Hands off

Dear Democratic Legislators in the NC General Assembly:

I am writing you today in response to a story I read in the Charlotte Observer. Thank you for taking time to hear my concerns.

Rep. Linda Johnson, a Kannapolis Republican, plans to force a vote Tuesday on a proposal to ban same-sex marriage in the N.C. Constitution. Johnson and Rep. Tim Moore, R-Cleveland, are sponsors of the state Marriage Protection Amendment introduced earlier this year.

This sad story has been written about extensively, and you've probably already been contacted by supporters of Equality NC and others who have been mobilized by one of our state's leading progressive bloggers. As a straight, middle-class white business guy, I want to add my words of advice as well:

Don't. You. Dare.

If you've bothered to read the Constitution of the State of North Carolina, which you are sworn to uphold, you will find no section in that document that is written to restrict the rights and liberties of We the People. On the contrary, the preamble is a proud and honorable celebration of freedom. Among its 36 sections, I call your attention to these:

Section 1. The equality and rights of persons.

We hold it to be self-evident that all persons are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, the enjoyment of the fruits of their own labor, and the pursuit of happiness.

Sec. 13. Religious liberty.

All persons have a natural and inalienable right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their own consciences, and no human authority shall, in any case whatever, control or interfere with the rights of conscience.

Sec. 19. Law of the land; equal protection of the laws.

No person shall be taken, imprisoned, or disseized of his freehold, liberties, or privileges, or outlawed, or exiled, or in any manner deprived of his life, liberty, or property, but by the law of the land. No person shall be denied the equal protection of the laws; nor shall any person be subjected to discrimination by the State because of race, color, religion, or national origin.

Sec. 35. Recurrence to fundamental principles.

A frequent recurrence to fundamental principles is absolutely necessary to preserve the blessings of liberty.

Sec. 36. Other rights of the people.

The enumeration of rights in this Article shall not be construed to impair or deny others retained by the people.

Make no mistake. The bill being proposed by Linda Johnson is a full frontal assault on the heart of our Constitution. She is effectively proposing to create a new Section 19:

Linda Johnson's Sec. 19. Law of the land; unequal protection of the laws.

No person shall be taken, imprisoned, or disseized of his freehold, liberties, or privileges, or outlawed, or exiled, or in any manner deprived of his life, liberty, or property, but by the law of the land. No person shall be denied the equal protection of the laws; nor shall any person be subjected to discrimination by the State because of race, color, religion, or national origin, unless that person is a homosexual.

I take my Constitution seriously and I consider the service of elected officials in protecting that Constitution to be a sacred honor. If you are not up to the task, I suggest you find another job.

This is your chance to prove to North Carolina, our nation, and the world, that the Old North State is a special place with values that transcend the hateful political agendas of people like Linda Johnson and her co-sponsors, people who have nothing better to do than divide us one against the other.

Please do the right thing. Keep the dirty hands of the North Carolina GOP off my Constitution.

James Protzman
Father, husband, entrepreneur, citizen
US Naval Academy, 1972
UNC School of Journalism, 1980


Comments

It will be interesting to see

where the so-called libertarian "freedom lovers" at the John Locke Foundation weigh in on this issue. The same with Sponge Bob Orr.

Which will prevail, their passion for liberty or their passion for political power?

I'm betting it's the latter. I'm better John Hood has nothing to say about this egregious assault on personal freedom and equality. I'm betting Bob Orr has already caved to the right-wing fringe of his party. They'll sit silent, just like they do on any matter of integrity and honor. They'd rather push the Puppetmaster's political agenda than protect and preserve the Constitution of the state they profess to care so much about.

So don't hold your breath. Just like they sat on the sidelines when the federal government tried to take land from farmers in Washington County, so too are they sitting silent during this attempt by Theocrats to build state-sanctioned discrimination into our Constitution.

I wrote this letter a couple nights ago to my (GOP)

Representative, Carolyn Justice who is signed on as a co-sponsor of this legislation. I'm not as articulate as Anglico, but it matters to me too and it came from the heart.

By the way...my OLF Resolution passed today at the District 7 Convention...on to State...but it says NO OLF. Thanks again "A" for the help!
Letter follows:

Dear Representative Justice,

I'M OPPOSED to denying anyone their civil rights and I'm opposed to the legislature meddling in the private affairs of others.

I don't eat brussel sprouts, but I don't condemn those who do. I'm not gay, but I know lots of folks who are and they are just as decent and law-abiding and upstanding as any other group of people.

My mother-in-law, once a Wilmingtonian and now a Penderlea resident, has been going to the same hairdresser here in Wilmington for 30+ years. He's gay. My mother-in-law is not wealthy. The hairdresser is still charging her the same $9 a visit that he charged her 30 years ago. When my brother-in-law passed away that same hairdresser helped prepare the body and wouldn't take a nickel. He is a fine man...as is his "partner." They have a lovely home just off Market and enjoy gardening and the same activities the rest of us do.

Julia Boseman is a lesbian. She's a fine and intelligent lady...as is her mother and all the gay/lesbian people I've met through Julia and Ann. These PEOPLE are YOUR neighbors and MINE regardless of their political or sexual leanings.

My wife and i sing in the choir at our Methodist church. We help feed the homeless. We have gays and lesbians into our home and never give it a thought. We're all friends and neighbors who simply want to live our lives peacefully, fully, and without having others tell us how it has to be done.

Why are you helping sponsor this atrocious and bigoted legislation? (By the way, if you smell something burning, it's the right reverend jerry "the bigot" falwell being spitted over a bed of hot coals in Hell.)

Thank you for your attention. I look forward to your reply.

Your constituent,

Stan Bozarth
Wilmington...Zip 28411

SE NC Dems

Stan Bozarth

Have we handed our power over to social conservatives?

On NPR this week there was a discussion about the rate of civil unions going down in states bordering Massachusetts, where gay marriage is available. Someone said that being told that the water in the fountain right next to the one everyone else could use just wasn't hitting the spot anymore.

I keep wondering why we are allowing the social conservatives in our party to keep us from demanding rights for all. Many of us have gone along with the idea that we should not be too hard on conservative Democrats, keep from pestering them publicly, that we should just be grateful to have Democratic majorities in the state and in Congress . . . but if they aren't going to stand up for civil rights for everyone, what good is having a majority?

Or, am I expecting too much and, in so doing, effectively ruining the chance for the candidates I do support fully to have a legislative alliances that give them at least some semblance of power?
 
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

how ironic

that the chair before jerry was a woman, and yet your rant still holds true.

It is a mixture of carrots and whips. We need to use both. Especially with people like Heath. He should be getting at least as many emails saying thank you when he does something we like as he gets when he does something we dont like.

That is why on the collective bargaining bill (which still needs our help) I was asking people to say thanks to the sponsors, to let them know that we appreciate their work, and our there to work for them.

Draft Brad Miller-- NC Sen ActBlue

"Keep the Faith"

local local local

I'm working in my county party and encouraging others to do so. Already, I'm seeing future candidates (who don't know it) getting their feet wet, learning the ropes in the local party system.

Soon, we'll have a host of great people running for local offices who are tied to the local party and the local residents, who are not vanity candidates or wealthy "names" who don't seem to feel the need to maintain relationships outside their little circle of cohorts.

And eventually these great local candidates will be ready for state office and congress and we'll have all kinds of young and old, female and male, red and yellow, black, brown and white Brad Miller-types everywhere.

And, as several people keep pointing out, the vast majority of these a-holes are dying off.
 
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

training

If you see enough people we could probably get a normal Wellstone camp into Charlotte or Asheville. Get about 100 of those people you mentioned from the western half of the state in a room to talk about running progressive campaigns in deep red areas.

Draft Brad Miller-- NC Sen ActBlue

"Keep the Faith"

Great idea

Mr. DQ attended a campaign camp in West VA in 04, that was the closest one to NC that year.
 
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

And this is why I'm calling

anyone in the Triad area PLEASE to show up at the HRC meeting tonight. My partner and I, with some of our IM contacts, will be there to support HRC in this fight to save our constitution. Here's the info again:

Event: Human Rights Campaign Meeting
When: May 18, 2007, 7pm
Where: Q Lounge
708 West Market St.
Greensboro, 27401
Type: Progressive Organization
Map: Google | MapQuest

Yes, the Q lounge is a predominately gay establishment. There will likely be a very mixed crowd for this event, so please -- if you're within driving distance -- find it in your heart to show up.

A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history.
Mohandas Gandhi

Argh, in-laws in town.

Going to be at dinner or something, and while they're liberal, I doubt they're interested in going to a queer rights rally/thing. -_-

What have you done for freedom today?

I just sent an individual email to every member of the NC House of Representatives asking them to keep their hands off our Constitution.

For future reference, it takes one hour and ten minutes with a modest amount of customization.

You can do it.

I have a simple text file

of all the email addresses and that shortens your email time considerably. Use the message option at BlueNC to contact me if you want it.
 
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

Representative Ross

I oppose discrimination, particularly in our Constitution.

Me too.

sex obsessed political party

one day they will learn to quit stepping in it.

How is it that some of the most vocal opponents of gay rights are closeted gays?

Seems like they are more worried about what other people do than anyone else.

Do you really think they give a

rat's a$$ about gays? They want their wedge issue to froth up their base.

I've been worried for a few years now that they would try an end run to get their marriage ammendment on the ballot. That's about how long ago I remember getting call after call with a fakey survey about marriage and a collection net at the other end of the phone for the nut cases that would jump in.

But you're right there does seem to be alot of pent up homosexuality in the GOP.

It's all misdirection

Yep, it's a wedge issue. Here in Colorado the GOP trots out something on gay marriage every time they want to get their base to the polls to defeat a progressive issue. Seems like the only way to defeat them is to use their own tactics against them. Debate and presentation tactics that is. Reframe the issue to reflect the truth rather than the hysterical rhetoric, and point out (quickly and in short statements that are quotable) the hypocrisy.

Thanks to all of you for keeping up the good fight. We so need to fight this one in every state all the time. There is just never any time we should stand for not standing up for all the people.

Thanks, Denny

It weirdly reassuring to know that this is a concerted nationwide strategy by R's to subvert freedom. It's like a big game of whack-a-mole, only the moles are evil Republican hypocrites.

Fredly fire

I think that's why Fred Smith supports it. If he can get it on the ballot for 2008 he can generate a lot of turnout for himself.

Except he won't be the nominee

The Puppetmaster wants Orr . . .and what the Puppetmaster wants, the Puppetmaster gets - at least when it comes to operating inside the NC Greedy Old Party.

Sponge Bob is a shoo-in. Too bad he's never actually run anything or balanced a budget or paid an employee except for his "work" at one of Art Pope's side-shows.

Not always

2006 was a great year for Pope, but in 2004 he spent a lot of money and got almost no results. But, he learned a lot and did much better in 06. He hasnt tried to buy a governor's race, and will probably find its a lot tougher than he thinks.

Draft Brad Miller-- NC Sen ActBlue

"Keep the Faith"