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In the last months, Barack Obama has made some bold moves in order to set himself apart from his opponent in the upcoming election race. There has many voices of dissolution among his supporters so it seems he has embarked on a risky strategy to win back some of his lost favor. One that could end in tears or in joy.
In the history of the United States no president has publicly supported gay marriage, but President Obama took the very first step recently, although he specified that his declaration was a public opinion and did not mean that he was planning to convert his opinion into a federal law.
This is a risky move that seems intended for the more liberal sectors of America, Obama’s more solid base, whose support has been dwindling. However this declaration shows what kind of politician Barack Obama really is — in his last campaign, when talking about gay marriage could make him lose votes, he said that in his opinion, marriage is between a man and a woman.
But four years on, he uses the same subject to gain votes which in my opinion is betraying his words: I don’t like politicians who only makes decision based on political advantages and disadvantages. I think that in life people need to have clear principles that guide their lives and it is wrong to change your beliefs in accordance with a principle’s convenience.
The Republican candidate for the White House seat is American businessman and former Governor of Massachusetts Mitt Romney, who has repeatedly mentioned that he believes marriage is between a man and a woman. This poses two opposing positions which may prove important to the voters. In the opinion of the republican strategist, Alex Castellanos, Mitt Romney will not lose any gay voter because he has none.
This leaves Obama in a compromised situation; he stated one thing four years ago and now he has changed position in what seems to be a political move. Many of us believes that President Obama was different from the average politician, changing opinions as the wind blows, but his recent move proves that he too is willing to compromise his words.
This is not to say that Mit Romney is any better as a politician, one who stays firm in his beliefs. He will have the chance to prove this if he is elected president this year. But regarding President Obama, we were many who thought he actually would hold his ground and not let the pressure of election time force him into compromising his ideas.
If he really supported gay marriage all along, there would have been a time to say this earlier when his words would have been more powerful and would have resonated with people as a clear message to the society he wanted to govern.
The fact is that in the United States, a large part of the population do not support the President declaration. It is in many ways a very conservative country, grounded in Christian values, where 30 states already prohibits gay marriage. The American society has clear values that defend the traditional family and if the question of sexual orientation is thrown into the mix, this often proves a very sensitive subject for many.
President Obama has expressed his own concerns in regards to his change of heart, citing that his revised opinion upon gay marriage came to be because his daughters have friends whose parents are gay couples. This explanation seems fabricated in my opinion, but I guess the President knows what he is talking about; After all, he is a great politician who knows the impact of his words.