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Saturday, July 7, 2012

Dallas Marriage Equality Sit-In

Mark Jiminez and Beau Chandler applied for a marriage license at the Dallas County Clerk's Office on Thursday.  When they were refused, they promptly staged their own sit-in.  I'm not sure what actual good that did anyone, but way to go, guys!  I can remember when something like this would have nearly gotten you lynched here in Texas - but times are changing, s-l-o-w-l-y, even here:

The Dallas Voice, the local gay paper, reports:
“City police, county sheriffs and building security are all here,” Chandler said. “Nice to get their support.” Although he was joking, most of the people the couple encountered in the building were supportive, even if they were unable to issue the license.

Sr. Cpl. Laura Martin, LGBT liaison officer for the Dallas Police Department, accompanied the group, even though she didn’t have direct jurisdiction since they were in a county building. Lt. Shelley Knight, LGBT liaison for the sheriff’s department, also followed the couple. “I told them if they want to smoke, do it before going upstairs,” Martin said. “And have a full belly.” Martin said the couple could be held overnight, depending upon how backed up the magistrate was.

“They’re the nicest couple,” Martin said of Chandler and Jiminez. “They’re the first guys after any protest to come up and thank the officers.” It was unclear at press time what charge would be filed against the couple. Last week, a sheriff’s spokesman indicated the pair likely would be charged with criminal trespass, a class-B misdemeanor. The penalty for that is up to 180 days in jail and a maximum $2,000 fine.

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