Stephen Miller and Virginia Postrel note Obama's relative reticence on the California initiative against marriage equality. Steve is wrong in as much as Obama has publicly opposed it, if in a mealy-mouthed fashion. But Obama, like Clinton and McCain, sadly opposes full gay equality. He's not a foe like Bush who wanted to marginalize gay couples in the very constitution of the country. And he does support federal civil unions (although I might as well say I don't think he'll deliver on this).

What really hurts is that Obama's own parents were in a marriage that was illegal in many states when he was born.

And yet he wants to perpetuate the same kind of irrational fears that once marginalized his own family. And he knows all this.

I have one small suggestion for Obama's campaign and gay people and their families. At some point before the election, he should give a speech to some chapter of PFLAG: the Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays. It's an integrative, family-oriented way to demonstrate his support for gay people, even as he resists our full equality. He needs to show that he is capable of more than lip-service. By including us in his campaign between now and November, he would show more courage than any Democrat in history.

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