Michael Steele: Don't Compare Gay Rights to Civil Rights

The former Republican National Committee chairman blasted John Heilemann for comparing same-sex marriage to interracial marriage.

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MSNBC

Former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele went on MSNBC's Now With Alex Wagner on Tuesday night and said that gays should not equate their struggle for equality with the black civil rights movement, Mediaite reports.

Steele, who was on a panel with gay-rights activist Lt. Dan Choi and panelist John Heilemann, blasted Heilemann when he compared gay marriage to interracial marriage.

Here's a quote from the conversation:

First off, let’s just be very clear about a couple of things. There are a significant number of African Americans -- myself included -- who do not appreciate that particular equation. OK? Because, when you walk into a room, I don’t know if you’re gay or not. But when I walk into a room, you know I’m black. And whatever racial feelings you have about African Americans, about black people, that is something that, it viscerally comes out. I don’t know until later on, maybe you tell me or some other way, so don’t sit there and make that comparison. It’s not the same.

Steele also said that the gay-rights movement should never be compared to the struggles of the civil rights movement.

What do you think of Steele's comments? Do you agree or disagree?

Click here to view the video.

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