Opposing groups demonstrate over same-sex marriage

By Tom Lehman 11:23am, July 1, 2013 - Updated 3:08pm, July 1, 2013
VIDEO: Partipants in both demonstrations and police discuss the Monday morning protests over same-sex marriage.
The first day of legalized same-sex marriage in Delaware brought supporters and opponents of marriage equality to Wilmington Monday for opposing protests.

WDEL's Tom Lehman reports.

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About six protesters with Westboro Baptist Church, located in Topeka, Kan., decried Delaware's marriage equality law at a demonstration outside the Louis L. Redding City/County building. The group sang songs and held signs bemoaning the legalization of same-sex marriage in Delaware.

Shirley Phelps-Roper, a spokeswoman with the controversial church, said same-sex marriage is unholy and goes against supporters' religious beliefs.

"You know that the last thing, the last offense against God is same-sex marriage contracts and then he sent the flood," Phelps-Roper said.

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Westboro Baptist Church members were opposed by dozens of counter protesters on French Street, who demonstrated in favor of same-sex marriage.

Kyle Dolan of Bear said he has friends who are in the LGBTQ community, which prompted him to join the counter-demonstration.

Dolan said Westboro Baptist Church members do have the right to protest as do supporters of marriage equality.

"What they believe in is what they believe in, and what I believe in is what I believe in, and I'm here to stand up for my voice," Dolan said.

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Wilmington Police said no arrests were made during the two demonstrations, but 40-50 officers were present at the City/County Building as a precaution.

Westboro Baptist Church members then traveled to Dover after the conclusion of their Wilmington demonstration to continue their protests in the state's capitol.

Dover police said Monday afternoon no arrests were made in connection to demonstrations by Westboro Baptist Church members or counter protesters.

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