After years of hedging on gay marriage — which many of us who supported him thought was a political ploy — President Barack Obama today declared his support of gay marriage. What had been a day of mourning for many GLBTs and allies in the wake of the Amendment 1 loss in North Carolina, has turned to a day of victory.
For the first time ever, a sitting president has had the courage to voice support for marriage equality. It’s hard to overstate the importance of that. From the AP article:
In the interview, Obama said, “I have hesitated on gay marriage in part because I thought that civil unions would be sufficient.” He added, “I was sensitive to the fact that for a lot of people the word ‘marriage’ was something that invokes very powerful traditions, religious beliefs and so forth.”
Now, he said, “it is important for me personally to go ahead and affirm that same-sex couples should be able to get married.”
Obama said first lady Michelle Obama also was involved in his decision and joins him in supporting gay marriage.
“In the end the values that I care most deeply about and she cares most deeply about is how we treat other people,” he said.
Well, that last quote is startlingly Christian.
Many will write this off as yet another political ploy — an attempt to re-ignite young voters next November. It may do that, or it may backfire — this may turn out to be Obama’s Jimmy Carter moment.
Regardless of the politics of it, the significance will long-lasting and far-flung, for it’s difficult to imagine anything that would do more to normalize homosexuality in our culture than this.
Kudos, Mr. President. Thanks for doing something so deeply Christian.