While every Democrat praises President Obama's "evolution" to favoring marriage equality, I can only ask: What took him so long? Why did he not realize sooner that marriage equality is the civil rights issue of our generation?
It seems like just yesterday that I wrote a HuffPost blog complaining about our president and vice president and their "evolving" opinions on gay marriage. Actually, it was yesterday. What a difference a day makes.
I remain steadfast and unwavering, convinced that we are on the cusp of true change: equality, tolerance, acceptance, inclusion, and ultimately the cohesive celebration of being one happy people who celebrate our inalienable rights to live as a truly free people under God.
The president and his advisers must have calculated that the benefits of appearing resolute and firm outweighed the costs of alienating conservative democrats in swing states. In a sense, Obama pulled a card from George W. Bush's playbook, saying to voters, I am the Decider.
Voters ultimately decide more on who they trust and respect than on their stand on a specific issue. Issues, and how a candidate handles the issues, becomes a proxy for voters' judgments about their character.
President Obama visited upstate New York this week. Don't hold your breath waiting for him to come back. We live with the Curse of the True Blue. Everybody knows how New York is going to vote in presidential elections, so nobody cares.
President Obama knows that a growing number of Americans and people of faith understand this as a simple matter of fairness for all families. Obama has chosen to stand in the gap, even as conservatives manipulate religion to undermine the core value of equal standing before the law.
I personally haven't "just concluded" that gay and lesbian Americans should be treated fairly and equally. I concluded this a very long time ago, when the most loved person in the world to my wife and myself, our young son, told us that he was gay.
Opposition to discrimination has always been a morally and politically right position for Obama, and that has included gender and sexual preference, not just racial discrimination. There was no doubt then that it was only a matter of time that Obama would finally say yes to gay marriage.
Legalizing gay marriage would grant rights to a group of people heretofore denied equal treatment in the eyes of the law. And those equal rights for everyone are true to the spirit in which this country was founded.
Just now, I think we're in "history-making" territory. Not because of Obama's own "evolution," but because of what his announcement says about the organizing power of the LGBTQ community over the past 20 years.