Oklahoma City banner ordinance ruled unconstitutional
BY Advocate.com Editors
September 18 2002 12:00 AM ET
An Oklahoma City, Okla., ordinance that kept a gay pride group's banners off city light poles has been struck down by a federal judge. The ordinance, adopted following public criticism of banners hung for the 2001 Gay and Lesbian Pride Parade, is an unconstitutional infringement of free speech rights, U.S. district judge Robin J. Cauthron ruled.
The order, handed down on Friday, is a victory for the Cimarron Alliance Foundation, which sued the city after its application to post banners to recognize gay and lesbian history month in June was rejected by city manager Jim Couch. "We always thought this was a First Amendment free speech case," said Mark Henrickson, who represents the foundation on behalf of the American Civil Liberties Union. "Judge Cauthron's decision vindicates that position."
Cauthron also ruled that Cimarron is entitled to damages from the city as well as court costs and attorneys' fees but withheld setting an exact amount.
Couch said city officials are reviewing the decision. "It's difficult to tell from the ruling whether we can have control on anything regarding banners or not," Couch said.
Henrickson said Cimarron plans to file new applications to hang the banners. "My clients hope to participate in the banner program like any other citizen," he said.
- Multiple Attacks on Gay Men in NYC, Hours After Rally
- Father of Teen Facing Felony for Lesbian Relationship Says She's Been Targeted Before
- Marriage Equality Makes Progress in U.K.
- Psychiatrists' Group Names First Out Gay Leader
- French Marriage Equality Opponent Commits Suicide at Notre Dame
- WATCH: President Obama Tells Morehouse Grads 'Be the Best Husband to Your Boyfriend'
Sign Up For Email Updates
- Mental Wellness Psychiatrists' Group Names First Out Gay Leader 51 min 12 sec ago
- Arts & Entertainment Which Gay Celeb Has a Wizard of Oz Aquarium? 55 min 35 sec ago
- Women WATCH: Kathy Griffin Calls for Suze Orman for President! 2 hours 26 min ago
- Marriage Equality Marriage Equality Makes Progress in U.K. 2 hours 30 min ago
- Women PHOTOS: Stars Come Out for the LA Gay and Lesbian Center's 'An Evening with Women' 2 hours 52 min ago
- Video Meet the Delicious Diet Dr Pepper Dude 2 hours 55 min ago
- Women INTERVIEW: Vicci Martinez Speaks her Truth 6:34 PM