Houston Mayor Annise Parker is being
called on to resign for promoting the legalization of gay marriage,
the Houston Chronicle reported.
Parker is among the 90 mayors to join
for the Freedom to Marry, an initiative of Freedom to Marry.
During a recent appearance on SiriusXM
Radio's Michelangelo Signorile Show, Parker told host
Michelangelo Signorile that he believes President Obama is not where
he should to be on the issue.
Obama, who supports civil unions for
gay and lesbian couples, has said he is “evolving” on marriage.
The president “needs to evolve a
little bit faster and is not clearly where I think he ought to be [on
the issue of gay marriage,]” she
Her backing of the issue has prompted
Pastor Steve Riggle of the 15,000-member Grace Community Church to
call for her resignation.
“Respectfully, if you cannot uphold
the Texas constitution, then you should do the honorable thing and
step down,” Riggle wrote in an email to Parker.
In response, Parker told the Houston
Chronicle that she takes her oath very seriously, “but I
have my First Amendment right to free speech.”
“We all have the right to do that and
I'm sorry that they [Riggle and his supporters] don't understand the
She expanded on her detractors during
her radio appearance.
“Okay, I'm an out lesbian. They know
that. I'm in a long-term relationship. And yes, I want the ability
to marry my spouse. … It [joining Mayors for the Freedom to Marry]
provoked this wave of hate mail. … [B]ecause I'm part of that, it's
like, somehow in people's eyes down here, I've changed from my role
as mayor of Houston into [a] lesbian activist. Well, I'm the mayor
of Houston first, but I'm still a lesbian. And I care.”
Parker overcomes anti-gay attacks to win second term as Houston
Houston is the nation's fourth largest
city behind New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.