"I have not said that I was a supporter of gay marriage, but I am a strong supporter of civil unions, and I would, as>"/>
"I have not said that I was a supporter of gay marriage, but I am a strong supporter of civil unions, and I would, as president, make absolutely certain that all federal laws pertaining to married couples--benefits pertaining to married couples are conferred to people who--same sex couples who have civil unions as well." Barack Obama, Meet the Press, Nov. 11, 2007
"I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman but I detest the bashing and vilifying of gays and lesbians." Barack Obama, in an Oct. 21, 2004 Senate debate with Alan Keyes. Source: OntheIssues.org
Not two weeks ago the streets of Capitol Hill were filled with jubilant voters (we assume) who had helped elect Barack Obama to the office of the President of the United States.
Yesterday, those same streets were filled with the same voters (I assume) to demonstrate their disgust for a California initiative that could mean the end of gay marriage in the state, and to show their support for equal rights for gays to marry in our state, and around the country. It is ironic, however, that the man they took to the streets to support for president does not share their view on an issue so important to them that they'd take to the streets en masse to support it.
President-Elect Obama believes that gay couples should have the same rights as straight married couples, only under a separate institution: civil unions.
Obama does support the complete repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act -- which prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages -- because he says federal law should not discriminate against gay and lesbian couples. But, he does not support gay marriage.
I was unable to attend any of the demonstrations around the country yesterday, so, please correct me if I get this next point wrong. From everything I've seen and read, I've seen no mention of demonstrators clamoring for their political messiah to throw his support and Democratic-controlled congress behind gay marriage. Why, as it appears that the young, diverse, liberal voters in Seattle and around the country are giving Obama a pass on this? And why am I reading more about Obama's Blackberry than how he will deal with this issue as president? Had George Bush been headed into a third term, protesters would have been after his throat on this issue. But, Obama gets a pass.
I found Obama's stance on this issue most curious during the campaign because, as the marketed candidate of change, it showed his willingness to employ the old-school political moves of playing both sides of an issue to get elected. And he did it remarkably well.
I understand and respect -- though might disagree with -- a person who believes that marriage should only be between a man and a woman because it conflicts with their religious beliefs or moral compass. But, the only people I hear saying that gay couples should have the same rights and benefits as straight couples as long as it's not called marriage are politicians.
It's not straight talk, and it sure ain't change.
"I believe that everybody in this country should be treated equally."