Originally created 04/09/06

NAACP leader opposes ban on gay marriage



COLUMBIA - Black leaders, including those in the church, have an obligation to oppose a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in South Carolina, the Rev. Nelson B. Rivers III, the chief operating officer of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People said Saturday.

"This is not about sexual orientation or about a lifestyle, this is about fairness and equality," Mr. Nelson said during an event sponsored by the South Carolina Progressive Network.

About 200 people attended the group's Democracy Day event.

The position could put Mr. Rivers in conflict with some black church leaders who think marriage should be only between a man and a woman.

Voters will decide in November whether the state Constitution should be changed to ban same-sex marriages.