Thursday, January 05, 2012

Along Came a Leader

Governor Gregoire of Washington State held a press conference to articulate succinctly what equality advocates have been saying for years: it's not the business of government to discriminate.


Echoing Hillary Clinton's speech in Geneva that gay rights are human rights, Gov. Gregoire's speech here is enhanced at the end, when she mentions the battle with her religion. I know of nothing else, no rational reason, to deny equality besides religion. Religion consistently pits brother against brother, and not just my own brother, his wife and sundry relatives ('family' for me is a suspicious thing not to be trusted, for I never know who's with me and who's against me - thank you, "god") but it insidiously divides the brotherhood of humanity. Look around - not even the Presbyterians can support each other!

Yet this religious Governor has gone on a journey and discovered religion is a personal thing, not to be influenced by - or to influence - government as it relates to civil rights. Sadly, most don't get to this place because organized religions have a mandate to infect others with the "word" (as if those "called", most of whom knowing nothing of the world, let alone the inner workings of themselves they have sublimated - are qualified to minister to anyone) and whenever this gets me furious - people being bigots, immune beneath a veil of piety as they hypocritically speak for their chosen deity, I simply look to the past and remind myself: foolishness ain't nothing new.

In the words of philosopher Bertrand Russell:

People choose the book considered sacred by the community in which they are born and out of that book they choose the parts they like, ignoring the others. At one point in time, the most influential text in the Bible was: “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” Nowadays, people pass over this text, in silence if possible; if not, with an apology.
Yet how many "witches" had to suffer, burned at the stake before this particular piece of ancient text was passed over? How I would like to live to the day where Governor Gregoire's speech above is as archaic, as much a statement-of-the-obvious as the day there surely must have been when a press conference was held to declare that witch-hunting would no longer be the business of the government. 


3 comments:

Dtown~Blog said...

Amen!

Tony said...

Amen Brother!
And what a powerful statement by the Governor of Washington. She makes the critical constitutional point that in licensing marriage, the state may not be in the position of discriminating between hetero and same-sex couples, especially on religious grounds. (See the 14th Amendment). And how about her acknowledgement that her children(!! ) helped change her mind? Way to go, kids.

Auntie M said...

Awesome, Jesse! I knew our gov was cool. I agree completely.
ooo and xxx

Auntie M