Love is a fundamental player in every single facet of life.
Love or – at times – the void of love is always present.
Sometimes I worry that my child won’t experience the full spectrum of love, due to his Autism or perhaps due to the choices society makes in embracing him and his Autism.
I fear others who will not love him, who may treat him as if he is less, because he is different. I want to protect him from this but I know that it impossible that I could intercept all things hurtful on his behalf. So I rely heavily on his community to aid me in protecting him through love.
I rely on his teachers, his peers, his neighbors, his legislators and complete strangers to do the right thing – to protect my son’s civil rights. To facilitate inclusion for him in his community, to offer support to him towards that end, and to protect him from “bullies” of all kinds, so that he may live the life he chooses in the community he wishes.
Am I wrong to expect this of our community?
Would you argue that because he is different he is less?
I doubt anyone would argue that he is less. After all, our nation is founded on the principle that “all men are create equal” and afforded the inalienable rights of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
Even if our community did fail my son, there are lots and lots of laws that specifically protect him and others with disabilities from discrimination. They took a long time in coming, true, and they probably do not reach as far as they could in some areas – but they exist to protect my child.
All of this happened because love won out over hate and fear.
Because of the love of those who went before us, no one has the legal right to discriminate against my child because of who he is.
No one can tell him he can’t…
Unless, he was gay.
Because somehow being gay here in North Carolina is okay, as long as you don’t want a side of “liberty” with it.
There are some people who want to take away the most basic of rights from same-sex couples. They want to tear down families and set the civil rights movement back decades…because they believe that their god instilled in them a divine providence to enact bigotry in his name.
It’s called “Amendment One” and would actually change the NC State Constitution to state that defines marriage as only between one man and one woman. Right now in NC? Marriage is defined as only between “one man and one woman”.
Why the rush to pass this legislation? I don’t know honestly. I’m not sure even the proponents are sure why. Here’s a website with a very nice looking white family that seeks to explain it. Honestly, I think it’s just a big cluster-eff fueled by right-wing extremist fear mongers and allowed to grow into a movement largely in part due to complacency and indifference on our part.
Somehow god got thrown in there and urgency and fervor gave birth to this emotionally charged blurring of the line between church and state – a line created to protect the very religious freedom which seeks to oppress.
Somehow love got lost.
You see, I don’t know this god of hate and fear. And neither do the hundreds of churches that have bravely come out “Against the Amendment” in North Carolina.
I know I’m more liberal than most of my peers but this isn’t about liberal or conservative. It’s about protecting the rights of families, of children, of the sanctity of same-sex and straight relationships. It’s about protecting the rights of all (married or not) who are victim to domestic violence. It’s about allowing people who are in domestic partnerships to pay for and be part of their loved one’s health care plan .
It’s about letting love prevail.
If none of those things resonate with you, think about the business that will be lost in North Carolina should this law pass. Now is not a time for NC to take a gamble at becoming more economically depressed.
If you disagree with gay marriage, please allow me to clarify that gay marriage is already illegal in North Carolina so this law is unnecessary at its very best.
I beg you to think about this issue in the broader sense. Our children, our precious children with disabilities, those who went before us fought long and hard to secure their rights. They still fight today to maintain them, to enhance them, yes – but someone paved the way to make our work easier.
Won’t you be part of that movement for our friends who are in the LGBT community? Won’t you stand up for equality for them? For basic human rights? For respect? For dignity?
Please Vote Against Amendment One on May 8th in North Carolina.
Because Love is Love. Because we have an obligation to our neighbors, to our community and to our children to fight for what’s right, to protect their rights. Because it is the right thing to do. Because they did it for us.
Because we in the disability community were once, are now, and will always be one step away from being the targets of Amendment One.