On May 8, North Carolinians will vote on an amendment to their state constitution:
Although there seems to be some debate about the precise legal meaning of “domestic legal union,” it does seem plain that the proposed language would constitutionally ban civil unions in North Carolina as well as gay marriage. Both ethically and politically, this approach seems to me to be a big mistake — another example of a take-no-prisoners, no-compromise mentality that will likely come across to many in North Carolina and elsewhere as mean-spirited, and for that reason is likely to backfire sooner or later. An old race-horse gambler’s line is, “You can’t beat a horse with no horse.” I haven’t seen any polling data, but my guess is that few North Carolinians believe that NOTHING should be done, now or ever, to extend legal recognition to gay and lesbian couples. Why would the framers of this proposed amendment want to take things to this extreme?