She can think, too

5 Feb

What is so great about the modern domestic goddess is that she can think and formulate opinions of her own.  This is as opposed to the stereotypical 1950s domestic goddess who really didn’t have any thoughts other than, “What should I feed my wonderful family for breakfast?”  Not that there’s anything wrong with feeding your family breakfast, we’ve just taken it up a notch.

I saw on HLN today a proposal in Great Britain for equality in religion (click here to read the news story).  Basically Great Britain would like religion to accept the LGBT community among its ranks and is trying to make it happen through the law.  The Catholic Church was, obviously, against the idea because their religion is pretty anti-LGBT.  They thought they would be punished for not hiring LGBT priests.  The Equality Bill was then amended to exclude ministers and priests, but the Catholic Church is now concerned that they will have to hire LGBT staff, a practice that would be difficult for them considering they don’t believe people should be LGBT.

Usually when I see the word “equality” I think, “Hey, great, we could use some more of that!”  But that is not the case here.  I am 100% opposed to the Equality Bill.  I believe in separation of church and state to a T.  I don’t think churches should be given governmental support and I don’t think there should be any types of prayers at governmental events.  (I will not go so far as to say we should rewrite the Pledge of Allegiance, but that’s a discussion for another day).  Great Britain is walking a very thin line and should this bill pass the separation of church and state in that country would be null and void.  My concern is that something similar could happen in the United States and that debate would be tedious to watch.

The problem I saw with the viewer comments on HLN and other sources is that a lot of the comments that were anti-Equality Bill were from people who were bible-thumping religious.  They argued that such a Bill would be terrible for the Catholic Church because the bible says it’s a sin to be gay and the church can’t hire sinners to staff its offices.  My fear is that people who are undecided will see these opinions and think that’s the only opinion for people are against the bill.

The reason this bill should not pass is not because gays are sinners, which they are not.  The reason this bill should not pass is because it is a direction violation of the separation between church and state.

I find the creation of this bill rather random.  To the best of my knowledge the LGBT community as a whole is not actively fighting for religious equality.  They are fighting for equal civil rights.  Should such a bill be suggested in the U.S., I think the LGBT community would say, “Hey, wait a minute.  We don’t have civil rights but you’re fighting to get us religious rights?  Have you been listening to us at all?!”  The fact of the matter is the fight for equal rights for the LGBT community has stalled out and fallen on deaf ears.

Until last week.  I’m starting to see some promising moves from the President and others in national government.  During is State of the Union, President Obama said he wanted to end the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy of our military.  Today’s generation has outgrown that policy.  Those in the military who are between 18 and 30 years old.  People in our generation accept the LGBT community a lot more than our parents generation did and I suspect most would have no problem serving with soldiers who happen to be gay.  We need to think of them as soldiers who happen to be gay, not gay soldiers.  I think ending the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy could open the way for more equal rights for the LGBT community.  You can’t say, “Well, they can fight and die for our country, but they can’t get married.”  It’s just not fair to have a segment of our military serve without enjoying the freedoms the rest of the population enjoys.

But it is almost a Catch-22.  You can tell a solider to fight for a country that doesn’t offer him equal rights, but will that solider volunteer to fight for that country?  Would a LGBT solider want to for our country which does not offer him/her the right to get married?  The right to adopt children?  The right to have their partner on their health insurance?  Being that I’m not a direct part of the LGBT community, I can’t say I know how they would feel about that.  But if I was denied the right to get married or have children in my country, I suspect I would not want to fight to protect that country.

But I digress.  My hope is that the British people realize that such a law would deny them separation of church and state.  Regardless of their opinions on LGBT people, I hope they realize this is bigger than that issue.  I hope they stand up for what they believe in, whatever that may be, but I hope that ultimately the bill is squashed.

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