Monday, April 9, 2012
From the Huffington Post:
Next month, North Carolinians will vote on a constitutional amendment that its supporters say will simply define marriage as between a man and a woman.
Same-sex marriage is currently illegal in North Carolina. But the measure's proponents are hoping North Carolina will join the 12 other Southern states with a constitutional amendment formally defining marriage as being between a man and a woman.
Amendment 1 prohibits state validation or recognition of “domestic legal unions,” a phrase never used before in North Carolina statutes, according to a publication issued by the state to explain the amendment.
"The problem is, we don't know what this language means or how courts would interpret this," said Maxine Eichner, a professor at the University of North Carolina School of Law. "If courts were going to interpret the constitutional amendment as invalidating any rights or protections for unmarried couples, it would invalidate domestic violence protections." According to Eichner's report on the potential consequences of the amendment, Ohio's history shows a possible downside for victims of domestic violence.
Read more here.