Jeff Thigpen of Guilford County Register of Deeds issued a statement voicing his support for marriage equality in North Carolina after he was forced to turn down marriage licenses for two same-sex couples yesterday.
Thigpen applauded the couples, Cheryl and Tracey Bridges, and Shela Williams and Deborah Wade, for their courage and commitment to standing up for their families.
“They don't want to change the institution of marriage; they simply want to join it by making lifelong promises of commitment and devotion to one another,” said Thigpen in a statement.
North Carolina law currently prohibits same-sex marriage. Yet, Thigpen said, he prays for a more equal future for his daughter.
“I have no idea if she will be straight or gay,” Thigpen said of his daughter, Elle, who turned 10 yesterday. “I just hope and pray she'd live in an America that did two things: uphold what is at the heart of all of our values as people-that we'd want to treat each other the way we'd want to be treated. In addition, we'd uphold a central value of who we are as a nation: that we are all created equal. That's what I want for Elle. Cheryl, Tracey, Sheila, and Deborah deserve that too.”
Currently, 13 states, plus the District of Columbia, have marriage equality laws on the books.
To stand with Thigpen, and the majority of Americans, in support of marriage equality, check out HRC’s Americans for Marriage Equality campaign.