The board of directors of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) on Saturday endorsed gay marriage.
"Civil marriage is a civil right and a matter of civil law," NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous said in a statement. "The NAACP's support for marriage equality is deeply rooted in the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution and equal protection of all people. The well-funded right wing organizations who are attempting to split our communities are no friend to civil rights, and they will not succeed."
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest gay rights advocate, cheered the move.
"We could not be more pleased with the NAACP's history-making vote today – which is yet another example of the traction marriage equality continues to gain in every community," HRC President Joe Solmonese said in a statement. "It's time the shameful myth that the African-American community is somehow out of lockstep with the rest of the country on marriage equality is retired – once and for all. The facts and clear momentum toward marriage speak for themselves."
The resolution reads in part: "[T]he NAACP has opposed and will continue to oppose any national, state, local policy or legislative initiative that seeks to codify discrimination or hatred into the law or to remove the Constitutional rights of LGBT citizens."
The North Carolina state chapter of the NAACP opposed Amendment One, the state's recently approved gay marriage ban, without endorsing marriage equality.Related:
Bishop Carlton Pearson talks to ChicagoPride.com about marriage equality and the lack of acceptance shown towards LGBTs within African American church communities (Read More