Obama Fires Up Bay Area Base

For the first time since coming out in favor of marriage equality, President Barack Obama visited the Bay Area last week. Although never using the word “gay,” Obama did draw huge cheers from the crowd at Redwood City’s Fox Theatre for supporting the right to be, “who you are and love who you love.”

Inside the May 23 fundraiser, which sold out with ticket prices between $250 and $1,000, almost every word of the president’s especially fervent speech was met with enthusiasm, and a few times chants, like “four more years!” and “fired up; ready to go!”

But outside, among the crowd just behind the barricades that bordered Courthouse Square, some gays and lesbians sang a different, more severe tune.

“I feel like the whole thing is an election year ploy,” said James Lee about Obama’s support of marriage equality. “It’s great that he said it, it’s a very symbolic move, you know, it shifts the culture a bit. But it’s not enough and I resent our community being used.”

I covered San Francisco news and politics for the Bay Area Reporter from the end of 2011 to 2013. Read the full article here.

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