GREENSBORO, N.C. — The ACLU announced Tuesday it plans to launch a challenge to North Carolina’s ban on same-sex marriage -- and a Greensboro couple is one of six named in the lawsuit.
The national civil liberties group said it will amend a federal lawsuit filed last year on behalf of six same-sex couples where one partner wanted to adopt the other’s child. Shana Carignan and Megan Parker of Greensboro are named in the suit.
The American Civil Liberties Union is asking North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper to agree to allow an additional claim concerning same-sex marriage to be added to Fisher-Borne v. Smith.
That lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Greensboro last year and challenges the state’s ban on second parent adoption.
Parker adopted 5-year-old Jax, three years ago and said while the law doesn’t recognize her partner Carignan as a legal parent, their child does.
“It’s hurtful for me to watch her to go through that because I didn’t do this choosing to be a single parent. He has double time moms and I don’t think there is a kid in this world that is more loved,” said Parker.
Carignan said she still doesn’t understand why a child with disabilities like Jax, who likely would have never been adopted, would be denied a loving set of parents.
“Why would you deny a child two loving parents, it may not be best in your eyes but some people don’t think single parents are best or grandparents. Our society is full of blended families and there is nothing wrong with the love we have for each other and the love we have for parenting our child together,” Carignan said.
The announcement comes on the same day that the ACLU has filed a federal challenge to Pennsylvania’s marriage ban and the ACLU and Lambda Legal have announced a challenge to Virginia’s marriage ban.
The ACLU’s move also comes about two weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a federal law blocking same-sex couples from being recognized as married.
North Carolina voters backed an amendment last year to the state constitution stating that marriages between one man and one woman are the only legally recognized unions in the state.
Reverand Ron Baity of Berean Baptist Church in Winston-Salem has been a long-time opponent of same-sex marriage and led marches on Raleigh in favor of Amendment One.
“We shouldn’t be surprised that the ACLU is challenging the marriage amendment in North Carolina, they’ve been swimming in the cesspool for a long time. It would be a tragedy if the State of North Carolina, the will of the people were overturned,” Baity said.