Follow breaking news @lgbtqnation

Same-sex marriage backers, foes hold dueling rallies at Utah capitol

Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Rick Bowmer, APSupporters of gay marriage gather for a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City. Opponents and supporters of gay marriage held twin rallies at the Capitol on Tuesday.

Rick Bowmer, AP
Supporters of gay marriage gather for a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City. Opponents and supporters of gay marriage held twin rallies at the Capitol on Tuesday.

SALT LAKE CITY — A little more than a month after a surprising federal court ruling overturned this conservative state’s ban on gay marriage, the battle over the issue hit the Capitol building Tuesday as hundreds of opponents and supporters of same-sex marriage held twin rallies.

Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, said Utah is the epicenter of the fight over marriage and how it’s decided.

A supporter of gay marriage Tiffany Lundeen wears a flag during a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer, AP
A supporter of same-sex marriage Tiffany Lundeen wears a flag during a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Supporters of gay marriage gather for a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer, AP
Supporters of gay marriage gather for a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Married couple Chris Johnson, left, and David Tuma, hug each other during a rally outside the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer, AP
Married couple Chris Johnson, left, and David Tuma, hug each other during a rally outside the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Corbin Aoyagi, a supporters of gay marriage, waves his flag during a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer, AP
Corbin Aoyagi, a supporter of gay marriage, waves his flag during a rally at the Utah State Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Opponents for gay marriage show their support during a rally at the Utah State Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer, AP
Opponents of same-sex marriage rally at the Utah State Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer, APOpponents of same-sex marriage show their support during a rally at the Utah State Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer, AP
Opponents of same-sex marriage rally at the Utah State Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Brian Brown

Rick Bowmer, AP
Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, speaks during a rally for the opponents of gay marriage at the Utah State Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

Protesters are shown during a rally for the opponents for gay marriage at the Utah State Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City

Rick Bowmer, AP
Opponents of same-sex marriage rally at the Utah State Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, in Salt Lake City.

“Activist judges now feel no qualms in simply putting forward their opinion as the law,” Brown said. “The people of Utah voted on this.”

Brown’s Washington, D.C.-based group, which opposes same-sex marriage, held a rally inside the Capitol building with a local group called Celebration of Marriage. About 700 people attended, with many holding pink and blue signs handed out by organizers with messages such as “Biology is not bigotry.”

Several supporters of gay marriage were escorted out by security officers after they interrupted the event by yelling, “Equality now.” Several protesters sat on the floor in the middle of the event and threw glitter.

Rod Arquette, a local radio host serving as host of the event, addressed the gay marriage supporters interrupting the event.

“We do not hate you. We do not despise you,” he said. “But we want to stand up for what we believe in.”

Doug Mainwaring, a gay man and national tea party activist, told the crowd that “it is not homophobic to oppose same-sex marriage.”

He said it’s best for children when they have a mother and a father.

“Two men creating or engineering a family with children is not exactly the same as a family headed by a man and a woman,” he said. “Kids need and learn from both a mom and a dad and they deserve to have them.”

Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes, a Republican, also spoke at the rally and discussed the state’s battle over gay marriage.

He said some have criticized him for paying $300,000 for outside attorneys to help with their legal challenge.

“I do not believe this is a losing case,” he said to a standing ovation.

A few hours earlier, about 300 supporters of same-sex marriage rallied at the Capitol steps, carrying rainbow flags and homemade signs with messages such as “Love is Legal” and “It’s okay to be gay.”

Speakers called for the recognition of same-sex marriages and attacked arguments made by their opponents that children do best with a mother and a father.

More importantly, children need a safe and supportive home, said Mark Lawrence, director of the group Restore Our Humanity, which is backing the legal challenge to the gay marriage ban.

“Marriage is the foundation of society. Yes, we agree with that,” he said. “And that foundation will only be strengthened when it’s built upon equality, decency and humanity.”

Lawrence also addressed arguments made by opponents that recognizing gay rights is carving out special rights for one particular group.

“We are not asking for special rights,” he said. “We are demanding human rights.”

The opposing gatherings are the latest square-off over gay marriage, an issue that took Utah by surprise over the past month. More than 1,000 gay couples rushed to wed when a federal judge overturned Utah’s constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in late December. Voters approved the amendment in 2004.

Same-sex marriages continued in Utah until early January, when the U.S. Supreme Court granted Utah’s request for an emergency halt to the weddings.

Republican Gov. Gary Herbert then ordered state agencies to freeze recognition of the marriages.

The state has also appealed the federal judge’s ruling to the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

While the case will play out in federal court this spring, it could eventually wind up before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Bob Henline, the assistant editor at QSaltLake Magazine, decried the spending of taxpayer dollars to defend the same-sex marriage ban.

Henline, one of the organizers of the rally supporting same-sex marriage, also called on lawmakers to approve a statewide ban on discrimination based on sexual identity or orientation.

Last year, the proposal made it further than ever in the legislative process, but it ultimately failed.

Sen. Steve Urquhart, the Republican from St. George sponsoring the measure, has said he’ll keep trying until it passes.

The bill is shaping up to be even more closely watched in the wake of the gay-marriage decision, with conservative groups running television advertisements opposing Urquhart’s proposal.

Henline said if lawmakers don’t consider the bill, it’s “nothing short of moral and legislative cowardice.”

© 2014, Associated Press, All Rights Reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Share this article with your friends and followers:

Archives: , , ,

Filed under: Utah, [ Editor's Picks ]

63 more reader comments:

  1. Let’s take to the time. To come to mutual respect for all

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:08am
  2. I will add a lil rap I wrote. I’ve been out for 38 years and actively fighting the fight. <3 Love on Lesbos and Lesbros.

    Your eyes tell a story- It’s untold
    you’re a mystery to me about to unfold
    Lets tell the story about love and hate
    We’ll speak about it now- no time to hesitate

    *It’s a shame…It’s a shame..*

    I speak about love- I speak from the heart
    So that’s going to be my place to start
    I am standing up for everyone’s right to love
    Some thing that isn’t judged from up above

    It’s the purity- the beauty of who we are
    Almost as simple as wishing upon a star
    We all love no matter our sex, gender, colour of our skin
    When your heart makes a decision-it’s always going to win

    YET …
    Somewhere Sometime along the way
    Someone stood up and said
    “Hey!
    You can’t love who you want to- It’s sin.
    We’ll say it’s in the Bible and say it with a grin.
    We don’t really know why we love to hate….
    But let’s just get nasty- no time to hesitate.

    * It’s a shame … it’ a shame*

    Well I thought about this along time ago
    I thought I could teach them by showing them light you know
    So they’d drop the anger that they carry steadfast and true
    They want to rage and this has nothing to do with me or you

    I’ve done my share of teaching to open their eyes
    Once in awhile I ‘ve seen a smile much to my surprise.
    I saw some hope and this has inspired me to go on
    I know who I am – I am strong and I know where I belong.

    Fast forward to the present the year 2014
    I still cannot believe what I’ve seen..
    The people I was wishing nothing but good will
    Spewing so much hate from the mouth of Phil

    Don’t Die Nasty … Don’t Die Nasty

    * It’s a shame It’s a shame *

    What so hard to understand- I operate from the heart
    In the eyes of God- I’d say that’s a pretty good start.
    Slinging your accusations all about genitals and lust
    I can’t say we think the same and in that you can trust.

    So who is the sinner and who is the winner?
    I have it up on hate..I’m not too late and to fight that with light- I will not hesitate.

    Rapped & Written by Dee … Tada!

    Copyright © 2014

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:27am
  3. Go Marriage Equality!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:46am
  4. Oh man, wish I could be there to support y’all! Sending my love! <3

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:47am
  5. Beautiful.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:48am
  6. <3....

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:48am
  7. Keep strong and Keep proud

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:49am
  8. <3

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:53am
  9. We have come far and will continue to, love it. Wish I was there to support us <3 :-)

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:01am
  10. Love always win!!!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:02am
  11. I love the CTR poster. My LDS friend has that posted in her home.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:03am
  12. Facebook supports the gay bashers

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:07am
  13. Whatever. Its natural to be atracted and committ yourself to another human being.

    Replied on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:44am
  14. KEEP LOSE YOUR TIME…….HAHAHA

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:16am
  15. We support you in FL!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:17am
  16. Where is this snow that Utah always brags about?

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:30am
  17. Eventually the SCTUS will have the final say and marriage equality will be a reality in Utah and elsewhere in the US ..

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:38am
  18. Keep it up everyone .. proud of youall

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:43am
  19. Make. Legal age to marry 13. In utah.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 6:47am
  20. Go marriage equality Utah!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 7:09am
  21. SCOTUS make it nationwide!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 7:10am
  22. and i wish i had a healthy body, i just love good protests!! when there is a cause, there is no time to pause!!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 7:30am
  23. add me lgbt

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 10:05am
  24. Love and power to ya all, from North Germany! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WQn9YqiZlI&feature=youtube_gdata_player This song is from the Dutch band called BAMBIX. It is against Hate!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 10:42am
  25. Get over it you haters I look at it this way if God did not want gay in this world he would not made us if God did not want haters and disappointment then he would not have made ignorant people

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 11:52am
  26. go marriage equality!!!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 12:30pm
  27. all you gays are making a joke out of marriage

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 12:56pm
  28. All in the name of jesus

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 1:45pm
  29. ok once again it shows two things to me: First and Foremost that true love whether its gays, lesbians, straights, etc conquers all. Second that peoples hate continues. These signs I see that children need a mother and father please people I know some of the best parents that are gay. I dont know if its your lack of wanting to grow to be a better person or that you just want to blame and hate someone. But let me tell you one thing: At least we beleive in the sacantity of marriage and equality for all. What can you say: you believe in divorce and hatred!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 2:05pm
  30. First of all, Rights shouldn’t be a popular vote! Secondly, these anti-gay marriage jerks need to put all this energy in their own marriages, because that my friends will protect the “sanctity” of marriage. The problem today is not that the gay community really needs the approval of others. They just want their same rights as everyone else. And these marriage blockers think we need their approval, We DON’T!!! Seriously, acting just like Westboro Baptist Church! These folks are gonna be laughed at 20 years from now in all the educational textbooks. I will be old, and I will laugh at them!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:13pm
  31. Brave person

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:24pm
  32. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Diamondz-LGBTQ/726289154083214 – EQUALITY FOR ALL!!! – Join us now to be a part of the fight for EQUAL RIGHTS!!! Spread love, not hate.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:31pm
  33. Then he should stop divorce….

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:33pm
  34. how many str8 ppl are single parents? more of the same stupid bullshit

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:36pm
  35. Omg children deserve a family, gay or straight. God loves all his children not just the straight one’s! Love is LOVE

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:36pm
  36. I really want to know why some people hate homosexuals and without involving God in this. That’d be interesting.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:37pm
  37. Children need Mom and Dad yeah right so how about those straight couple who had divorced then :v what children need is a family to love them and care for them not Mom and Dad, gay or les or straight it’s all the same, love is love !!!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:39pm
  38. Well if children deserve mom and dads then they should step up and be foster parents me and my life partner have been foster parents for 5 years now and we have 7 kids

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:39pm
  39. My favourite “children deserve a mom and dad” outlaw divorce then.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:39pm
  40. he supports a mom and dad?,closed minded moron.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:40pm
  41. Why are people more angry about a child having same sex parents, than children who only have one parent, homeless children, hungry children, violence against children…. Give me a break!!! All a child needs is a family unit that has love and parents that can provide for them. These people need to rethink their priorities.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:41pm
  42. I grew up with an abusive dad and my best friend grew up without a dad along with over half of my class mates and we have done just fine!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:41pm
  43. Every child deserve loving parents/family.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:41pm
  44. Does this mean I have to get remarried so my son has a dad as well as a mum?

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:43pm
  45. Its funny to me to see old men holding signs about mom and dad, their generation was probably the last one to follow the momdad dinner at 5 and “wait until your father gets home” life. We have changed as a society, single moms and dads raising kids with love and devotion. I do not think 65-70 year old people have a clue about it they just have memories of how it use to be,

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:45pm
  46. They deserve a community that doesn’t teach them to hate!!! These people ares like the people who don’t like a book or a movie but have not read the book or seen the movies. I think they need to try homosexuality before they condemn it.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:46pm
  47. kids need a male and a female role model as they grow up. why do gays not agree? cuz then they have no argument to justify their reason their kind of marriage could work.it seams Gays only care about themselves and thrie sexual preference.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:48pm
  48. BOYCOTT ALL STATES AND BUSINESSES THAT IS ANTIGAY

    EVERY STATE THAT HASN’T PAST A LAW GRANTING SAME SEX MARRIAGES, AND LAWS AGAINST DISCRIMINATION OF SAME SEX WILL BE BOYCOTTED

    THIS BOYCOTT INCLUDES BUSINESSES THAT REFUSE TO SERVE SAME SEX PARTNERS OR THE GAY PEOPLE

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:48pm
  49. Children actually need and deserve “great parents”. It doesn’t matter what gender they are. Children brought into this world deserve to be loved and raised in a good family.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:49pm
  50. It all the kids had a mom and a dad that cared for them the world wouldn’t be in the shape that it is in today. And Dr Phil wouldn’t have a show that lasted for 10 years.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:51pm
  51. People are so ridiculous….how about they worthy about there own lives.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:58pm
  52. My dad was never in my life. So, what now?! I was raised by my Mom and Grandma. So, technically I was raised by two women!!! I turned out just fine, EXCEPT for my “daddy issues” because of a man who was never in my life! FUCK YOU OLD MAN!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 3:59pm
  53. And Cheryl, have your rights taken away – or not even given in this case – and you tell me how concerned you’d be!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:03pm
  54. While I understand the sentiment. What children really need is to be taken care of, loved and guided through this life.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:07pm
  55. Kids in a smae-sex parent home HAVE a Mom and Dad. The equipment doesn’t make the role…the intent, talent, and love do.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:11pm
  56. Kids need two parents who do a great job. Even a single does pretty well in most cases. Those parents who are homophobic are the lawsy ones…which means they cannot accept their child the way it is born. Children need parents who are open-minded instead of narrow-minded.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:18pm
  57. Tell that to the men stet fathers n the mothers they can go to hell

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:20pm
  58. I wish that I have gay parents more than straight married parents, because I do see gay marriage and lesibian marriage more than straight marriage. America should say no to straight marriage. Because the straight married couples do teaches their children to hurt people by playing a rated M videogame on PlayStation and Xbox too.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 4:57pm
  59. How can one group who only holds a “belief”, go and try to enforce others to live by it? That’s harassment and bullying. GLBT people are just living out their normalcy like “straight” people and are not harassing or bullying ANYONE to force them to live like they do. When will law enforcement stop these bullies and harassers? “Freedom of speech” does not trump freedom from harassment, bullying, and threats and violence.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:00pm
  60. Respect , morals , success , forgiveness , responsibilities and love have no gender !! As long as ur child has that doesn’t matter if they were raised by animals !!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:03pm
  61. Children deserve a loving home period!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:09pm
  62. So many kids are raised by single parents, I’m pretty sure they come out just fine.

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:11pm
  63. Many people possess many traits of women and men…who gives a shit what the gender is…as long as they have a loving, healthy, and caring home environment that raises the kid to be a person who contributes positively to society. I do not see alot of straight people being the example that anyone should follow…

    Posted on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 at 5:14pm