On Gay Marriage

First Vice President Biden comes out:

Look, I am Vice President of the United States of America. The president sets the policy. I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women and heterosexual men marrying women are entitled to the same exact rights. All the civil rights, all the civil liberties. And quite frankly I don’t see much of a distinction beyond that.

Then today, President Obama comes out as well:

“At a certain point, I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married,” Mr. Obama said.

Long a proponent of civil unions, Mr. Obama said his views had changed in part because of prodding by friends who are gay and by conversations with his wife and daughters.

“I had hesitated on gay marriage in part because I thought that civil unions would be sufficient,” Mr. Obama said. “I was sensitive to the fact that for a lot of people, the word marriage was something that invokes very powerful traditions and religious beliefs.”

It’s about fucking time our Chief Executives acknowledge this. Biden’s comment is perfect.

But while this is great news, Marco Arment has a good perspective:

This is certainly progress and worthy of celebration. But does it disappoint anyone else that he was so obviously holding it back all this time because he didn’t want to offend all of the bigots?

His statements are couched in so much equivocation and accommodation that it’s barely an endorsement. And it’s easy to question his motives as he finally says something to energize Democratic voters a few months before his re-election campaign.

It doesn’t feel sincere: rather, it feels like the good-politician move of just telling people whatever they want to hear to maximize campaign contributions and keep themselves in office.

Now, one could argue that Arment’s take here is overly cynical. It is brimming with cynicism, but I, for one, think the jadedness is just. It is really disappointing that it’s taken this long for the powers-that-be to summon up the balls to stand up for same-sex marriage. It sucks that people have to skirt around what’s right because some people might be offended that the gay married terrorists are plotting to blow up the Empire. (A referendum, of course, on the Bush administration’s bullshit post–9/11 scare campaign.) Furthermore, Arment’s point about Obama’s announcing support as a political maneuver is well taken. One would like to believe Obama’s sincere, but seeing how close we are to election time, it’s not unreasonable (or cynical) to think Obama’s simply trying to drum up support on his side of the ticket. (Example 5,765 why Democrats are essentially Republicans Lite. And why I say, fuck ’em all.)

See also: Same-sex marriage is a growing trend that should prevail long-term.