Monday, May 07, 2012

The sadness of the Amendment One fight expressed by a three-year-old

The following passage is from a piece in the Huffington Post entitled My Family Was Harassed at the North Carolina Polls. It is written by Aly Windsor, a mother, partner, and writer. It describes what happened when she and her partner - accompanied by their two young children - went to vote early against Amendment One:

Inside the polling location, the atmosphere couldn't have been more different. Everyone we encountered was respectful and kind. One poll worker cooed over our youngest and tickled his feet. We didn't have to wait at all to vote, and the whole process from start to finish took fewer than five minutes.

As we walked toward the exit, we could see the crowd again through the glass doors. The anti-amendment supporters argued with the pro-amendment campaigners. I felt an intense flush of gratitude that these young guys were willing to stand out in the hot sun, unwaveringly weathering the anger of our opponents, to fight for our family's rights and the rights of many others like us.

I hoped we'd be left alone as we walked to our cars, because no amount of shouting was going to change what we'd already done. But no, we reentered the chaos as we exited the building. Again, I thanked the young men for their presence. As we passed the crowd, a woman who looked to be the same age as my mother shouted after us, "Children are already suffering! Vote for!" Her voice was shrill and angry, and she clearly meant to harm us with her words.

Unfortunately, in the moment, she succeeded. Tears pricked my eyes, but I held it together until we got to our cars. Still within view of the crowd and the malevolent woman, my partner and I carefully put our children in their car seats and then hugged before before driving off separately. As I drove away, my tears spilled out. My 3-year-old asked where we were going, and I replied that I didn't know yet. He asked me why I was sad. I told him that the woman who shouted at us hurt my feelings. He told me she wasn't very nice.

I told him he was right. I knew that the woman was wrong not only in how she spoke to us but in what she said. Our children are not suffering. One need only spend a day with us to realize that our children are thriving, happy, and well-loved. They're fortunate to not only have two adoring parents but an assortment of doting grandparents, aunts, and uncles.

It reminds me of  that line at the end of the movie Bridge on the River Kwai uttered by a character who was fortunate enough to live past the scenes of war the movie conveyed, but also unfortunately had front row view of it all:


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WOW! Associated Press nails report on Amendment One vote!

This report on Amendment One from the Associated Press is excellent. And I know everyone is going to be talking about the elderly man in the beginning of the clip. What he says is astoundingly ignorant but so indicative of the other side and also the reason why we will win when it's all said and done:

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'Olympic hopeful comes out' and other Monday midday news briefs

Josh Dixon, Olympics Gymnastics Hopeful, Comes Out As Gay - Look at this. A black, gay Olympic hopeful gymnast comes out and . . . you get to choose between the wolf howls or the crickets. And I'm not talking about just the black community. Now  I didn't say this, but someone else made the comment to me that if little Mr. Dixon were of a, shall we say, lighter shade, he would be getting a lot more attention. Discuss while I duck. LOL

Bryan Fischer's Last Stand Against The GaysThis Buzzfeed piece reminds me of a Bugs Bunny cartoon I saw where Bugs Bunny led Elmer Fudd onstage, allowed him to make a fool of himself, and then supplied the audience with tomatoes to throw at him.  We need to follow that model. Let Bryan Fischer speak, then point out to everyone just how ignorant he is.

AFA Stands By Their Man: Fischer Says 'Things that A Lot of People on the Conservative Side of Things Think but They Won't Say' - And while we are at it, let him drag down the religious right too.

Richard Grenell's Resignation Shows Mitt Romney's Unfit To Be President: Anti-Gay Pundit Bryan Fischer - Also, speaking of crazy Bryan Fischer, pay attention to a bit of history here - probably the only time he and I will agree on anything.

Will Obama Push Biden’s Support For Marriage Equality Back Into The Closet? - You know the controversy. Start reading and talking about it. 

Finally . . .

The Daily Agenda for Monday, May 7 - The Daily Agenda is a regular segment from the blog Box Turtle Bulletin and I recommend that every lgbtq read it on a regular basis for education and inspiration. You see things are happening now which are bothering me a bit. Tomorrow is the Amendment One vote and it may or may not pass. But what thing that cannot be denied is the simple fact that those fighting Amendment One is putting a hell of a fight in educating people about how harmful this amendment can be to same-sex families and the rest of NC's population.  And also that alliances are being formed because of this fight. But if you read some of the messages I have read on Facebook and other places, you wouldn't know that. Some folks are already criticizing the campaign for this or that. Folks need perspective on things. Folks need to be reminded as to where the lgbtq community was then, where we are now, and where we are headed. And they need to ask themselves are they going to be the ones with the discipline for the long fight or are they going be standing on the sides with the crying towels or talking about street protests . . . that is until the next trendy thing catches their fancy. Are they going to be the ones so constantly angry because they are not equal in the eyes of the law yet. Or are they going to spend more time changing the law and not simply for themselves and their relationships, but also for the next generation.

Some of us are so wrapped up in our pity parties that we forget that every move we make affects the next generation.  The kids are watching us, folks. They see what we say and we do and trust me when I say that they are taking mental notes. And I rather have my actions and words motivate future leaders into action rather than making them think that things are hopeless. Nothing is hopeless for those who are willing to fight, fight hard, and fight intelligently. 

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Video: North Carolina rises up against Amendment One!!

One thing which must never be forgotten about the Amendment One fight in North Carolina is how those who oppose that awful thing have fought with both cylinders.

From Pam's House Blend (I highlighted something to remember about the fight):

(There have been) hundreds of faith leaders against (Amendment One) as well, ones who understand why faith and matters of civil law must remain separate in order to protect religious freedom. (Yesterday) there was an event in Greensboro sponsored from the NAACP featuring over 100 clergy from large congregations including Rev. Dr. William J. Barber and ministers speaking out against the amendment. The NAACP has sponsored mailers and radio spots against the amendment as well. It’s notable that the NAACP, LGBT and progressive communities have been working together in ways that will continue beyond election day.

Some statistics from the latest phone call with the Protect All NC Families team:
  • The campaign to fight Amendment One resulted in 11,000 donors with 70% of the money coming from inside NC, and $2.5 million raised
  • 22% of targeted GOTV population has early voted
  • An incredible 507K NC residents have early voted in this primary versus 486K that early voted in 2008
  • Black voter turnout is down in this primary: 16% Af-Am voted this time, versus the unprecedented turnout of 40% in 2008 when Barack Obama ran for President
  • Half-a-million robocalls went out today across the state broadcasting the anti-Amendment message from Bill Clinton.

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