Wednesday, May 09, 2012Download All Stories
Obama becomes 1st president to support gay 'marriage'
WASHINGTON (BP) -- President Obama Wednesday became the first sitting U.S. president to support gay "marriage" publicly, an announcement that was surprising perhaps only in its timing and one that could impact the general election.
The announcement came one day after North Carolinians overwhelmingly affirmed the traditional definition of marriage. Four other states will consider the issue this year, a year in which Obama is seeking re-election.
Obama seemed to be forced into stating his position after Vice President Joe Biden told NBC's "Meet the Press" three days earlier that he is "comfortable" with gays and lesbians "marrying."
Obama made the announcement during an interview with ABC News' Robin Roberts.
"I've just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married," Obama told Roberts. The full interview will air later Wednesday on ABC's "World News with Diane Sawyer."
Even before Obama was elected, some conservative and liberal pundits scoffed at the suggestion that Obama did not support gay "marriage." For instance, in 2008 he opposed California Prop 8, a constitutional amendment that defined marriage as being between a man and a woman. In 2011 he ordered the Justice Department to stop defending in court the Defense of Marriage Act, a federal law that defines marriage in the traditional sense, and he also announced support for a congressional bill that would overturn the law. And this year, his spokespersons announced he opposed proposed constitutional marriage amendments in North Carolina and Minnesota. He's also spoken twice to events held by the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay group. Yet all along, the White House maintained he merely was "evolving" on the issue.
Bryant Wright, president of the Southern Baptist Convention, reacted to the news with sadness.
"It is very depressing news when the president of the United States uses his power of influence to endorse same-sex marriage," Wright, pastor of Johnson Ferry Baptist Church in Marietta, Ga., told Baptist Press. "... Scripture is very clear that from the beginning, God intended marriage to be between one man and one woman. It is important for us who are followers of Jesus to uphold the sacredness of marriage according to Scripture."
Wright added, "Christians are called to pray for our government leaders, and it is now more important than ever to pray for President Obama in this very misguided decision."
It remains to be seen whether it will cost Obama politically. Although some polls now show majority support for gay "marriage," it has yet to translate to the ballot. North Carolina voters Tuesday passed a constitutional amendment defining marriage between one man and one woman, and the margin of victory -- 61-39 percent -- surprised even supporters. Read More
As Land issues 5-part apology, NAAF pres. awaits trustee actionNASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) -- A five-part apology for "injudicious comments" was released today (May 9) by Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, regarding the Trayvon Martin killing. Read More
N.C. becomes 30th state with marriage amend.RALEIGH, N.C. (BP) -- North Carolina voters have made the state the 30th in the U.S. to define marriage within a constitution as between a man and a woman, passing a proposal that had drawn nationwide attention by a margin even larger than pre-election surveys. Read More
The people speak: A history of marriage votes
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) -- Every state that has voted on the issue of marriage at the ballot has affirmed the traditional definition of marriage being between a man and a woman. Following is a list of each state that has voted on the issue. Read More
Church ladies provide clean water in AsiaJOYCE, La. (BP) -- When Ella Creel heard children were dying for lack of clean water, she knew something had to be done. But the problem was half a world away, in the high desert of southern Tajikistan. Read More
SWBTS grads to see trials & victoriesFORT WORTH, Texas (BP) -- Paige Patterson challenged graduates never to forget their calling nor lose their vision of the exalted and holy God during Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary's spring commencement May 4. Read More
EDUCATION DIGEST: SWBTS, GGBTS, Union
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP) -- This Education Digest contains reports about Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary embracing Madagascar's Antandroy people; Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary partnering with a seminary in Mexico; and a book on faith & learning by Union University faculty members and other contributors.
SOUTHWESTERN EMBRACES UNREACHED PEOPLE GROUP -- Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary has accepted the challenge of reaching the estimated 1.4 million Antandroy people ... Read More
FIRST-PERSON: Mother's Day & the infertile
Mother's Day can be a time of sorrow for infertile women, but there are ways churches can help the situation, says columnist Russell D. Moore. Read More
FIRST-PERSON: Falling in love with Nineveh
When he was pastor of a church in Miami, columnist Eric Geiger found practical ways to fall in love with the people, thereby deepening his burden to see them come to know Christ. In this column, Geiger lists nine suggestions for falling in love with wherever God has placed you to serve. Read More