Obama's Stand For Gay Marriage Shouldn't Cost Him African American Votes

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Only the visionless cannot see the wisdom of President Obama’s continuing efforts to level the playing field in all facets of American existence. He wants to create a better, more just and competitive society, as we challenge the world armed with the power of the principles that govern our lives in this country.


 
[The Monderson View]

There are many reasons why President Barack Obama's support for Gay marriages should not cost him significant African American votes in November.

From
the time President Obama publicly stated “Gays should be
permitted to marry” all manner of criticism was unleashed: from
his alleged questionable moral conduct to his supposedly harming his re-election chances.  
 
However,
while it must be reiterated the President’s position reflects his own
personal belief rather than official policy, he feels the rights of Gay
people to marry means they will be accorded the equality all Americans
are entitled to.  
 
Gays love the fact the President recognizes
their right to happiness and equality. Conservatives who never liked Mr.
Obama is now seeking to win converts among Blacks, particularly the
Clergy, who seem to be leaning towards withdrawing their support for the
President because of his new position on gay marriage.

Mr.
Obama’s statement about the status of gays is a natural response from a
prominent personality about an increasingly important issue gaining
prominence among a new generation of Americans. The problem with the
President’s statement, no matter what he says, his comments become an
issue, most often misconstrued.
 
For example, when Professor
Henry “Skip” Gates was arrested while trying to enter his own house and
President Obama commented on his friend’s arrest, he was castigated for
his comments by many so-called mainstream media as a racial matter.  
 
In
the Trayvon Martin killing, the President said: “If I had a son he
would look like Trayvon.” Newt Gingrich and many others, at the time,
candidates for the Presidency, accused Mr. Obama of exploiting the
situation and creating a racial divide in the country.  
 
This is
not necessarily so. If we remember when Mr. Obama was attacked
particularly by the nascent Tea Party Movement, first as a Senator and
then as President, many people thought the outlandish accusations had
crossed the line and that they were racist in intent.  Mr. Obama said,
"No." He said these were just Americans expressing a respected right to
protest and demonstrate.  
 
Here was a man then trying not to
infuse or see racial behavior even in such clearly questionable
expressions-- consistently attacking his patriotism, moral character,
leadership, vision, and even his family.  
 
However, Mr. Obama
did take a stand when he looked into the camera that day and said: “If
you’re listening, lay off my wife.” You see, Mr. Obama does know his
strengths and he knows a great many of the American people are with
him.
 
Nevertheless, the subtle but powerful attack on Mr.
Obama’s candidacy in the appeal to the Black Clergy is on the grounds
that support for homosexual behavior by the President was immoral and
against Biblical dogma.  
 
The question really is, can these
pastors who exert influence from their pulpits distinguish between the
social drama and the political ramifications of unfolding events as we
approach the November elections. The President’s position on the right
of Gay and Lesbian Americans to get married and enjoy the benefits of
matrimonial protection was based on one man’s conviction of the need for
fairness. Yet, it involves a great many Americans: declared or not.  
 
After
all, civil unions do not go far enough to protect the rights and
visitation privileges of homosexuals in committed relationships that
sometimes outlast even heterosexual marriages, where by last count, the
rate of divorce has been spiraling., 
 
Many men of the cloth
have expressed disagreement with some things said in the Bible, as
unalterable Gospel. During slavery, defenders often sought Biblical
justification for their actions. Recently, Rev. Joseph Lowery, that
venerable civil rights icon was on CNN with Don Lemon and expressed the
view: “I find problems with a fellow named Paul saying ‘slaves obey your
masters.’”  
 
Naturally, to quote J.E. Harris in "Africans and
Their History" (1972: 14) quoting Robert Graves and Raphael Patai,
"Hebrew Myths" (New York: 1964: 221) description of this issue and
wrote: "it must be Canaan, your firstborn, whom they enslave" and
"Canaan’s children shall be born ugly and black" and "Your
grandchildren’s hair shall be twisted into kinks, [their lips] shall
swell" and "Men of this race are called Negroes; their forefather Canaan
commanded them to love theft and fornication, to be banded together in
hatred of their masters and never to tell the truth.”  
 
As
Malcolm X said: Perhaps the “House Negro” will accept being a slave but
the “Field Negro” will reject such outright. Harris (1972: 14)-15)
continued his explanation, that the “passage includes not only a pretty
clear description of the color and physical type of the ‘cursed’ people,
it also presents the principal stereotypes associated with blacks –
thieves, fornicators, and liars. The translation of a Hebrew manuscript
of Benjamin ben Jonah, a twelfth-century merchant and traveler from
Spanish Navarre, not only supports the same theme but also suggests that
it was fairly widespread” 
 
Even Christian missionaries,
ministers and others “explained that an African was better off a slave
in a Christian society than free in African savagery.”  
 
Thus,
we can see the connection of Republican political theoretical
strategists appealing to the Black Clergy to denounce the President for
his stand on Gay Marriage.  
 
Julian bond, icon of the Civil
Rights Movement has made the distinction on the gay right issue and the
NAACP board has recognized and supports it as a social and “civil right”
then we see the wisdom of Barack Obama in further leveling the field
for all Americans.  
 
Consider this: Gays cans serve in the
military, judicial system, schools, in all walks of society but it is
okay to continue to discriminate against them? One commentator noted
that if an American marries a woman from a foreign country she is
entitled to immigrate and join her husband. This right does not belong
to a Gay American who marries a non-American male abroad.  
 
There
is even more to this. As such, only the visionless cannot see the
wisdom of President Obama’s continuing efforts to level the playing
field in all facets of American existence. He wants to create a better,
more just and competitive society, as we challenge the world armed with
the power of the principles that govern our lives in this country.


"Speaking Truth To Empower."


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