Nothing I have heard in quite a while has stuck with me the way this old man’s faltering words have. His testimony was given back in April, but I just saw the video on a friend’s Facebook page today.
Just before I watched it some item online had once again brought up that reprehensible Louisiana judge who recently refused to perform a marriage ceremony for a mixed race couple because it wouldn’t be good for the couple’s hypothetical offspring, and my heart was heavy. How can such things still be happening in America today?
And then I watched this man’s haltingly delivered speech. He’s an 86 year-old war hero, a small town family man, and a Republican with a personal history of service to his country and his fellow human beings that few can match. He doesn’t fit the profile of a liberal social activist clamoring for the cause of the day. And yet there he was, standing in front of nearly 4,000 people to make a case for equality before the law. He did it for his son, but he also did it because he believes that freedom and equality are what this country is about and that these are the ideals he fought for. It’s truly moving.