Gay rights advocates respond to same-sex marriage ban

Gay rights advocates respond to same-sex marriage ban

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Mississippi is the latest state to have it's gay marriage ban overturned by a federal judge.

But, the ruling is on hold to give the state time to appeal.

State attorneys have already said they will ask the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to block Judge Carlton Reeves' order.

Mississippi has a 1997 law and a 2004 voter-approved constitutional amendment that define marriage as being between a man and a woman.

In the meantime, same-sex advocates are responding to the ruling.

ACLU of Mississippi Executive Director, Jennifer Riley-Collins said "We are thrilled that the freedom to marry has finally come to Mississippi! This is a beautiful day for all the loving and committed same-sex couples who have long waited to get married, or for their marriages to be recognized in Mississippi, and for their loved ones and supporters. We applaud Judge Reeves for concluding that Mississippi's same-sex marriage ban deprives same-sex couples and their children of equal dignity under the law. Gay and lesbian citizens cannot be subjected to second class citizenship"

Attorney Roberta Kaplan said "Soon, families throughout this country will be gathering together to celebrate Thanksgiving. Our clients and thousands of other gay people throughout the State of Mississippi can now enjoy their turkey and pecan pie with their families thankful that a court has recognized that their government must treat them the same as everyone else. This is a big day since it means that gay Mississippians will have the right to be married in their own home state that they love so much. It is also a big day for our country and for our Constitution, since it means that Americans in yet another state can now appreciate that gay people, who are their neighbors, friends and family members, have the right to equal protection of the laws."