According to AllHipHop News, Queen Latifah will be performing live at The Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride Festival on Saturday May 19th, 2012 in Long Beach, California. Latifah’s performance offers encouragement to young lesbian women in North Carolina, like Laura NeeSmith who are preparing to vote for the right to marry.
North Carolina’s “Amendment One” currently recognizes a marriage as between a man and a woman. On May 8th however, voters will flock to the polls to vote against the amendment and legalize same-sex marriage. NeeSmith, who says she and her partner deserve the same rights as a heterosexual couple, is even heading out for early voting on May 5th. “Voting against amendment one means the world to me,” NeeSmith said.
If the amendment is overturned, same-sex couples will not only earn the right to marry, but to also enjoy simple rights that heterosexual couples may take for granted. While NeeSmith says she’s always dreamed of a walking down the isle in a white dress, it’s more about having a family than a wedding. “I plan on having kids within the next year and my kids shouldn’t have to worry about not being able to be with their other mommy due to the law. My kids will have two mommies, I want my wife on my insurance benefits and I want the law to recognize the bond between her and I. We’re no different.”
While there are strong feelings on both sides of the dispute, North Carolina seems to leading the nation as one of the first states to address the issue. Although many would consider this a sign a progress, NeeSmith is not impressed. “I thought that since things improved with racism that people would not be as closed minded,” she stated.
With so much going on here in North Carolina, NeeSmith is excited about Queen Latifah showing support to the gay pride movement. “That woman is so gay,” she says jokingly, “if she’s not, then mad props to her for supporting rainbow pride.” Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride Inc. says that Latifah’s performance will be her “first-ever engagement at a Pride celebration anywhere in the world.”