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US Vice President Joe Biden praises gay activists for ‘moral courage’ and ‘physical courage’

US Vice President Joe Biden praises gay activists for ‘moral courage’ and ‘physical courage’

Vice President Joe Biden was praised at a Freedom to Marry event Thursday (9 July) in New York City for speaking out for marriage equality even before the Obama administration was officially ready to do so.

But Biden said in a speech that he is not the one who should be praised for such achievements as last month’s US Supreme Court ruling that made same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states.

‘It hasn’t been simple for a lot of you, especially those of you who are older,’ Biden said. ‘Pursuing this simple proposition for many of you standing in front of me took courage. It took moral courage, but it took physical courage — physical courage.

‘As you came out and stood up and made your case, unlike me, you risked a great deal. I risked nothing holding this position I’ve had for so many years.’

‘It’s hard for me to imagine the sense of accomplishment you must feel,’ he added/ ‘Over the years in their homes, on our staffs, in the front lines of war, in houses of worship, (wife Jill Biden) and I have known, stood with, supported countless gay and lesbian, bisexual, transgender Americans who share a love for their partners that up until now was constrained only by social stigma and discriminatory laws.

But the work all of you have done, laying the groundwork for the Supreme Court decision — their love, your love — it has been set free.’

Biden shared an incident early in his life that formed his open-minded view.

He was driving his dad to work one day and while they were stopped at a red light, they saw two men turn and embrace and kiss each other before going their separate ways.

‘I’ll never forget,’ Biden said. ‘I turned and looked at my dad, just looked at him. And I’ll never forget what he said. He said, “Joey, they love each other. It’s simple. (Applause.) They love each other. It’s simple.”‘

H/T: Towleroad