An Important Civics Lesson For North Carolina’s Legislature

I could say so much about the anti-marriage constitutional amendment that the House and Senate of North Carolina approved this week. There are so many avenues, so many little bits of information that needs to be remembered now that the bill has been passed and placed on the May 2012 ballot.

I could talk about how the Republican majority in the House snuck the amendment onto the floor, disguising it as a bill on an unrelated and uncontroversial issue until the last minute on Monday afternoon, when the bill changed chambers, committees, bill numbers, content, and ballot date in less than 75 minutes. (Fortunately someone leaked the actual text late Friday.)

I could talk about how the Republican House Majority Leader Paul Stam refused to allow public comment before the vote, openly breaking North Carolina’s open meeting laws, saying that people would get to comment at the polls next May, so, you know, fuck ’em.

I could talk about how Senator James Forrester, the major Republican sponsor in the Senate, went to a church last Thursday night and perpetuated the lie that gays live 20 years less than straight people, after which he said, “We need to … get them to change their lifestyle back to the normal lifestyle which we can accept,” as if he’s Big Daddy on the plantation.

Oh, and thanks to ThinkProgress, it’s on tape.

I could talk about how UNC Law Professor Maxine Eichner told the North Carolina Legislature that the vague language of the amendment endangers laws against domestic violence involving unmarried straight couples. Apparently that human collateral damage is okay with the Republican majorities, because both bodies voted the amendment through anyway, with eight Democrats joining the Republicans.

I could talk about how Community College instructor Johnny Hunter stood up in a press conference last Wednesday and banged two locks together to show how weird gays having sex is. That’s on tape too. (Don’t worry, it’s cued up.)

(And I’m sorry, that’s nowhere near as poetic as Dr. Camilla Bowner’s electric socket analogy.)

I could talk about how Republican House Majority Leader Paul Stam had such contempt for the process and for the American taxpayers whose rights he was taking away that he literally snacked on popcorn during Monday’s brief debate.

I could talk about all those things, but (378 words later) I won’t.

Instead, I’ll share some unfortunately relevant words from Rachel Maddow. It’s a quote that I’ve had in rotation over there on the right since she said it last year. (Image shamelessly stolen from Brian Gets Clarity.)

What part of that don't you understand?

Feel free to pass it on.

[box]Major thanks and sympathy to North Carolinian Pam Spaulding, who’s been on top of this whole mess from the start, saying a whole lot so I wouldn’t have to. You should definitely follow Pam’s House Blend to its new home at Firedoglake.[/box]

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