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Mississippi Town Rejects Request For Area's First Gay Pride Parade

AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis
AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis

LGBTQ group Starkville Pride planned the event for March 24.

Residents in Starkville, Mississippi who requested the town host their first ever gay pride parade this March were rejected by the Board of Aldermen in a 4-3 vote.

LGBTQ group Starkville Pride planned the event for March 24 but faced rejection. Starkville Daily Newsreports that sixteen citizens of the town spoke publicly in favor of the parade while two spoke against it: resident Dorothy Isaac and pastor of Josey Creek Missionary Baptist Church Thomas Rogers.

Isaac told the Associated Pressthat she did not support the parade because "God created Adam and Eve."

An organizer of the parade, Bailey McDaniel, is reportedly going to be represented by Roberta Kaplan, the lawyer who represented Edie Windsor in the groundbreaking LGBTQ rights case United States v. Windsor.

Related | OUT 100: Edie Windsor

"The parade is integral because it shows the community that we're here, we're not going anywhere, you see us in everyday life," said McDaniel, a student at Mississippi State University, to AP.

It's far from the first time in recent years the Board of Aldermen have voted agaisnt the LGBTQ community: in 2015 they repealed discrimination protections and also ceased to provide health insurance to unmarried partners of city employees, at a time when gay marriage was still illegal.

Mayor Lynn Spruill, pictured above, expressed her disappointment in the decision, remarking: "I think it creates a view of the city of Starkville as noninclusive, and I happen to think we are an inclusive community. We value diversity."

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