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Lesbian couple arrested in North Carolina after marriage license refused

Friday, October 14, 2011

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — A lesbian couple twice refused a marriage license by the Buncombe County Register of Deeds refused to leave the government office today and initiated a sit-in. The two were arrested.

NC4Equality

Kathryn Cartledge and Elizabeth Eve, after release from police custody.

Rev. Kathryn Cartledge and Elizabeth Eve, her partner of 30 years, were among the first couples to request a license last weekas a part of the Coalition for Southern Equality’s “We Do” Campaign. They were the last couple request a license for a second time today and refused to leave the office after their denial.

The two were arrested at about 4 p.m. after being asked to leave and continuing their sit-in. They have been charged with trespassing and were immediately released by local law enforcement.

The civil disobedience was the culmination of a two-week-long campaign organized by the Coalition for Southern Equality and comes as campaigns form to defeat an anti-LGBT state constitutional amendment on marriage and civil unions.

About two dozen same-sex couples have been denied marriage licenses over the course of the group’s “We Do” Campaign. The group organized several couples in requesting the licenses each weekday since Oct. 3.

Coalition for Southern Equality Executive Director Jasmine Beach-Ferrara has described her group’s campaign as a social justice movement. She says it is time to demand full equality for LGBT people.

“Today’s action is about real people saying, I will no longer live as a second-class citizen in my country,” Beach-Ferrara said in a statement following the arrests.

“Kathryn and Elizabeth have devoted their lives to public service and to the values of love and fairness. Today, they stand up not just for their right to be marry, but for all LGBT people who know first hand how harmful these laws are. We are saying, simply, we are equal people. Laws that treat us as unequal must change. We will continue to resist them until they do.”

Continue reading, at QNotes
Matt Comer is Editor of QNotes.

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Filed under: North Carolina

37 more reader comments:

  1. So much for the FREEDOM we get here in AMERICA…

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 8:54pm
  2. This Country has to wake up. It is 2011. Gay marriage should be legal nationwide in this country. Other countries allow gay marriage. This will not be a free country until He have full equality.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 8:54pm
  3. wtf

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 8:55pm
  4. oh good, more tax dollars being wasted by the state over civil rights. The damn Westboro Baptist gets away with all of their protests. It seems the only people whose rights are protected are the people who agree with the religious right. And did you know that it is a N Carolina state law that before a woman gets an abortion, the clinics basically have to bully these women into pro-choice options before performing the procedure to try and “pursuade” them? Fascists!

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 8:55pm
  5. I don’t miss living there much.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 8:58pm
  6. THAT’S SOME BULL SHIT WE JUST WANNA BE HAPPY

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 8:59pm
  7. MORE POWER TO ‘EM! People say we are militant and this is just one of many reasons we are. We are growing, we are strong and we are NOT going away…EVER! Get used it, haters!

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 8:59pm
  8. We won’t stop!!!

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:00pm
  9. Don’t stop. Ever.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:01pm
  10. Its ok, Gina and others. We are growing, we are have our allies, and we get stronger and stronger each time hate like this happens and the haters had better get used to it and deal because WE ARE NOT GOING AWAY…E V E R ! ! ! !

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:02pm
  11. why are these things happening.i mean the inequality

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:02pm
  12. Dima, people hate in others what they fear or don’t understand in themselves.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:06pm
  13. America don’t lie and say we have rights and then turn around and arrest innocent people! Come on! Its hard to defend a country who isn’t willing to grow and changed for the better!

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:06pm
  14. I expected nothing less from the south, honestly.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:17pm
  15. ………I’m moving as soon as I get movie

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:19pm
  16. ***money ><

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:19pm
  17. Of course they got arrested; sit-ins are illegal.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:22pm
  18. Tic toc tic toc…its just a matter of time…. as “the gays” we ALL have to do our part to make out voice heard…… FREEDOM FOR ALL….

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:23pm
  19. Omg!!That’s so stupid that they arrested them Omg Ignorance Is Stupidity WTF Just accept Damn Gay Marriage shit were equal Like everyone else wake the fuck up and see the whole world around you which Is not all straight PPL There’s Gay And BI and Trans Etc etc….Cono

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:24pm
  20. This is rediculous. Who the heck are these two women hurting?? Oh that’s right NO ONE!!!!! Let us live our lives how we were born!!! Please? Thank you for listening!

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:32pm
  21. Oh good grief! But go them for doing a “sit-in”! More power to them!

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:33pm
  22. Thank You my sisters for standing up for our family…shame on you police for enforcing your homophobic laws.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:36pm
  23. What a shame! Smh

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:36pm
  24. way to go to them i am proudof them

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 9:51pm
  25. Religious bigots doing what they do best. Use the lies of religion to repress the rights of LGBTQ community.

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 10:08pm
  26. WOW and not in a good way on this one !!!

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 10:47pm
  27. Christianity is a joke

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 10:53pm
  28. messedup

    Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 at 11:54pm
  29. bravo to the two ladies.

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 1:06am
  30. May not always be land of the free, but it is home of the brave! My prayers are with you!

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 1:57am
  31. what the fuck?!

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 2:02am
  32. I hope everyone who posts from NC is voting AGAINST the anti LGBT Constitutional Amendment on May 8th next year and is finding 2 or 3 other people who will as well. Defeating that amendment is a very strong step toward getting the right to marry.

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 4:55am
  33. I hope to see more nonviolent civil disobedience/resistance. It is what Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, Mandela used and what the Dalai Lama promotes. As a straight supporter, my heart and support is not just for every same sex couple’s right to marry, but for those with the fortitude to stand up and speak up when told to sit down and be quiet! Namaste.

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 6:10am
  34. Why is it still legal to marry your first and second cousin in Every state (with weird modified laws) in this country??? But oh, no- being gay & married is so much worse – we aren’t the ones having in-bred, idiots for babies… Oh, wait, think I just found the majority of people Against gay marriage!! =/

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 6:37am
  35. this may be one event in a courthouse in n carolina but it affects us all, in time we will have equality. it will come one step at a time by those willing to put themselves on the line and take that step forward. thank you ladies

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 9:53am
  36. bull shit not fucking right

    Posted on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 4:24pm
  37. This will outrage thousands of straights, North Carolina, in addition to all LGBT people! You’ve accomplished nothing aside from reviving the bigotry of the days of the KKK. As you know, that became a lost cause on a very national level. Why not just go back to burning crosses! Are all Carolinins so sick? Seems so. I’d be ashamed to even be from your state! Here in the UK you would go to jail for what YOU’VE done! It’s called a hate crime!

    Posted on Monday, October 17, 2011 at 3:15pm