What Georgians said

Elaine Duffus, Marietta, 67, retired

“I’m totally against gay marriage because I am a devout Christian. If it was something else, like a civil union, I would say that’s OK. They can get the benefits - you live with someone long enough, 30 or 40 years, you deserve the benefits. But it should not defy the sanctity of marriage.”

Keith Hill, Atlanta, 57, facilities coordinator

“The Supreme Court sets the standard for the country. Slowly but surely, states are gonna see it is for the best interest. To me, it seems so strange that if two people are willing to get married, contribute to society, pay taxes — why not? It should be the same standard as any other marriage.”

Wilton D. Gregory, archbishop of Atlanta

Today’s unfortunate decision … is extremely disappointing. The Catholic Church promotes and defends marriage by teaching about marriage’s authentic meaning as a lifelong, exclusive, and fruitful communion of one man and one woman. Today’s decision is part of a public debate of great consequence. The future of marriage and the well-being of our society hang in the balance.

Willie Thomas, 36, insurance industry

“You can’t help who you love. Everyone deserves equal rights and equal benefits. That’s just the basics- it all comes down to love and equality.”

Richard Speigel, Atlanta, 64, retail

“As an institution, I think [gay marriage] should not be allowed. Marriage should be between a man and a woman. As the world is changing, all our ethics and values from long ago no longer have standing. It all stems from the number one man at the top, Mr. Obama.”

Melissa Stell, Kirkwood, mechanic

“I think its amazing, I’ve been following it, watching it on the news on and off. Its wonderful- every other state should follow suit- I think Georgia needs to evolve with the rest of the country, but in the south it takes much longer.”

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