I (Maureen Dowd) asked whether President Obama, who said at a Martin Luther King Jr. commemoration that the civil rights movement was partly about “changing people’s hearts and minds and breaking out of old customs and old habits,” had disappointed him given that the president is a triumph of civil rights himself.
“Oh, I can’t get in trouble here,” Newsom said with a playful wince. “I want him to succeed. But I am very upset by what he’s not done in terms of rights of gays and lesbians. I understand it tactically in a campaign, but at this point I don’t know. There is some belief that he actually doesn’t believe in same-sex marriage. But it’s fundamentally inexcusable for a member of the Democratic Party to stand on the principle that separate is now equal, but only on the basis of sexual orientation. We’ve always fought for the rights of minorities and against the whims of majorities.”In all we've seen this past year with Obama, we know he is a political beast, and is pragmatic as a political beast. He knows that if he came out "pro-equal rights in marriage," those who call themselves "independent," who recently aligned with Scott Brown in MA for U.S. Senate, would leave Obama in 2012, as they well might leave the Democrats behind in 2010 mid-term elections. This is why they are stalling on DADT, ENDA, overturning DOMA: politics.
In the words of King, though, whose life we are celebrating this week: justice delayed is justice denied. When King was told to be patient by a white supporter, it gave birth to a letter from a jail in Birmingham, Alabama.
We who support equal rights in marriage, who support the overturning of DADT, who support employment protection, will have to force Obama's hand with votes, with rallies, and with letters/emails pushing the politics and politicians, Republican, Democrats, and Independents alike...or move to Nepal (read previous blog).