Yesterday, the Human Rights Campaign unveiled another video from its new series promoting same-sex marriage. This ones features that frequently outspoken defender of civil rights, Rev. Al Sharpton. It comes just days after the HRC released a video featuring chief executive of Goldman Sachs, Lloyd Bankfein.
As the African-American community and religious leaders are frequently seen as roadblocks on the road to equality, Sharpton is inarguably a strategic voice to speak to both—and particularly to target their overlap. “As a Baptist minister, I don’t have the right to impose my beliefs on anyone else,” he says in the clip. “So if committed gay and lesbian couples want to marry, that’s their business. None of us should stand in their way.”
Though he has long been recognized as an advocate for the black community, Sharpton has become more vocal in his support for the LGBT community and his opposition to homophobia for several years. It’s a big change from the old Sharpton—the one who, in 1994, allegedly described “white folks” in Socrates’ time as “Greek homos,” and in the late 1980s angrily called an audience member on The Morton Downey Jr. Show a “punk faggot.”
Welcome to the fold, Rev. Al.