Video of Republican mayor’s reversal of anti-gay marriage stance more uplifting than most lesbian movies

This is not entertainment-related at all, but this video is so moving I had to blog about it. reader Manon des Sources brought to our attention that Republican San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders held a press conference last night to announce a surprise reversal on his anti-gay marriage stance (in his 2005 mayoral campaign, he publicly supported civil unions but not same-sex marriage).

In explaining his decision to support a resolution challenging California’s — a resolution he had promised to veto up until 24-hours prior to this conference — he revealed that his daughter is gay (further research online told me she came out to him four years ago, and is in a committed relationship) and that he has "personally wrestled with this decision" (the fact that 62% of his constituents are against gay marriage couldn’t have helped), but ultimately he decided to "do what I think is right and to take a stand on behalf of equality and social justice.”

Here’s a somewhat blurry photo I found of Sanders with his wife and two daughters in 2005 (Lisa’s in the white shirt in the middle):

He was close to tears at several points in the press conference, particularly when he mentioned his daughter and how he wants for her and the gay members of his staff to fine someone they can grow old with together. “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."

My first thought? Bravo to Jerry for going with his conscience, even if that will piss off 62% of his constituents.

Second thought: Thanks Lisa! For the reminder of what a difference you can make just by coming out to your family.

Lastly, what is the world coming to when even Republicans are supporting equal rights for gays and lesbians? I might have to actually start being optimistic about the future of this country…

Thanks to the internet, we have the full, unedited footage of the conference (the broadcast news outlets only showed a few clips from it). Watch it here:

You can also ready a full transcript of the video, and if you’re so inclined, email your thoughts to the mayor’s office at or call them at (619) 236-6330.