2005 @ 06:44 am Again, We Are LAWRENCE, KANSAS (not to be
confused with "KANSAS")|
|Current Mood: Once again, the city of Lawrence and the
county where she resides have shown the nation and the world that
we're out of step with the rest of the state of Kansas. And this is
a good thing. Why do we live here? Because it's a progressive,
thinking-person's town. A town filled, by and large, with people who
make sense. Which is directly the opposite, it seems, from the rest
of this backward-thinking state. "Kansans voted overwhelmingly in
support of the amendment" is what those of you around the country
will hear today. "Figures," is what most of you will say. Well guess
what? Here in this progressive county it was exactly the opposite.
People voted overwhelmingly AGAINST the amendment. A major blow to
the supporters of the amendment. And it reminds me why I'm here. It
reminds me why I wouldn't be living anywhere else (in Kansas).
Still, the amendment is a slap in the face to Kansans in alternative
lifestyles who might have hoped the state would leave the door open
to reinterpretation and an over-turning of the current ban. To think
that people actually voted in favor of this form of discrimination
is unbelievable. WHAT ARE YOU THINKING, ASSHOLES!!!??? [glares at
Rev. Terry Fox and all the other supporters]. Future historians will
look at these "bans" just as we currently look at the laws that made
it legal to own slaves and the laws that prevented women from
voting. Just plain stupid. The rest of the story:
Sirius 104 (CNN)
County alone rejects ban
By Scott Rothschild, Journal-World
Wednesday, April 6, 2005
Topeka — Douglas County stood
alone Tuesday in rejecting an amendment to the state constitution
banning same-sex marriage.
By a statewide margin of about
2-to-1, every other county approved the amendment.
people of Kansas have blown us away," said the Rev. Terry Fox, of
Wichita, one of the primary supporters of the amendment. "History
has been made tonight."
The vote counting continued late
Tuesday, but the outcome was clear early in the evening, making
Kansas the 18th state since 1998 to add a gay marriage ban to its
Last November, 11 states approved same-sex
marriage bans with approval ranging from 56 percent to 86
Opponents of the amendment said they were devastated
by the defeat.
"God help us," said Steve Brown, of Prairie
Village, president of the Democratic Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual,
Transgender Caucus. "This is a blatant act of discrimination to put
citizens -- both homosexual and heterosexual -- in a second-class
Opponents said they were confident they could
reverse the amendment in court.
"It's only temporary. This
amendment is truly unconstitutional, and it won't withstand the
light of judicial review," said Bruce Ney, of Lawrence, and chairman
of Kansans for Fairness, which worked against the
The amendment stated
marriage could only be between a man and a woman and that only
traditional marriage was entitled to the "rights or incidents of
The second proviso has thrown legal scholars into
a tailspin and several states that have recently adopted similar
amendments have seen court battles. In Ohio several men are
challenging domestic abuse charges because the abuse happened in
nonmarital relationships, and in Michigan the attorney general ruled
the amendment prevented cities from extending benefits to domestic
partners, gay or heterosexual.
But Fox said legal battles
didn't frighten him. "I've got some bad news for them. It's a whole
lot harder to overturn a constitutional amendment than it is a law,"
"I don't feel anybody has the
right to deny somebody else their civil liberties," said Katherine
Sharp, a Kansas University student who was leaving the polls at the
South Park Recreation Center.
But other students came out to
support the amendment.
"I don't think we should allow it
(marriage) for gays and lesbians. I'm a Catholic, and that is what
we believe," said Scott Hampel, a KU student voting at the rec
More than 130 Kansas ministers signed a statement
opposing the amendment, but others supported it.
Heritage Baptist Church, the Rev. Scott Hanks was happy when told of
the amendment's landslide approval.
"I think it's going to
hold marriage to a higher standard for a long time to come," Hanks
said. "It's a standard the Bible talks about, that God put in place.
It's a shame we have to approve His standard. We should just obey
Douglas County alone
Hanks said he wasn't
surprised voters in Douglas County, alone in Kansas, defeated the
"That's just the liberal influence of our area,"
he said. "I'm glad that's not the influence of our entire state,
that's for sure."
The Rev. Leo Barbee, pastor of Lawrence's
Victory Bible Church, fought against the city's "Simply Equal"
ordinance in 1995 that protected gays and lesbians against
discrimination. He said Tuesday he was gladdened by the amendment's
passage but disappointed by the vote in Lawrence.
I think, has shown it's behind the times. I'm sorry for Lawrence,"
But Diane Silver, a gay parent from Lawrence, said
she was proud so many people voted against the
Kansans for Fairness said when the campaign
started, polls showed only about 18 percent of Kansans would vote
"We are coming out of this much stronger than
when we came in," she said.
said Tuesday's vote was not the end.
Fox said issues such as
abortion, evolution and a proposed federal gay-marriage amendment
are prominent on fundamentalist Christians' radar screens.
He said he intended to make sure voters knew which Kansas
legislators voted against putting the state marriage ban on the
"We'll do a real good job of identifying who those
people are," he said.
Ney, with Kansans for Fairness, said he
believed the religious right's next target would be to try to
prohibit gays from adopting children or becoming foster
"This is just going to embolden them. They have felt
pretty much in control," he said.