Sunday, March 29, 2015

Indiana's "Religious Bigotry Law": The Re-Legaliztion Of Segregation

Christian Fundamentalism on the right.
The Supreme Court on the left.

"Indiana, A Great Place To Be A Bigot!" Excellent Video Spoof

Dear Fred,

I will preface my comments with a historical review.

Throughout slavery and the Jim Crow era, black people were see as sub-human. 

The inferior status of blacks was preached, routinely, from southern pulpits. 

Christian Defense Of Slavery Preached From The Pulpit

If Christians believe that certain individuals are sub-human -- the settled view of Spanish officialdom during centuries of New World colonization -- intercourse with these beasts would be bestiality. 

The above quotation is not fabricated.
It is commentary on Christian Europe's conquest of Latin America
written by revered Dominican Friar Barolome de las Casas

Jeremy Irons and Robert DeNiro's film, "The Mission," probes the central issue of bestiality during the Spanish Conquest.

In hindsight most Christians dismiss these white supremacist views as historical peculiarities which humankind has outgrown.

It hasn't. 
Alan: From the '60s onward, my best friend Steve, son of a "Georgia gentleman," held  that "the most notable fact of The Civil War is that it isn't over."

The Ku Klux Klan aside, many Americans continue to believe that "Blacks Aren't Humans."

We should establish legal protection against the growing belief that Christians (specifically white Christians) have a right to segregate their business lives from the commercial interests of black people, just as Jim Crow restaurateurs and hoteliers refused service to black people, a position recently resurrected at the national level by Kentucky senator Rand Paul.

If I read you correctly, I side with your view that Indiana's new Religious Uncharitableness Law (the new RUL) is much less important than, say, The Middle East or exploitation of farm workers.

I also think that the rhetorical-legal nub of RUL gives way to an immeasurably larger issue set forth "in full" several paragraphs hence.

The "short form" is this: 

If narrow-minded, uncharitable Indianans can prevent "government intrusion" of gay rights into their business lives by resorting to "conscientious objection," I want to know why my own conscience is not respected with legal acknowledgment of my moral right to withhold that portion of my taxes which pays for capital punishment and unjust wars in violation of my Christian conscience, taxes that force me to collaborate in murder?

This is a huge question and if Indiana's Religious Uncharitableness Law is put to good political use, conscientious Christians can use it as precedent-template to make formidable moral claim that such taxes represent egregious violation of religious belief. 

If we could get Pope Francis' ear, he just might "pronounce" favorably. Who knows? Maybe he'd mention "conscientious objection from tax-paying" in his September U.N. speech.

If he did, everything that "needs unraveling" in America -- and the world -- would start to unravel. 
"Follow the money!" Fred.

If conscientious tax resistance gets legal - or even moral - traction, watch the entire American political system do full court press against it, simultaneously revealing themselves as fundamentalist lickspittles whenever the religious right wants to re-legalize bigotry.

The Full Argument:

Why do "true believers" have a moral obligation to shun commerce with gay people but not with those straights who facilitate the supposed sinfulness of gay people by having commerce with them?

If we accept the premises of "true believers," the situation is rather like prostitution.

"Good Christians" may not support the "prostitutes" themselves. Rather they are supporting their "pimps."

Which, in turn, begs the question... 

Which of them is worse?

And what about Catholics whose physicians supply women with contraceptives? Or, God forbid, IUDs which are generally considered abortifacients.

Should these "Good Catholics" not at least ask physicians to reveal whether or not they participate in such sinfulness?

Only then can "Good Catholics" avoid active encouragement of those who aid and abet sinfulness in others.

And if physicians refuse to reveal their profiteering nurturance of sinfulness, should Catholics not shun them "on suspicion?"

Traditional moral theology says "it is better to err on the side of safety."

And what of those companies represented in Catholics retirement funds that produce condoms, IUDs, chemical contraceptives and appliances used in abortion? 

Why is their no moral obligation for Catholics to shun such full-throttle participation in sinfulness?

Divestment anyone?


Most Christian churches -- certainly the Catholic Church -- teach that gay orientation is not sinful.

Rather the theological position is that orientation is morally neutral whereas same sex intercourse evokes culpability.

Which raises this question...

Short of being in someone's bedroom, how do "Good Christians" know that gay people are practicing gays?

It seems to me that the Indiana law is built on a cornerstone of presumptuous judgment without ANY legally binding evidence of"homosexual immorality."

What minimally sane society predicates law on supposition of guilt?

Nor is gay marriage itself proof of sexual intercourse since countless millions of human beings live in sexless marriages.

There is also an excellent chance that every American Catholic currently has -- or at one time had -- gay parish priests and lesbian nuns yet, revealingly, this circumstance has never ruffled any feathers. 

Gay nuns and priests' salaries get paid -- in full! -- right out of the collection basket.

Yet "we" presume the right to deny commerce with gay civilians -- with no evidentiary proof of gay activity.

At bedrock, RUL is a cover for reactionary malice. 

RUL is also excremental "law."

A question for you...

Do you have any evidence -- evidence that would be valid in a court of law -- that the gay people you know are sexually active?

Despite ubiquitous flagwaving, conservative Christians are beginning to realize that they are essentially Know Nothing anti-Americans, opposed, tooth and nail to every Enlightenment principle on which The United States was founded. 

The American Party: Know Nothing Nativism And Opposition To Catholic Immigration

The European Enlightenment And The Founding Of America

The Thinking Housewife is increasingly disgusted with American governance, if only because the United States is a democracy and democracy spearheaded the destruction of monarchy. Laura does not yet state her contempt for America perhaps because she would lose followers or because she realizes -- as do other conservatives -- that they have no viable alternative to the current system of governance. 

The sooner Conservatism's contempt for "liberal democracy" comes to light, the sooner the nation will embark the discussion it needs.

Pax On Both Houses: Compendium Of Voter Fraud And Voter Suppression Posts

The Daily Show Interviews Republican Official Who Spills Beans On Deliberate Voter Suppression 
Masquerading As Prevention Of Voter Fraud

Most importantly, why is my own conscience not safeguarded by legal guarantee of my moral right to withhold that portion of my taxes which pays for capital punishment and unjust wars that violate my Christian conscience by forcing me to collaborate in murder?

Why, for example, must I pay for military aid to finance Israel's indiscriminate slaughter of Gazan men, women and children, who, with nowhere to flee, are killed - at regular intervals - like fish in a barrel.

"Is Israel The World's Worst Terror State? 
An Israeli General's Son Thinks So"

"Frog Hospital" And "Pax On Both Houses" Discuss "Netanyahu And Obama's Deal With Iran"

Pope Benedict XVI's Question: 'Can Modern Warfare Ever Be Just?'

You mention the relative triviality of left-wing resistance to RUL but I draw your attention to the triviality of RUL itself relative to the enormous moral issues "in play" with Uncle Sam obliges every American - regardless their religious beliefs - to pay taxes that finance the Vietnam War, The Iraq War, The Nicaraguan Contra War, the Bay of Pigs invasion and the Israeli Terror State.

This is the true context of RUL and it is a golden opportunity for people of conscience.

At minimum there "should" be a way to perform "conscientious objection service" in lieu of paying war tax. 

It would be enlightening -- in the original "revelatory" sense of "apocalyptic" -- to see how this process would sort.

"Proposal For Two Years Obligatory National Service"

Make no mistake.

Aggressively ignorant Christians are their own worst enemy.

"Why The Bible Belt Is Its Own Worst Enemy"

By their action and inaction they contrive to undermine the believability of their faith.

If not their children, their grandchildren will turn on them in disgust.

These young people will not revile their elders because the kids are immoral but because their parents 
and grandparents are.

It is wrong to abuse Truth by debasing it with logical fallacy and linguistic/rhetorical manipulation rather than honoring it as a non-negotiable pillar of reality.

"There are two ways of lying, as there are two ways of deceiving customers. If the scale registers 15 ounces, you can say: "It's a pound." Your lie will remain relative to an invariable measure of the true. If customers check it, they can see that they are being robbed, and you know by how much you are robbing them: a truth remains as a judge between you. But if the demon induces you to tamper with the scale itself, it is the criterion of the true which is denatured, there is no longer any possible control. And little by little you will forget that you are cheating."  Denis de Rougemont

In the end, I predict Indiana -- and other religiously hateful states -- will cave to economic pressure.

American conservatives are quick to mount their Christian soapboxes, proudly cockadoodledooing... until their wallets order them to step down.

Pax tecum,


On Sun, Mar 29, 2015 at 6:17 PM, Fred Owens <> wrote:

This is not about personal safety, slander or physical attack. This is not about employment, housing, health care or education. This is not about equal justice before the court. This is about two people getting married and some guy doesn't want to take photos at their wedding. Oh, that's why this is important.
War in the Middle East. Several wars in the Middle East. Underpaid farmworkers on strike in Baja California. And a hate-filled wedding photographer in Terra Haute. The whole world is a disaster!
Having achieved widespread social acceptance of same-sex marriage, we are now in pursuit of unanimous endorsement and appreciation of that same status.
I think we're pushing our luck.
I can't boycott Indiana. I never go there anyway.

Fred Owens
cell: 360-739-0214

My gardening blog is  Fred Owens
My writing blog is Frog Hospital

send mail to:

Fred Owens
35 West Main St Suite B #391
Ventura CA 93001

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