> Read the article from 08/28/13
> Read "Is Facebook Making Students Terrible Writers?" (Unrelated)
There was an article on a local news website yesterday that caught my attention. The mayor of New Hope, a small, very gay friendly town that hosts a gay pride parade on its main street every year, refused to marry a same sex couple. The couple had obtained a marriage license in neighboring Montgomery County, despite the fact that it is illegal to do so. They then brought the license to New Hope's mayor, Larry Keller, who refused to officiate, citing the the definition of marriage in Pennsylvania being the union of a man and a woman.
He defended himself stating, "“If it was legal, I’d be happy to do it. But, it’s not the law yet.” I agree with Keller. How can the mayor of a borough defy the law and marry a same sex couple? If he broke the law and got a DUI, there would be an uproar. I don't see why this situation should be any different. Keller is a public figure who, when sworn into office, took an oath to obey and uphold the law.
I had an interesting conversation on Facebook with my friend Brandy after I had posted a link to the article on my timeline. I'm going to re-post it here. I hope she doesn't mind. Here's what was said, including all the bad punctuation, grammar, and syntax that comes with the way everyone writes on Facebook. That's a conversation for another blog. Full conversation after the jump... Click "Read More".
Nicholas Emeigh - "There probably wouldn't be repercussions, but I wouldn't have done it either. How did they obtain a marriage license? If you obtain a marriage license in a state where gay marriage is legal, you can't cross state lines and expect someone to marry you when it isn't legal in the officiant's state. People get too carried away with this stuff. The mayor said, "I would have done it gladly if it was legal." There you have it. If a man and a woman obtained a license in a state where it was legal, then came to PA and asked someone to marry them and we come to find out they are first cousins, no one would do it and everyone would be appalled. Not like the reaction here, but the same issue."
Brandi - "The article in the paper said they got the license in Montgomery county... Marrying your cousin is a whole other planet of issues. Lol I do feel bad for the mayor though. He's taking slack for something he can't legally do. It's the morons who don't change the friggin law that should be to blame"
Nicholas Emeigh - "LOL yeah, it's legal in some states, but not in PA. That was my point, goofball. You shouldn't be able to apply for and get a marriage license in a state where you can't legally be married. That's confusing and wrong."
Brandi - "I would party it UP if all of my gay friends could marry!! Haha My friend Annie just filled out her first W2 since being married to her wife. It's something so blah and common for everybody else, but for her, it's all exciting! We're so very proud of her to be able to legally share her life with her wife! It's just a shame that people are playing God, and determining what's "right and wrong" based on their OWN religion and/or beliefs!"
Another article was published criticizing the mayor, and I can relate to both sides of the debate. I'm a gay man, so I would love for my state to legalize gay marriage, whether or not I want to get married; however, you can't expect the mayor of a borough, no matter how gay friendly it is, to do something that's against the law. Though I can play the part of devil's advocate, it's not so clear which side the devil is on. One thing is very clear to me, though: the law is the law, and until gay marriage is legalized in the state of Pennsylvania, no marriage licenses should be issued, and no marriages should be officiated. Plain and simple.