msnbc | May 10, 2012
>>> what i believe is that marriage is between a man and a woman.
>> i would have supported and will continue to support a civil union that provides all the benefits that are available for a legally sanctioned marriage.
>> my feelings about this are constantly evolving. i struggle with this.
>> the evolution of the president now complete. was the vote in north carolina on amendment one the straw that broke the president's stance on marriage equality or was it something a little more personal, conversations with his very own family. he talked about his daughters sasha and malia and their role they played in his stance in what he now feels about same-sex marriage.
>> malia and sasha, they have friends whose parents are same-sex couples. it wouldn't dawn on them somehow their friends parents would be treated differently. frankly, that's the kind of thing that prompts a change in perspective.
>> that reference turns out to be very apt. young people are very much at the heart of the sea change in attitudes on same-sex marriage. joining me singer activist and founder of the true colors fund cyndi lauper and chely wright , gay rights activist , country music star, two women very involved with lgbt . it's my honor to have you. we talked about the lighthouse, established, opened up as a safe haven for kits in the lgbt community . how do you think the president's endorsement is going to change the endorsement allowing for kids in this country to feel like they have a place, not second class citizens as they figure out their sexual identities.
>> it's really important. the president made a bold and risky move to basically come out for us. and especially for young people . they now have a message from the lead are of our country that their dignity, their integrity and their equality matters. it's unprecedented. it was an emotional day for a lot of people. i think he just saved a bunch of lives.
>> cyndi lauper , you're in washington, d.c. you established the true colors fund. that is a group that advocates on behalf of lgbtu, how big of a step do you think it is for lgbt rights and as chely says saving thousands of lives in this country.
>> well, you know, these kids at adolescent are at a very fragile moment in their life. i couldn't have been prouder of my president yesterday. i would want to continue to work to get him re-elected. i think what what he did was he made a population which is pretty substantial, because up to 40% of the kids on the street are lgbt homeless. they are gay or transgender. also in any given year, just to give awe number, kids on the street go from 500,000 to 1.6 million. that's a large, large population. up to 40% is quite a bit. i'm here to lobby and to bring, shine a light on senator kerry's belize putting forth which will reconnect the family, kind of preventive medicine , so to speak, to bring the family together before they get thrown out. being a parent myself, although my kid is still a kid and he, you know, doesn't have that issue, but i work in the community and i see this a lot. i see kids on the street . you know, with the progress of the true colors house i got to talk to the kids and their story. basically a lot of times you feel invisible when nobody wants to acknowledge you. now the president has made invisible people feel more visible and acknowledged. i believe inspiration of church and state , and i think that it's awesome that here is a person who has his own personal beliefs -- i mean, i think he evolved because of life. we share a stories.
>> he's definitely evolved. he's made the full evolution on this. chely as we talked about this and have done stories over the last two years especially for suicide rates for lgbt , covering them almost weekly, mounting up month by month. i want to talk about the ligke me lighthouse in missouri. how is it doing? when you see amendment one in north carolina , knowing the south as you do, what do you think it takes to change hearts and minds to bring people to tolerance.
>> the like me lighthouse is doing well. we're still finding our way within the community to engage and assist the other great advocacy organization there. we're two months old being open and, again, finding our way. people are coming from other states and many other counties just to be there and use our resources. as far as what happened in north carolina , i was here with you shortly after he traveled to the capital last year of north carolina to lobby and to try to keep this horrific amendment off of the ballot, which unfortunately we failed to do that. we see that there's a lot of progress to be made in north carolina . you know, cindy made a great point about the president's evolution. i know people are taking shots at him about that. i will say in the president's statement yesterday, he cited that the reason this evolution happened -- and i do believe passionately it was a true evolution. the reason he came around, if you will, is because gays and lesbians somehow became interwoven into his consciousness and his life, whether by people making pilgrimages to the white house like i did to share my story with the administration or a more natural organic way. his kids go to school with people who have same sex parents. when the storytelling and when lives are interwoven into a person's life, it's awfully hard to not understand love. i think the president did a bold, risky thing. i will do everything i can to ensure this president has a second term.
>> chely wright , great to have you. cyndi, we know you have the wind at your back after the president's announcement yesterday. good luck. we appreciate both of you time.
>> hi, cnydi. thank you for everything.