Olbermann on Proposition 8
Earlier this week, Keith Olbermann delivered the best commentary I've ever heard from him, a passionate piece on the injustice of California's Proposition 8 (text available here). He seemed almost on the verge of tears at some points, even though, as he pointed out, he has no personal investment in the issue.
For me, the core of Olbermann's argument came here:
I keep hearing this term "re-defining" marriage. If this country hadn't re-defined marriage, black people still couldn't marry white people. Sixteen states had laws on the books which made that illegal in 1967. 1967.We've redefined marriage to allow minorities to marry. We've redefined marriage to allow minorities to marry white people. We've redefined marriage to allow divorce.
The parents of the President-Elect of the United States couldn't have married in nearly one third of the states of the country their son grew up to lead. But it's worse than that. If this country had not "re-defined" marriage, some black people still couldn't marry black people. It is one of the most overlooked and cruelest parts of our sad story of slavery. Marriages were not legally recognized, if the people were slaves. Since slaves were property, they could not legally be husband and wife, or mother and child. Their marriage vows were different: not "Until Death, Do You Part," but "Until Death or Distance, Do You Part." Marriages among slaves were not legally recognized.
You know, just like marriages today in California are not legally recognized, if the people are gay.
But let's not let the facts of history get in the way of human rights.