes aim and unloads two rounds into the yard sign.

“That’s how we do it ’round here,” he explains with a grin. “That’s all folks.”

Gawker’s Louis Peitzman snarked that the video amounted to “brilliant political commentary from a trigger-happy asshole with a YouTube account.”

“Hey, if you can’t shoot gay people directly, might as well shoot signs supporting LGBT rights,” Peitzman wrote.

The blog Joe My God, which first flagged the video, reported that the police department in Kannopolis, North Carolina said they would classify the incident as a crime “if the shotgun was fired onto property that includes a home or business.”

Although Wiles has deleted the video from his YouTube account, other copies remain available online.

For both of these stories, whether it be the Shotgun Wedding or the Shotgun Target Practice, we have our legislative leaders to thank.

Please thank them with your vote “against” Amendment One on May 8th!

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