Although not included in the video clip above, the MTV page goes on to quote Obama as also saying
Usually, our constitutions expand liberties, they don’t contract them…
In addition to expressing his opposition to Proposition 8, Obama said he believes and supports “strong civil unions … that provide legal rights to same-sex couples [so] that they can visit each other in the hospital if they get sick, [so] they can transfer property to each other. If they’ve got benefits, they can make sure those benefits apply to their partners. I think that’s the direction we need to go in. I think young people are ahead of the curve on this for the most part. Their attitude, generally, is that we should be respectful of all people, and that’s the kind of politics I want to practice.”
Of course, California already has marriage equality, so his support of civil unions is retrograde and so very Jim Crow. And since CA also still has Domestic Partnerships, I wonder if his strong civil unions stance actually supports someone who wants to vote for Prop 8 to feel quite alright about doing that. After all, those gays will still have our DP largesse.
So, after watching this, is the glass half full or half empty for you? Unless the full video reveals something further, for me the glass is half empty. I am disappointed that he couldn’t talk about constitutions and what they’re for without stating boldly and for the umpteenth time that marriage is between a man and a woman. In January, he will be taking an oath to uphold the Constitution of the USA. Yet his emphasis remains on religion and personal bigotry, not equal protection of the laws. And he made sure we all know that. When will he let us see the constitutional scholar he keeps claiming to be?
All I can hope is that enough of his supporters in CA, AZ and FL, who will be voting on anti-equality amendments next week, will somehow hear “vote no on that trash!” in his weak “no marriage for gays! oh, but don’t mess with constitutions” response.