It's petty of me, I know, but I have really enjoyed the somewhat "in your face" tactic of a gay-rights group in Washington state. In the wake of a decision by a Washington court upholding the state's ban on same-sex marriage (on the grounds that the purpose of marriage is procreation), they have sponsored a referendum that would void all marriages that do not produce a child within three years.
Seems fair enough to me.
Predictably, however, the logically-challenged folks who Speak For God have gone berserk. My current favorite protestation comes from some character named Gribbit (I am not making that up), who--being blind to the concept of irony or, probably, humor of any sort--was quoted by the local press as follows:
"So these people would tell those of us who believe that marriage is a sacrament from GOD that if our marriages don't produce a child within 3 years it wasn't valid? Who are they to legislate over the will of GOD?"
And who are you, Mr. Gribbit, to assume to speak for God, and know the will of God?
(Continue after the jump)
I am constantly amazed by people who are so very certain that they know that God exists, what He (never she--and of course, their version of God always has gender) looks like (flowing white beard, really clean clothes and a very snazzy throne), and especially, what social and economic policies He wants America to adopt. It's just coincidental that God is white, as they are, and that God wants exactly the government actions they happen to prefer......Anthromorphism, anyone?
When I'm in a fairer frame of mind, I do feel sorry for these folks. They are pitifully, painfully frightened--of change, of their own inner "demons" and longings, of a world that is increasingly incomprehensible to them.
Those of us who have raised families know how easy it is for young children to turn their own fears and insecurities into animosity towards children who are different in some way. The problem is, bigotry is indivisible. Once you learn how to divide people into "we" and "them," it's fill in the blanks time. Anyone different, in any way, is automatically "the other" and the other is automatically wrong, evil, unChristian, unAmerican. Fear and loathing of the "other" is the constant--the identity of that "other" can and will shift with the circumstances and the threat: blacks, Jews, immigrants, Catholics, gays.....and just like parenting small children, when they bite or hit, you have to calmly, carefully--but firmly!--explain why such behavior is wrong. And why it ultimately hurts the person doing it most of all.