Tammy Mutasa, NBC 5 News
Mayor Mike Rawlings meets with Dallas GLBT leaders but still will not sign a pledge advocating Same Sex Marriage.
Tensions have calmed between Mayor Mike Rawlings and some members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community in Dallas.
They met Saturday morning after the LGBT Community protested the Mayor’s decision not to sign a national equal marriage pledge.
“The Mayor listened,” said Cece Cox, Executive Director and CEO of the Resource Center Dallas. “He listened.”
Behind closed doors, rising tension were eased with laughter and dialogue as Mayor Rawlings assured LGBT leaders, he was still looking out for them.
"I really appreciate the openness, the love and the support that I felt back in that room,” said Mayor Mike Rawlings after the meeting.
Protests formed Friday night at Dallas City Hall after Rawlings refused to sign a national pledge supporting same-sex marriage which mayors in Austin, San Antonio, Houston and Galveston have already signed.
For now, the meeting didn’t change the Dallas Mayor’s mind. "I'm a bit pledgeophobic -there are too many pledges in America,” said Mayor Rawlings. “And I think it's simplistic and not substantive. I'm a Mayor that wants to be substantive, I do care about the civil rights of all our citizens."
A couple who have been together for 41 years brought their photo to the meeting for the mayor to see. "Our mayor's a good man and I think he cares a lot about this city and it was good to sit down and talk to him about the issues that were on our mind,” said Louise Young.
While LGBT leaders want the mayor to sign the pledge, they want to work together to focus on issues like jobs and civil rights.
"I think the Mayor is grappling with this issue, I think he's thoughtful and I think he's trying to see what would be best for the city of Dallas,” said Cox. “Whether the mayor signs the pledge or not, we all have to continue working forward."