Shit that Pissed me Off this Week – 5/31
I missed this one last week, sorry.
So here’s what happened. Arizona State Representative (and secular humanist) Juan Mendez gave an invocation that did not include God. They take turns giving the invocation, it was his turn and he gave an invocation based on his beliefs. Which is totally his fucking right.
Representative Steve Smith was so upset about it, he offered up a special prayer the next day for “repentance of the previous day.” In addition to a prayer he’d already given. Because he had to make up for Mendez, I guess.
Now let’s step back for a moment and ask what the appropriate response would be had Mendez given a Hindu prayer. Or a Jewish one. Or an Islamic one. Would that have been OK because he’d mentioned a god or gods (even if they weren’t the right one)?
Assuming Smith’s response had been the same (two prayers to make up for the lack of a Christian one), would he have taken flak for choosing to disrespect any belief system other than humanism?
I’ll bet people would have been pissed as hell. Not just Muslims or Jews or whatever other religion he’d chosen to disrespect but Christians as well.
As it is, Smith will be applauded by the religious right for standing up to the godless left even though the godless left has had to tolerate Christian prayer in the Arizona state house for every day except one.
In the movie Mississippi Burning, a character says “hatred isn’t something you’re born with. It gets taught.”
A few enterprising Christian authors have taken that advice to heart and they have written a book designed to teach children to hate gay people.
Now if I’d written a children’s book that uses real world examples of some Christians (like the ones that wrote the book) in order to teach kids they should hate Christians, I would imagine the uproar would be far louder. The religious right would say that I’m using stuff that actually happened while they are using three passages from the bible.
We’d both be wrong because I’m choosing a few members of a massive group to vilify all of them and they are using a few sentences in a massive book filled with contradictions to vilify every gay person on Earth.
And in both cases, we would be doing so to poison the minds of children against those groups.
Writing a book that teaches children to hate another group based on any criteria is wrong. Hatred is taught. Writing a book with the express purpose of teaching hatred is reprehensible.
Peterson’s statement doesn’t make him a terrible football player and maybe it doesn’t make him a terrible person. What his statement does is reveal what we should all know is there – a subtle but pervasive idea that a bond between two people is anybody’s business but those two people.
The fight for same-sex marriage is not a fight about what Peterson, or anyone else, is “with.” It is about whether or not his point of view is relevant.
It is not.
Nor, for that matter, is mine. I support same-sex marriage – in part – because nobody’s opinion of same-sex marriage should have anything to do with the law.
The state should not be in the business of telling people whose marriages are morally acceptable. As long as it is in the business if providing legal protections, it should be in the business of helping two people of any gender marry if they would like to.
The religious right feels that their point of view is so important that other points of view should be rejected. They are teaching that point of view to people like Peterson and he, in turn, is saying it into a microphone.
As a sports icon and the reigning MVP, what he says gets heard by a lot of people and that is a tremendous disappointment.
PS: Anyone who tells Peterson to “shut up and run” is not helping. Lots of people told Chris Kluwe to shut up and kick. The suggestion a professional athlete cannot have an opinion on something other than sports is idiotic. It is doubly idiotic when we support the rights of athletes (or other celebrities) to agree with us and then tell them to shut up when we disagree.
I should be celebrating because she’s a crazy racist homophobe but there’s something about this news that doesn’t sit well with me.
See, as a comedian, Bachmann is a never ending source of material. I can’t think of another politician who provides a constant supply of already written one liners. In her own crazy messed up way, she’s kind of brilliant.
Comedians are all pretty lazy so having someone who writes our material for us is a luxury that is about to be taken away. I’m not happy about that.
Writing jokes about Amy Klobuchar or Tim Walz takes a whole lot more work. Because before you can tell a joke about them, you have to explain to people who they are.
Not to worry though, if past performance is any indication, the Minnesota 6th can be counted on to elect another crazy person.
It has been pointed out that Mr. Polanski’s idea of “romance” includes sex with 13 year olds. So there’s that.
But he also says that because of the pill, women don’t want men to give them flowers. Or something.
Because clearly the ability to have sex without being worried about procreation also makes women resentful of romantic gestures like getting flowers from their significant other. I haven’t done any sort of scientific study but I’m guessing almost all of the women I know like it when their husband/boyfriend/lover gives them flowers.
Maybe Polanski is striking out with the teenagers these days because he’s trying to give them flowers and what they really want is a restraining order.
When we talk about abortions, we always talk about exceptions. Seemingly everyone has a problem with a plain old abortion (this is not true) so we don’t need to talk about that. The really shocking stuff is a story like this where a baby is developing without a brain and will not survive.
So we know the baby will die. We also know that the odds are very good the mother will die if she gives birth. So in this exceptional case, one would think that an abortion would be OK with just about everyone except psycho crazy anti abortionists who care about unborn life way more than they care about the born life that is carrying it.
Unfortunately, it would appear that the psycho crazy kind of pro-life zealots are the ones who are in control of El Salvador.
Even though this mother already has a living child, they would rather see that child become an orphan than see the life of a child with no future ended a little bit early.
There is a petition to have the Pope step in because El Salvador is a strongly Catholic country. I have no doubt the pope will pray for the mother.
A fat lot of good that’s going to do her.
While we are becoming more tolerant of homosexuals in (parts of) America, the Nigerian government has passed a law that will put those who even assist a same-sex marriage in prison for up to ten years.
It makes one wonder if there just isn’t enough crime in Nigeria. Perhaps their prison guards are bored and just need someone to care for. Maybe this isn’t an anti-gay bill. Maybe this is a pro prison guard bill.
It’s a jobs bill!
Because the alternatives to that idea are just too depressing to think about.