September 24, 2012
Black clergy members who support marriage equality say they want to dispel the myth that all African-American ministers are against it. About a dozen clergy members joined the Rev. Al Sharpton on Friday at a news conference in Washington to express support for a November referendum in Maryland to allow marriage for same-sex couples. "To take a position to limit the civil rights of anyone is to take a position to limit the civil rights of everyone," Sharpton said. The Rev. Delman Coates, who is senior pastor of Mt. Ennon Baptist Church in Clinton, Md., says people don't have the right to impose personal religious beliefs on others in matters of public policy. Sharpton, president of the National Action Network, says theological debates should take place in churches, not in government. Maine and Washington also are deciding whether marriage equality should be legal. Minnesota is voting on a constitutional ban.