Gay kiss arrest sparks ‘Kiss-In’ protest at SLC Mormon Temple

Jul 21st, 2009 | By | Category: Featured Articles, Intermountain Northwest, News

Matt Aune, 28 and Derek Jones, 25, a gay couple, were detained July 8, 2009 by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints security. The couple was walking across the Temple plaza on their way home from a nearby concert while holding hands, the couple stopped and Aune kissed Jones on the cheek.

LDS security say they asked them to stop “engaging in inappropriate behavior,” reports the Salt Lake Tribune. According to church security, when the couple refused to leave they were detained while Salt Lake City Police were called. LDS security “put Jones on the ground and handcuffed him” and also roughly cuffed Aune. When police arrived the couple was arrested and cited for criminal trespassing.

Salt Lake Tribune Gay Kiss InNot sure what made the Mormon Church think a trespassing arrest would make this go away in light of the intense reaction, and negative publicity, the Church received in thier highly publicized participation is California’s Proposition 8.

Now things have escalated to more deliberate public displays of affection by both gay and supportive straight couples, when Sunday about 200 gathered at the LDS Church’s Main Street Plaza to stage a “kiss-in.” Protesters entered property for three rounds of kissing in the second such demonstration since Aune and Jones’s arrest. Counter protesters gathered from a group called America Forever some minor altercations occurred between groups but no arrests were reported. editor, independent journalist & LGBT media spokesperson,
Jody May-Chang now writes on "As I See It...Reporting from the front lines

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  1. Thank you! You often write very interesting articles. You improved my mood.

  2. Maybe it is against their religious beliefs so we should be careful in our act when we are in the public place.