Some Local Organizations Hail Supreme Court Ruling On Gay Marriage, Others Oppose
Same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states after the U.S. Supreme Court released its 5-4 ruling today. The decision was prompted by lawsuits in several states challenging bans on same sex marriage.
Rich Incorvati with Equality Springfield says it’s a big deal, especially for LGBT communities in Ohio.
“It’s one of the first times that we’ve gained protections," he said. "We [still] have no non-discrimination protection, and we don’t have local hate crimes legislation. So not only a big recognition allowing families to be legally recognized, but a move that we just haven’t seen in Ohio that way that we would have hoped to have seen by this point.”
Lynn Sellers is co-chair of the Safe Schools program operated by PFLAG – Parents and Friends of Lesbians And Gays. She says through marriage, gay couples will now share in the protections offered to other couples.
“A marriage contract affords a number of legal rights that are denied people of the same gender who are in love and who are family and who would like to participate in those legal rights," she said.
Randy Phillips, president of the LGBT Center in Dayton also applauded the High Court’s decision.
“Basically it means that people can share their lives just like any other individual without feeling like a second class citizen behind straight couples."
There is no requirement for churches who disagree with the court’s decision to conduct gay weddings. Steve Saucer is the Assistant Pastor at City of Victory Deliverance in Dayton. He says although the church welcomes everyone, they will not marry same sex couples.
"I wouldn’t carry out a wedding between two individuals of the same sex because I fundamentally disagree with it altogether."
Saucer says that decision comes from a spiritual perspective though and not a political one.
“I hope that people are mature enough to be able to live alongside people who are different, who think different. What we don’t need in today’s society is more division.”
Within several hours of the court’s ruling, Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley conducted the city’s first gay wedding.