Dear President Obama:
First and foremost, thank you so much for all you have done thus far for LGBT equality. I truly appreciate the groundbreaking work and progress you have ensured. I am writing because I support marriage equality, and I hope you will, too.
First, gay rights are not special – they are human rights. The recognition of gay rights is the recognition of the equality of all people. Anything less endangers the very foundation of human rights – if not all humans have them, how can they be human rights? If gay people are ‘less deserving’ of full equality, where do we stop? Who’s equality as a human being will we vote on next?
Second, in order to recognize ‘gay rights’ as human rights, we must move beyond tolerance. Tolerance was once a great step forward, but it is no longer sufficient. Recognizing same-sex couples as equal to opposite-sex couples is the foundation of securing equal rights because it is the legal recognition of the equality of sexual minorities. Once sexual and gender minorities are provided equal access to the rights they supposedly hold as humans, then we will truly have a system of human rights, one that affords certain rights to all humans because they are human.
Third, all people must be afforded the same rights with the same names. Civil unions are separate but equal, a system we rejected with the Civil Rights Movement.
Finally, this is one of those moments that the United States has the opportunity to step up as a global leader. Only a handful of States have legalized same-sex marriage. If we move the world further by legalizing equality, perhaps the decriminalization of homosexuality in many African and Middle Eastern nations will become a more possible reality. Equality in the United States goes beyond ourselves; it is our part of creating a better world for all.
For more detailed information, see: Why Same-Sex Marriage Matters.