Last edited: December 17, 2004

Hundreds Rally to Call for Resignation of Roy Moore

Tuscaloosa News, March 9, 2002
P.O. Box 20587, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401-0587
Fax: 205-349-0802

By Stephanie Taylor, Staff Writer

TUSCALOOSA—Several hundred people rallied on the steps of Gorgas Library at the University of Alabama on Friday to call for the resignation of Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore.

"It’s both saddening and frightful that we have a member of this state’s highest court of authority that uses his capacity to rule in a manner of personal bias and prejudice," said Jon Macklem, University of Alabama Student Government Association President.

The rally, sponsored by the UA Human Rights Alliance and the UA Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Alliance, featured 10 speakers, including professors, students and clergy.

Protesters held signs reading such things as: "Vote Moore for Führer," "Go back to law school Roy Moore" and "No Moore hate."

Recalling the civil rights rallies of the 1960s, the Rev. J.R. Finney of Birmingham’s Covenant Metropolitan Community Church said, "This is déjà vu all over again."

Finney, who once marched at Washington with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., said he and other community leaders are "in it for the long haul" and are organizing a movement to protest Moore’s status as the state’s top jurist.

"Judge Moore," Finney said, "your tactics may play in some parts of Alabama, but you’re on the wrong side of history, and I want you to know that it’s no badge of honor to be the Bull Connor of your era."

Moore, 55, has been a lightning rod of controversy in his nine years as jurist—eight in Etowah County and the past year on the state’s top court.

He first gained national attention by displaying the Ten Commandments in his Etowah County courtroom. A similar monument is now in the Supreme Court building.

Most recently he has come under fire for a Feb. 15 opinion he wrote involving a child custody case and a lesbian mother. In it he called homosexuality "inherently evil."

"I can tell you his opinion is poorly argued, poorly written and poorly reasoned," UA law professor Bryan Fair said. "It misrepresents Alabama law."

Fair said the weakness in Moore’s arguments surfaces in the fact that he had to reach back to an 18th-century jurist—William Blackstone—to find support for his reasoning.

"Now is the time to shout in our loudest voice that we will not go back to an oppressive America," Fair said.

Rally organizers said they might meet every Friday at noon in the same place.

"East Germany was overthrown by a small group meeting in one place. This can be our place," said UA American Studies Associate Professor Rose Gladney.

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