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The Boston Globe

Metro

President Obama stuns with call for gay rights

After taking the oath of office on a Bible once owned by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., President Obama used his second inaugural address Monday to make an emphatic call for gay rights, elevating the movement to iconic civil rights battles for racial and gender equality.

The president’s references to an influential 19th-century women’s rights convention in Seneca Falls, N.Y.; a bloody voting rights clash in 1965 in Selma, Ala.; and Stonewall Inn, the scene of a 1969 uprising by gay men in a bar in New York’s Greenwich Village thrilled gay rights advocates, whose efforts to compare their struggles for equality to those of blacks and women have been long met with bitter controversy. And at least one scholar saw them as historic.

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