This past week a federal judge ruled Indiana’s same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional, but in Daviess County there were no wedding bells ringing for same-sex couples. Despite receiving an email from the Indiana Attorney General’s office advising county clerks to “show respect for the judge and the orders that are issued,” local clerk Sherri Healy failed to uphold her duties as an employee of the state.
Whatever your personal opinions on same-sex marriage are, it is important to remember that elected officials are entrusted to uphold the law regardless of their personal beliefs. It is troublesome to see that in Daviess County individuals in public office are not just blurring the line separating church and state, rather they are completely erasing it.
As our nation moves toward a more equal and just society, it is essential that Daviess County fosters a community of love and acceptance. If we want our county to grow economically, we need to advertise ourselves as a desirable place to live, work and visit. Many of the outstanding positive contributions of local organizations working diligently to improve the quality of life in Daviess County become overshadowed when we are spotlighted in the state news as one of the few counties that refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
It is the year 2014, and we need to move out of a 1950s mindset. Despite the fact that there is currently a stay on the federal judge’s ruling, precedent in other states has shown that appeals of these types of rulings are usually denied. Most likely the Indiana Attorney General’s appeal will be denied and same-sex marriages will be legal in all of Indiana. As a community we must embrace this change and show that we are willing to accept diversity.