To the Editor,
I’d like to thank the more than 20,000 voters of Robeson County for doing something that we as North Carolinians have not done since 1875, enshrining bigotry along lines of marriage in our state’s constitution.
In 1875 the voters of North Carolina decided that interracial marriages should be constitutionally prohibited within the state. This week, in the year 2012, 137 years later, voters once again put on the mantle of bigotry.
Yes, those who voted for this amendment are bigots. It was unnecessary because for the past 16 years it has already been illegal for any level of North Carolina government to issue a marriage license to same-sex couples. This amendment was only proposed and passed to send a clear message to members of the LGBT community in North Carolina: We do not consider you to be equal to the rest of us.
I am aware that many in North Carolina and Robeson County cast a vote for this amendment due to their religious beliefs. I am a Christian who confessed my belief that Jesus Christ is my savior in First Presbyterian Church of Lumberton in 2002. I say with conviction that those who voted in favor of this amendment were not following the example or teachings of Jesus Christ. Christ commands all of us in the Book of Mark to do two things: Love the Lord our God and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. Those who voted for this amendment do not love their neighbors and therefore are in conflict with Jesus himself. I do not believe that my Christian beliefs should be forced onto others through the law and I believe any attempt to do so is illegal and immoral.
Finally, the North Carolina Constitution declares: “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 those are life, liberty the enjoyment of the fruits of their own labor, and the pursuit of happiness.” Amendment One clearly is inconsistent with our primary right as North Carolinians. I would ask how I can be deemed equal when my state’s constitution adamantly declares that I am not.
Those who voted in 1875 to ban interracial marriage were bigots and it is sad to see that bigotry is still alive and well in Robeson County and North Carolina.