Ridiculous Discrimination Law Passed In Arizona Legislature, Common Sense Suspended
Truth or Gospel and I are a constant in life and as we are entering a political season, I made a decision to launch a site that would enter the fray.
My name is Max Oebulet (or is it?) and after spending many years occasionally on my soap-box and more often biting my tongue, I’ve done and will do this. This overtly opinionated blog wordpress social media thingy,
It was easy to come to this effort. I have, for many years been advised to write a book about the contemporary political question of the day and many that have heard me speak actually bother me about it. A book takes too much time and is no longer topical after the last election. Ask Senator Al Franken. So we turn to the internet.
And here I am. Day one.
My first thought was to paint with a broad brush to let people know where I’m coming from. Let you get to know me, as it were. Stay away from specifics and not call anyone out to attack me or to defend their position. Step in softly and garner some territory before I launch a salvo at the truly absurd positions on certain issues that people take.
Well, that is not going to work out. I’m not starting this fight.
Seems the legislature of the State of Arizona wants to start this fight. We have to say something by Friday so I have to start here. A complete broadside at one of the most reprehensible laws written in the last thirty years. They have written a law that protects overt discrimination against lawful citizens. They want the Governor to sign it by Friday and this has got to be stopped.
So, I’m going to tell you a personal story.
I am heterosexual, white and male. I never gave much thought to the gay community. I am a father and grandfather that never had a homosexual experience or thought that I am aware of. I don’t understand the entire picture of the difficulties that homosexuals face.
Yet, I shared a bedroom with a homosexual for 17 years. My brother Bill. We shared a room from the time I was three days old. An honestly good guy, both moral and tolerant. And always gay.
To imagine that he could be discriminated against in my country, in a particular state, for any reason is mind boggling.
The reasoning is just plain disgusting. You see, the law says that it can be done for religious convictions.
What? Did I hear that right?
You want to deny my brother goods, services and opportunities because of something which you have no interest in? Because of what you believe? This is my brother. I don’t give a damn what you believe. If you can’t follow the law and include everyone then get out of the public arena.
There are those that would argue that it is a private business with religious convictions that is following the teaching of the Bible and staying true to their faith. They would argue that requirements that stop them from being this stupid are attacks on their religious freedoms and beliefs. Balderdash.
No one is attacking them.
Let’s say a guy owns a hot dog stand and just happens to be gay. An evangelical bigot comes to buy a hot dog and the vendor says no, we have a law that says I can discriminate against you based on your ridiculous beliefs. Now, that’s attacking them.
A law that allows stupid people that honestly believe they can discriminate against “others” has no place in civil society.
They would argue that they are not discriminating against anyone but, just staying true to their convictions.
Let’s be real here. The history of religion (theirs, yours, anybodies) and the history of discrimination go hand in hand throughout history and straight into contemporary times. I know what my brother has been through and I know religion. These are convictions that have earned no support of civil society.
I can hear the religious right rear up right now and call me a godless atheist. They would be wrong. Accurately, they could only call me a non-congregate.
They would argue that it’s their business and therefore their right to decide who they may or may not do business with. They certainly have a way with B-O-L-O-G-N-A. Many businesses are in the market of essential services and in many cases being discriminated against could affect a person’s actual lifeline.
The only discrimination that is allowed by default, in business, is the capitalistic exclusion of customers being unable to pay for goods, services and opportunities. I have no argument with that, on an equal playing field.
That’s why we have a civil society with all those pesky anti-discrimination laws. That’s why rights are considered to be equal and universal. That’s why businesses are not allowed to hide behind religious buffoonery in the name of doctrinal convictions that have no place in a civil society. That’s why businesses, both large and small, must comply with the requirements of law and government and not the preacher. If they can’t, there can be fines to pay, liabilities to be assumed and closures to be required.
It’s a civil society. What does religion have against that.