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Locals react to same sex marriage developments

Eastern Kentuckians have mixed reactions to the Supreme Court

MGN Online

HAZARD, Ky (WYMT) - Eastern Kentuckians have mixed reactions to the Supreme Court's latest ruling on same sex marriage.

Wednesday, the United States Supreme Court said legally married same sex couples could receive federal benefits.

In addition to that ruling, the court also paved the way for same sex marriage to resume in California.

While neither of these decisions directly impact Kentucky, that has not stopped locals from speaking their mind of the divisive issue.

Vicco Mayor Johnny Cummings, who is openly gay, recently made headlines when his tiny town approved a fairness ordinance.

He said this issue is about standing by our nation's principles.

"Constitutional wise, you know, all men are created equal and just like today they decided it is discrimination to say different," said Cummings.

Cummings said at the end of the day, talking about whether or not same sex couples can marry is all about a person's rights.

"Everyone deserves the same rights," said Cummings.

However, not everyone is happy about the high court's ruling.

Peter Youmans is the pastor at Davidson Baptist Church in Chaives.

He said the court's decision goes against the word of God.

"The Scriptures are very clear as to what constitutes a biblical, traditional marriage," said Youmans.

He said regardless of whether it is ruled constitutional or not does not matter from a religious perspective.

"While they may have the legality to do that, that does not mean it is right," said Youmans.

Youmans said the nation is headed down a slippery slope if actions like this continue by the government.

"What we are doing now is a social experiment and I do not think people realize that it is something we do not understand the ramifications from," said Youmans.

Still, those celebrating the ruling said they are convinced this is a step in the right direction.

Jordan Palmer is with the organization Kentucky Equality Federation, which works to help the Lesbian Gay Transgender Bisexual community.

He said today is a victory but that more still needs to be done.

"Yes, it is progress, but it further illustrates how much work we have to do here in Kentucky," said Palmer.

He added that his organization is working to convince everyday people that it is time the state adopt marriage equality legislation.

"Our primary job in these communities is to go community to community and touch the hearts and minds of one person at a time because that is the only way we are going to win this war," said Palmer.

Kentucky does not allow same sex marriage.

That measure was added to the state constitution back in 2004.


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