Missouri County Will Lower Flags To Mourn Gay Marriage Ruling For A Year

Late Update: It now appears that the Dent County commissioners are preparing to reverse their decision to lower the flags as a sign of mourning the Supreme Court’s decision legalizing same-sex marriage. The Salem News reported Tuesday morning that the commission will meet today to rescind the decision “out of respect for veterans and those currently serving in the military.”

An all-Republican county commission in Missouri voted unanimously Monday to observe a full calendar year of “mourning” after the Supreme Court’s gay marriage decision, a protest that will include lowering flags to mark the somber occasion.

Flags at the Dent County Courthouse and Judicial Building will now fly at “below half-staff” on the 26th day of every month from July 2015 until July 2016, the Salem News reported, to mark the day SCOTUS handed down the ruling that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide.

Presiding Commissioner Darrell Skiles filed a letter into the record ahead of the vote staking his opposition to “the U.S. high court’s [sic] stamp of approval of what God speaks of as an abomination.”

Skiles also wrote that “all who see these flags at this lowered position be reminded of this despicable Supreme Court travesty” as reason enough to approve the plan.

The vote by the three commissioners comes days after Gov. Jay Nixon signed an executive order directing all state agencies to comply with the court’s ruling

The county granted its first marriage license application from a gay couple on July 1, although the current official forms still have only blanks for “man and woman.”

Recorder of Deeds Cindy Ard told the paper she would continue to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples in accordance with the law.

“Some people might not agree with it, but I’m not going to discriminate. I’m not here to judge anybody,” Ard said.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

TPM Staff
Latest Livewire
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: