Thursday, May 03, 2012

Rev Graham should not endorse Amendment One shuck and jive

Rev. Billy Graham
Using religion to distract is the unkindest cut of them all so why should we be surprised that Amendment One supporters in North Carolina are doing just that.

That has been their modus operandi since the beginning, but now they have stooped exceedingly low.

Legendary pastor Billy Graham has endorsed Amendment One in full page ads set to appear in 14 newspapers across the state:

“At 93, I never thought we would have to debate the definition of marriage,” the national religious leader says. “The Bible is clear — God’s definition of marriage is between a man and a woman. I want to urge my fellow North Carolinians to vote FOR the marriage amendment on Tuesday, May 8.”

I mean no disrespect to Rev. Graham, but it disappoints me that he is lending his name  and reputation to this deceptive campaign. His statement is deliberately simplistic and ignores several issues, including the fact that Amendment One is not a Biblical issue and that marriage equality is already outlawed in North Carolina.

However, I would prefer to give him the benefit of the doubt. I personally don't believe that he would endorse Amendment One if he was educated on the realities of what would happen should it pass.

Legal experts across the state, even those who are conservative, have spoken out against Amendment One, calling it extreme because it "threatens a range of other protections for unmarried partners and their children, including domestic violence protections and child custody law."

University of North Carolina law professor Maxine Eichner, during a recent press conference on Amendment One, said:

. . . as indicated in the “Statement from Family Law Professors,” which was signed by family law professors from every law school across the state, every one of us believes that the Amendment One threatens domestic violations protections for unmarried couples, whether they are same-sex or opposite-sex.

I sincerely doubt that Rev. Graham would knowingly endorse something which could harm not only children, but also women trapped in domestic violence relationships.

I also sincerely doubt that Rev. Graham would endorse Amendment One had he known the parties involved in its attempted passing, included:

  • A Neo-Nazi group which has also endorsed Amendment One,

Rev. Graham, these are the people on your side, sir. And maybe it's just me but there is something really, really wrong with that.

There is a saying that "the road to hell is paved with good intentions" and it is very apt here. Rev. Graham's supposed "good intentions" in endorsing this sham of an amendment would definitely send innocent North Carolinians down a road to hell paved with harmed children, damaged domestic violence laws, racism, and the stigmatization of the state's gay community

I know in my heart that this is not the future he intends for North Carolina.

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'Does Romney fear the religious right' and other Thursday midday news briefs

Presumptive Republican nominee for president Mitt Romney and his campaign are embroiled in a scandal regarding the resignation of an openly gay man, Richard Grenell, as Romney's national security and foreign policy spokesman. Grenell only had the job for two weeks. There is a huge belief that Grenell was let go to appease members of the religious right. Here are three voices on the matter:

Did Grenell Jump or Was He Pushed?
- And Box Turtle Bulletin gives a good chronology of the controversy.

Hailing Gay Spokesman's Resignation, Religious Right Keeps up the Pressure on Romney - I guess admonitions against gloating means nothing to these so-called Christian people.

NOM now up to $425k in North Carolina
- Look at this. NOM is bankrolling Amendment One in North Carolina in a HEAVY manner.

African American Voters Came Out Against Discriminatory Amendment After Overhearing ‘Caucasian’ Argument - And we see why now.

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Bullied gay student protects himself and now faces expulsion

I don't condone the way this young man in Indiana defended himself but I understand and am totally in his corner:

Darnell "Dynasty" Young's classmates at Tech High School cursed at him in the school hallways and taunted him with homophobic slurs.

They followed him home from his bus stop and threatened to beat him up.

One night, as he walked home from his after-school job, they threw rocks at him.

When the 17-year-old and his mother, Chelisa Grimes, told school officials, she said, teachers and administrators seemed to blame Young for being openly gay.

His behavior and the way he dressed called attention to himself, they said.

He accessorized his outfits with his mother's purses and jewelry. And he loved to dance.

His dance routine to Beyonce's "Single Ladies" won second place at Tech's talent show in December.

"They said that the problem was he was too flamboyant, with his bags and his purses and his rings," Grimes said.

Desperate to protect her son from bullies, Grimes gave him a stun gun to carry, just in case.

"I had to do something," she said. "They throw bottles and rocks at him."

Now Young faces expulsion from school.

"It has been a nightmare," Grimes said. "I'm trying to fight for my baby's education."

Young's story is one that could unfold in countless schools across America.

More to the story here.

You know what? Who cares if the young man is flamboyant. There are worse things you can be in life. And if the child carries himself with pride and no shame, then more power to him.

It's a terrible thing when adults blame the teen victims of bullying for their abuse. And it's even worse when a child is made to feel that he or she is a freak and that their creative deserves to be stifled.