Germany hails Obama's 'courageous' gay marriage stance

10th May 2012, Comments 50 comments

Germany's openly gay foreign minister on Thursday hailed US President Barack Obama's decision to back same-sex marriage as a "courageous step".

"I welcome this not only personally but also in the name of the German government," said Guido Westerwelle, who entered into a registered life partnership with his longtime companion, sports executive Michael Mronz, in September 2010.

"This corresponds with the policy that we as a government and with a great majority in parliament pursue."

Germany introduced "registered partnerships" for same-sex couples in 2001 but stopped short of granting them the full rights and privileges afforded to married couples.

The country is currently debating new measures that would put gay and lesbian registered partnerships on a more equal legal footing.

But the constitution, known as the Basic Law, reserves a special status for marriage between men and women.

Westerwelle is said to be the world's first foreign minister who has openly declared his homosexuality.

In an interview on Wednesday, Obama abandoned his earlier position that he was "evolving" on gay marriage to come out in full support of marriage equality.

The stance is risky ahead of the presidential election in November as the sudden injection of a divisive moral-social question could hit Obama's prospects in battleground states that he needs to win.

© 2012 AFP

50 Comments To This Article

  • Gabe posted:

    on 15th May 2012, 04:10:41 - Reply

    Many, if not most, of the comments made regarding this topic are simply intellectually offensive. Religious beliefs are not to be used to justify discrimination. As the US once knew, the control of government decision making by religious doctrine is very dangerous. A citizen, is a citizen, is a citizen...period. There is nothing legal, just, or fair about depriving one group of citizens their right to marry whomever it is their choice to marry. The US has a sordid history of refusing to allow whites and blacks to marry. It has a sordid history of refusing to see women a full, competent, intelligent humans with rights to vote. I can give endless examples of the lack of democracy in the US but won't waste any more time doing so.
    My point is this. I respect your religious beliefs. In turn I respect the rights of citizens to marry whomever they choose. At the state and federal level marriage is a LEGAL arrangement, not a religious, moral, or SPECIAL arrangement only reserved for the majority or the powerful.
  • Clean Fun posted:

    on 11th May 2012, 00:07:51 - Reply

    Hitler approves your president's message.
  • Peter James posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 23:30:07 - Reply

    Same Sex Marriage Forbidden By The Eternal God 2010/Sodomy.htm
  • alan posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 23:29:18 - Reply

    From the country that gave us Adolph Hitler and the Nazi Party.
  • Kevin Stowell posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 22:58:53 - Reply

    The abandonment or lowering of standards, particularly moral standards, is always the Left's measure of "progress." Apart from the disingenuousness of that, can any be more backward than the Left?

    Isaiah 5:20:

    "Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter."
  • B F posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 22:17:30 - Reply

    Careful Germany. You're slipping back into the Hitler era. Remember, that war was lost by Adolph.
  • Klaus Von Veritas posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 21:55:13 - Reply


    Are you really the grandson of the Red Baron?
  • Melanie posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 21:49:57 - Reply

    The headline is misleading. One gay politician in Germany does not mean that "Germany hails Obama's courageous gay-marriage stance". The world is going down the toilet, faster than we realize.
  • Alfred Hussein Neuman posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 21:45:59 - Reply

    Did you hear the one about the black President, illegal immigrant and the gay couple?
  • el polacko posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 21:45:25 - Reply

    as many, many, many, many, many, many mistakes that obama has made, he got this one right. there is no valid reason, other than bias, that tax-paying gay citizens should not be treated equally under the law as is guaranteed by the constitution.
    marriage licenses are issued by the state, not the vatican. it's unamerican to tell millions of americans that rights and responsibilities granted by their government to others are not available to them because of somebody else's religious beliefs.
  • JustAGuy posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 21:37:31 - Reply

    Why is everyone so easily manipulated by Barry Obama?

    The announcement does nothing but expand Obama's campaign coffers since several of his bundlers are gay and were sitting on their hands out of disappointment with him.

    Barry added that the whole gay marriage matter is a state's rights issue, so in other words, nothing changes. Obama said he was for gay marriage, then stated he won't do anything about it. The man is a fraud!
  • Edward von Richthoven posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 21:27:41 - Reply

    Deutschland should be ashamed of itself. My grandfather, Baron von Richthoven, is turning over in his grave to see der Vaterland lose it's cojones.
  • Klaus Von Veritas posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 21:08:00 - Reply

    Before you Euros do backflips over El Presidente's "courageousness," know that he has been for the abomination in question his whole adult life. In fact, in 1996 he stated on a questionnaire that he supported "gay marriage." His aides later retracted the statement, saying that it didn't "reflect" his actual views. And why?

    Because he needed voted in the black community, where being pro-marriage destruction is a liability. So courage?

    With courage like that, who needs cowardice.
  • Phil Kammer posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 20:54:30 - Reply

    Germany hails President Obama saying God doesn't matter and that he and Germany know better than God ---- Tower of Babel here we go again.....teh last time man said there was no God the Titantic sank.........................lets see what happens in the world
  • diane posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 20:51:22 - Reply

    Again as with abortion, slowly the beginning fall of US. Should not be
    laws, but left to individuals to determine within their own conscience and to ask a simple question .. is it wrong. There you will find your answer. For the intellectual junta will be but a shadow where no one will ever pay attention to their rhetoric of self-destruction.
  • kim posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 20:29:48 - Reply

    this was one guy - Westerwelle. He's largely ignored even though he's the foreign minister and is not the leader of his party (a junior medical doctor was tagged as an alternate).

    He is an embarrassment to the government since he can't barely speak any other language other than German - not good for his position AND for taking is boyfriend with on government business.

    Hardly the glowing example the article proposes.

    This gay thing is BS. we are trillions in debt, high unemployment, a major recession - depression going on. Do we really need this idiotic tail wag the dog crap?
  • Oscar posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:57:51 - Reply

    Courageous? Obama's motive was nothing more than pandering to those with deep pockets on the eve of a new round of fundraising on the West coast. Besides the monetary incentive of his "new" stance on gay marriage, this clown will do anything to distract from the real issues namely the economy, entitlements and massive national debt. It's laughable that Europeans remain so enamored by this empty suit.
  • Udo posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:48:48 - Reply

    What a disgrace the people of Germany have become. Once a proud, confident, mostly moral people, they've become worshipers of political correctness, have lost their sense of honor and morality, their pride and are kept in a constant state of guilt over the Holocaust. Shameful.
  • Robert posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:47:50 - Reply

    When are people going to realize that this "gay" rights movement is not about individuals, it's about an agenda.
  • Shamgarr posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:41:14 - Reply

    What a depraved, Godless, generation we live in. People, God is Love, but He is also the perfect Judge who is VERY patient. He will soon judge the earth of all sins (homosexuality included). Only way to escape is to trust Jesus to rescue us from our sins... And then we should show our love for Him by doing what he wants (or doesn't want) us to do.

    Wake up world! You don't want to face His judgement unprepared.
  • mike posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:40:12 - Reply

    didn't Cheney say this in 2009? Leave it up to the states to decide.
  • Frank posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:32:20 - Reply

    thank God I don't have one drop of German blood in me!
  • Dan posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:31:16 - Reply

    How courageous our Great Leader Obama is! Maybe you Eruos can give him another Nobel Prize for this. Wait, why stand on protocol, he should be Sainted. Call the Vatican!
  • joanna posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:16:04 - Reply

    Nice! More lesbos in the Greek isles waving their dildos!
  • Jimbo posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:04:46 - Reply

    Wow, all of Germany hails Obama's latest position on gay marriage. Did they go door to door and ask every single German. Amazing!!!!
  • Mark posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 19:01:40 - Reply

    "germany hails obama's courageous gay marriage stance" the foreign minister of germany speaks for the whole country? sounds like the mindset of our emperor obama
  • Sensible_American posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 18:58:47 - Reply

    How is one perverted person's opinion all of a sudden a whole country's?
  • Huh!! posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 18:54:24 - Reply

    Are you kidding me? Are you KIDDING me!!! Better blow of the dusty 'ole Bible, folks. This world is a train wreck ready to happen. Wow, I can't believe Germany. I'm ashamed for having German blood. This sucks!
  • duane posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 18:42:19 - Reply

    OK, so, like in such a relationship, who gets the "headache?" As every hetro married male has heard one time or another, "Not tonihjt dear, I have a headache." No headache, no mariage. I think the government needs to study this for abouit 50-years before coming to a conclusion....
  • El gato posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 18:42:16 - Reply

    In the case of homos, Hitler had it right!
  • Ococker posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 18:26:51 - Reply

    No, Germany did not hail the decision. A homosexual minister did.
    Cut the spin.
  • RogerCfromSD posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 18:15:02 - Reply

    What is "courageous" about an election year conversion? It is cynical and calculated.

    Getting euphoric over this man's continual artifice makes his supporters seem vacuous.
  • ibsage posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 17:52:08 - Reply

    so another aging nazi show his true colors.
  • yo posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 17:43:50 - Reply

    If you are in favor of gay marriage this is an "evolution."
    If you do not believe in gay marriage this is a "flip-flop."
    However, this is all really about an agenda that is aimed at destroying Jeudeo-Christian values, Western Cultural Norms, and natural law all in the name of Political Correctness as a way to get more for one class (as opposed to protecting a class). But PC leads to nowhere good in the long run. And left-leaning propaganda is seen in calling Obama's new stance as "evolution," but if this was Romney or Bush it would be a "flip-flop." Those of you who are independent thinkers hopefully realize this. Obama was painted into a corner with this one and some one made a political calculation as to which side who should come out on ... it may be a mistake. Again, in the U.S. most media outlets point to polls where Americans are OK with gay marriage appoximatelyy 51% to 49%, but they almost never mention that everytime it is a ballot issue where people actually vote on it it loses and loses big as it just did in Virginia and 35 other states. Don't confuse executive orders and judges rulings with the will of the people. It appears that when people are not being "judged" by being asked a question but rather in the voting booth without outside infuences they have a very different opinion. Again, read and research issues yourself, don't depend on the media, they spin too much, and come to your own independent view of things. Don't go with the flow, do what you believe is right on this issue or any other issue.
  • sickofobama posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 17:42:33 - Reply

    Who cares what Germany thinks??
  • johnston posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 17:30:40 - Reply

    I can't believe people are falling for the same crap over and over, thats how stupid America is. Just one more cop out from Obama.
  • Jack posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 17:13:49 - Reply

    He only did it for votes...don't fool yourselves, the guy is still a moron
  • albert321 posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 17:05:58 - Reply

    Didn't you know who have homosexuals in his killing machine in the 1930s?
  • A Comment posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 17:02:18 - Reply

    I apologize for my comment because it showcased how incredibly naive and narrow minded I have become. I'm hoping to work on this as well as humbling myself. My ego has gotten way too out of wack. Please forgive me.
  • AFSGTSAM posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:59:08 - Reply

    Yeah he is a regular George Patton old blood and guts? Gimme a break!
  • Bruce Gregory posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:57:54 - Reply

    Well, before you go nominating him for the Nobel Prize, realize this evolving moment for Obama was all political. I'm sure the analysts and their focus groups indicated a net gain of votes from this "personal" opinion.

    He finally came out with a statement that surprised nobody. He finally felt it was politically expedient to do so, not because of how important the issue is to him. Not exactly leadership to me.
  • jaded66 posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:56:09 - Reply

    I agree w/ Obama, and don't really care one way or the other who marries whom. But all of these Obama KoolAid drinkers praising him for his amazing "courage" are ridiculous. Obama is a typical politician. He licks his finger, puts it up in the air to see which way public opinion is blowing, and then after being backed into the corner by the press because of his gaff-prone VP he "COURAGEOUSLY" comes out in support of gay marriage(while at the same time saying it should be left up to the states - in other words, his comments meand NOTHING) .

    Where was he BEFORE the NC vote when he could have helped? Hiding as usual. He even cancelled a campaign appearance there in the days before the vote so he wouldn't face more pressure to comment.

    Obama is no leader. He is an average politician at best, a follower who waits for others to state their opinions or come up with solutions and then either jumps onboard (see 'Leading from Behind') or uses the opportunity to criticize and score political points. Oh, what a brave, brave leader....

  • Chuhyona posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:53:44 - Reply

    Mr. Brown thank you for articulating at least 50% of Americans believe.
  • bhman1 posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:49:47 - Reply

    Mr. Brown, you were able to pack a lot of ideas together, in a small space. Good job!
  • M Austin posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:45:38 - Reply

    Here is the US, he is referred to President Coward. If you liberals iin Europe want him, please come and get him. He is a disaster and a national embarrassment.
  • EllieEnlightened posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:45:20 - Reply

    Sure they think it is couragoues. They wan't us to go down the same economic and moral train wreck they are on.
  • A Person posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:37:31 - Reply

    Mr. Brown: You may have surrounded yourself with educated people but you don't appear to be very well educated. Your grammar is atrocious.
  • JBSPuddintane posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:35:48 - Reply

    Plumbing still deeper the depths of the gutter...
  • Mr.Brown posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:25:26 - Reply

    Throughout my life I have heard the term “stupid Americans” repeated over and over again. For the longest time I took some personal affront to. I spent my life surrounded by educated individuals whose intelligence seemed the normal condition. I was not submersed in a world of half wits and intellectually inbred morons. I looked on the saying as offensive but over the last decade it has become obvious to me that although America does has some of the brightest minds, creates some to the most unique products, has some of the highest rated higher learning and has invented the most unique ideologies as a mass we are drowning in a sea of our own ignorance. An ignorance purposely created by our subpar lower educational system and our political elite. We have become a country, for the most part of course, of whiny, dependant sheep. A collection of court jesters and town drunks. Myrmidons who seem not to be able to string together a coherent and rational line of thought if their very existence depended on it.
    Nowhere is this more evident than in our world of politics and governance. We continually elect “leaders” who do exactly the opposite of what is in our own best interest, “leaders” who manipulate us like hand puppets to increasingly devolve our liberties, our own self sufficiency in exchange of more safety, for comfort and dependence. They speak in lavish tons of scripted fluff that the masses glom onto. They feign compassion and righteousness while whittling away independence. They invent legislation to usurp our responsibilities that we are all too willing to surrender. We have been conditioned and manipulated to be good servants. Worker bees for the “greater good” but who’s good? They move various chess pieces of social ideology depending on which way our short attention eigth ball happens to be showing.
    “Take Back” for whom? “The Majority” of who? “Forward” to where? “Change” into what?
    The media, once a stalwart ally of the people, a watchdog against tyranny has become the lap dog of whichever party their majority in chained. They refuse to confront with facts and the hard questions instead opting for surface dribble. They have become the federal Völkischer Beobachter or the Pravda. A propaganda machine. Of course they will not always deceive. There are always individuals trying to maintain truth but as a conglomerate they have become an arm of the elite. Glossing over the stories that actually matter for half truths and circular deceit.
    The cliché of “history repeats itself” may not be100% accurate, but at 95% it seems clear where the “winds of change” are blowing our sinking ship. If you don’t relish being included in the “stupid American’ collective remove those blinders, start digging deeper, stop taking lofty rhetoric at face value. Stop regurgitating the same phrases and talking points. Search for actual solutions not just problems. Demand independence. Insist of liberty and privacy rights. Stop waving the white flag of laziness, raise you mental weapons and respect what our forefathers bleed and died for. Throw aside the partisan excuses and see clearly the intellectual dumbing down of generations or stay blind, stay blissfully unaware, remain addicted to the federal comfort food and remain the “stupid and future enslaved, Americans”.
  • Alex K posted:

    on 10th May 2012, 16:19:34 - Reply

    Gay marriage distraction, yet another violation of our rights. The gov’t constantly violates our rights.

    They violate the 1st Amendment by caging protesters and banning books like "America Deceived II".

    They violate the 4th and 5th Amendment by allowing TSA to grope you.

    They violate the entire Constitution by starting undeclared wars.

    Impeach Obama, support Ron Paul.

    Last link of "America Deceived II" before it is completely banned: