White House spokesman Jay Carney on
Monday said President Barack Obama respects the views of black
pastors opposed to the president's support of gay marriage.
Obama has been both praised and
criticized for his May announcement in support of marriage equality.
Black leaders held dueling press
conferences on Friday reflecting both sides. The Rev.
Al Sharpton called on Maryland voters to uphold a gay marriage law
approved by lawmakers, while the Rev. Bill Owens for the third time
called on African-American voters to reject Obama in November.
gay marriage support is like waving your thing at God, Bill Owens
“The president said at the time and
firmly believes that people have different views on this issue, and
he respects that,” Carney
said in response to a question offered by gay weekly the
Washington Blade. “He has made it clear that his support
for the right of every American to decide who he or she loves and the
right to marriage is a matter of civil marriage, and that religious
institutions, churches, have their own sacraments and decide what
they are. And he respects differing views on this.”