Please excuse the following outburst:
HOLY EFFING SHIT THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES JUST CAME OUT IN FAVOR OF SAME-SEX MARRIAGE!!! SWEET MERCIFUL CRAP THIS IS EXCITING NEWS!!!
And, it’s about time.
I know, the position expressed by our president today is not unnuanced or without its caveats. He says he’s okay with the issue being decided state-by-state, a position scorned by most marriage-equality advocates. It’s tantamount to saying, “I personally support marriage equality, but I’m okay with individual states banning same-sex marriage if that’s what they want to do.” And that’s exactly what North Carolina did just yesterday in a crushing setback for marriage equality. Not exactly an affirming backdrop against which to endorse the state-by-state strategy.
However, as I’ve been saying for the past three and a half years, the LGBT community has never had a better friend in the White House. And that distinction is far from marginal. President Clinton signed DOMA and DADT into law. President Bush advocated a Constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, and anti-gay-marriage sentiment played a significant role in his re-election. But president Obama has used his executive authority to roll back federal restrictions on, and extend federal benefits to LGBT Americans. His Justice Department no longer defends DOMA in the courts, and DADT met its demise on Obama’s watch. And now the president publicly supports marriage equality.
I understand that there is little the president alone is empowered to do that would bring sweeping marriage equality across the U.S. I also realize that in this election year, there are politics at play, and that Obama is a politician. But this is a bold and still-risky position for him take. It may have taken him some time to “evolve” to this point, and his current position may still be less-than-perfect, but the president has proven himself a true ally to LGBT Americans.
However long overdue, this is a momentous pronouncement from our president, and it is worthy of celebration. I, for one, will be raising a glass (and perhaps a cupcake) for President Obama this evening.