To Praise or Not To Praise Obama for the DOMA Decision?

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[Updated: Joe Mirabella has an interesting take on this matter. Take a read.]

Obviously, yesterday’s announcement that the Department of Justice will no longer defend (Section 3 of) the Defense of Marriage Act is a good thing, as was making the case that sexual orientation deserves heightened scrutiny.

But this question has to be asked: Why now?

Why did we have to endure two years of the defense of DOMA? Why did we have to endure comparisons to incest and child rape?

It’s important to remember that yesterday’s decision was a change in policy. That I noticed, it did not include an apology for the previous policy.

Likewise, the Department of Justice is going to continue to defend Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell this week. Even though training has already begun to implement repeal, the Log Cabin Republicans’ case is proceeding since repeal is still months from certification. What arguments will the Department of Justice use to defend the constitutionality of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell if, at the same time, it’s suggesting heightened scrutiny for DOMA?

I want to give President Obama credit for this change, I really do. But he still opposes same-sex marriage! That’s kind of a problem.

He could have done it for political reasons. It wins him some favor from the left and puts it to the right to deal with. Many have already noted the irony and hypocrisy of Speaker Boehner’s response. Given that his first order of business as Speaker of the House was to address a controversial social issue (defunding Planned Parenthood), it’s absurd that he would complain that the President is doing the same. If he or other Congressional Republicans tried to intervene in the defense of DOMA, it would be all the more obvious how disingenuous they are about their intentions.

So, I don’t know. I don’t have some grand point to make. There are a lot of folks who complain about people like me for always putting down the President and not giving credit where credit’s due. But if my rights are just being used as a political strategy and my equality isn’t really being favored, I guess I just feel like I have to call that out.

Am I a sourpuss for being skeptical?

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