Tulsans Share Mixed Feelings Over Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Friday, June 26th 2015, 11:46 pm
By: News On 6

Lots of Oklahomans are celebrating the Supreme Court's decision to legalize same-sex marriages.

While the decision is happy news for the Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transgender community, not everyone's happy about it.

A special celebration wrapped up Friday night as Tulsans packed the Dennis R. Neal Equality Center.

For the LGBT community, the decision is a major win. However, it's one they say they'll have to fight to keep.

6/26/2015 Related Story: Oklahoma Gay Rights Supporters, Detractors Say Fight Isn't Over

For Sharon Bishop-Baldwin and several others, it was a long overdue celebration.

"When the word popped up marriage our hearts stopped and then it said they had ruled in our favor and the lump in our throat comes and we said really we're equal we're really equal," she said.

The Supreme Court's 5-4 vote to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide is history making, but for the LGBT community it's still not enough.

6/26/2015 Related Story: Supreme Court Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage, Ban Overturned

Oklahomans for Equality Advocacy Chairman Mike Redman said, "It is still legal to discriminate against gay, lesbian and transgendered individuals, with respect to their homes, housing accommodation and employment. So until we have equal rights in those areas we will be here advocating on their behalf."

The court's ruling in support of same-sex marriage has been generations in the making, but the opposition to it continues.

State Representative Sally Kern said, "Years ago the homosexual activist just wanted to come out of the closet, today they want to put anyone who disagrees with them into the closet, probably into jail, and they want to do it with government sanction."

"Changing the definition of marriage and based on the decision of one vote which has enormous ramification and I think it was a terrible decision and I'm very disappointed," said Bishop Edward Slattery.

While supporters of marriage equality say it's all about the right to love the person of their choice, Slattery returns to religion.

"I cannot find that either rational or biblical, I think it's against God's plan," he said.

No matter the arguments, tonight those on the winning side are just savoring the high court's decision that affirms that they are finally like everyone else.

Of the people I spoke to, both supporter and those opposing, say the LGBT community shouldn't be denied access to medical care, housing or run the risk of losing their job because of their sexual preference.