Letter to the Editor of the Rutland Herald about Barack Obama and Marriage Equality (gay marriage)

To the Editor,

Today I received a call from the Barack Obama campaign asking for my support. When I asked about Obama’s position on equality for gays and lesbians, I was directed to a statement on his website concerning his position on marriage equality. This statement upset me because it made clear that Barack Obama believes in discrimination. So I called back his campaign and read them Obama’s own words, however I substituted the word “black” for gay and substituted the word “white” for straight/traditional. This change of a few words made it blatantly obvious that Obama’s position on marriage equality is simply wrong. If you support marriage equality, I encourage you to call the Obama campign and read them Obama’s position on marriage equality with black substituted for gay:

“I believe civil unions should include the same legal rights that accompany a marriage license. I support the notion that all people – black or white – deserve the same rights and responsibilities to assist their loved ones in times of emergency, deserve equal health insurance and other employment benefits currently extended to white married couples, and deserve the same property rights as anyone else. 
“However, I do not support black marriage. Marriage has religious and social connotations, and I consider marriage to be between a white and a white.  If I was President, however, I would oppose any effort to stifle a state’s ability to decide this question on its own.  Whether it was a  Constitutional amendment banning black marriage or a bill like the Defense of Marriage Act, I  would oppose such efforts.  I think the President should do all he or she can to advance strong  families.  Whatever the make-up of the family, it is the President’s role to provide policies and  leadership that enable the family to thrive.”

I say, “Yes we can” change Obama’s position on this important issue.

John Fedor-Cunningham
Benson, VT