(Via SourceFed) North Carolina has voted to amend their state constitution to specifically outlaw gay marriage. I mean, again. They already had laws banning it.
North Carolina law already bans gay marriage, but an amendment effectively seals the door on same-sex marriages. (Source)
This makes them the 31st state to ban gay marriage. The Guardian, a UK paper, has published a cool infographic illustrating the various ways in which our country oppresses people that mainstream Christianity has a problem with.
Tina Fitzgerald, leader of "Vote FOR Marriage NC,"[1. I really hate that if someone says they're "for" marriage it means they're against marriage between homosexuals. I know, this complaint has been made before. But it should be made again. We should stop letting bigots frame themselves however they want.] said,
I think it sends a message to the rest of the country that marriage is between one man and one woman. The whole point is simply that you don't rewrite the nature of God's design based on the demands of a group of adults. (Source)
That sounds to me like an explicit admission that this is a direct violation of the first amendment. You can't claim to know what a god wants without claiming to be talking about a specific god, with specific rules and preferences.
The problems of this amendment extend beyond its intended oppression -- like some other legislation I can think of lately, Amendment One is written so poorly that it will almost certainly cause collateral damage to a bunch of other people's rights.
Bank of America executives have warned that Amendment One’s ban on domestic-partner benefits would be bad for business and detrimental to North Carolina’s competitiveness in an unstable economy. Child-welfare advocates have voiced concerns that Amendment One would threaten existing health care and parental custody for thousands of children being raised by loving but unmarried couples, both gay and straight. Religious leaders from many different faiths have denounced Amendment One’s divisiveness and the harm it would cause to countless families. (Source)
On the bright side, President Obama has explicitly come out in support of gay marriage:
I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together, when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married. (Source)