Two years ago, the Republican mayor of San Diego, Jerry Sanders, was elected on a platform that included opposition to gay marriage. Yet, on Wednesday, he suddenly dropped his opposition and signed a City Council resolution supporting a challenge to California’s gay marriage ban. He had previously promised to veto it.
Why the change of heart? It seems the most important reason is Lisa Sanders, the mayor’s daughter, who it turns out is a lesbian:
The Republican mayor said he could no longer back the position he took during his election campaign two years ago, when he said he favored civil unions but not full marriage rights for homosexual couples.
He fought back tears as he said he wanted his adult daughter, Lisa, and other gay people he knows to have their relationships protected equally under state laws.
“In the end, I could not look any of them in the face and tell them that their relationships — their very lives — were any less meaningful than the marriage that I share with my wife Rana,” Sanders said.
The move most likely carries some political risk for Mayor Sanders since, “in 2000, 62% of San Diego voters endorsed a statewide measure to restrict marriage to a union between a man and woman.”
It seems quite understandable to me that through the love one has for one’s daughter, one would gain insight and empathy for the plight of homosexuals. Yet, that is not always the case. Dick Cheney’s daughter is gay, and Dick Cheney continues to oppose gay marriage. I think in Cheney we have a man willing to put political considerations above what his heart must tell him is the right thing to do. But do you think I’m being too hard on Cheney?