Arkansans Rally in D.C. for Marriage Equality

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WASHINGTON D.C. (KNWA/FOX24) – A decision by the U.S. Supreme Court could legalize same-sex marriage across the country, effectively ending the Arkansas case and the debate nationwide. Two Arkansans who are part of the same-sex marriage case in the Natural State spoke on the steps of the Supreme Court, Tuesday.

“I have inherited a huge family of the LGBT community in Arkansas. They have adopted me as their mother, and I am very proud to carry that title,” Arkansas Plaintiff Attorney, Cheryl Maples, said.

Maples represents a number of couples in same-sex marriage cases in the Natural state.

“It’s not just the LGBT community that feels that this needs to be done. I’m an ally. I am not gay. I am heterosexual, and I’m very much a part of this,” Maples said.

Maples says her gay daughter is just one reason she feels motivated to support this movement for marriage equality. Maples delivered a speech, Tuesday, on the steps of the Supreme Court in front of thousands.

“The vast majority were people there that were just in support of being able to love who they want to love and being treated equally, and people like me that were in support of those people because we also believe in their right to happiness and equality,” Maples said.

Arkansan Wes Givens was married in New York, he believes his marriage should be honored in every state; but as he rallied in front of the Supreme Court, Tuesday, his focus is for those afraid to ‘come out’.

“For the younger generation how hard it was for me 20-30 years ago when I came out, how hard it was and so I’m hoping to be able to help the younger generation,” Givens said.

In Arkansas, some 400 marriage licenses were given to same-sex couples following the state court decision last year, but the Arkansas Supreme Court blocked the issuance of more licenses pending its review of the case.

The Supreme Court could either let this debate continue to play out, or end it altogether by ruling same-sex marriage bans unconstitutional.

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