Approach To Same Sex Marriage
Critics In An Uproar
By Nannette Miranda,
abclocal.go.com from the Web, February 3, 2007
Yolo County, CA Feb.2 -- A
county clerk outside Sacramento has come up with a unique Valentine's Day idea
for same sex couples who want to get married. But the Yolo County clerk's
proposal is drawing fire from those opposed to gay marriage.
Same sex couples who'll try to get married in Yolo County this Valentine's Day
will be in for a surprise. In addition to being told 'no', Clerk-Recorder
Freddie Oakley will be giving out "Certificates of Inequality," made on her home
Freddie Oakley, Yolo County Clerk-Recorder: "I want to give them something
to take away that says: 'I personally respect you and believe you should
have the same rights as everyone else.'"
To quiet critics, the elected official serving her second term made sure the
certificate says it's an unofficial document.
Freddie Oakley, Yolo County Clerk-Recorder: "This is in lieu of my
And it's not really valid under any state law.
The mother of two, in a traditional marriage for 37 years, is herself an
evangelical Christian who says she just wants to make a statement.
Freddie Oakley, Yolo County Clerk-Recorder: "It's just not right that
they're considered unequal and can't get married in California."
The certificate may be unofficial, but traditional marriage supporters call
Oakley's move a 'stunt.'
They not only oppose gay marriage, but also the use of public buildings as a
platform for personal views.
Craig DeLuz, traditional marriage supporter: "She shouldn't be on the
government dime when she's doing it. And she shouldn't be utilizing
government resources, for example the county clerk's office, in order to be
Freddie Oakley, Yolo County Clerk-Recorder: "We don't give up our first
amendment rights when we cross the threshold onto public property."
After 33 years together, Ellen Pontac and Shelly Bailes have gone to the County
Clerk's office for seven years in a row. A Certificate of Inequality would
mean a lot to them.
Ellen Pontac, same sex marriage supporter: "To have an elected official
step out and say this is wrong and I want people to know this is wrong, is just
Shelly Bailes, same sex marriage supporter: "This piece of paper says we
really are being discriminated against."
The constitutionality of California's gay marriage ban is still pending at the
state Supreme Court.