In August 2008 Barack Obama gave a speech at the Saddleback Presidential Candidates Forum that aired live on CNN. In that speech he made what I believe is the most damaging statement any political leader can make with regard to gay people and our marriages. When asked by Pastor Rick Warren to define marriage, Barack Obama answered, "I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian, it's also a sacred union. God is in the mix."
The idea that God Almighty finds heterosexual marriages to be "sacred" while discriminating against the unions of gay people is not a new one by any means. Far too many young LGBT kids grow up believing that God hates them. Anti-gay pastors and politicians have long used religious dogma as a weapon in the fight against LGBT equality. But to hear that Barack Obama essentially held the same religious view of gay marriage as that of Rick Santorum was nothing short of stunning. Sadly, it's also the same viewpoint the president adamantly stood behind throughout much of his presidency. Even after his recent "evolution" on the issue of gay marriage, President Obama has never actually renounced or even bothered to clarify his religious viewpoint.
Speaking at a fundraising reception in Atlanta this week, President Obama stated, "I'll always tell you what I thought. I'll always tell you what I believe." If that is truly the case, then it's past time for the president to tell America if his religious views on gay marriage have also evolved. During a time when far too many young gay kids are killing themselves, there is simply no longer time for equivocation. Does the president still believe that God only sees heterosexual marriages as "sacred," or does he feel that God's grace now shines on gay people, as well?