Kansas City Pride Week is being held in downtown Kansas City, and many participants were thinking about gay rights.
President Barack Obama recently announced his support of same-sex marriage. This decision was cheered by many.
James Wagner said he has been with his partner for 13 years, but had to stay "in the closet" while serving in the military. He said he supports the president's stance.
"A lot has changed over the years and I think it's about time things got changed," the Florida resident said.
Wagner said he does not believe Obama made his announcement in an effort to curry favor with voters, but said he did not so because the president is becoming aware of the problem with acceptance.
But others believe political reasons motivated Obama's change of heart.
The president debated for weeks how and when to announce that he supports gay marriage, and only went public after remarks by Vice President Joe Biden nudged him along. When Obama finally did make his announcement, his words were carefully measured to tamp down any backlash. He spoke of dinnertime conversations with his daughters about treating people equally, and of abiding by the Golden Rule.
GOP nominee Mitt Romney, too, treated the issue gingerly, even as he disagreed with the president. He restated his opposition to legalizing such marriages, but called it a "very tender and sensitive topic" and said he supported extending certain rights to gay couples.
Christopher Draven welcomed the president's support for gay marriage.
"I don't think it's a ploy," Draven said. "I don't think it's anything that's new. I think it's how he really feels. He's talked about how he's slowly evolved his feelings over the years."
Copyright 2012 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Sunday, May 19 2013 11:52 AM EDT2013-05-19 15:52:39 GMT
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