Stand Up for Southern Hospitality & Vote Against Amendment One on May 8

Growing up I ate many meals at my grandmother’s dining room table. My grandmother was challenged in the kitchen and I spent many a meal politely clearing my plate of burnt toast and red fish stew. So, this post isn’t about food and I won’t overwhelm you with her recipes. But, while her skills were lacking in the kitchen, she was an expert on Southern hospitality.

To my Grandmother,  Southern hospitality was more than greeting guests into our home with a smile or the amount of butter we added to our dishes – it was an act of grace that she strived to pass on to her children and grandchildren. Often times before meals she would send me from house to house and dock to dock on Canterbury Drive and the Withlachoochee River delivering dishes to her neighbors.  The purpose of my deliveries was more about learning to introduce myself  and give a firm handshake than the food itself. She understood the value of building relationships with people from all walks of life and spent her lifetime advocating and caring for those less fortunate than she. To her, that was Southern Hospitality – taking care of everyone with grace. 

Far away from the Withlachoochee River, the meals at my grown-up dining room table are now much more elaborate than my grandmother would have ever envisioned. Without a doubt, the best part about making my home in North Carolina is the diversity of my friendships and conversations with them around my around my table. While my grandmother’s recipes are rarely shared at the table – or on this blog – her tradition of grace is an equally important component to meals shared on Mendenhall Street.

A frequent conversation around my table over the past year is the threat of Amendment One on our ballot, May 8th.  North Carolina’s Amendment One is far from hospitable. If passed, it would spoil what Southern Hospitality means to our state and our traditions. It’s impacts are wide-spread and harmful.

 

Amendment One strips North Carolina families and children of basic health care, threatens parental rights, and throws basic protections like domestic violence laws into what many are calling  “legal chaos.”

  • It’s poorly written and has unknown consequences that could impact our citizens unpredictably.
  • It endangers children of unmarried families – potentially losing healthcare and prescription drug coverage. I’m fortunate enough to know many unmarried couples who have adopted children. Particularly, my friend Jamin, in the photo above , who adopted her son Hugo several years ago. Regulating how parents can love or care for their children – biological or not – isn’t the Southern way, period.
  • It puts unmarried women at risk. Amendment 1 could strip domestic violence protections for all women.
  • It puts unmarried seniors at risk – forcing them to choose between legal protections and pensions.
  • It makes our state unattractive to businesses, creatives, countless industries and young people. It puts our (already threatened) economy at risk.

To me, there is nothing more hospitable than caring, protecting and securing the rights of all our citizens. So, I ask you to go to the polls proudly on May 8th (or before) to stand up for Southern Hospitality and vote AGAINST Amendment One. Perhaps if you don’t, we will be eating a lot of red fish stew on Mendenhall Street.

For more information on the negative impacts of Amendment 1, visit www.protectncfamilies.org.

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