Friday, May 11, 2012

And now a word from the Bishop of Washington

Lots being written -- and lots yet to come -- about President Obama's "evolution" on marriage equality and on his historic statement earlier this week supporting the right of same-sex couples to equal protection of civil marriage.
Here's one from Mariann Budde -- AKA the Bishop of Washington -- who makes what I think is a critically important and infinitely hopeful point about the "evolution" aspect of the story:
“I want to thank President Barack Obama for his forthright description of how he came to change his mind on the issue of marriage equality. While some commentators are dismissing the President’s “evolution,” the fact is that many of us have a similar story to tell. We grew up in social and spiritual traditions that taught us that same-gender orientation was a perversion, was a sin. Yet over time, and in relationship with people whose lives and examples contradicted our assumptions, we came to a different conclusion. Eventually, we came to realize that the sacred traditions we thought were opposed to same-gender relationships had much to say in support of them.
“The President acknowledged that it was the example of staff members in committed, monogamous relationships; the same-gender parents of his daughters’ friends, and brave gay and lesbian soldiers that made him reconsider his opposition to marriage equality. This is only fitting. Jesus said that by their fruits you would know them. The President, like millions of other Americans, recognized goodness and holiness in the lives of same-sex couples, and had the courage and humility to change his mind. I offer him my appreciation and my prayers.”
My fondest hope is that in giving the gift of transparency in his decision-making process, President Obama is also giving the gift of encouragement to those who are still struggling with issues of LGBT equality to listen, to learn and to have both the courage and the humility to change their minds as well. We know that the arc of the moral universe bends toward justice. We also know that it does so a reconsidered position at a time -- a changed mind at a time -- an inch at a time.


Bateau Master said...

President Obama took a route to energize his base without having to use any political capital in the process. Where is the legislation, where is the reciprocity, where is the proposed Constitutional Amendment? What's with the idea that it's a state rights issue?


The Government (Local, State & Federal) hand out benefits based upon a contracted relationship between two adults - called Marriage. But what business is it of the Government who those two people are or what the nature of their relationship might be. Why a man and a woman? Why unrelated? Since Lawrence v. Texas - the Government has no interest in our bedrooms. If two adults want the contractual benefits and responsibilities that come with such a recognized relationship, they should be able to enter into one. Let's call it Registration ....

Brothers looking out after one another - establishing SS survivor or inheritance rights. Sisters, mothers, fathers - heck any two adults should be able to enter into such a contract. Of course, breaking the contract would entail further legal actions up to and possibly including a court case.

Any one wanting to be married by a religious organization would be required to enter into such a contract, but adults could be "Registered" without having to be married. The Government would not marry anyone - its business ends at registration.

IT said...

For discussion of state's rights issues, EJ Graff points out that if marriage weren't a state's right issue, right now no LGBT couple would be married.

Bateau master wants to kill marriage to save it. Well, THAT ain't gonna happen.