Friday, July 9, 2010

Day 190- DOMA

Dear Mr. President,

I applaud Judge Joseph Tauro's decision to reject federal legislation against gay marriage. DOMA is a shameful relic of our country's bigoted past and should be repealed. I hope that the kind of wisdom he demonstrated in his decision will not go unheralded by your administration. This is another step, albeit much too small and much too slow, in the direction of equality and justice for gay and lesbian Americans. The arguments posed by proponents of DOMA during congressional debate simply do not stand up against evidence. Gay mariage is legal in Canada, South Africa, Sweden and many other European countries. As far as I know, these countries haven't experienced a tremendous breakdown in traditional mariages. The basic family unit has not been destroyed. Plagues of locusts have not descended. The fear and hatred expressed by those who feel threatened by the gay community is simply not based on anything resembling legitimate grounds.

In preparation for this letter I decided to read some pro-DOMA arguments, from news sites I don't normally visit. (This, by they way, is still your fault. Remember that commencement speech in Michigan?) This jewel, from world net daily, is what I found:

"President Obama has been actively promoting an agenda to undermine the nation's marriage laws," said Staver, who also is dean of Liberty University School of Law. "When you weaken the family, as President Obama is doing by his policies, you weaken society. Children fare best when raised with a mom and a dad. Redefining marriage to something it was not intended to be weakens the family and is not in the best interest of children or society. President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder must defend the nation’s marriage laws. The Obama administration must defend DOMA, not sabotage the law."

I don't see how the speaker has made his case that your policies "weaken the family", or how this affects "children and society." I do find it amusing that these far-right nut jobs are attacking you for advancing the homosexual agenda when, no offense, your administration has moved pretty slowly on issues of gay rights. I suppose my point is that, if you're going to upset these people no matter what you do (and, let's face it, they weren't voting for you, anyway,) why not own the charges they make? Why not actually, vocally, publicly support repealing DOMA and granting marriage equality to homosexual couples? Civil rights issues shouldn't have to wait for a show of hands from every one; acceptance of interracial couples is still a problem for some people, but no one is arguing that we should let them steer national marriage policy for every one. If you're holding out for more public support, I think that's just poor leadership. Legalizing gay marriage is the right thing to do, and I think you know that. Why miss the opportunity to show that you're a courageous leader for the sake of voters who will blame you for it no matter how slowly the changes are made? I don't see what you gain, and I don't see how it is best for the country. I sincerely hope that you find the courage to stand up against DOMA, and to praise Judge Tauro for his wise decision.

Respectfully yours,


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