Friday, March 8, 2013

Bill Clinton Is Off the Hook on DOMA

Bill Clinton went from shining hope to scoundrel to wise old sage. What a trip.

Maybe I'm just treating a favorite pol of mine lightly, but I take him at his word, as reported on Daily Kos. Sez Clinton about DOMA:
When I signed the bill, I included a statement with the admonition that “enactment of this legislation should not, despite the fierce and at times divisive rhetoric surrounding it, be understood to provide an excuse for discrimination.” Reading those words today, I know now that, even worse than providing an excuse for discrimination, the law is itself discriminatory. It should be overturned.
We are still a young country, and many of our landmark civil rights decisions are fresh enough that the voices of their champions still echo, even as the world that preceded them becomes less and less familiar. We have yet to celebrate the centennial of the 19th Amendment, but a society that denied women the vote would seem to us now not unusual or old-fashioned but alien. I believe that in 2013 DOMA and opposition to marriage equality are vestiges of just such an unfamiliar society.
I buy his perspective and his story. It rings true. I'm a nobody on this issue -- although at the time I thought DOMA was dumb, dumb -- but I had to do my own evolving. So the movement from gay marriage is weird to gay civil unions is okay to gay marriage is a constitutionally protected right is a voyage many of us took.

I like that Bill Clinton said this and shared it. And cynical as I am about the state of America at this point in time, it's heartening when we're reminded of the kind of real progress we have made over time on so many issues. Reason for hope.

I remember why I was against this. I'd much rather forget. Oh well, growth.

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