Call Me English

A little corner of the world where I talk about what I want.

Posts Tagged ‘religion

CME Political Platform 1: Euthanasia

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This is the first in a series of posts that explains my political beliefs in greater detail, and I thought I’d start with a topic that can’t ever be called easy: assisted suicide.

I believe terminally ill patients (or anyone who so wishes) should be allowed to end their lives with dignity via assisted suicide, but only after a psychological examination to show they fully understand this choice. Banning euthanasia is a prohibition based on religion, which has no place in public policy of any kind.

You’ll notice a trend across the entire spectrum of my political beliefs, and it’s captured in the last sentence of the statement on euthanasia. Religion has no place in public policy of any kind. No faith or faith-driven values in a country where people share more than one religious background (including NO religious background) can be used to prohibit any behavior by law.

The permanent and pronounced separation of church and state is the most important political belief I hold.

Assisted suicide, which should really be called “death with dignity,” affords terminally ill patients (or others) the option to end their lives on their own terms. The reason I stipulate that a psychological examination should be required is because non-assisted suicide (also known as suicide) is the result of mental illness in some form. If a doctor determines that a person is compos mentis when deciding to end his or her life, why in the world should the government say otherwise?

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Much Ado About Nuggets

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So I have resisted saying anything about the Chick-fil-A scandal until now, but not because I don’t have an opinion… I guess I’ve just been waiting to see how long this non-story could hang on buried in the flabby, sweaty armpit that is the August news cycle.

It looks a little like a dog to me…

If you’ve been living under a rock, Dan Cathy, the COO of Chick-fil-A and the son of founder S. Truett Cathy, told The Ken Coleman Show and Biblical Recorder where he stands on the issue of marriage and, by extension, the issue of gay rights.

“I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, ‘We know better than You as to what constitutes a marriage’. I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about.”

“We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that. … We want to do anything we possibly can to strengthen families. We are very much committed to that,” … “(w)e intend to stay the course. We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.”

This led to strong reactions on both sides of the issue, including from Boston mayor Tom Menino, who stated very clearly that Chick-fil-A was not welcome in his city because of its executive board’s cultural views. Most notably on the supporting side, former Arkansas governor and Southern Baptist minister Mike Huckabee suggested that people should record and photograph themselves going to Chick-fil-A in support of their owners’ views during what he called Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, which took place last Wednesday, August 1.

The controversy here, in my opinion, lies not in the Cathys’ positions on an extremely polarizing political wedge issue but in the fact that their views determine which special interest groups they give money to. In this country, anyone is free to espouse any political position, no matter how bigoted, but when money is involved, the only recourse of those who do not agree is to avoid providing the financial support any political group needs to spread its message.

The saddest part of all this is since Chick-fil-A is HUGE in the capital-S South, most stores were overrun with supporters on Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, far more supporters than counter-protesters. Most of the patrons appeared to be white Southern Baptists 35 to 65 years of age, the demographic most likely to support banning same-sex marriage by statute or amendment and least likely to embrace this country’s long history of inclusion, diversity, and church-state separation.  Supporters posted photos and videos of themselves going to Chick-fil-A on sites like Twitter and Facebook leading those of us Americans for whom homophobia is and always has been grossly unpalatable to wonder why we even know these people, why we have to share the same country.

They choose bigotry over love, big business over common sense, and – perhaps most outrageously – organized religion over their own flesh and blood.

Notice I didn’t say they chose God over their own flesh and blood; no god ever worth his letters would let his adherents behave the way these people have.  The position chosen by the supporters of Chick-fil-A is not about God at all, no matter what they may say; it’s about fear, ignorance, insecurity, and self-hatred. It’s based on a criminally widespread belief among these slack-jaws that they are inherently superior to others who are different in any way. That right there is the very definition of bigotry.

After a few days, I’m sure this stink will die down like every other demoralizing bit of news about the state of LGBT rights (or lack of) in the United States, but one question in my mind won’t: why were there so many thousands of these so-called Christians seen at Chick-fil-A on a day’s notice instead of at, say, a homeless shelter or soup kitchen?  Because, you know, Jesus actually did go out of his way to make mention of that.

Belief in a cruel God makes a cruel man

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A friend of mine from college posted a link from Buzzfeed detailing how the Oreo page on Facebook had posted a picture of a multi-layer rainbow Oreo in recognition of (LGBT) Pride, which took place this past weekend.  The image is innocent but clear enough:

Well, some bitterly ignorant bigots made their presence felt by threatening to boycott one of the most successful baked goods ever made.  A sampling of some of the negative comments…

  • “Being gay is totally wrong and should be a crime.”
  • “gays need to leave america”
  • “I won’t buy any oreos or other Kraft products anymore(;) looks like you have plenty of Faggots to keep your business going!”
  • “Yet another liberal company destroying our religious values and teaching immorality”
  • “This is absolutely disgusting. Your attempt to ‘normalize’ the behavior of homosexuals has cost you a customer.”
  • “Gays can all go kill themselves(;) they are sinners and will burn in hell”
  • “don’t support gays or the companies that do and hell yea I’m a hater! being a fag is just wrong and always will be!!!! you should all be exiled to some island where you can all share aids together!!”
  •  “I hope Nabisco goes out of business for supporting this atrocity. I will make sure my friends and family never again buy your products. Fuck faggots. Hate them so much. So many whose skulls I want to smash in with a hammer. I thank those who support this boycott and GOD BLESS AMERICA.”

WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?  Where do they come from?  What sham of a religion do they pretend to adhere to?  Maybe I wasn’t exposed to self-loathing closet cases like these growing up in New York City or in Canada, but I want nothing to do with anyone who would kill someone over a picture of a fucking cookie.

Jesus might have “saved” you, but he thinks you’re a disgrace to humanity.  Homophobia of this sort is so over, it hurts. The only cure is death… or to have someone you really love tell you he or she is gay.

For every cowardly, criminally backward comment on that picture, there were two dozen positive ones.  And the number of people who liked Oreo on Facebook went up.  Way up.

I’d tell you to rot in hell, bigots, but I know you’re already there.  It’s not too late to secede and form your own failure of a country while the rest of us retake our position of respect and decency among nations.  Just keep that in your back pockets.

Written by Dave

June 26, 2012 at 23:07