September 10th, 2012

Ravens linebacker on MD delegate attempt to censor gay marriage support: Thank you

Baltimore Ravens Linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo joins Starting Point to discuss his support for marriage equality and his reaction to Maryland Delegate Emmett Burns, Jr.’s initial attempt to silence him.

Ayanbadejo says, “I merely see it as an equality issue. There’s a time women didn’t have equal rights, African Americans didn’t have equal rights. So now it’s the LGBT community that doesn’t have equal rights as the rest of the 90% of America…. We have to treat everybody equal. Two people love each other, we shouldn’t be able to tell them who they’re allowed to marry and who they’re not allowed to marry.”

When CNN’s Ali Velshi asks him how he feels about Burns’ attempt at censorship, Ayanbadejo responds, “Well, more than anything, I’d have to thank him for bringing national recognition to the cause…. Luckily it’s starting here in Maryland. And [there are] four other states voting on this in November for marriage equality. And he really just made it a national issue and now it’s on the front pages of all the papers and all the media. If he wouldn’t have [written] his letter, then I don’t think we would’ve received this type of attention.”

When Panelist and former Clinton Advisor Richard Socarides asks about what the response has been from other players, he answers, “Whereas 95% of the people were against it (in 2009), it now seems like 95% of the people are for it.”

Starting Point with Soledad O’Brien airs weekday mornings from 7-9am ET on CNN.