In July, we reported on Christian-nation extremist David Lane’s closed-door pastors briefing in Iowa, and the presidential hopefuls and other politicians who have flocked to Lane’s gatherings over the years.
This week the Des Moines Register’s Jennifer Jacobs reported that Lane’s American Renewal Project is holding church-based voter registration drives on three Sundays this month: Sept. 15, Sept. 22 and Sept. 29. Steve Michael, a spokesperson for the project, told the Register that after the American Renewal Project’s $1.2 million voter registration campaign in Missouri during the last election cycle, the state saw a 3 percent increase in evangelical voters. He said it will organize in Iowa “steadily until the 2014 election.”
The "Stand-up Sundays" model goes like this: Pastors ask their congregation members to stand up if they're already registered. Volunteers will then hand out voter registration paperwork to the adults still seated. But each Iowa pastor will decide how to do it, Lane told the Register.
Iowa is among 11 states the American Renewal Project is targeting in the 2014 cycle, Michael said. The others are Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, Montana, Nevada, North Carolina, South Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia.
Organizers will do “Pastors and Pews” events followed by voter registration drives in each state. Next up is Louisiana on Sept. 26-27….
Lane said Iowa may be one of the most registered states in the nation, thanks to the attention from the presidential campaigns, so he expects Louisiana, Arkansas and North Carolina to be more "target rich areas."
It’s worth noting that Louisiana, Arkansas, and North Carolina are also among the top Senate races for 2014, as are other states on Lane’s target list.
In a WorldNetDaily column today, Eagle Forum’s Phyllis Schlafly comes to the defense of North Carolina’s new voter suppression measure with classic Schlafly logic. The new law is not politically motivated and won’t keep Democrats from voting, Schlafly claims…before adding that the law’s main virtue is that it is politically motivated and will keep Democrats from voting.
Schlafly starts out her argument by claiming that the notion that the state’s new photo ID requirement will disproportionately disenfranchise largely Democratic voting groups is “absurd” because “the poorest members of society can obtain photo ID to get taxpayer-funded handouts”….and then immediately contradicts herself by declaring “the real reason the left wants to make sure that individuals without voter ID are allowed to vote is because they are expected to vote for Democrats”:
Liberals make the absurd claim that requiring photo ID is discriminatory because some minority groups may be unable to provide proper ID. But government-issued photo identification can be obtained by anyone at very low cost.
We already need photo ID, aka a driver’s license, to drive to work, which is rather important to most people. Welfare recipients are required to show photo ID to receive money in many states, and we haven’t heard any gripes about ID discrimination.
If the poorest members of society can obtain photo ID to get taxpayer-funded handouts, they should be able to do likewise for voting. The real reason the left wants to make sure that individuals without voter ID are allowed to vote is because they are expected to vote for Democrats.
Schlafly then takes on the North Carolina law’s reduction of early voting days, including eliminating Sunday early voting, which she happily admits is a response to the popularity of early voting among Democratic voters:
The reduction in the number of days allowed for early voting is particularly important because early voting plays a major role in Obama’s ground game. The Democrats carried most states that allow many days of early voting, and Obama’s national field director admitted, shortly before last year’s election, that “early voting is giving us a solid lead in the battleground states that will decide this election.”
She is especially upset that the Obama campaign (or the “Obama technocrats”) ran a successful early voting get-out-the-vote effort, or, as she puts it, “identifying prospective Obama voters and then nagging them (some might say harassing them) until they actually vote”:
The Obama technocrats have developed an efficient system of identifying prospective Obama voters and then nagging them (some might say harassing them) until they actually vote. It may take several days to accomplish this, so early voting is an essential component of the Democrats’ get-out-the-vote campaign.
But early voting’s sins, according to Schlafly, go beyond being successfully used by Democrats. In fact, she says, early voting “is actually contrary to the spirit of the U.S. Constitution”:
Early voting is actually contrary to the spirit of the U.S. Constitution. Article II states, “the Congress may determine the Time of choosing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes, which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.” Federal law sets the date for national elections on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November.
But that isn’t all! Schlafly -- who happens to be the recipient of the 2011 Citizens United Lifetime Achievement Award-- claims that early voting actually “increases the influence of big money spent on campaigns.” Not only that, she says, but it “increases opportunities for ballot fraud” because, she claims without any evidence, poll watchers aren’t present during early voting:
Early voting increases the influence of big money spent on campaigns because it requires candidates to campaign, to spend and to buy expensive television ads over additional weeks. Early voting increases opportunities for ballot fraud because the necessary poll watchers we expect to be on the job at polling places on Election Day can’t be present for so many days.
Schlafly wraps up her argument by declaring that North Carolina’s voter suppression law should “cheer up” conservatives as they work to restrict reproductive choice, cut unemployment insurance and Medicaid and mandate the teaching of cursive so that “kids will now be able to read letters from their grandmothers”:
In 2012 the Democrats were so sure that North Carolina was a happy hunting ground for their votes that they held their National Convention in Charlotte to renominate Barack Obama. North Carolina promptly responded by voting down same-sex marriage in a referendum and then passing a bunch of good laws. So cheer up, conservatives.
In addition to the helpful new voting laws, North Carolina passed stricter regulations on abortion clinics, ended teacher tenure, cut unemployment benefits, blocked the expansion of Medicaid and (despite the scorn of propagandists for the national takeover of education by Common Core) mandated the teaching of cursive writing. Maybe that’s why the liberals are so angry: Kids will now be able to read letters from their grandmothers.
The Christian Action League, the American Family Association’s North Carolina affiliate, issued a statement Friday praising a restrictive new voting law in North Carolina. The group is particularly pleased with a provision eliminating early voting on Sundays. “We have always opposed voting on Sunday for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that Sunday is the church’s prime time for developing the character of a nation,” said Mark Creech, the Christian Action League’s director.
He adds that Sunday voting in fact imperils our freedom because “it is a Sunday-cultivated character that makes an electorate fit to guard and preserve its liberties.”
“These new laws will not create a hardship for anyone who wants to vote in North Carolina. What they will do is ensure — through ID checks and a slowed down registration process — that all of our votes count,” said Dr. Creech. “We’re most pleased that the shortened early voting period takes at least one Sunday out of the mix.”
“We have always opposed voting on Sunday for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that Sunday is the church’s prime time for developing the character of a nation,” Dr. Creech said. “It is a Sunday-cultivated character that makes an electorate fit to guard and preserve its liberties.”
Of course, Sunday early voting hours have been particularly popular among faith communities. In 2008, a “souls to the polls” drive in black churches led to 37,000 people in North Carolina casting Sunday votes. Last year, it was a similar success.
We here at People For the American Way Foundation are deeply saddened by the passing of Julius Chambers, a trailblazing civil rights lawyer and former People For the American Way Foundation board member. In the 1960s, Chambers opened what became the first integrated law firm in North Carolina and later went on to lead the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund. Throughout his life, he fought and won cases on school desegregation and discrimination, including a case on public school integration – Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education– that went all the way to the Supreme Court and paved the way for the use of busing to counter segregation.
But as the New York Times noted yesterday:
Mr. Chambers’s victories came with a cost. In the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision in Swann, his offices were firebombed. After his successes in 1965, his car was firebombed and two bombs exploded in his home.
His response was defiant; he said he would “keep fighting.”
More than forty years later, during a 2008 PFAW Foundation panel on the future of the Supreme Court, Chambers made it clear that he was still fighting. He underscored his commitment to “us[ing] the courts to correct the injustices that we see still perpetuated today,” including discrimination against low-income people.
It is not difficult to see why the North Carolina NAACP chapter described Chambers as “a man of tremendous courage.”
The pastor who helped organize and finance the campaign to pass North Carolina’s constitutional amendment banning same-sex unions, Rev. Mark Harris of Charlotte’s First Baptist Church, is pondering a run for US Senate against Democratic Senator Kay Hagan, a marriage equality supporter.
As reported by Jeremy Hooper, Harris, who leads North Carolina’s Baptist convention, emphasized that the Amendment One campaign wasn’t just about marriage but attacking the gay community:
Harris also preached that God would mourn the anti-gay amendment’s defeat:
His church also promoted a column by his wife that put marriage equality advocates in the same category as Nazis and eugenicists, argued that people are gay as a result of sexual abuse, warned that the supporters of the “gay agenda” like Oprah Winfrey and Katy Perry are warping the minds of children and contended that gay youth are simply deluded.
Harris has informed his congregation about his potential run for Senate, the Charlotte Observer reports:
Harris, 47, met in Charlotte last week with about 70 people from around 20 North Carolina counties who are trying to draft him to run.
“I’m certainly humbled and flattered by the confidence that these folks have expressed,” he said. “It’s a little bit overwhelming to be honest. Right now we’re doing two things. One … doing a lot of listening to people and the second and most importantly to me is just to pray and seek God’s leadership … and see if that’s his plan for me.”
Harris announced that to his congregation at the end of Sunday’s service, and walked off to a standing ovation.
Last year, Harris campaigned heavily for Amendment One, which recognizes marriage between a man and a woman as the only valid union recognized in the state.
He has hosted Republican precinct meetings at his church and last year brought in a number of prominent conservative speakers, including former presidential candidates Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee and Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council.
A few weeks ago, Harris met with GOP consultant Tom Perdue of Atlanta, onetime chief strategist for former U.S. Rep. Robin Hayes, now the state’s Republican chairman. Among the many GOP candidates Perdue has helped were former U.S. Sens. Paul Coverdell of Georgia and Bill Frist of Tennessee.
Gary Bauer filled in for Family Research Council head Tony Perkins on Washington Watch yesterday where he once again blamed the Republican Party’s problems on a lack of opposition to gay marriage and abortion rights.
Bauer, who once led the FRC but now runs American Values and the Campaign for Working Families, chided President Obama for favoring marriage equality and claimed that “if Martin Luther King, Jr. were alive today” he would condemn Obama’s pro-gay rights stance, which Bauer said “twisted and distorted” the legacy of the civil rights movement.
“But in spite of all we’ve done, all of our work, everything that you’ve done at the grassroots level,” Bauer lamented, “we are right on the edge of losing that issue.”
Later in the program, Bauer told a caller from North Carolina that the sole reason Romney won the state and no other swing states was because Bauer ran ads there attacking Obama’s position on marriage equality.
“We lost them all again except for one state and it was North Carolina,” Bauer said. “I believe the only reason that Gov. Romney won North Carolina was because the voters of that state were reminded of that issue, so it’s a lesson I think for the Republican Party.”
Let me give a tip of the hat to North Carolina, you know in 2008 President Obama won all of the swing states that are so important in presidential politics. In this last presidential election in 2012 there was a major effort made by conservatives to get those swing states back. Unfortunately, we lost them all again except for one state and it was North Carolina. The people of North Carolina took another look at Barack Obama and decided, ‘hey, we made a mistake four years ago,’ and this time around they voted differently. I’d like to think at least in part that happened in North Carolina because of some ads that I and other groups ran in that state on the marriage issue, reminding the voters of North Carolina who had just voted just a little over a year ago to keep marriage between a man and a woman, that President Obama had come out right after that vote and had endorsed same-sex marriage. I believe the only reason that Gov. Romney won North Carolina was because the voters of that state were reminded of that issue, so it’s a lesson I think for the Republican Party.
That’s right; Bauer thinks that this ad put Romney over the top in North Carolina.
Out of State Money Floods Contests in 2012
Washington, DC – Today People For the American Way Foundation unveiled new state-by-state fact sheets detailing outside spending in U.S. Senate and House races in 21 states. Each report analyzes the outside spending totals from Super PACs, dark money groups, and out-of-state spenders in the down ballot federal races from the 2012 election cycle. The fact sheets reveal that, on average, a majority of outside election money in these states came from Super PACs. And in every case, a vast majority came from organizations registered outside of the state.
The release of the “Outside Spending, Outsized Influence” reports coincide with the weekend marking Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and the third anniversary of Citizens United v. FEC to draw attention to the dual threats of voter suppression and unlimited corporate and special interest money in politics. The reports – a partnership between PFAWF and U.S. PIRG – are part of the Money Out/Voters In campaign. As part of that campaign, People For the American Way Foundation, its affiliate People For the American Way, and other organizers across the country are hosting “Day of Action” events in more than 76 cities in 33 states this weekend. Members of People For the American Way Foundation’s African American Ministers Leadership Council will be leading Money Out/Voters In events in Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Virginia.
“Last year’s elections were far and away the most expensive in history,” said People For the American Way Foundation Executive Vice President Marge Baker. “A major reason was the influx of outside, special interest spending in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. FEC decision. When big money floods our elections, it dwarfs the ability of individual Americans to have their voices heard. Just as important, when politicians push laws to suppress the vote, we turn back the clock on decades on progress to expand and improve our democracy. We need to pursue the full range of remedies to address the problem of too much money in politics, including amending the Constitution to overturn Citizens United, and we need to stand up against the growing threat of voter suppression. This weekend we are joining with allies across the country to call for a democracy that gets Money Out and Voters In.”
The states featured in the reports are California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, New Jersey, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, and Wisconsin.
For links to each report, please visit: http://www.pfaw.org/issues/outside-spending-outsized-influence-big-and-s...
For more information about the Money Out/Voters In campaign or the Days of Action, please visit: http://www.moneyout-votersin.org
David Benham organized a prayer rally in Charlotte to coincide with the opening of the Democratic National Convention called Charlotte 714, based on 2 Chronicles 7:14, along with groups like the North Carolina Values Coalition and Operation Save America, which is led by his father Flip Benham. While speaking to Janet Mefferd yesterday about the prayer rally, Benham said that Charlotte was chosen not only because it is the site of the DNC but also because the city was one of the few areas to vote against Amendment One, the same-sex marriage ban voters passed in May. Benham called Charlotte’s vote against anti-gay discrimination a sign of the “very desperate spiritual situation and moral situation in our country,” requiring “a citywide church service of repentance.” Later, Benham told Mefferd that America’s Christian majority must repent for tolerating abortion rights, no-fault divorce, legal pornography, “homosexuality and its agenda that is attacking the nation” and the “demonic ideologies” that he says have taken over the education system.
In North Carolina you know we just fought for Amendment One which was a constitutional amendment that simply said, this is exactly what the amendment said is the only legal marriage in North Carolina was between a man and a woman. We received—it was such a battle in North Carolina it blew me away. I already knew in my heart as most all of us Christians in America know that we are in a very desperate spiritual situation and moral situation in our country but it really hit home during Amendment One, so much so that when Amendment One passed I realized the only three counties in North Carolina that actually voted against the amendment were Charlotte, Raleigh and Asheville, our three cities. So we had all the rural areas and all the suburban areas but we lost all the cities. So I felt like, OK it’s time that we have a citywide church service of repentance and that’s the reason that we decided to do it right in the heart of Charlotte the night before the DNC.
We will always finger point but we don’t realize that OK if 87% of Americans are Christians and yet we have abortion on demand; we have no-fault divorce; we have pornography and perversion; we have a homosexuality and its agenda that is attacking the nation; we have adultery; we have all of the things; we even have allowed demonic ideologies to take our universities and our public school systems while the church sits silent and just builds big churches. We are so complacent, we are so apathetic and we are very hypocritical in the church, that’s why the Bible says judgment begins in the house of God. So when we prayed at 714 we asked God and our city to forgive us for allowing these things in the house of God.
Peter LaBarbera today posted yet another interview with his new best friend, Patrick Wooden along with John Kirkwood, pastor of Grace Gospel Fellowship in Bensenville, Illinois, discussing the recent passage of the marriage amendment in North Carolina.
During the discussion, the three men tackled a wide array of related topics, including President Obama's statement of support for marriage equality. It was Obama's citation of the Golden Rule in explaining his views that seemed particularly offensive to them, prompting Wooden to offer up a truly incoherent statement that "most people don't invite strangers to their family reunions" while Kirkwood simply compared Obama's citation of Scripture to Satan:
LaBarbera: Talk about this use of the Golden Rule that Obama cited to justify his new support of the so-called homosexual marriage.
Wooden: It's funny, he's quoting Scripture to debunk Scripture. Amazing. But I agree with the President on the Golden Rule, I think we should do unto others as we would have them do unto us ... I don't that that I should aid anyone in entering into anything that does apply to them or does not appertain to them. Words still have meaning and the word "marriage" means something, it means the union between a man and a woman. So I don't know how he's applying the Golden Rule but I think we should treat people the way we want to be treated. But if a person wants to do something that doesn't apply to them, then I don't think we should help them do it.
Most people don't invite strangers to their family reunions. Most people don't allow perfect strangers to come into their house and sit at the dinner table and dine with them. And we shouldn't, under the Golden Rule, allow people who are not to participate in marriage to be invited into the union in the name of treating people the way we want to be treated. It makes no sense.
LaBarbera: And John, also, four years ago or long, dismissed Romans 1 to justify his support for homosexuality. So talk about this.
Kirkwood: Yeah, I don't think he holds The Word with a great deal of esteem. There was another guy in Matthew 4 who quoted The Word to rebuke The Word. It's not going to work out so well for him.
Matthew 4, for those who may not know, is when Jesus was tempted in the wilderness by Satan.
After Ohio passed a marriage amendment in 2004, which not only enshrined a ban on same-sex marriage in the state’s Constitution but also barred legal recognition of any union outside of opposite-sex marriage “that intends to approximate the design, qualities, significance or effect of marriage,” a judge struck down part of the state’s domestic violence law because it “recognizes the relationship between an unmarried offender and victim as one ‘approximating the significance or effect of marriage.’”
Like in Ohio, North Carolina’s Amendment One similarly prohibits the state from recognizing any union besides opposite-sex marriage and could potentially have a devastating impact on domestic violence laws. Alliance Defense Fund attorney Jordan Lorence is out today with a column defending Amendment One, which voters will decide on today, and arguing that banning same-sex marriages and protections for unmarried couples, gay or straight, “would help promote” the goal of stopping domestic violence:
The distorted, fear-mongering claim that the marriage amendment will protect those who batter their unmarried partners from criminal prosecution is simply false and has been effectively refuted. This claim has not come true in any of the 30 states that have approved marriage amendments. Anyone who beats up another he lives with should be prosecuted criminally.
But there is a bigger issue here: multiple studies show that women in unmarried relationships and their children are more likely to suffer domestic violence than women married to the biological father of their children. We as a compassionate people need to warn our neighbors about living arrangements that expose them to physical harm. State authorities must prosecute batterers, but prevention is better. Approving the North Carolina marriage amendment would help promote this goal.
In an interview with the Fayetteville Observer, Republican state legislator Paul Stam said the ADF “overruled” an effort to pass “a more narrowly worded amendment.”
North Carolina voters today are casting their ballots on Amendment One, an extreme measure that would write discrimination into the state’s consitution and potentially take away important protections for all unmarried couples, gay and straight.
The amendment states that “marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic union that shall be valid or recognized” in North Carolina. It would not only deal another blow to gay and lesbian couples in the state, who are already prohibited by law from marrying, but endangers protections for all unmarried couples, including domestic violence protections and health insurance coverage.
The Coalition to Protect North Carolina Families is running a handful of powerful ads showing Amendment One’s potential devastating impact. Here are a couple:
President Bill Clinton also recorded a robocall on behalf of the anti-Amendment One campaign. You can listen to it here.
North Carolina voters can find your polling place here.
As North Carolina voters go to the polls on May 8th to decide the fate of Amendment One, which would enshrine a ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions in the constitution, radio host Steve Noble has been working with the leaders of the Amendment One campaign Tami Fitzgerald and Patrick Wooden. Following in the footsteps of Wooden, Noble appeared on Americans for Truth about Homosexuality Radio Hour with Peter LaBarbera, where LaBarbera likened gays and lesbians to murderers and drug addicts and Noble said the gay community is trying “to attack the entire world” and “the word of God”
LaBarbera: This idea that’s coming out of the emergent church or the liberal evangelicals in which we don’t want to talk about ex-gays and people who’ve left the lifestyle, you know nobody has a problem that Jesus cold change murderers, drug addicts, and yet somehow homosexuals, people practicing homosexuality, that is held up as something ‘oh no that’s verboten, can’t talk about that.’
Noble: The homosexual lifestyle is not an orientation it’s just a temptation, we all face that, but they’re the ones, that’s the only group of sinners that’s chosen to try to attack the entire world, let alone the word of God, to say ‘no, no, we’re going to keep fighting until you all agree with us that this thing that we know as a sin, isn’t.’
LaBarbera: Right, there are other sins but we don’t see adultery pride parades every June.
As Jeremy Hooper noted, Noble’s comments continued to devolve, and he even alleged that gays and lesbians are living in “the playground of Satan”:
LaBarbera: You’re talking about the spiritual significance of attaching that name—marriage—to the sin of homosexuality.
Noble: Right, when you refuse to repent the only option you have left is to redefine. You say, ‘I’m just going to take this sin right out of the Bible by redefining it and I’m going to get rid of it.’ That’s why when you do that and this is the really sad spiritual underbelly of the whole thing for me as I look at this situation, I’m looking at people, men and women, caught up in their sin, enslaved by their sin, it’s the playground of Satan and the evil forces against God’s way, and they are so broken and so angry at the world telling them and pointing out to them ‘there’s something wrong with you, your lifestyle is messed up, it’s deviant,’ all the things that get said, these are broken people who desperately want to feel whole but they are not willing to repent.
Earlier today we noted that the North Carolina Values Coalition teamed-up with the Southern Baptist Convention for a panel to marshal support for Amendment One, a constitutional amendment barring same-sex marriages and civil unions, which are already banned by statute. Following a speech by Richard Land, panelist Tim Wilkins made the case for why gays and lesbians should not have rights equal to those of their straight counterparts. Wilkins began his remarks by describing how he is “ashamed” of his “past homosexuality.”
Wilkins in fact, is a professional “ex-gay” activist whose ministry “stems from his own freedom from homosexuality some thirty years ago.” He is also a member of NARTH, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality, and organizes a conference that “addresses such topics as If a Friend Says ‘I’m gay’, Debunking the ‘Gay Gene’, ‘What’s a Parent to Do?’, Untwisting ‘Gay Theology’, Counseling the Homosexual, Preventing Homosexuality, and A Biblical Bridge Out of Homosexuality.’”
He maintained that a same-sex relationship is inherently “unequal” and actually “lacks the very diversity it seeks to promote,” urging audience members not to treat homosexuality as a sexual orientation but instead as a “temptation.” Wilkins argued that homosexuality should be reduced to a “temptation” just as Pluto was relegated from its status as a planet to dwarf planet by the International Astronomical Union.
North Carolina activists pushing Amendment One, the constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage and civil unions in the state, met at the Southern Baptist Convention’s Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary where Richard Land said that the referendum “is not about gay rights” but about whether marriage will “be transformed by the whims of a minority,” i.e. gays and lesbians. Land tied marriage equality for gays and lesbians to growing rates of single motherhood, and said that North Carolina vote would influence a potential Supreme Court case on same-sex marriage. Tami Fitzgerald of the North Carolina Values Coalition, the group behind the campaign in favor of Amendment One, added that “gay marriage is the beginning of the end for religious freedom,” and the seminar professor Daniel Heimbach said marriage equality “will harm everybody by harming social stability”:
"If the people speak in North Carolina, and also in other states, to affirm that marriage is between a man and a woman, it will tip the balance of the Supreme Court to reject trying to foist by judicial imperialism same-sex marriage on a populous that is clearly opposed to it," Land said at the March 28 forum.
Land went on to say that the federal government spends $700 billion in domestic programs to support women and children due largely to the absence of fathers. The epidemic of fatherlessness has been "catastrophic" on America's landscape, Land mentioned. The issue, Land said, "is not about gay rights," but instead "about the basic building block of human society" -- and "whether we'll allow it to be transformed by the whims of a minority."
The issue of religious liberty was also discussed as gay rights groups throughout the United States have pursued legal action against Christian owned-companies and religiously affiliated adoption agencies, forcing compensatory damages and even closure. "This is not a question of sexual freedom, but of religious freedom," Land said. "The agenda of the homosexual community is to have their behavior and their lifestyle normalized and have same-sex marriage normalized and to have those who disagree with it to be ostracized."
Tami Fitzgerald, executive director of North Carolina Values Coalition, said that "when marriage is redefined as genderless, there are legal consequences for anyone who disagree with it."
"Everything from inheritance laws to property rights must then change," she said. "If you disagree with this, you're treated as a racist and as a bigot."
"Gay marriage is the beginning of the end for religious freedom," she said.
With upcoming votes on gay "marriage" in other states, Land said, the future of marriage could be settled in the next 18 months. No state has, by popular vote, chosen to create same-sex "marriage," Land said.
Gay marriage proponents insist that the proposed amendment is unnecessary, discriminatory and unfairly targets gay persons. Daniel Heimbach, an ethics professor at Southeastern Seminary, said gay "marriage" is not about equality.
"The harm of legalizing gay marriage will radically change marriage in a way that it will then deny all fixed structures," Heimbach said. "It will de-institutionalize marriage as an institution.
"It will harm everybody by harming social stability."