Dean, Council Clash on Gay Unions
He’s lone critic of marriage resolution
Times-Picayune, July 10, 2004
3800 Howard Ave., New Orleans, LA 70140
By Amy Blakely, St. Bernard bureau
When it comes to supporting legislation about “family
marriage,” St. Bernard Parish Council members—with the exception of
Council Chairman Lynn Dean—say “I do.”
On Tuesday, the council decided to pass a resolution
alerting the state’s congressional delegation to their thoughts on the
sanctity of marriage.
Councilman Craig Taffaro offered a resolution supporting
family marriage or, specifically, the union of one man and one woman in
The move prompted a mini-showdown between Dean and
Taffaro, 38, a psychotherapist, who has been married for 17 years and has
Dean, noting that he and his wife, Jackie, have been
married for 56 years, said he opposed Taffaro’s resolution. He paraphrased
some biblical passages, saying people should love their neighbors and not
judge others. Dean also said gay couples don’t enjoy the same financial
benefits a husband and wife might.
All of that combined, Dean said, makes him think that
government shouldn’t get involved in defining marriage.
Taffaro said he and Dean would just have to disagree.
In the end, Taffaro’s pro-marriage resolution passed
with only Dean objecting.
This isn’t the first time that Dean, 80, has stood up
publicly for gay rights.
In 2003, when he was a state senator, Dean sponsored a
bill that would have exempted private conduct among consenting adults from the
state’s sodomy law. Aspects of that law applying to homosexuals were
eventually muted by the U.S. Supreme Court when it overturned a Texas sodomy
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