In the Gay Marriage Debate, Both Sides Seek Support From Black Clergy

February 29, 2004

Source: The New York Times

On February 29, 2004 The New York Times reported, "As debate escalates around same-sex marriage, advocates on both sides are busily seeking support from the same source: black clergy members. Though their pitches are polar opposites, their motives are largely the same. Each seeks the perceived moral authority and the sheen of civil rights that black religious leaders could lend to each cause. But the aggressive outreach is rife with complications. Neither white conservatives nor gay-rights advocates have had great success in sustaining broad alliances with black churches in the past. The fact that many black Christians are both politically liberal and socially conservative makes them frustratingly difficult to pigeonhole in a political environment in which, many pundits contend, voters are cleanly split along ideological lines. Many blacks opposed to gay marriage, for example, support equal benefits for gays as a matter of economic justice."