According to NPR, the rights of gays are clashing with “religious liberties.” This is a different story than the rights of women clashing with “religious liberties,” but seeing as how California is only about an hour away from taking a significant leap forward in the history of civilization, let’s talk about how the gays are repressing the god folk today, shall we?
Many businesses, organizations, and churches have discriminated against gay people by taking actions ranging from refusing to perform in-vitro fertilization, to denying them the services of a wedding photographer. Many groups who discriminate against gays are fighting back in court, and if NPR is to be believed, they are not doing so well.
As I heard this story, however, I kept wondering when they were going to get to the part where the god folks were actually being oppressed and stuff. I mean, what is it, exactly, that they are being denied? The right to fuck with people they don’t like? Hell, I don’t get to do that to the extent that I would like either, but you don’t hear me bitching about it.
Unless you know me, in which case you get to hear me bitch about that quite a bit.
In one instance a group called the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Organization, of
Hm, well, okay. Except the gay couple that wished to use the pavilion were not trying to silence them about that belief. And they weren’t trying to prevent them from practicing that belief. They were just, you know, not practicing that belief themselves. Because they, you know, don’t subscribe to it.
So it’s interesting to me that this struggle would be defined as one of civil rights vs. religious liberties. Because what’s really being restricted is not their beliefs, but their ability to impose their beliefs upon others.
Remembered I mentioned the wedding photographers that refused to photograph a commitment ceremony, in
"We wanted to make sure that everything we photographed — everything we used our artistic ability for, everything we told a story for or conveyed a message of — would be in line with our values and our beliefs.”
They’re wedding photographers. Someone lays down a few hundred bucks, they come and take some badly staged pictures, the end. They don’t investigate the couple to make sure they’re not sinners, or that their union is one that would be met with approval by whatever vision of a deity they believe in. Look, I can show you exactly how their client transactions go:
Future Groom: Excuse me, do you take wedding pictures?
Photographers: You got $800?
Future Groom: Yes.
Photographers: Then we take wedding pictures.
Future Groom: Great.
Photographers: Wait, you are getting married to a woman, right?
Future Groom: Oh, yes.
Photographers: Okay then. See you there.
So can we please stop pretending that these kinds of refusals to accommodate gay couples are based on anything other than simple revulsion?
Particularly Christians, who have tossed aside silly Biblical passages forbidding the touching of pigs, planting different crops in adjoining fields, endorsing slavery (although that one took some doing), and forbidding the wearing of one garment made of two kinds of cloth. But for some reason, some of them keep insisting, all evidence to the contrary, that God was serious about the gay thing.
It’s bullshit, pure and simple. It’s fear of sexual inadequacies and/or proclivities masquerading as piety. Those kind of laughably pathetic justifications for discrimination have, over the years, been exposed for what they are when they have been wielded against the Irish, the Italians, African-Americans, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, and Arabs, to name just a few. When are we going to admit that refusing to let gay people marry is the same as refusing to let blacks marry whites?
When are we going to grow the fuck up? When are going to, finally, live, and let live?