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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Now that the exultation over President Obama’s symbolic gesture in favor of gay marriage has subsided, is it possible to ask exactly what he’s done? Politically speaking, I mean. He’s a politician, after all, not a moral philosopher.

As I understand it, the president has proposed no legislation nor promised any. Indeed, he’s said that the question of whether same gender couples can legally marry is up to the states, in which case nothing’s apt to change in the foreseeable future.

It’s interesting to speculate if any Southern state would have voted to allow interracial marriages like that of Obama’s parents had the Supreme Court not decided the issue in Loving vs. Virginia. Probably not.

So for this Newsweek sanctifies Obama as “America’s First Gay President” in a cover portrait with a multi-colored halo? (Never mind that historians suspect that James Buchanan, a lifelong bachelor whose close relationship with an Alabama Senator prompted Andrew Jackson to call him “Aunt Fancy,” preceded him by 156 years.) Is the magazine trying to make Obama look like a self-regarding fop?

On MSNBC’s “Chris Matthews Show,” Andrew Sullivan, the Newsweek article’s author, spoke of weeping when he heard Obama say, in effect, “I am his equal.” The ubiquitous British-American pundit who has long crusaded for gay rights (and who idolized George W. Bush in his flight suit incarnation) explained that “to hear the president who is in some ways a father figure speak to that—the tears came down like with many in our families.”

Up to a point, I can empathize. It’s an emotional issue, acceptance. Like Salon’s Glenn Greenwald, however, I do find it a bit thick coming from a pundit who had previously written that “the desperate desire among some gays for some kind of affirmation from one man is a little sad.” But then Obama’s not a father figure to me unless Bush was—or Bill Clinton. Some people’s need to make him one strikes me as a little creepy.

  • hdges41

    You have said it like it is. Thank you.

  • true, the president ‘proposed no legislation’, but in july of 2011 he endorsed the feinstein bill (S 598) to repeal DOMA. i believe that is, for practical purposes, the same thing. therefore, again for practical purposes, the premise of this article is invalid.

    • Two_Six

      I’m not the brightest bulb in the pack. So, please explain why marriage needs defending and how DOMA will accomplish that ends.

  • Maricia12

    The President only stated his personal opinion which he is entitled to. More than half the states have already voted against gay marriage so there does not seem to be much of a change for most of the country. It is very difficult for many heterosexual people to approve of homosexual marriage because of religious teachings or their respect for marriage traditions begun thousands of yrs ago. Even though families come in all shapes and sizes, especially in today’s world, most people still see a family unit as a Mother, Father and children. If same sex couples can have the same benefits of married couples, then what is to prevent all single people, living together without marriage, from demanding the same benefits? I think more confusion and less acceptance and tolerance for homosexuals will result from them having legal marrage rights. Even though homosexuals say they are only asking for equal rights, in fact they are asking for special rights. As it stands, they now already have the same rights as heterosexuals since heterosexuals cannot marry the same sex either. They are actually seeking validation for thier chosen life style which was viewed as sexual perversion for many years and still is by some.

    • Pesos

      You start out sounding rational, then you skewed off out of track and killed yourself in the road of chaos.

      There are absolutely no special rights being asked for, simply equal rights. If a gay man doesn’t want to marry a woman is the government going to point a gun to their head and force them to do it if they want a family? There’s a lot of gay couples that want a family, but not with the opposite sex. Those that have already created a family have ran into a lot of complications because of homophobic laws that are still in place. If these homophobic laws weren’t put in place, and if they would be equally protected like man/woman couples then maybe they wouldn’t be demanding marriage, but as it currently stands gay marriage is the best step forward to their equality in legal society.

      • Maricia12

        You can view my opinion anyway you wish because you are trying to validate your choices as equal rights. I still say you already hve equal rights and what you want is a special exception to the rules that have been in plance for centuries,. If we did that to every rule and law there would be no consistancy or stability in our society. You wish to validate your sexual preference as a legitimate life style which I do not happen to agree with nor do I intend to teach my children that it is . You seem to be the one who is on that road to chaos. I have a very clear thought pattern and it does not include being attracted to my same sex. I can be tolerant of your” biological imbalance” but I do not have to agree with yuor opinion to change the entire world so that you can feel more accepted. You have the same benefits as any unmarried couple living together.

  • Why such a big fuss over gay marriages when the ones doing the hollering are probably getting by with married men having sex with another married man??? I am only interested in “WHY” there is never anything mentioned about ‘THE NOTCH YEARS” or don’t our political persons even know what ”T H E N O T C H YEARS” ARE???????????????

    IT’S TIME FOR THOSE RUNNING FOR OFFICE S T A R T THINKING ABOUT THOSE OF US WHO HAVE PAID IN TO SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICARE THAT WE ARE N O T GETTING WELFARE. WE PAID FOR IT THROUGH THE YEARS.

  • tampajim

    If you don’t approve of gay marriage, don’t marry a person of the same sex yourself. Please let others do what makes them happy. Committed relationships are the business of no one except those who are in it.

    • That is indeed the long and short of the issue. Follow the golden rule and leave people alone.

      • Do what you want to behind closed doors. Anyone flaunting there perversion in front of my grand kids will publicly be called what they are.

  • dljones

    Make political hay for approving gay. Obama can’t even place it on the platform for the democratic national convention. This was his political convenience for the day.

  • Two_Six

    When we have the opportunity to vote on what rights we will “grant” each other, are we voting from our personal likes and dislikes or the more objective question of “what harm will it do?”

    • Pesos

      It’s to protect everyone’s rights that are guaranteed by the constitution. Currently, most states don’t recognize crimes against gays and it’s legal to fire someone for being gay. Also, in legal matters gay couples have a hard time because they usually aren’t recognized as a couple.

      It’s not about personal opinions, it’s about what is right.

      • Two_Six

        fa·ce·tious – Treating serious issues with deliberately inappropriate humor; flippant.

        Forgive me Pesos. I was trying to make the point, rather facetiously, that most people don’t vote objectively on social issues….as they should!

        Most people deal with each other defensively, which is somewhat immature. They are even defensive about the learning process and usually won’t relinquish irrational beliefs easily. Irrational fears and prejudices often provide us a psychological sense of stability in an uncertain world.

        My rhetorical question was intended to get people to think logically about their objections to gay marriage in a kind of sneaky way. The standard criteria of democratic law is “damage.” I wanted them to ask themselves, “What measurable damage do I sustain if a gay couple is recognized as married?”

  • @ Maricia12,

    I feel you are being true to your understanding of this issue, but you are completely ignorant about the struggles the GLBTQ community faces.

    Your statement, “As it stands, they now already have the same rights as heterosexuals since heterosexuals cannot marry the same sex either,” is honestly the most idiotic statement I’ve heard thus far. Furthermore, the use of the terms “Life style, or choice” are falsities. This is NOT a “life style,” IT IS OUR LIFE, and there is NO choice in whom one is attracted to. A humanbeing has as much control over whom they are attracted to as they have in changing their ethnicity.

    Let me remind you of a couple of points that are in our Constitution. First, we live in a country where we ALLpeople are to be equal under the law. That is the law of the land, NOT the laws doled out by a religious figure, which leads me to my second point. In America, we also have Freedom of Religion. This means that your religion DOES NOT trump my religion.

    By granting every citizen total and complete equality, we strengthen our communities and nation. And for those of you who think they are the only ones “entitled” to certain privileges that the whole are not, then you are the ones wanting “SPECIAL RIGHTS.”

    Please realize that bigotry is still bigotry regardless of the wrapping.

  • For a man who calls himself a Christian I don’t understand why or how he can stand and say he is for gay marriages and why he is giving money to an organization such as planned parenthood. If you are a Christian then you should act like one. Maybe he does not know how a Christian should act. READ YOUR BIBLE AND ACT LIKE CHRIST.

    • You should read the real Bible.

    • Correct me if I am wrong, but wasn’t Jesus the dude who said “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”? Or, as it is practiced by a lot of right wingers nowadays, “Do unto others before they do unto you.”

    • Pesos

      While you’re at it why don’t you demand slavery to come back? Your god preached slavery was good after all. There’s a lot of crap bibles talk about, but that doesn’t stop religious nuts from liking the bible, right? You pretty much pick and choose the parts of the bible you like and pretend that it’s always right.

      Get back to real life. That book is outdated, if you want to read something up to date then read something more recent, such as all the injustices being done to gay people.

    • Two_Six

      Then render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and we of the Empire will allow your Church to stand.

  • How dare you write such a crock of chit??? You hypocrites are all alike, trying to control peoples lives!!! I say to hell with all you morons, good for you Mr. President!!! Obama 2012!!!

  • ayse007

    For me ‘marriage’ is a religious word and my religious beliefs don’t allow me to condone behavior against God’s given law. This shouldn’t even be a political issue if you ask me. If really all the gays want is equal treatment, why don’t they fight for ‘civil unions’ instead to procure the rights similar to what married heterosexuals have. they could have my support then and I would feel more confident that they weren’t trying to change my ideology nor trying to persuade the youth that God should accept homosexuality. Among religious people who believe in God’ s love, the gays are our brothers and sisters who we are required to love, and that actually applies to not just gays but to other persons who may be considered outcasts. I do actually love my gay associates, but I can’t legalize something I don’t feel is good for society. I could march right along with the gays if they weren’t so adamant about using the word ‘marriage’ which has for centuries meant a union between and man and a woman. If they truly are after equal rights for themselves ‘civil unions’ should be enough, as opposed to what looks like a surreptitious effort to break down what the majority feel is the foundation of our ideology. Incidentally, whenever I have visited a gay bar, it has not been a pleasant experience because once discovered to be ‘straight’ I was not welcome there. So where’s the equality there?

    • skytimer01

      Visiting a Gay Bar? UM,,, I am hearing more than one visit. What was the not so pleasant experience besides being straight? Were you overwhelmed and surprised? You don’t know how to cruise? Ask some of your friends? Maybe they are in the closet too.