Rally outside Fayette County Courthouse supports same-sex marriage
By Liz Zemba
Published: Friday, Feb. 15, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
A rally in support of legislation allowing same-sex marriage was held outside the Fayette County courthouse on Thursday.
About two dozen individuals, some carrying signs that read “Pride Against Prejudice” and “With Love and Marriage for All,” turned out to show support for passage of a law in Pennsylvania.
The rally was organized through Marriage Equality for Pennsylvania, according to Paula Johnston, contact for the group's Fayette County chapter.
“We are out here to support marriage equality for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people,” Johnston said. “And to create awareness and gain greater acceptance.”
Noting that other states, including Maryland and Washington, have granted gay-marriage rights, Johnston said the group's members want a similar law in Pennsylvania.
“We just want the right to be married,” Johnston said. “It's not just about sanctioning marriage. There are rights that married people have that civil unions don't.”
Those rights, Johnston said, include Social Security death benefits, the ability to make health care decisions for a spouse and joint tax return filings.
Troy Michael Smith, 25, of Connellsville, who spoke at the rally, said the group wants small rallies such as the one held Thursday to spark larger ones in bigger communities.
The goal, he said, is to foster support at the local level that will evolve into a statewide push for marriage equality.
“We do have a voice, but the many are silent,” Smith said. “That's the problem. We need people who are silent to reach out to their local leaders.”
A lone protestor, Rebecca Mansberry of Uniontown, stood at the rear of the crowd with a sign that read, “I Do Not Agree.”
“I disagree with their lifestyle,” Mansberry said, lamenting the loss of prayer in public schools and the banishment of Christian-based principals from government. “I figured I needed to stand for what I believe, which is becoming a minority.”
Another woman, Lori Rodeheaver of McClellandtown, passed out Valentine's Day cookies with her 7-year-old daughter, Mia. Rodeheaver, who writes a blog on Christianity and has issued a self-published book on “Organic Christianity,” said she does not support the homosexual lifestyle but wanted those at the rally to know they are “loved.”
“We thought we would share some love with them because we think the church gets a bad reputation for the way they treat people,” Rodeheaver said. “We do not support homosexuals, but we love people.”
Liz Zemba is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-601-2166 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Three Connellsville area veterans share stories from World War II
- Groundbreaking for Connellsville hotel shifts to January
- Two new members welcomed to Connellsville Area School Board
- Connellsville Area High School receives positive report from Middle States study
- Fayette officials look for $3M in cuts
- Connellsville’s St. Rita’s Christian Mothers prepare for cookie sale
- Connellsville Senior Center welcomes card club members
- Churches, nonprofits participate in It’s a Connellsville Christmas
- District court will open Dec. 16 in Star Junction
- Connellsville student ‘touched the lives of so many’
- Perry supervisors plan to erect township building