Obama supports marriage equality in inauguration speech

By : Staff Report
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For the first time in history, the President of the United States directly addressed the gay and lesbian citizens of the country when Barack Obama gave his second inauguration speech on Jan. 21.

In his 2,095-word speech, given on the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday, Obama touched on civil rights issues, gun control, education reform and alternative energy. But what most LGBTs noticed was the president’s reference to the Stonewall Riots of 1969, which many view as the beginning of the modern-day gay rights movement.

“We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths – that all of us are created equal – is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall; just as it guided all those men and women, sung and unsung, who left footprints along this great Mall, to hear a preacher say that we cannot walk alone; to hear a King proclaim that our individual freedom is inextricably bound to the freedom of every soul on Earth,” Obama said from the steps of the United States Capitol.

He went on to challenge “our generation” to carry on the path of freedom, where he specifically singled out gay and lesbian rights – and alluded to marriage equality

“Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law – for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well,” Obama said.

In another first in LGBT history, openly gay poet Richard Blanco shared his own poem from the dais and LGBT Americans were also recognized during the benediction, ready by the Rev. Luis Leon, who asked God to bless gay and lesbian Americans, among many others.

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