Pennsylvania's Law Banning Same Sex Marriage Challenged

FRANKLIN COUNTY, PA- The American Civil Liberties Union says it is time to challenge Pennsylvania's law banning same sex marriage.

"More than half the country favors equal access to marriage; more than half of Pennsylvanians favor the freedom to marry. Legislators are behind the curve," said ACLU-PA attorney Mary Catherine Roper.

Just two weeks ago, the United States Supreme Court issued two major rulings concerning gay marriage and gay rights. This lawsuit attempts to overturn Pennsylvania's ban on gay marriage on the state level.

But gay marriage opponents are saying that the ACLU's use of the courts disregards what voters want. They say the matter should be handled legislatively.

The ACLU says it chose to tackle the law through state courts because Pennsylvania's Republican-controlled legislature is not likely to budge on the issue of gay rights.

"It's not what people's individual religious views are, it is about what is fair when it comes to how the government treats you, and that's really all we are looking for," Roper said.

It's a topic not only being debated in the court of law, but also the court of public opinion.

"The fact that the ACLU has brought this lawsuit against Pennsylvania, I can understand where they are coming from, I also understand other people and their beliefs, but my belief is that it should have no government involvement whatsoever," said Hagerstown resident Susan Mayer.

For many, the debate hits close to home.

"My grandma has been gay for years, and I love her just the same, and she is going to be with her wife regardless," said Chambersburg resident Rachelle Eckenrode.

If the lawsuit succeeds in Pennsylvania, gay marriage would be legal in 14 states.

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