GRAYSON, Ky. (AP) — They stood chanting outside the jail house, “Thank you, Kim; Thank you, Kim,” and prayed that the defiant county clerk locked inside could hear them.
As Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis began her third day as an inmate at the Carter County Detention Center, having chosen indefinite imprisonment over licensing gay marriage, around 300 people gathered on the lawn outside.
“She won’t bow, I promise you,” Davis’ husband, Joe, told the crowd. “She sends her love to each and every one of you all. And this is what she said, ‘All is well. Tell them to hold their head high because I am.'”
Part revival, part political rally, a series of speakers denounced the government and the judiciary, and hailed Davis a Christian hero in a war against the godless. They waved signs that read “Kim Davis for President,” ”no to sodomite perversion” and “God gives his hardest battles to his strongest soldiers.”
Some traveled from states away to support of the embattled clerk, held in contempt of court by U.S. District Judge David Bunning on Thursday and sent to jail until she agrees to follow the court’s order. She has pledged she never will.
News of her imprisonment rocketed around the world, igniting a furious debate over religious freedom and the place of God in government.
As the temperature topped 90 degrees in Grayson, Kentucky, Davis’ supporters sweated and shouted for more than an hour.