Deborah Greene is the well known Tea Party activist in Watauga County who opposed “high-impact industry” zoning in 2002, who opposed construction of the new Watauga High School a few years ago, who opposed the quarter-cent sales tax increase proposed by the Republican county commissioners last year (after it appeared the money might go to the school system), and who is now the leader for getting Amendment 1 passed here in the May 8th primary election. Oh, yeah, and she wants a seat on our county Board of Education and is running in the May 8th primary.
She had a great deal to say down-column on Amendment 1, in three different posts (under the piece titled “Where the Pro-Discrimination Folks Are Getting Their Talking Points.”
1. Greene clears one thing up pretty quickly and definitively: Amendment 1 is all about writing the dictates of her religion into the state’s Constitution (her protestations to the contrary notwithstanding). “We know what God says,” writes Greene. That “we” contracts and expands rather freely, I’ve noticed, and is mighty susceptible to politics, especially the politics of the moment (not to mention the charisma of certain religious preachers). On that basis alone, and in the shadow of a long history in our Republic of separating Church from State, I would have to oppose her Amendment and her religious, busy-body stewing over the private lives of fellow citizens.
2. Greene writes, “Why did government think it was necessary to define marriage at all? Government saw the need, for the common good, to establish a law that would protect children and promote/encourage the family. Yes, we have divorce; but, we have divorce laws.”
Government is involved in marriage because marriage is a legal contract, with remedies for breach (adultery) and rules for dissolution (divorce and child custody when children are involved). Contract law is a good deal less “sacred” and a good deal more practical than Greene seems to understand or acknowledge.
Understanding that marriage is a contract should help Greene understand why her Amendment 1 would violate the rights of people legally prevented from entering into that contract and thereby having remedies for damages due to breach and no access to orderly dissolution (not to mention the several benefits given to married couples via tax law, etc.). She either doesn’t get that or is being deliberately obtuse.
3. Greene ties herself into syntactical knots, double negatives, and impenetrable meaning when she addresses discrimination: “Not discriminating is treating same-sex couples equally without going against God’s law.”
I’ve read that sentence repeatedly and have decided that it’s the result of not wanting to admit that she’s perfectly happy and prepared to practice discrimination against a minority via our state’s Constitution, but she doesn’t want to admit it, so she once again hauls in God to cover herself.