By Josh Hinkle
Originally published on Advocate.com April 18 2012 5:56 PM ET
The heated battle over North Carolina's Amendment One is bringing out new advocates for marriage equality, such as the president of the state chapter of the NAACP.
During a rally Tuesday at Winston-Salem State University, the Reverend William Barber spoke to 120 people on the effects Amendment One will have over and above banning same-sex marriage in North Carolina. "Whether you agree or disagree with same-sex marriage, that is a personal and religious choice," Barber said, according to the Winston-Salem Journal. "You should disagree with anybody who is writing hatred and discrimination into the constitution."
In his speech, the Journal reports, Barber said North Carolina's ballot initiative violates the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. This amendment guarantees equal legal protection to all people. He supported his statement by saying Amendment One could bar same-sex couples from many benefits, including protection of laws involving domestic violence between unmarried couples and domestic-partner insurance coverage.
To end his 40-minute speech, Barber urged students to vote against the amendment when the May 8 election rolls around. "Young people like you died for the right to vote," Barber said, according to the Journal. "You must be engaged."