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400 Rally to Protest County Commission Vote Against Homosexuality

August 14, 1993

MARIETTA, Ga. (AP) _ About 400 people rallied Saturday against a county resolution condemning homosexuality, holding their protest outside a theater under fire for the content of its shows.

″The recent actions of the Cobb County Commission not only show a complete lack of understanding of the issue, but a total disregard for the principles of freedom and justice,″ said Len Sisson, 36, of Cobb, who spoke to the crowd.

″Contrary to what they would have you believe, gay people are no threat to families,″ he added. ″We grew up in the American family, we were fostered by the same ideals as the rest of America, and we still hold true to those ideals.″

The resolution, adopted Tuesday, states: ″Lifestyles advocated by the gay community should not be endorsed by government policy makers, because they are incompatible with the standards to which this community subscribes.″ It carries no legal weight.

However, the commission has said it is also considering a proposal to consider ″family oriented values″ in providing funding for county arts groups. Gay rights groups have promised to sue if such a proposal is adopted.

The debate over homosexuality and family values arose after complaints about the content of local theatrical productions.

Saturday’s rally was in Marietta Square, whose Theatre in the Square has been criticized for the sexual content of two recent plays.