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Letters: Obama's same-sex marriage evolution

May 12, 2012
  • A sign outside the Stonewall Inn, a historic gay bar in Greenwich Village, after Obama's announcement
A sign outside the Stonewall Inn, a historic gay bar in Greenwich Village,… (Spencer Platt / Getty Images )

Re "Obama takes a stand for gay marriage," May 10

Iwas 13 when I first considered the same-sex marriage "dilemma." I was a Catholic school student, yet even then I could not find the moral (let alone legal) reason by which two consenting adults should not be allowed to marry. Each religion can define the issue's spiritual validity. However, morally and legally, marriage is a common right.

Three years ago, I married a wonderful Mexican American man. As recently as 1967, laws that prohibited interracial marriages such as ours were still constitutionally legal in the United States. I married an immigrant, but as a white, law-abiding, Catholic Democrat, I still could have married an African American, a Jew or a Muslim or a Buddhist, an inmate, or a Republican. We recognize such rights to marriage, yet not those based on sexual orientation or identity.

We have finally given permission for gay troops to serve openly in the military, but when they return home, we deny them the right to devote themselves to matrimony. One can kill and be gay, but to love is unacceptable. I am ashamed of my compatriots for holding dear such biases against our own.

So to you, President Obama, of course I thank you for standing up for the rights of the minority. It should have happened sooner.

Valerie Palacios

Long Beach

"Obama takes a stand for gay marriage," just in time for the president's $15-million Hollywood campaign fundraiser in California, which is heavily funded by the gay community.

Indeed, along with gay-marriage-friendly California officials — Gov. Jerry Brown and Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris, who refused to defend Proposition 8 in federal court — Obama endorses gay marriage and refuses to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, diminishing the institution of marriage.

It is simply unconscionable that gay rights activists consistently jerk around the majority, who should not have to defend centuries of the institution of traditional marriage between one man and one woman — particularly when government has unreasonably institutionalized protected classes as sacred cows.

Daniel B. Jeffs

Apple Valley

Nothing this president does simply "evolves." Vice PresidentJoe Biden'sannouncement Sunday that he supports same-sex marriage seemed like a strategic move.

Gay marriage? Who cares? Don't look in my bedroom and I won't look in yours. Like they said when Bill Clinton was running againstPresidentGeorge H.W. Bush, "It's the economy, stupid."

Keith Karpé

San Clemente

Thank you, President Obama.

If we relied on the conservative Southern Bible belt voters to make our laws, we wouldn't have legal biracial marriages today. It takes a strong leader and a strong Supreme Court to lead this nation forward.

Ron Anderegg

Los Angeles

Log Cabin Republicans: Will you support Obama after his announced support for same sex-marriage, or will you keep to the Republican Party's line against something that would be backed individually by almost all members of your organization?

Sidney Rubinstein

Rosemead

There were several quotes in the May 10 Times (including letters) supporting gay marriage: "Treat others the way you would want to be treated"; "people who love each other should have a right to marry"; "people in America have a right to happiness and to do what they want"; "denying a group of people the simple pleasure of marriage … is asinine."

The continued un-addressed question: Don't these comments equally apply to relatives who want to marry?

Mel Wolf

Burbank

I lost my partner of 41 years in 2010. Though we never felt we needed the marriage certificate, we did become domestic partners, which eased some of the formalities necessary after his passing.

But what feels so very wrong is that I did not receive Social Security survivor benefits. This is happening to so many gays and lesbians, and it is an atrocity. I am doing fine, but I can only imagine the numbers of partners left who really needed this benefit.

I know the process of "evolving" has been oh so slow; however, I would think that educated citizens would more quickly understand that this is not about what goes on in your bedroom, and should not be. Like it our not, the Republicans will fight this. My gut feeling is that this time, with support from our president, gays and lesbians may finally realize some true equality.

Thank you, President Obama.

Ronald L. Wallace

Sherman Oaks

I believe the issue of gay marriage has been framed incorrectly from the beginning.

Instead of asking, "Should same-sex couples be allowed to marry?," I suggest a better question is, "What business does the government have in saying that any two adults can or can't marry?"

What gives the government (or any of us) the right to decide?

Where are the libertarians when you need them?

Edwin McBride

Long Beach

The juxtaposition of the obituary on Nicholas Katzenbach, the Kennedy administration lawyer who faced off with Alabama Gov. George Wallace in 1963, with the headline on Obama's proclamation supporting same-sex marriage was telling. The political cost to Obama in the South demonstrates how far we still have to go.

Human rights and freedom continue to be for only the chosen ones in the eyes of the Deep South. If you don't fit the mold, you don't have the right.

Susan Cossaboom

Yorba Linda

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