Saturday, April 18, 2015

Who gives you the right to discriminate? I'm casting the first stone.

Okay. I'm not a stone. I'm not powerful, rich, nor articulate enough.  In fact, I'm just a tiny pebble: a white, Christian raised, middle-aged, divorced mother of three grown children. Needless to say, I understand my opinion doesn't carry much weight in the huge and divisive pond of public opinion. Yet, for some reason, I feel driven to speak out. In the hope that if enough little pebbles are heard from - positive changes can be made.
It's time to remember this country was founded on freedom of religion and the separation of church and state. The Founding Fathers drafted the Declaration of Independence and the first Constitution during a time lacking in the most basic freedoms. It was during a time when all power was tightly gripped in the hands of white, Christian males. 

Even the Founding Fathers knew this wasn't right. Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Declaration:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

This was not limited to one God, one color, or only to heterosexuals. Using the term 'creator' could even imply evolution. 

The first amendment states:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Though most who drafted these original documents were devout Christians, they went to great lengths to remove religion from the governing bodies they were forming. This is why I don't believe an ordained minister should be able to hold a government office.

United States is unique, at least on paper, in that we recognized all as equal. There would be no monarchy and no one religion ruling us.

Let's stop for a moment for a ecclesiastical history lesson.
According to the Bible, the basis for the Christians faith, a Hebrew God created the earth and Jesus was Jewish. Does no one see the bilateral symmetry here? It's time to stop acting like bickering, rival siblings. Every faith is based on love No one faith is superior to another. Do you really believe on Judgement day, God will look more kindly on someone who bombed an abortion clinic, picketed grieving relatives at a funeral, or refused to sell pizzas to a gay couple? 

If so, I think you better start reading again. Quit picking and choosing the parts of the Bible you like while ignoring the rest. Stop quoting only the verses supporting your personal vendettas while ignore any opposing your viewpoint. Face it. You can't discriminate against gay marriage if you accept divorce and re-marriage. If you run a school or business for profit - you are opened to the public. That means you can't deny another person's right to that product. Everyone, regardless of race, nationality, creed, or lifestyle has a right to be served. Treat everyone the same or get out of the public sector, and, hopefully, the United States as you obviously don't want to be united with all.   

Because freedom is a right for everyone. Not just for those who share a narrow belief structure. It's way past time for acceptance of all races, colors, creeds, lifestyles. We don't have the right to judge others for what they believe, their status, gender, skin color, size, or for whom they love. If we do, then we haven't traveled very far from the days when women couldn't vote or own property, divorce was illegal,  adulterers were stoned, slavery was legal, races were segregated, and non-Christians were discriminated against. 

Don't forget. At one time Christians were killed  for their faith. In Sunday School we were filled with stories of how Romans stoned, burned, and turned early Christians into lion bait. So what now gives proponents of Christianity the right to discriminate or abuse others because of a differing faith or lifestyle? If you do then you're no better than those who killed the first followers of Christ. Jesus, need I remind you, espoused love for all.

Life and let live should be the motto sang high and low. Love all and treat others the way we want to be treated. It isn't so hard.

And just maybe, this little pebble might make a positive ripple.

No comments:

Post a Comment