The latest deception from opponents of the upcoming statewide constitutional marriage amendment is the use of the expression "Amendment One." Like much of the rhetoric from the other side, this latest term is likely to confuse rather than inform the voting public.
The term "Amendment One" started appearing on signs and bumper stickers in late March. Apparently the long-winded and inaccurate previous reference, "the constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage," wouldn't fit on a yard sign.
The problem with the term "Amendment One" is that it doesn't exist. The ballot for the primary, produced by the N.C. Board of Elections, does not associate a number with the only amendment under consideration, which is the last item voters will see on the May 8 ballot.
So, it doesn't have a number and it's last, not first. So why would opponents of the marriage amendment use the term?
They don't share strategy with me. But my guess is that they are afraid of the word "marriage" and want to avoid using it. There is so much goodwill associated with that single word, so many hopes and dreams, so much happiness and, with children, a promising future. The word simply cannot be demonized or mocked.
Marriage pre-dates the state of North Carolina and even our 2,000-year-old Catholic faith. In His wisdom God created man and woman differently, and from that beautiful and loving difference comes the whole human race. Without it the Bible would end about halfway through the Book of Genesis. God knew what He was doing when he created Adam and Eve and the complementary natures of men and women.
I've yet to speak with an opponent of the marriage amendment who has an underlying philosophy or theology for their arguments that is as deep or as broad as natural law, Scripture, Church teaching and thousands of years of human experience in support of traditional marriage.
Without a logical argument for their opposition to marriage, the opponents have chosen to play word games. They substitute "Amendment One" for "Marriage Amendment" and – presto – people who support traditional marriage can now be miscast as bigots.
Sadly, even President Barack Obama has chosen to jump in to what essentially is a local event by declaring his opposition to the amendment. His re-election campaign office released a statement on March 20 saying, "While the president does not weigh in on every single ballot measure in every state, the record is clear that the President has long opposed divisive and discriminatory efforts to deny rights and benefits to same-sex couples."
Putting aside the fact that North Carolina's marriage amendment will not deny rights and benefits to anyone, the weakness of the president's argument is made clear when you realize that he couldn't bring himself to utter the word marriage.
David Hains is the Diocese of Charlotte's director of communication.
Father John Putnam: 'My God, what a life, O priest of Jesus Christ'Tonight (Holy Thursday) we celebrate the Mass of the Lord's Supper, which celebrates the institution of the Most Holy Eucharist – Jesus present among us Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity, and the institution of the sacred priesthood, without...
Mercy Sister Jeanne-Margaret McNally: Just wage, social justice and care for the poorThe Christian faithful are obliged, according to Church Law (Canon 222), to assist with the needs of the Church for worship, apostolic works, charity, and the support of ministers. They are also to promote social justice and to assist the poor...
What we know that ain't so: Deacon James H. Toner: Inside out, upside downWhat we think is the right road I am tired of the biases, bigotry and backwardness of those who aren't bright enough to be progressive. It's time to stop the prejudice against men marrying men or women marrying women or labeling restrooms for...
Sister Constance Veit: Heroes of religious libertyEach year since 2012, Catholics in the United States have observed the Fortnight for Freedom in preparation for Independence Day on July 4th. The theme set by the U.S. Bishops' Conference for this year's Fortnight is "Witnesses to Freedom." Fourteen...
Father Mark Lawlor The sound of the screen porch doorFor years, every Monday about 7:20 a.m. I heard the distinctive sound of the screen porch door slamming shut over at my neighbor's house. That sound informed me that my father was on his way over for our morning Mass at 7:30 a.m. and that he...
Matthew Newsome: Dads: You can't 'babysit' your own kidsI saw a YouTube video recently that elicited a chuckle. A dad had attached wheels to his baby's booster seat, then hitched it to the back of a remote-controlled truck. As Dad was controlling the truck, the baby was laughing hysterically as it...
Mercy Sister Jeanne-Margaret McNally: Right to a good reputationUnder Church law, no one is permitted to harm illegitimately the good reputation which a person possesses, nor to injure the right of any person to protect his or her own privacy. This obligation arises from natural law. Calumny, denunciation,...
LETTERS FROM OUR READERS
Responding to commentary on Communion for divorced, remarried CatholicsIn the May 27 issue of the Catholic News Herald, a commentary by Father Noah Carter explains the Church's practice of denying Holy Communion to the divorced and remarried Catholic who has not...
Imitating the virtues of the Blessed MotherIn my work as a Catholic mother, nurse and birth and postpartum doula, I have spent a great deal of time reflecting on Mary, our Blessed Mother. Not only is she a supreme model of motherhood,...
Women volunteers are vital to prison ministryI am a prison ministry volunteer at St. Margaret of Scotland Church in Maggie Valley. It was of great interest that I read the prison ministry article in the March 4 edition of Catholic News...
FROM THE PASTORS
Read and listen to homilies posted regularly by pastors at parishes within the Diocese of Charlotte:
- Fr. Roger Arnsparger at St. John the Baptist in Tryon
- Fr. Frank Cancro at Queen of the Apostles
- Fr. Jason Christian at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Matthew Kauth at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Timothy Reid at St. Ann in Charlotte
- Fr. Christopher Riehl's archive from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Benjamin Roberts at Our Lady of Lourdes in Monroe. Listen to homily podcasts.
- Fr. Joshua Voitus at St. Mary, Mother of God Parish in Sylva, including homilies in Spanish
- Fr. Patrick Winslow at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Gospel reflection videos from St. Matthew Church
- Watch full Masses live and on demand, listen to homilies and reflections from Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury
- Listen and watch homilies from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Listen to homilies from St. William Catholic Church in Murphy