Metro Weekly

Tennessee county asks God’s mercy for allowing same-sex marriages

Proposed resolution in Blount County condemns "judicial tyranny" and asks God to spare it from divine punishment

Blount County Courthouse (Photo: Brian Stansberry, via Wikimedia Commons).
Blount County Courthouse (Photo: Brian Stansberry, via Wikimedia Commons).

A Tennessee county has plans to mix religion and politics at a Tuesday night meeting, during which its elected officials will consider passing a resolution asking God to spare them from fire and brimstone.

The Blount County Commission is planning to debate a resolution condemning “judicial tyranny” that led to same-sex marriages while begging for God’s mercy. The bulk of the resolution, introduced by Commissioner Karen Miller, focuses its ire on the Supreme Court, accusing the nation’s highest court of having “once again usurped powers not delegated to them,” and violating both the principle of federalism and natural law.

“With a firm reliance upon the providence of Almighty God, We the Blount County Legislature call call upon all of the Officers of the State of Tennessee, the Governor, the Attorney General, and the members of the Tennessee Legislature, to join us, and utilize all authority within their power to protect Natural Marriage, from lawless court opinions, and the financial schemes of the enemies of righteousness wherever the source, and defend the Moral Standards of Tennessee,” the resolution reads. “We adopt this Resolution before God that He pass us by in His Coming Wrath and not destroy our County as He did Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighboring cities. As the Passover Lamb was a means of salvation to the ancient Children of Israel, so we stand upon the safety of the Lamb of God to save us.

“We adopt this Resolution begging His favor in light of the fact that we have been forced to comply and recognize that the State of Tennessee, like so many other God-fearing States, may have fallen prey to a lawless judiciary in legalizing what God and the Bible expressly forbids,” the resolution continues.

According to CNN, the Tennessee Equality Project, an LGBT rights group, is urging residents to attend and speak against the resolution at the meeting, wearing red as a sign of support.

“It’s discouraging that elected officials become demagogues like this, but we didn’t wallow in despair,” Chris Sanders, the executive director of the Tennessee Equality Project, told The Daily Beast.

If passed at Tuesday’s meeting, the success of Blount County could inspire other jurisdictions within the Volunteer State to adopt similar resolutions. The Daily Beast notes that the state legislature is expected to vote on a bill known as the “Natural Marriage Defense Act” that would seek to nullify the Supreme Court’s decision legalizing marriage equality. But for all of the bluster over marriage equality, so far, there are no reports of anyone in Blount County or the state of Tennessee refusing to issue marriage licenses to qualified same-sex couples, as has happened in three counties in the neighboring state of Kentucky.

Rebecca Lucas, the founder of the Blount County-based LGBT support organization PFLAG Maryville, told the Daily Beast: “I don’t think it’s likely to pass, but you never know with these small-town commissions. I’m hoping more level heads will prevail.”

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