Claire_McCaskill,_Official_portrait

THIS IS a profound moment for my home state of Missouri.

In most every way, Missouri is a backward state. I fled it in my 20s and have been amazed since then that the politicians haven’t been influenced by the changing times.

There is a rabidly bigoted thread that runs through this state that is joined by a misogynist and anti-women’s freedom vein, which we’ve seen displayed on television through the likes of Todd Akin, as well as others.

Today, Senator Claire McCaskill has made Missourians proud. She has also joined the 21st century and validated the civil rights of gays and lesbians, as well as the entire LGBT community.

From her Tumblr website, a statement of love and an endorsement for marriage equality.

And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. I Corinthians 13

The question of marriage equality is a great American debate. Many people, some with strong religious faith, believe that marriage can only exist between a man and a woman. Other people, many of whom also have strong religious faith, believe that our country should not limit the commitment of marriage to some, but rather all Americans, gay and straight should be allowed to fully participate in the most basic of family values.

I have come to the conclusion that our government should not limit the right to marry based on who you love. While churches should never be required to conduct marriages outside of their religious beliefs, neither should the government tell people who they have a right to marry.

My views on this subject have changed over time, but as many of my gay and lesbian friends, colleagues and staff embrace long term committed relationships, I find myself unable to look them in the eye without honestly confronting this uncomfortable inequality. Supporting marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples is simply the right thing to do for our country, a country founded on the principals of liberty and equality.

Good people disagree with me. On the other hand, my children have a hard time understanding why this is even controversial. I think history will agree with my children.