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May 9th, 2012
08:44 PM ET

Letters to the President #1206: 'Evolution'

Reporter's Note: Each day I sit at my computer and write to the White House. Each day I receive no response. I’m not complaining. I’m sure they are very busy over there.

Dear Mr. President,

So this afternoon, after more than three years in office, you came out and finally said that you are in favor of same-sex marriage. Good for you.

Now, I’m not picking sides in this fight; how you or anyone else in this country feels about that issue is your business and I won’t pass judgment on it. What I mean when I say “good,” is that it is always refreshing when a politician says openly and directly what he or she believes.

And after all, I don’t think your “I’m evolving” talk, was sitting well with anyone anyway. Conservatives figured you’d already made up your mind and were just trying to hide your opinion from voters because you feared a backlash; liberals figured you’d already made up your mind and were acting like a coward by not speaking up. I personally talked to a fair number of gay and lesbian rights activists who were, to say the least, disheartened that you seemed to be taking forever to finish your evolution.

I do understand that sometimes changing one’s political or moral stance on something does indeed take time. Certainly there are beliefs that I was plenty confident about when I was 15 that have changed since then, and it has taken years for me to fully understand and express my altered views. But here is the difference: I’m not the president. To be honest, my opinion doesn’t matter much even when I have one. Heck, even my dog ignores me half of the time.

So, all of that considered, I hope you were not hoping for a big bump in the polls from this, because I’m not sure it will be coming. Maybe this was truly a courageous decision that you made out of nothing but your conscience and heartfelt feelings on the matter, but I suspect few folks will see it that way. Because I think many of those who wanted it feel like you made them wait too long, and many of those who oppose it feel as if your inspiration was not a commitment to civil rights, but rather a hope for re-election.

Not trying to wreck on you, just letting you know what I’m hearing and seeing out here.

I hope all is well. Call if you can.

Regards,
Tom

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