David Dixon, Action Center For Justice, Nov. 20, 2008
Photo by Carol Marley.
Click here for more photos.
This past Saturday, Nov. 15, some 300 people rallied outside the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center in downtown Charlotte. The action was part of a national day of protest against California’s Prop 8 ban on the right of LGBT people to marry and be able to receive the over 1,000 benefits marriage entails.
There were a large number of energetic youth in the crowd. People driving by in cars honked & raised their fists in support as chants of “Out Of The Closet, Into The Streets” filled the air.
Some of the signs read “Yes We Can”, “You Can’t Outlaw Love”, “Ban H8”, “Marriage Is A Human Right”, and “Gay Rights Are Human Rights”. Many of the signs were noticeably homemade, creative & rainbow colored.
Laura Benjamin reports on University of North Carolina – Charlotte’s Niner Online: “To open up the program, two choral groups, Gay Men’s Chorus of Charlotte and One Voice serenaded the crowd. Following their selections, Reverend Catherine Houchins of the Metropolitan Community Church spoke and offered a blessing for those couples, gay and straight, who were in serious and committed relationships. After Rev. Houchins, Mandy Plante, Providence High School president of the Gay/Straight Alliance, gave a captivating speech that promoted equality.” (nineronline.com, Nov.18, 2008)
Protest were held in hundreds of cities throughout the U.S. and are expected to continue until marriage equality and equal rights for LGBT people are attained.
It’s no wonder since The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force reports that: “The 1,138 federal benefits and protections of marriage are only available to couples that are allowed to legally marry. These include Social Security survivor and spousal benefits, the ability to file a joint tax return, immigration rights, and coverage under the Family and Medical Leave Act. To date, civil unions are not ‘portable,’ meaning that when a couple moves to another state, none of the benefits, rights or responsibilities coming from civil unions move with them.” (Workers World, Nov. 20, 2008)
The anti-war movement & all progressives should join the movement for marriage equality and equal rights for the LGBT community.
The Charlotte protest was organized by UNC-Charlotte’s PRIDE. To get involved contact Braxton Midyette at 704-687-4150 or firstname.lastname@example.org.