A new video has been released on behalf of the “WE DO Campaign,” an initative by the Campaign for Southern Equality, tackling bans on same-sex marriage and other issues in the South.
In the video, lesbian couple Misha and Ivy, who have been together for two years, apply for a marriage license in Greenville, South Carolina, where same-sex marriage is banned. Having been before, and knowing they will be denied again, the couple present their completed form to the government employee.
A heterosexual couple ahead of them who were also applying for, and were granted, their license demonstrate the pervasive opinion found in the South.
Talking to her partner, the woman says, “Romans Chapter 1. I think it was verse 37. What does Paul say? Doing that which is unseemly,” as she shakes her head. “One man, one woman forever. If I sign it, that’s what it means. You ready?”
When Misha and Ivy step up to the window next, the government employee returns with a piece of paper and says, “Based on South Carolina law, we have to deny your marriage license. Here are the codes.”
To which the couple reply, “We don’t want to treat you with anything but love and respect, and we know you’re just doing your job. But we’ve been here before and we’re going to continue to come back and resist these unjust laws until we can be full and equal citizens in the state we live in.”
The Southern Equality Campaign is based in North Carolina, and seeks to “assert the full humanity and equality of LGBT people living in the South.” Through coordinated actions that directly resist discriminatory laws, like the WE DO Campaign, they hope to place a human face on anti-gay beliefs in traditionally conservative states.
“We would both love to hear those words ‘by the power invested in me, by the state of South Carolina…’” said Misha and Ivy in a blogpost accompanying their video. “We love the south, this is our home and we want to stay here. Our friends, our family and our businesses are here. We don’t want to have to move to have our marriage be legally recognized.”