Court throws out firefighters' gay pride lawsuits
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The Rhode Island Supreme Court has thrown out lawsuits by two Providence firefighters who said their constitutional rights were violated when they were ordered to drive a truck in a gay pride parade.
The firefighters, Theodore Fabrizio and Stephen Deninno, argued that they are Roman Catholics and therefore do not support or condone homosexuality.
Writing for the high court this month, Justice William Robinson said that the men appeared in the 2001 parade as public servants, and that did not constitute a form of expression. He said it was a legitimate work assignment.
The city had argued that the city sent trucks to various parades as a matter of course, including the Columbus Day parade, Purim parade and others.