Rally For Marriage Equality At Next Week’s Federal Hearing 5/13
Equality Virginia, the GCCR, People of Faith For Equality in Virginia and other community activists and supporters are set to be front and center at the Federal Appeals challenge to VA’s same-sex marriage ban next Tuesday, 5/13.
“This is the most historical event that our community may witness in our lifetimes,” said Gay Community Center Foundation ED Bill Harrison. “It is critical that we show our backing, especially to our two courageous couples who are taking the commonwealth to court. They are doing this for all of us and they more than deserve our support. We are making American history. Who wants to miss that?”
The hearing on Tuesday started out months ago as a challenge by Norfolk couple Tim Bostic and Tony London. A Norfolk district court heard the first oral arguments back in early February, and a decision was issued by Federal Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen on 2/13 which struck down the state’s ban.
The case grew to include a class-action lawsuit filed by the ACLU on behalf of all same-sex couples in VA when a judge combined the two cases into one to be argued on the 13th.
Expect a large crowd on both sides of the issue as the National Organization of Marriage, a group fighting to keep same-sex marriage bans nation wide, is expected to hold a protest as well.
Those supporting the ban haven’t been shy in the past. People of Faith for Equality in Virginia (POFEV), a group fighting for LGBTQ equality around the state, was present for the Norfolk hearing and their President, Rev. Robin Gorsline, said it was hard to see so much push back against their cause.
“There were, on one side of the street, 250 people saying lots of loud things with incredibly negative signs. On the other side, there were 20-30 of us holding up signs about love,” said Gorsline. “We want the equality side of the street to have a similar kind of power that the other side does. This time, let equality love and justice be clearly illustrated.”
For Gorsline, it’s a matter of showing those who cannot make it that the voice for equality is present in the state’s capital. “People need to come out to stand up for equality and to stand against those who will be at the court-house protesting equality,” he said.
Equality Virginia has organized a Facebook event to help keep track of those who plan to come to Tuesday’s event. You can confirm your attendance here.
“The majority of Virginians support the freedom to marry,” said James Parrish, executive director of Equality Virginia, the group charged with organizing the marriage equality rally. “It will be important to see a big crowd outside the courthouse on Tuesday to reflect the prevailing opinion in Virginia: We are ready for marriage equality here at home.”
Be there by Tuesday, 5/13 at 8:30 AM till about 12:30 PM at the Richmond Federal Court of Appeals, 901 Bank St, Richmond, Virginia 23219.
From national protests to grassroots activism, EV’s Day of Action connects local LGBTQ advocates and citizens with legislators on 2/7
“We have reached the point of changing hearts and minds.”February 2, 2017
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