Herenton speaks out against gay marriage, legalizing pot in letter

By Nick Kenney - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Former Memphis mayor Willie Herenton takes a direct swing against Rep. Steve Cohen in a recent letter that takes a stand against gay marriage and legalizing pot.

The Reverend Dwight Montgomery was there, at a meeting of the Memphis Baptist Ministerial Association, when the letter written by Herenton was passed around.  The letter promotes Herenton's upcoming for the congressional seat currently held by Cohen.

"We have to work in the best interest of our parishioners," Montgomery said in an interview Wednesday. "We do not endorse candidates."

But in the letter, Herenton requests support by outlining his platform, which includes better access to healthcare, quality education, and affordable housing.  By the letter's end, Herenton asks the pastors to join him in the fight to keep jobs in America.

Herenton also writes he opposes same-sex marriage and legalizing marijuana.

"We don't bash individuals who are gay, we just stand on biblical principles," Montgomery said. "We are, of course, against the legalization of marijuana for social principles."

Herenton's letter bemoans a lack of proportional representation in the Tennessee Congressional delegation.  Tennessee is 16 percent African American - a population with no representation, Herenton says.

Incumbent Steve Cohen says his record speaks volumes.

According to Montgomery, the Baptist Ministerial Association will officially request parishioners to vote their own conscience.

"I'm African-American, but I don't look at color," he said. "I look at who is the one to work in the best interest taking this community forward."

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