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Last updateThu, 22 Nov 2018 12am

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    Wednesday, November 21, 2018-11:47:56A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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Inos on same-sex ruling: Marriage is celebration of love

REACTING to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on same-sex marriage, Gov. Eloy S. Inos on Monday the “union between two individuals, regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, etc., through the ceremony of marriage is a celebration of unconditional love and enduring commitment.”

He said while “we acknowledge this historical ruling, we must remember that what is most important in our community: that we express love, compassion and tolerance towards one another.”

He added, “Same sex common law unions were in existence in our culture even before this ruling. In our small community, we either have family, friends or know of people who are gay or lesbian couples. Let us continue to practice our Lord Jesus’s teaching to love one another as I have loved you.”

Inos said he Lt. Gov. Ralph Torres “will be reaching out next week to the attorney general and the four mayors to see how we can initiate the necessary changes to current regulations to comply with the ruling and ensure an equal application of our constitutional rights throughout the CNMI.”

Three House members interviewed by this reporter expressed mixed reactions to the ruling.

House Floor Leader George N. Camacho said the ruling is a “victory” for everyone.

“It’s not just for gay people but for society in general. Things are moving forward and although we are a very Christian community, I don’t think this is a ‘black eye’ for the church. The church will go on and same-sex couples who want to get married will do so outside the church.”

Camacho said he supports same-sex marriage.

“If two people are in love and they want to spend their time together and pay taxes together — more power to them. As I’ve said it’s a victory for society in general.”

But for Rep. Joseph Leepan T. Guerrero, same-sex marriage is not morally right.

He is urging the Diocese of Chalan Kanoa to issue a statement about the issue.

“I am hoping that the diocese will no longer be silent for the sake of the community. I am not against gay people. If they want to be gay so be it, but marriage is another thing. I don’t agree with it. I just don’t understand why they have to be married when they can be together if they want to exercise their right to love each other.”

He added, “I am a true believer of Catholic teachings. The consummation of marriage is between a man and a woman and not between man and man or woman and woman. I respect the U.S. Supreme Court decision. We have to respect the law, but there’s no reason for same-sex marriage. This is a very sensitive issue for the CNMI. 80 percent of the people here are Catholic.”

Rep. Angel Demapan said that the ruling will now be “the guiding principle” for all state and territorial governments under the U.S. flag.

“As a government under the Constitution of the U.S. we have to honor the court decision,” Demapan said.

“This is still a very sensitive issues in many communities, but the ruling is there…. I think in my view, the times have changed a lot. There’s greater acceptance in the community to honor the decision of every individual. They are free to choose their partner and that’s the fundamental principle to follow. In my opinion, it’s a decision that lies with each individual. If this is really the home of the free we should be free to make those kinds of decisions.”