Locals React to State Sanctioned Gay Marriages in Massachusetts

News of the historic day in Massachusetts has brought on both celebration and protest throughout the country.

Reverend Paul Anway has performed more than 50 gay marriage ceremonies. He says Monday’s news is not only good for him and his partner of 13 years, but for the entire gay and lesbian community.

"Locally, this is a great day for gay and lesbian people. There is a great deal of excitement and a great deal of happiness to finally have our relationships recognized. We couldn't be happier,” Rev. Anway explains.

Around Tallahassee, the news has stirred up quite a bit of mixed reaction.

“I think they deserve the same rights as everybody else. They are people like anybody else, so why not give the same rights as everybody else has?” comments resident Shannon Nazzal.

"I don't have anything against them or anything like that, but it's just something I really don't believe in. I just haven't been brought up that way,” resident Jerrick Pittman adds.

"A lot of people don't feel that the same sex marriage is right. They say civil union is a lot better. If the U.S. government doesn't recognize it, I don't think anyone else should either,” adds resident Charles Hair.

Rev. Anway says civil unions would actually be ideal, but for all couples, both homosexual and heterosexual, “Then allow the church to determine which relationships they're going to recognize as marriage and allow the church to determine what they consider to be marriage, that would be the best approach, but that's probably not the way it's going to play out."

In Florida, a law was passed in 1997 that bans gay marriages, and in Georgia an anti-gay marriage bill was adopted in 1996. The Georgia law also declares same sex marriages from out of state as null and void.