Top Stories

Open letter to readers: Today and tomorrow

By Lynda Waddington | 11.17.11

Wednesday was a difficult day for The American Independent News Network, which is the larger entity that operates The Iowa Independent. Our chief executive and founder announced two of our sister sites would close and their content would be moved to The American Independent.

ACS lockout continues; plan emerges to repeal sugar protections

By Virginia Chamlee | 11.15.11

A recently introduced bill could have far-reaching impact on the U.S. sugar industry, including American Crystal Sugar, a farmer-owned cooperative that locked out 1,300 Midwest workers on Aug. 1.

Cain campaign: Farmers know more about regulations than EPA

By Andrew Duffelmeyer | 11.15.11

The chairman for Herman Cain’s Iowa effort says the campaign “relied more on the word of farmers than Washington regulators” in deciding to run an ad containing claims the Environmental Protection Agency says are false.

Mathis wins, Democrats maintain Senate control

Liz Mathis
By Lynda Waddington | 11.08.11

The Iowa Senate will remain under the control of a slim 26-25 Democratic majority when it reconvenes in January 2012.

Press Release

PR: Nation should work to address veterans’ challenges

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

BRUCE BRALEY RELEASE — As US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan ends, it’s more important than ever that our nation works to address the challenges faced by the men and women who fought there.

PR: Honoring veterans, help in hiring

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

CHUCK GRASSLEY RELEASE — A difficult job market is challenging the soldiers, sailors and airmen who have protected America’s interests by serving in the Armed Forces.

PR: In honor of America’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

TOM LATHAM RELEASE — No one has done more to secure the freedom enjoyed by every single American than our veterans and those currently serving in the armed services.

PR: Honoring and supporting our nation’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

DAVE LOEBSACK RELEASE — Veterans Day is an opportunity to reflect on the service of generations of veterans and to honor the sacrifices they and their families have made so that we may live in peace and freedom here at home.

Iowa wedding announcement creates controversy for Indiana newspaper

By Lynda Waddington | 07.17.09 | 2:58 pm

Management at The Elkhart Truth in Elkhart, Indiana was unintentionally put in the center of the same-sex marriage debate this week when it published an Iowa couple’s marriage announcement.

The Iowa couple — Michael Berkey and James Chapin, both of Hanlontown — were featured in the newpaper’s July 12 engagement section because Berkey is a graduate of the local high school and his parents continue to reside in the community. Their wedding is planned for later this month.

The backlash from groups who oppose marriage equality began 48 hours later. At first the announcement became fodder for local radio station, then the American Family Association of Indiana, according to Indiana reporter Bil Browning, e-mailed an action alert to its membership, suggesting that the paper would also soon print “anniversary announcements for polygamous marriages” and “incestuous birth announcements.” Conservative Indiana blogger Brian Sikma, citing the fact that Indiana law does not recognize same-sex marriages, encouraged readers to contact the The Elkhart Truth’s parent company, Federation Media, to launch a complaint.

The editorial board at The Truth addressed the ongoing controversy on its own pages.

We had no idea that people in Fort Wayne, Lafayette, Warsaw, Kokomo, Indianapolis, Fishers, LaGrange, Muncie, South Bend and Syracuse cared so passionately about The Elkhart Truth. Not to mention our burgeoning fan base in Lawton, Okla.

Nonetheless, we appreciate the interest…

…Same-sex marriage is legal in Iowa, where the couple lives and plans to marry. Since one of the young men is originally from Elkhart and his family still lives here, we did the same thing we’d do for any other local family with a child getting married — we published the couple’s engagement announcement.

Because after all, how would Hoosiers who oppose gay rights even know about Iowa’s same-sex marriage ruling in April if news outlets hadn’t reported it in Indiana — where same-sex marriage is illegal? …

We fulfilled our role as a paper of record. We documented an engagement, something we do hundreds of times each year.

Protesters asked why we would publish a story about something illegal in Indiana. Basically, it’s because an informed citizenry, a citizenry capable of thinking for itself, needs uncensored news from a variety of sources. That includes states and nations where the law does not conform to Indiana’s.

Same-sex couples began entering into legal marriages in Iowa on April 27, following a unanimous decision by the Iowa Supreme Court that the state’s definition of marriage, which excluded same-sex couples, violated the equal protection clause of the Iowa Constitution. A study by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law indicated that spending on gay and lesbian weddings and the related tourism could bring $53 million a year to Iowa.

Follow Lynda Waddington on Twitter


  • MeRainyDay

    Oh very well done Editor. Thank you so much! Am copying whole article and sending it to the editor of my local (rural) paper here in CA.

  • ricmarc

    i am gobsmacked! this is my hometown newspaper! way to go elkhart truth.

    the letters to the editor should be ahoot. i quit reading because half of the letters are from creationists.

  • slincoln

    Because the bigots from Indiana dont deserve our attention, all I can say is… congratulations Michael and James!

  • beecatcher

    It is against the Law for same-sex to marry in Indiana. So why is it cool to announce it? It should be an embarrassment to the parents that their Gay Son is violating one of Gods laws. Indiana needs to hold strong and respect their own laws. Iowa residents have not had enough time to fix their State Constitution from the Court forced Gay agenda. The Indiana community should be complaining. We dont want that Gay CRAP here.

    • ricmarc

      it is also illegal in indiana to sell a cold six pack of beer on an day of the week or booze on sunday. did you have a point? beecatcher doesn't seem to know much about elkhart. a lot of people there think that the world is 6000 years old and often send letters to the elkhart truth saying just that and the rest of us are evil for not believing it. this was a NON story until some religious jerk made a big deal about it.

      • beecatcher

        Indiana! whooo hoooo, keep that Gay stuff away from your children. Look at what has happened in Mass. the kids are being bombarded with ALL KINDS of Gay agenda. If Mass isn't the perfect example of why NOT to allow Gay Marriage, what is!

        California has got it right, put it to a vote and see how many parents want Gay kids! Children are inocent and do not deserve to be bombarded by the Gay Agenda while they are impressionable. Being Gay is an Adult Lifestyle Choice, whait until they are adults to make those decisions. The activists want to compel as many as possible to justify their lifestyle, dont let them do it at the expense of our KID! Our Nation Treasures!

        • ricmarc

          i would say ignorance is bliss but it is obvious that stupidity rules your day. pople are born gay. deal with it.

        • Melanie

          Yeah, its just so crazy how much gay agenda we are getting here in MA! I can't go anywhere without some crazy gay person flaunting their gayness and enticing my kids to go over to the dark side. Its like an insane gay night club on the streets of Boston all day every day.

          Wake up beecatcher and join the 21st century- I feel sorry for you with your blatant ignorance. It must suck to be filled with such hatred for others.

          • beecatcher

            pathetic, that is how it is in the castro district. Additionally, ignorance
            is bliss, cause I just love others

    • Peggy2

      Yes, I feel sorry for this idiot's parents.

  • Hien Nguyen

    Thanks for being fair to everyone. It's sad that certain “Christians” are once again at the forefront of disrcrimination.

  • Hien Nguyen

    Thanks for being fair to everyone. It's sad that certain “Christians” are once again at the forefront of disrcrimination.

  • left_leaning_independant

    I have to admire the editorial board. Bravo for a wonderful response to created controversy.

  • msainth

    Gotta love the editor's response.

    Some people, I swear! Not only do they not want to allows gays to get married, but they can't stand to have it written in their newspaper! (But they somehow have no complaints to reading stories of murder, rape, babies being left in dumpsters, etc…)

    Coincidentally, there is a Bible verse which sounds like it's describing a familiar group of people in today's world… Modern-day Christians perhaps?

    1 Timothy 4:1-6:

    The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer. If you point these things out to the brothers, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, brought up in the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed.

    • Anonymous

      Here are some verses that perfectly describe today’s gay mockers of God who put more weight on man’s foolish laws that come about through the evil and corrupt agenda of activist judges and the penalty for such:

      Romans 1:21-32

      For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
      Professing to be wise, they became fools,
      and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.
      Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them.
      For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
      For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural,
      and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.
      And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper,
      being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips,
      slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents,
      without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful;
      and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

  • melesha12

    I agree with the editor. Gay marriage is legal and so they need to print the announcement just like any others.

  • Jesse Driscoll

    The editors response is fantastic and 100% correct. They are fulfilling their duty as a news source. I applaude their courage!

  • adavid23

    Get it Elkhart Truth! I have a news flash for everyone who is scared that allowing homosexuality into their newspapers and homes will ruin their children. Ready? here it comes; homosexuality is not a COLD! Your children will not CATCH it. I grew up surrounded my straight people. Heterosexual neighbors, siblings, parents, movies, t.v. shows, engagement announcements, and I'm gay. I'm also gay in Indiana. Grow up

  • beecatcher

    pathetic, that is how it is in the castro district. Additionally, ignorance
    is bliss, cause I just love others

  • beecatcher

    pathetic, that is how it is in the castro district. Additionally, ignorance
    is bliss, cause I just love others

  • Anonymous

    Unfortunately, we see a newspaper with no moral fiber. Like the other bastions of turpitude that hide themselves under the banner of political correctness. The new tolerance that is pervading America today is just the old sin repackaged. It is not that we have reached a new high in understanding and acceptance. It is that we have sunken to a new low in allowing abnormal, filthy, disease-ridden practices to be socially okay. It is not Christians who should be chided for obeying the wise words of our creator, but rather thanked for having enough sense to fear God. For, if we all like sheep had gone astray and embraced this unnatural life style, then all of mankind would shortly cease to exist

Switch to our mobile site