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Reaction to Court Ruling on Gay Marriage

http://ozarkspub.vo.llnwd.net/o37/KSMU/audio/mp3/reactionto_2292.mp3

The Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a ban on same-sex marriages is unconstitutional but stopped short of ordering the state to issue marriage licenses to the seven couples who wanted them. The court also gave the Massachusetts legislature a chance to act in light of this ruling. KSMU's Missy Shelton spoke with two Missourians on opposite sides of the issue to get their reaction to the ruling.

TWO LOBBY GROUPS IN MISSOURI RESPONDED DIFFERENTLY TO THE RULING.

JOEY DAVIS IS THE STATE DIRECTOR OF CONCERNED WOMEN FOR AMERICA.

BUT FOR MEMBERS OF PROMO, MISSOURI'S STATEWIDE, GAY, LESBIAN BISEXUAL AND TRANSGENDER CIVIL RIGHTS ORGANIZATION, THE RULING WAS A VICTORY.

GREG RAZER IS THE WESTERN MISSOURI FIELD ORGANIZER FOR PROMO.

AT LEAST FOR NOW, IT APPEARS A SIMILAR SITUATION IS UNLIKELY TO ARISE IN MISSOURI.

GREG RAZER POINTS OUT THAT HIS GROUP IS FIGHTING FOR MORE BASIC ISSUES THAN MARRIAGE IN MISSOURI. HIS GROUP HAS PUSHED LEGISLATION THAT WOULD PROHIBIT LANDLOARDS AND EMPLOYERS FROM DISCRIMINATING AGAINST INDIVIDUALS BASED ON SEXUAL ORIENTATION.

DAVIS' GROUP WAS BEHIND THE EFFORT TO GET THE DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT PASSED...SHE ALSO SAYS MISSOURIANS ARE NOT READY TO SANCTION SAME SEX UNIONS.

DAVIS SAYS UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD A STATE LEGALIZE GAY MARRIAGE.

FOR PEOPLE WHO BELIEVE MARRIAGE IS EXCLUSIVELY FOR A MAN AND A WOMAN, GREG RAZER HAS A SUGGESTION.

RAZER SAYS HE DOESN'T WANT TO CHANGE ANYTHING DEALING WITH RELIGIOUS BELIEFS ABOUT MARRIAGE. INSTEAD, HE SAYS THE ISSUE IS ABOUT MAKING SURE THE STATE GUARANTEES EVERYONE THE RIGHT TO DECIDE WHETHER OR NOT TO GET MARRIED AND THE FREEDOM TO CHOOSE WHO THEY WILL MARRY.

I'M MISSY SHELTON FOR K-S-M-U NEWS.