That's the problem. This is a follow on post to gregflynn's Misanthropy on the Mall; yet another of my long winded comments that just got too big for it's breeches.
The thing about the men who lead rallies like the verbal gay-bash-fest yesterday in Raleigh is that they don't have the first stitch of love or care for anyone in them. Gregflynn is absolutely right about that. Not one bit of their goal is about love or helping gays. They lay every problem in this nation and even in other nations at the feet of those who do not believe exactly like them. Gay, straight, whatever. As W would say,
They hate us for our freedoms.
I can't speak to the followers of these men. I know some of them personally -- the followers that is. I could never call them bad people. They are just people. Its not an excuse, but a man's need to feel a part of a group and a woman's need to feel safe can and does cause people to make really piss poor decisions. They may indeed really think they're helping with some odd sort of tough love to ostracize and condemn their fellow human beings. Still, that doesn't change the fact that one day their children's children will be ashamed of these pictures in their history books.
However, the men who lead these sorts of movements -- like the "let's all gang up on the gays" movement -- are the bad seeds. The very worst among them is a man who would dare claim philosophical kinship to a Lion among men like William Wilberforce. These men are not focused on helping anyone, lifting anyone or freeing anyone. All they want is power. Little men get power when they can convince others that there is an enemy to fight. So they tear down and denigrate and demonize to make themselves seem powerful and strong.
But have you ever noticed the common thread through the history books? These types only ever pick on the weakest in the bunch. A hundred years ago that was African Americans. A hundred years before that it was American Indians. Before that it was women. In Martin Luther's day it was anyone who wanted to excercise freedom of thought or belief. The 'others' are always smaller groups ... weaker groups ... easy prey. These bullies always pick on the easy prey. These men are not Lions. They are hyenas. They are opportunists and cowards. I feel no conflict about them. I have no respect for them. They deserve no respect.
But those whom they mislead cause me some confusion. Because you see ... those are my family and friends. Love the sinner? That's just a crock. Even the people who recite that line know in their gut its a total crock.
A Christian cannot HATE who someone is and still treat them with justice, grace and mercy as Christ commanded christians to do. Period. Its a crock. Its just a word game. Likewise, an American can't impose their religious views on others and still claim to believe in freedom of religion like all good Americans are supposed to believe. Period. Its a crock. Its just a word game.
I stand with T.J. on this. Keep the Church out of the state. The state will return the favor by keeping out of the Church.
Or, tax the bloody hell out of 'em. Gift tax rate. And the state gets to set diversity goals for every church, define the cirriculum for their schools and fine them when they don't meet their goals and standards.
No? Then lets just keep it simple. Keep the Church out of the state. That means that laws are not written to follow Church edict. They are written to maintain safety, freedom and fairness in a civil society.
Now, close your eyes and imagine you're in the middle of the woods, and the world is your peaceful oyster. ;)