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POPLARVILLE, Miss — Heartened as they were by last month’s Supreme Court decision recognizing same-sex marriage on the federal level, gay couples in the heart of Dixie say their joy at the country’s progress is bittersweet.
Across the South — home to a third of the country’s gays and lesbians and where gay marriage is universally banned — they say they are still relegated to living in the shadows as second-class citizens, trapped behind a web of state laws and hostile political and religious attitudes.
But instead of being written off as a lost cause, Mississippi and other southern states remain the focus of grass-roots gay rights campaigns. Among them is one organized by a Harvard-trained minister and heavily funded by a Jamaica Plain church.
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