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Utah traditional marriage supporters divided on Supreme Court ruling

SANDY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - Traditional marriage supporters along the Wasatch Front are having a bit of mixed reaction to Wednesday's Supreme Court ruling on same sex marriage.
SANDY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - Traditional marriage supporters along the Wasatch Front are having a bit of mixed reaction to Wednesday's Supreme Court ruling on same sex marriage. 

Believe or not, some traditional marriage advocates here in Utah are celebrating the U.S. Supreme Court's support of gay marriage.  

"To me that's a tremendous victory," said Mary Summerhays, Friends of Marriage President.  

Mary Summerhays organized Wednesday night's Celebration of Marriage at the South Towne Expo Center. She said even though the Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act and refused to rule on California's Prop 8, which temporarily banned same sex marriage, she's said this is a win for Utah. 

"For the 38 states in our nation they have had their decision, their votes recognized by the Supreme Court, saying we're going to leave this in your court, I think that's awesome," said Summerhays.    

However not all traditional marriage supporters feel the same way.  
 
"I'm disappointed," said Mark Smith, traditional marriage advocate. 

"Little afraid of what involvement the federal government can lead to," said Carli Oyler, traditional marriage advocate.   
 
"This seems to be opening the door to a flood gate of immorality," said Wendy Smith, traditional marriage advocate.  
 
The evening's key note speaker, author and conservative activist David Barton shares a similar opinion. He said the U.S. is now likely to mimic what's happened in European countries who've embraced gay marriage. He said in those areas, the number of children born out of wedlock have risen dramatically. 
 
"We already spend a $112 billion a year in America on out-of-wedlock births. So when that rises as well, and you have all the educational, sociological and criminal things that go with kids that don't have a mother and a father, it's just a tough thing for America," said David Barton, author & conservative activist. 

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints also finds the ruling troubling. In a statement sent Wednesday, the church said quote:

"By ruling that supporters of Proposition 8 lacked standing to bring this case to court, the Supreme Court has highlighted troubling questions about how our democratic and judicial system operates. Many Californians will wonder if there is something fundamentally wrong when their government will not defend or protect a popular vote that reflects the views of a majority of their citizens," said LDS Church Spokesperson Michael Otterson.   
 
However, LDS church members who founded Mormons Building Bridges believe the ruling is not all doom and gloom. 

"It gives us an opportunity to talk about the larger issue of how can we be good neighbors, good coworkers, good family members to our LGBT brothers and sisters," said Erika Munson, Founder of Mormons Building Bridges.    

Talking about the issue is exactly what traditional marriage supporters celebrating Wednesday night want to do. 

"The point is to get a little more education little bit more information out there," said Summerhays.   

What traditional marriage supporters are talking about education, they're referring to the impact the ruling will have in the state. There's still a lot questions about how this will affect people here in Utah. 

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Follow Brian Carlson on Twitter: @briancarlsontv
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