By Rose Arce and Carol Costello, CNN
Baltimore, Maryland (CNN) – From her Baltimore kitchen, Rebecca Murphy is lobbying legislators, crafting signs and making phone calls as she wages a battle to allow gays and lesbians to marry in her state.
The married mother of two doesn’t have a personal stake in the fight. Rather, Murphy represents the growing number of people nationwide who support gay rights regardless of their own sexual orientation.
“I have gay and lesbian friends and family who are raising children and creating lives, and they deserve to be treated fairly,” she says.
As national polls show a shift in attitudes about same-sex marriage, Murphy’s state of Maryland is one of three poised to put the issue to an up-or-down popular vote for the first time next month.
While support has grown, there are still many who oppose allowing gays to marry and are doing their part to strike the measure down. The Rev. Frank Reid and his wife, Marlaa, of Bethel AME Church in Baltimore run workshops for single African-Americans in an effort to encourage strong marriages and discourage sexual behaviors that can lead to HIV/AIDS.
“I do understand and accept that there are other patterns for families,” Marlaa Reid says. “However, the basic prescription for marriage, I embrace it as a biblical prescription. A man and a woman.”