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As the debate over Question 1 builds to a conclusion next month, two key players will present their arguments in a Goldfarb Center debate at Colby College on Wednesday, November 2. Michael Heath of the Maine Christian Civic League, an organization pushing for the repeal of the law extending equal protection to gay and lesbian individuals, will discuss the issue with Ted O’Meara of Maine Won’t Discriminate, a coalition of individuals, businesses, and religious and political organizations working to keep Maine’s antidiscrimination law on the books.
The debate will take place at 7 p.m. in Given Auditorium of the Bixler Art and Music Building, on the Waterville campus. Government Professor Joseph Reisert, who is currently teaching a course on constitutional law and individual rights, will moderate the debate.
An Act to Extend Civil Rights Protections to All People Regardless of Sexual Orientation passed the Maine Legislature in March of 2005 with support from a bipartisan majority in both houses of the Maine Legislature. Question 1 on the November 8 ballot asks, “Do you want to reject the new law that would protect people from discrimination in employment, housing, education, public accommodations and credit based on their sexual orientation?”
The event is part of the Cotter Debate Series, named in honor of former Colby president William Cotter, which presents debates on topics of public interest throughout the school year. The Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement at Colby, the host for the debate, connects teaching and research with contemporary political, economic and social issues. The center provides a venue in which faculty and students can think and work across disciplinary boundaries to develop creative approaches to complex local, national and global challenges.