Rhea Working on New Resolution on Gay Marriage
Associated Press, June 13,
DAYTON, Tenn.—Rhea County
commissioners are taking their time with a second attempt at a resolution
supporting Tennessee’s ban on homosexual marriage.
A fumbled attempt earlier this year led to a vote banning
gays altogether—threatening them with arrest for “crimes against
nature.” That measure was quickly withdrawn but not before national
attention brought protests and cries of outrage from the gay community.
The commissioners are now working up a resolution that
would specify support for the state’s ban on homosexual marriage. The
resolution was originally on the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting. But the
resolution is instead headed for a workshop to make sure it says what they
want it to say.
“After the last incident, we don’t want to put
anything hastily on the agenda,” commissioner Dennis Tumlin said.
Tumlin, who worked on the resolution with County Attorney
Gary Fritts, said he plans to bring the resolution to July’s workshop for
The resolution Tumlin is presenting would urge
legislators to uphold Tennessee’s definition of marriage as being between
one man and one woman. It also requests that current Tennessee law banning
same-sex marriage be adopted as amendments to the state and U.S.
Tumlin said the resolution could put to rest the debate
“Everyone is asking, ‘Why didn’t you finish what
you started?”’ he said. “This puts an end to it.”
Commissioners said they want to move past the issues of
the past two months and on to more important things. “Were hoping to end it
once and for all,” Tumlin said.
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