Trial will be held before decision on same-sex marriage ban - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Trial will be held before decision on same-sex marriage ban

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(10/16/13) - A federal judge in Detroit says he will hold a trial before deciding whether to overturn Michigan's ban on same-sex marriage.

Federal judge Bernard Friedman says he wants to hear testimony from experts on whether there is legitimate interest in banning same-sex marriage, before he makes a ruling.

The possibility of the ban being overturned is creating a lot of controversy.

Earlier Wednesday, protestors rallied outside a Midland County building. The small group that came out said they support traditional marriage between a man and a woman. They want the Midland County Clerk to reconsider her decision to issue same sex marriage licenses.

"As the people in the state of Michigan, we need to stand up be counted and let our voices be heard that we're not going to have our laws overturned by a judge and that we voted for these things and it's the law and it has to stand," one protestor said.

"I don't believe that it's family friendly. I don't believe that it is good for our country," said protestor Carolyn Wegner. "Our constitution federally and state both represent God's law."

Ann Manary, Midland's Clerk, is one of several clerks around the state who have said they will begin issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples immediately if directed by the law.

Manary says this is not personal, she is just doing the job she was elected to do - and that's not making some people happy.

"I need to follow the law, I can't pick and choose which laws I'll follow and which ones I won't," she said.

Manary has some support.

"I think everybody just needs to be less judgmental," said Shelley Spencer, who supports gay marriage. "It's about people's rights, they have a right to be just as unhappy as everybody else that's married."

Judge Friedman scheduled the trial on the same sex marriage ban to begin in February.

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