Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

June 27, 2013

Locals weigh in on same-sex marriage ruling

ASHLAND — Local responses to the U.S. Supreme Court decisions on Wednesday that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act and invalidated California’s ban on gay marriage reflect the complexity of the issue across the nation.

Many religious groups vowed Wednesday to continue efforts to prevent same-sex marriage from further legalization including the Southern Baptists Convention.

Floyd Paris, pastor of Unity Baptist in Ashland and the immediate past president of the Kentucky Southern Baptist Convention, called Wednesday’s decisions “a travesty of justice.”  

“From the legal standpoint there are some 39 states that are in opposition to the Supreme Court. The citizens of some 39 states have laws on the book that define marriage as between one man and one woman,” he said.

“It seems like a travesty of justice that even when the majority of Americans have spoken that the Supreme Court can look at that and overturn it,” he said. “It is almost as though they are trying to legislate law from the bench. It is not the Supreme Court’s job to legislate, it is to interpret the laws that are already passed, not change laws that are already passed.”

Actually there are 35 states that limit marriages to opposite-sex couples, according to the Washington Post. Thirteen states and the District of Columbia allow same-sex marriage and 10 states recognize unions and partnerships.

Paris said he believes the “only solution” from a legal standpoint is a Constitutional Amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman.

Warren Howard disagrees. He called the decision “a win, win. I know people who have fought for equal treatment for years. This gives them freedom. It is finally an affirmation that there is not something wrong with them,” said Howard. “My son, he was very happy about it. He is young. It gives him a future.”

To Howard it’s not an issue of sexual orientation, it’s a Civil Rights issue.

“Equal rights are equal rights,” he said. “I think whenever people are denied rights that other people have freely, we are lesser for it,” said Howard. “When people are given the same rights as other people — just as a human being — it is a win, win situation. I don’t see their sexual preference playing into it as much as a denial of equal rights,” said Howard.

Howard is an Ashland Community and Technical College education professor and said he teaches that discrimination for any reason has no room in the classroom.

“As teachers we should be able to set our biases and beliefs aside and teach,” he explained. “When I teach teachers, I tell them the responsibility of their job is they are really going to be asked to be more of a listener. As teachers we need to be color blind to any kind of difference that a child brings into a classroom. We have to understand that is part of their upbringing, it is not our duty to change that. Sexual orientation is part of that, whether we want to admit it or not.”

Paris agreed sexual orientation is not the issue, for him it is just about defining marriage.

“Homosexuality, while I do not believe that is a Christian lifestyle, I certainly understand that they have the right to privacy in their own home,” he said. “When you are trying to change the definition of an institution that has been around since the beginning of time, just to accommodate your own sexual orientation, seems like a gross miscarriage of justice to me.”

Both agreed to disagree on another point too, that the times have changed.

“Forty years ago,” said Paris, “If you had asked people what marriage is, they would say it is one man and one woman joined in holy matrimony.”

He said the ruling issued Wednesday, “is almost like the institution of marriage itself has changed and it has not.” 

 “We stand where we always stood. God’s definition of marriage is between one man and one woman. That is where God has always stood. This nation has always stood.” 

Warren has a different perspective.

“It is a different time,” he said. “I’ve heard people say it’s a lot like the Civil Rights movement, where we look back and say, ‘We can’t believe we treated African-Americans that way.’ In 50 years, we’re going to say ‘I can’t believe they had to have a Supreme Court decision over gays getting married,’” Howard said. He added, the next thing the country should work on is ensuring women have equal rights, too.

CARRIE STAMBAUGH can be reached at (606) 326-2653 or by email at cstambaugh@dailyindependent.com

Text Only
Local News
  • colepotteronline.jpg Acoustic jam night at Callihan's

    With the onset of  patio season, the staff at Callihan’s American Pub & Grill have adopted a new program for Wednesday’s open-invitation entertainment with the all new Callihan’s Acoustic Jam Session, providing a stage for local talent and a spotlight for a featured musician each week.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Golf scramble will benefit Paramount Arts Center

    Paramount Woman’s Association’s seventh annual Ladies’ Golf Scramble is scheduled for Aug. 11 at Bellefonte Country Club.

    July 30, 2014

  • MARK MAYNARD: Parking, history, and some wiffleball

    The calendar flips to August tomorrow and some students in the area will be back in school next week.

    July 30, 2014

  • Students need better counseling to contribute more to the region, working group says

    A group studying how education can lift the economy of Appalachian Kentucky has several ideas, including a “counseling for careers” approach that would begin for students no later than middle school and continue through high school.

    July 30, 2014

  • Tensions rise among city commission members

    The controversy about City Manager Ben Bitter’s moving expenses revealed a division in the Ashland Board of City Commissioners.

    July 29, 2014

  • ambulance.jpg Ambulance flips on Winchester

     One minor injury was reported after a passenger car collided with an ambulance at the intersection in front of the Paramount Arts Center on Winchester Avenue around 10 a.m. Tuesday. Independent videographer Adam Black witnessed the accident and reported the ambulance was traveling south of Winchester with lights on and siren activated when it was struck in the rear quarter panel by a passenger vehicle that had a green light for the intersection and failed to yield for the emergency vehicle.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0730Grimes_080.jpg Grimes campaign comes to Lexington

    A recent poll that has twice previously shown Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes with a slim lead over incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell now has McConnell up by two points.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • U.S. 60 yard sale will be Friday and Saturday

    Bringing bargain shoppers from miles around, the U.S. 60 Yard Sale officially begins Friday morning in Carter County.

    July 29, 2014

  • John Cannon: Bracing to stand on her own 2 feet: 7/30/14

    My youngest granddaughter, who will turn 5 on Sept. 2, has been fitted with a pair of ankle braces to help prevent her from falling down so often.

    July 29, 2014

  • War firearms demo set

    A few of the most devastating and accurate firearms used in conflicts ranging from the Civil War to world wars will be demonstrated for an audience limited to about 40 during an upcoming event sponsored by the Eastern Kentucky Military Historical Society.

    July 29, 2014

Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP basketball
SEC Zone