Obama, Warren defy culture war

A controversial invitation
When President Barack Obama tapped megachurch pastor Rick Warren to give the invocation at his inauguration, many liberal activists decried the choice of a high-profile evangelical figure who has opposed gay marriage and abortion rights. It did not matter to them that civil rights veteran Joseph Lowery, a backer of same-sex marriage, was picked by Obama to deliver the benediction at the January 20 ceremony.

To critics who deemed Warren a symbolically bad choice, Obama responded in mid-December by saying that he himself is “a fierce advocate of equality for gay and lesbian Americans.” Moreover, he added, “it is important for Americans to come together even though we may have disagreements on certain social issues.”


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