Gays, lesbians hopeful despite inaugural pastor
Posted on January 22, 2009
Filed Under Uncategorized
Hope – and the idea that the country’s new leader would break down barriers of discrimination – overshadowed the disappointment many gays and lesbians felt when an outspoken critic of same-sex marriage gave the invocation at President Obama’s inauguration Tuesday.
“I am completely hopeful, optimistic, relieved, enthusiastic – even knowing that he’s going to disappoint,” said Kate Kendell, executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights.
Obama’s decision to have the Rev. Rick Warren to deliver the inaugural prayer dampened Kendell’s expectations “of how culturally competent Obama is on gay and lesbian issues,” she said. “I think it’s a reminder of how much work we have to do.”
Warren, Evangelical pastor of the Saddleback Church in Orange County, was a chief proponent of Proposition 8, the California ballot measure approved last year that bars gays and lesbians from marrying.
He also has equated same-sex marriage to incest, polygamy and pedophilia and has said that gays and lesbians should resist the urge to act on their sexuality. Warren made no such references during the globally broadcast invocation.
Instead, he spoke of the need to pursue commitment to “justice for all” and “civility in our actions, even when we differ.”
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