Minnesota is no exception. Voters will be faced with an amendment on marriage this NOvember. Proponents of the amendment say that it’s about “protecting marriage in Minnesota,” however, don’t be fooled. This amendment has little to do with protecting anything. In fact, same sex marriage is already prohibited in the state of Minnesota. Many people don’t even realize that. So truly, this amendment does nothing other than rehash an old debate. If you look at the history of amendments that voters have faced in Minnesota, there hasn’t been a single amendment that tried to limit the rights of the minority outside of this one.
And if you think Minnesota is too progressive, or could never pass such a mean-spirited amendment, you need to think again. If Minnesotans were to vote today, polls show this amendment passing. Yes, you heard that right: If we were to vote today, Minnesota voters would choose to update the state constitution to write in something that has already been defined for the state. This amendment would change absolutely nothing, other than put Minnesota on the wrong side of history.
With that said, there are some very positive signs. In December, Duluth became the first city to voice opposition to the amendment this NOvember. Minneapolis followed suit in 2012. Additionally, there have been many groups that have come out against the amendment including Minnesota Rabbis and Minneapolis Evangelical Lutherans along with high-power individuals like Marilyn Carlson Nelson, CEO of Carlson Companies. Missing from this group of opponents? Minnesota’s big businesses. Up to this point, many have been silent about the amendment this NOvember. Yet many of these same companies will be at Twin Cities Pride this year professing their love and support of the LGBT community; hypocrisy? You be the judge.
At the end of the day, marriage equality is moving forward. People like Zach Wahls are telling their stories. Non-profits like GetUp! Action for Australia are helping people to understand that love is love. Heck, even the Golden Girls were talking about marriage equality over 20 years ago.
I believe we’ll do what’s right in Minnesota and defeat this mean-spirited amendment; after all, love is love. Minnesota voters, I hope you’ll join me in voting NO at the polls this NOvember. It’s about equality. It’s about fairness. It’s about love.
And it’s about time.