Yesterday, President Obama became the first president of the United States to address same-sex marriage in his inaugural address, and the first president to use the term “gay”:
Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law –- (applause) — for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.
Leaving aside the idiocy of this statement – gays and lesbians have precisely the same rights under law as heterosexuals, they are just disproportionately affected by those laws; being created with equal rights does not mean all behavior is equal (see polygamy vs. monogamy) – the president is a hypocrite. Even as he stoked the flames of the culture war by suggesting that America isn’t truly equal under law until same-sex marriage is embraced, he refuses to federalize the issue. In fact, it’s perhaps the only issue he won’t federalize. Blanket bans on assault weapons from the federal government? Sure. Federalized same-sex marriage? No chance.
Today, White House press secretary Jay Carney stated, “The presiden’ts position on this has been clear in terms of his personal views. He believes that individuals who love each other should not be barred from marriage.” Except, of course, for close relatives, multiple partners, and minors, although Carney couldn’t explain why they shouldn’t be allowed to marry under this logic. Carney declined to give an administration position on California’s Proposition 8, and refused federal action on same-sex marriage altogether.
Obama’s speech, then, was sound and fury signifying liberalism, but certainly no more action on behalf of the gay and lesbian community.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the book “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).