The Latest: Gay pride parade backers eye suit over denial
STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — The Latest on a Mississippi city’s denial of a gay pride parade (all times local):
A Mississippi State University student who unsuccessfully sought a city permit for a gay pride parade and related events says she intends to sue the city.
Starkville aldermen voted 4-3 to deny the event permit Tuesday. None of the aldermen who voted against the permit have explained their reasoning.
Bailey Evans told The Associated Press that she contacted the Campaign for Southern Equality to seek a lawyer. The campaign connected her with Roberta Kaplan, a national leader in gay rights litigation, and a spokesman for Kaplan say she will represent Evans.
McDaniel says she and others wanted to have a parade to show the strength of the city’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
Mayor Lynn Spruill and an alderman who supported the permit say Starkville is more accepting of gay people than the vote indicates.
City leaders in a Mississippi college town have denied a request to host the city’s first Pride Parade.
Starkville Pride, an LGBT support group, wanted to hold the parade March 24 in Starkville.
WCBI-TV reports that Starkville aldermen on Tuesday voted 4-3 against the permit. The Dispatch reports that three of the aldermen who voted to reject it left the meeting room through a back entrance, and that none of the alderman who voted no voiced their opinions at the meeting.
The newspaper reports that some Starkville Pride organizers left the meeting in tears.
Starkville Mayor Lynn Spruill said she was disappointed with the decision.
The town is home to Mississippi State University. Spruill noted that Oxford, Mississippi, where the University of Mississippi is based, has held gay pride parades for several years.