The money quote is at the end: “I’ve just concluded that, for me personally, it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married.”
We can speculate about why President Obama has decided to make this statement now:
- the sheer awfulness of over 60% of North Carolina voters amending their state constitution, most of them not understanding that now children of same-sex couples can’t get health insurance; same-sex couples can’t bury each other; same-sex couples in North Carolina just aren’t couples anymore, legally
- the rising anger of his base, particularly the young, over his pragmatical fence-sitting
- the fact that Romney and an increasingly right-wing Republican Party have staked out their territory on the issue
- the rumour that more than one seven-figure donation to Obama’s campaign has been withheld until he ‘evolved’
But to me the dint in Obama’s arse doesn’t matter much. What matters is the fact that this campaign cycle has begun, and same-sex marriage will be an issue. I expect discourse to devolve rapidly from polite to virulent.
But not here. There will be no virulence on this blog, from either side. I will moderate ruthlessly. Commenters will be kind, humane, and alert to our inherent differences. We are all human. We all have feelings. Let’s treat each other that way.
Number one rule: do as you would be done by. Stay open. Stay patient. Stay polite. Not just here, but Out There. And keep your fingers crossed that others on both sides will, too. To create change we have to understand. We have to really listen–especially when we think we already do understand. Play nicely.