What I wrote:
Dear President-Elect Obama,
First, congratulations on your victory! This was the first year I caucused, and my first presidential election when I didn’t feel like I was choosing the lesser of two evils. My elation at your win didn’t last long, however. Wednesday afternoon, I was crushed to hear of the passing of Proposition 8 in California.
My point in writing to you today is to implore you and Mr. Biden to rethink your stance on same-sex marriage. While it’s exciting to see gays making progress and gaining acceptance, I find civil unions an unacceptable compromise. Even if civil unions are made to grant every right that is conferred to heterosexual couples by marriage, it’s not the same thing. When I hear people supporting civil unions but not marriage, the phrase that sticks in my mind is “separate but equal.” In 1954, the Supreme Court decided that “separate is inherently unequal.” That was true of education then, and it’s true of civil unions now.
I know that you probably also view marriage as a states’ rights issue, but as a constitutional law professor, you must understand the harm in using the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions as tools of discrimination. Please do everything in your power to influence the repeal of gay-marriage bans that now stand in 40 states and pledge to veto any proposed federal gay-marriage ban.
Thank you for your time, and good luck in your Presidency.