Texas county judge tries to block lesbian couple from using public park for commitment ceremony

Posted on 18 Jul 2012 at 5:34pm

Young County Judge John Bullock


The county judge in Graham, Texas, recently tried to block a lesbian couple from holding a commitment ceremony at a public park.

CW33 reports that Young County Judge John Bullock denied the couple’s application to reserve space for the ceremony at Fort Belknap when he found out they were lesbians.

“I didn’t think it was in the best interest of the fort or in the best interest of the county,” Bullock said.

But the Young County Commissioners Court — which Young chairs — overturned his decision, after determining that the couple’s application for use of the public property could not legally be denied, according to The Graham Leader.

Bullock responded by proposing a new policy that would allow him to deny applications for ceremonies that are not “legal, ethical or practical” or if they are “in conflict with the constitutions or laws of this  nation or the great state of Texas.”

But the court rejected Young’s proposed policy after he was unable to obtain a legal opinion backing it up. One commissioner, Jimmy Wiley, presented a legal opinion saying Bullock’s proposed policy would violate the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and Article I, Section 3 of the Texas Constitution.

In other words, Bullock’s proposal was itself “in conflict with the constitutions or laws of this nation or the great state of Texas.”

Bullock couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. His assistant said he was in a meeting with the county attorney, which frankly sounds ominous.

If you’d like to try to get in touch with Bullock yourself — perhaps to try to prevent him from reviving his proposed policy in some form — he’s at 940-549-2030 or j.bullock@youngcounty.org.

Watch CW33’s report below.

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