When President Obama first announced his support for marriage equality yesterday, he mentioned that his new view was motivated in part by same-sex couples who are raising kids together. In a campaign e-mail later yesterday evening, he said again that he was influenced by the children of same-sex parents. His daughters have friends with same-sex parents, he added, and the girls assume that those families should be treated equally (my emphasis):
What I’ve come to realize is that for loving, same-sex couples, the denial of marriage equality means that, in their eyes and the eyes of their children, they are still considered less than full citizens.
Even at my own dinner table, when I look at Sasha and Malia, who have friends whose parents are same-sex couples, I know it wouldn’t dawn on them that their friends’ parents should be treated differently.
So I decided it was time to affirm my personal belief that same-sex couples should be allowed to marry.
The president may have come to embrace marriage equality, but it seems like his daughters were there before him. That in itself speaks to the power of family. We learn as much from our kids as they do from us. Maybe even more.