In 2004, Barack Obama said, “I am not a supporter of gay marriage as it has been thrown about…I think that marriage, in the minds of a lot of voters, has a religious connotation.” Four years later he commented, “I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian, it is also a sacred union. God’s in the mix.”
God got thrown from the mix in 2012. That’s when President Obama, running for reelection, endorsed gay marriage. But even as late as last year, he was still on record respecting the religious rights of dissenters. “How religious institutions define and consecrate marriage has always been up to those institutions. Nothing about this decision [the Supreme Court’s ruling overturning the Defense of Marriage Act]—which applies only to civil marriages—changes that.”
God got tossed again a few weeks ago when Obama called for homosexual marriage to be recognized as a constitutional right. In doing so, he teed up a confrontation between our long-established constitutional right to religious liberty and this newly invented right to gay marriage.
Contrary to what many have said, this issue is not over. Were it not for unelected judges overturning the express will of the people—in state after state—attempts to subvert marriage, properly understood, would not have succeeded. We need to return power to the people by considering a constitutional amendment.
The time is ripe for Catholics to support the efforts of San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, the bishops’ point man on marriage. In February, he called for support of the federal Marriage Protection Amendment.
As any astute political science undergraduate knows, there is no constitutional right to gay marriage. But now that this issue has been thrust upon us by our constitutional law professor president, we need to affirm marriage between a man and a woman in the U.S. Constitution.