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While I applaud the Mayors action, it is interesting to note that his feelings and politics on this issue only change when it came to light that his daughter was gay. Now I am not taking anything away from him, but I think this would of been more significant if he had done so before this came to light. I also applaud his position more than I could say for others in the republican Party. People such as Alan Keyes, and Phyllis Schlafly who both have children that are gay, and openly advocate positions that deny them equal civil rights.


Joan Walsh of Salon Magazine echoes the same words and sentiments you spoke of when she wrote this on Thursday:

The courage of Mayor Jerry Sanders

This is the way necessary social change happens. It starts out unthinkable, and then one day it's inevitable.

I'm not going to spend much time describing San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders' statement about why he changed his mind and supports gay marriage. Watch the video, below. (Don't watch it if you can't afford to have a good cry this afternoon.) Sanders, a Republican, explains that he planned to veto a City Council resolution supporting efforts to overturn California's ban on gay marriage, but he changed his mind when the resolution reached his desk. Things get dramatic at about 1:55 in the video:

"The arrival of the resolution to sign or veto in my office late last night -- [pauses] please excuse us -- forced me to reflect and search my soul for the right thing to do. I've decided to lead with my heart, which is probably obvious at the moment, to do what I think is right and to take a stand on behalf of equality and social justice."

He tells reporters that his daughter Lisa and members of his staff are gay, and explains: "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.

I myself was a cowardly civil unions supporter, until San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom started marrying gay couples at City Hall three years ago, and the sight of thousands of gay people, from all over the world, lining up to exercise this basic human right changed my mind forever. San Diego still isn't San Francisco, and this isn't a political no-brainer there, the way it was for Newsom. Mayor Sanders is a hero today.

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