GALLERY: Rallies Held To Protect Marriage Draw Thousands Throughout America

( [email protected] ) May 24, 2004 02:42 PM EDT

Last week, Americans throughout the nation gathered in stronger protest following the Massachusetts Supreme Court’s decision to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. In cities such as Boston, Phoenix, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Sacramento, and Washington DC, thousands of pro-family advocates took more active roles in letting their voices be known.

In the wake of the week as many as 8,000 people in Phoenix gathered outside the Arizona state capital to rally against same-sex marriages. The rally, organized by the Center for Arizona Policy, saw protestors wearing white shirts that said “for the purity of marriage” with signs that read “One Man, One Woman” as they march around the state Senate and House of Representatives and the Arizona Supreme Court building.

On May 21, 200 Christians and pro-family advocates gathered outside the Indianapolis Statehouse, emphasizing two points on the marriage debate: that God-given traditional marriage must be protected, and gay-“marriage” is not a civil rights issue. Currently Indiana law restricts marriage to a man and a woman, however, the law was challenged by three-same sex couples in 2002 and is pending before the state appeals court.

And on the West Coast, as Californians wait for the State Supreme Court to hear the arguments on whether San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom abused his authority by allowing same-sex couple to “marry” earlier this year, Christians and pro-family advocates gathered in Los Angeles and Sacramento to protect traditional marriage May 18 and 22, respectively. The rallies were sponsored by Campaign for California Families, who filed suit to stop the marriages earlier this year and challenged Newsom's authority to allow same-sex marriages.

Meanwhile, 1,000 protestors gathered at the Arlington City Hall in Texas May 22 calling for a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. The rally was hosted by African-American pastors part of the “Not On My Watch” Committee that denounces the parallels homosexual advocates are making to compare their movement to that of the civil rights movement. A similar rally, held on Capital Hill on May 17, also heard the voices of the African-American clergy who are battling the oft-used rhetoric that equates gay-rights to civil-rights.