Texas Paper Refuses to Run Lesbian’s Wedding Announcement
A Texas lesbian couple has leveled charges of discrimination against a local paper after the paper refused to run the women’s wedding announcement. Patricia Wrightner and Michelle Cooks believe that the Texarkana Gazette is preventing them from sharing their wedded bliss with their hometown.
"They refused us because we are a gay couple," said Cooks, who told KSLA that she would marry Wrightner in Mexico Friday, Sept. 13.
"And if the Pentagon has recognized, you know, giving same sex couples benefits," Wrightner added. "At least, I think we could..."
"...put our picture in the paper," finishes Cook.
The Texarkana Gazette said that their policy is to not publish announcements of weddings that are not recognized by the state, but the couple is accusing them of anti-gay discrimination.
"The Texarkana Gazette publishes wedding, engagement and anniversary announcements related to marriages or impending marriages that are recognized by states in which it circulates," reads a statement from editor Les Minor on Sept. 4. "This policy have been in place for several years. Neither Texas nor Arkansas allows same-sex marriages or recognize same sex marriages from other states. If those laws change, this newspaper will re-examine its policy."
Wrightner said Minor refused to return their calls on the matter, and adding that, "Rhonda at the Gazette was so rude to us."
On her Facebook page, Wrightner elaborated on this, saying that they should be "able to announce our wedding in the paper just like everyone else," because they are "just like everyone else."
"We are human beings and we are in love and we have the right to announce our wedding just like everyone else," said Wrightner.
Wrightner said that the move was an insult to her and all same-sex couples in the state, and that she will no longer read the paper.
"It’s a damn shame that the Texarkana Gazette thinks that we are gonna start some kinda war simply by a small 4x4 with me and my baby’s pik on it sayin’ when we’re getting married," wrote Wrightner in her Facebook comments section. "Now that’s some front page news right there!! So do not come by my house to deliver my paper. I will not help support my local Texarkana Gazette when they have discriminated against me and my family and friends."