Leaders can't decide on support for gay issue
BATON ROUGE- City leaders could not agree on backing a law that would eliminate a provision in state law outlawing sexual acts between people of the same gender.
House Bill 12 would change the crimes against nature law that was deemed unconstitutional, yet enforced by East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's deputies recently. Gay men were arrested for picking up other men in a park. After the incident, activists urged leaders to make changes to the law.
Wednesday, city leaders were set to discuss a resolution supporting House Bill 12 but failed to get enough votes to do so.
All but three council members voted against the resolution. C. Denise Marcelle, Ryan Heck and John Delgado support removing the unconstitutional provision. Delgado was very outspoken in the wake of the arrests of the gay men, too.
"I don't believe the council members voted with the voice of their constituents," Delgado said. He believes most voters in East Baton Rouge support House Bill 12, written by Pat Smith.
But, Tara Wicker said supporting the resolution meant creating a rift in the community and not supporting it made or sense and brought more people together.
"I believe we need to do things that bring our community together and not divide and that particular resolution was going to do just that," Wicker said.
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