In early 2004, I was opposed to attempts to legalize same-sex marriage. That's because I was scared of the backlash that I was sure would come. I thought that pushing too much would alienate so much of the American heterosexual public that it would take even longer to make change happen.
And then, in February of that year, San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom opened the doors to same-sex marriage in that city. And I went up and stood outside City Hall and cheered and applauded along with the rest of the crowd, and the joy in the air was totally infectious, and it changed my mind. After that, I became a supporter.
I still feared the backlash, especially a few days later when I read a poll in which only 30% of Americans polled said that same-sex marriages should be legal, and 51% of Americans polled said that “a homosexual relationship between consenting adults is morally wrong.” But I could no longer bring myself to oppose making the attempt, not after seeing the happiness on the faces of the people who got married in San Francisco that day.
And eleven years later—a far shorter time than I could ever have imagined—here we are.
I don't think I've ever been gladder to have been wrong.
Many thanks to all the people who didn't make the mistake I made, all the people who worked hard all along to make the change happen.