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Gay Marriage Debate About to Heat-Up In Minnesota, St. Cloud [AUDIO]

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ST. CLOUD — There’s going to a lot of talk about gay marriage in Minnesota, if the State Legislature votes to put the question on the ballot in November of 2012.

Two men who will be leading that discussion in the St. Cloud area have very opposing views on the issue.

Denny Smith supports the idea of allowing gay men and women to marry.  His son is gay, and he’s a member of the local chapter of PFLAG – Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays.  He says he wants to talk to anyone who will listen over the next year-and-a-half.

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However, Granite City Baptist Church Pastor Dennis Campbell has a different view.  He says it’s a moral issue.

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Right now it’s illegal for gay people to marry in Minnesota.  If the amendment would pass, gay marriage would still be illegal, and if the question fails it would also still be illegal.  The question will only decide whether to write the gay marriage ban into the state’s constitution.

Five states allow gay marriage right now: Iowa, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.

30 states have constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage.

If the federal government decides to take a position on the issue — either for or against same-sex marriage — that would override any state laws.

There are 10 countries around the world that have legalized gay marriage, the first was the Netherlands in 2001.  Other countries include: Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Portugal, Iceland, and Argentina.

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