Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Obama evolves into queer rights

Obama has come into the 21st Century!

The president has finally taken a real stance pro gay marriage, truly moving into the 21st century. Is it a kinda bullshit announcement, without any direct policy ramifications? Yes.  Will he fight for marriage rights? No.

But is it a turning point for queer identity an normalization in America? Yes.

When the president supports gay marriage with lipservice he is doing it symbolically. That means he effects and represents in the same move. On the one hand, the majority of Americans support gay marriage, the right of marriage equality, and this is clearly the "right side of history." On the other hand, Obama's support helps make it the majority opinion.It's symbolic like Thanksgiving dinner. We celebrate family and community by coming together for a special feast. At the same time, the special feast is the source of family and community.

I'm reading through the various reactions, and I want to say: you're all right! This did happen and it's a big deal! But not the biggest deal ever! Let's walk together and continue to figure this out!

This announcement was fortuitously placed alongside a post from Rachel Evans (shoutout to stuffchristianculturelikes), who related some stats alongside anecdotes that I second wholeheartedly. As people who self-identify as queer continue to self-identify, people who self-identify as straight know more of them, and everyone is more offended by the bombastic rhetoric from churches and church-y political organizations. When I moved from the country to the city, I went from only knowing people like me to knowing loads of people of all stripes. And now I don't just think in my head that they deserve equal rights and access, I feel it from experience. That is feeling community!

And it is in the spirit of the God who brings us together.  For a religious organization to gay-bash is insane. As always, let us walk together until we dissolve our differences, instead of throwing each other against walls.

If rhetoric is all Obama has to offer on this topic, I'll still take it.