Here’s the message from commissioner (and District 1 candidate) Holly Jones, via her email newsletter:
Meet Gabriela, my 9 year-old daughter. Early on in life, Gabriela demonstrated a clear sense of justice. In these times, it is encouraging to see Gabriela and her friends stand up for fairness and dignity for all. The future feels brighter with this clarity.
I asked Gabriela why she was against Amendment One. Her response. “The law shouldn’t be involved in the choice of who we love. Love is all that really matters”
Real threats to marriage exist: substance abuse, financial stress, abuse and infidelity. Thoughtful citizens of NC know that LGBT couples in committed relationships pose no real threat to the institution of marriage. The only real threat that exists in this discussion lies with the many consequences that come with institutionalizing discrimination by amending our state’s constitution.
Proponents of this discriminatory amendment are quick to gloss over its numerous and severe impacts. While my family would not be directly negatively impacted by this amendment, we have scores of friends and constituents who would be and we are committed to standing up for them.
Particularly, as an advocate for women, I must highlight one of my gravest concerns: Amendment One’s impact on violence against women. Amendment One has the power to leave open for question how North Carolina’s domestic violence laws are applied — threatening our state’s victims of domestic violence. Our community is experiencing a rise in domestic violence and we are seeing its deadly consequences in the headlines of our local papers. Why are we seeing on our ballots a proposed amendment that would, by all expert accounts, undermine the protection of victims?
If passed, domestic violence protections may only apply to married couples, leaving thousands of women without life-saving recourse. This week our Attorney General, Roy Cooper, weighed in on the Amendment’s dangerous consequences and urged citizens to vote “No”.
In Ohio, where a similar amendment passed, this loophole allowed convictions to be overturned. Based on these real experiences in other states, local advocates for domestic violence victims here in Buncombe County are preparing for an increase in violence. Attorneys across the state are now preparing for increased caseloads, representing countless new domestic violence victims, with the possibility of dangerous results.
As Gabriela highlighted, state-sanctioned discrimination against our LBGT friends and family is reason enough to run to the polls to defeat this amendment. But it is also important to note that the Right’s political opportunism has simultaneously downgraded women’s safety to “inconsequential” or an “overstated concern.”
I urge each of you to vote “No” to Amendment One. County Commissioner Candidate Brownie Newman, a lifelong champion for equality and justice, joins me in this opposition.
Offering clarity, passion and leadership on this issue while on the campaign trail are three fearless candidates, Ellen Frost – County Commissioner District Two, Terry Van Duyn – County Commissioner District Three and Drew Reisinger – Register of Deeds. I love their courage. If justice is important to you, I would encourage you to learn about all candidates’ position on Amendment One. It matters.
EARLY VOTING HAS BEGUN! The Jones and Newman campaigns need volunteers for Early Voting and May 8th. Thank you for your support and your vote!