North Carolina’s Amendment One Passes Just In Time To Dissolve Families For Mother’s Day

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Amendment OneNorth Carolina’s Amendment One, the completely anti-family constitutional amendment that essentially dissolves domestic partnerships and civil unions, passed last night by an overwhelming majority. The aggressive piece of legislation which recognizes heterosexual marriages as the only legal union of the state passed by 60%, thereby compromising the health benefits and protections of children who happen to be born to unmarried parents — gay or straight. And while I clearly take issue with Mother’s Day as a rather blind celebration of everything American women do not have, Amendment One gives North Carolina families even more reason to boycott the supposed observance of motherhood.

After all, should North Carolina children have two unmarried parents, their mother (or father for that matter) was just officially stripped of many prominent legal means by which to parent them. Children like Isak Atkins-Pearcy, the 12-year-old boy with two moms who made a video protesting the amendment, could loose their health care coverage and prescription benefits that have been secured by a union that the state no longer recognizes. If something were to happen to one of his mothers, the state could take him away from his other mother despite the number of of years that they have invested raising a family together. Amendment One also successfully tampers with existing child custody and visitation rights established by separated parents who were never married.

North Carolina mothers who are survivors of domestic assault and abusive relationships also have no reason to feel “celebrated” this coming Mother’s Day either, as Amendment One says that domestic violence protections only apply to married couples. So if mothers perhaps didn’t bother to marry their attacker prior to him beating both her or her children, the law can no longer protect her as well as those mothers who were married.

Gay marriage is already banned in the state of North of Carolina, so this double trip ban seeks to delegitimatize the few unions that same-sex parents have procured under which to create a family. But in the process of going after gay parents, Amendment One revokes the rights of many types of families, a reality that will be felt by parents and children long after that dreaded Mother’s Day brunch.