Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The word marriage is an important one...to each and every one of us.



Despite flying high over the Obama win last week, my heart was heavy watching the votes come in for Proposition 8. I have a hard time understanding how people can take away rights from others. Especially when quoting scripture. I consider myself a Christian and this doesn't jibe with my beliefs.

There's a wonderful essay on this called: Proposition 8: "It is written, but I say unto you" by John Seery. He says:

The offended religiosity claims to be based on Scripture. It all boils down to a couple of passages in Leviticus, and maybe a few scattered comments in Paul's letters. To take those passages seriously, however, one today must read them selectively and tendentiously while ignoring their clearly antiquated aspects. I don't see any way around it. If a man lies with a male as with a woman (Lev. 21:13), then that "abomination" requires that they both be put to death--along with the death penalty for adultery and other offenses. If the "Yes on Prop. 8" folks are sincerely convinced that Leviticus requires them to oppose same-sex marriage today, then why aren't they following Scripture more rigorously and calling for the death penalty--not only for homosexuality but also for heterosexual adultery? I just don't get how one can be actively incensed by one line of Scripture but then be completely oblivious to the very next line. If you're a literalist and you believe every word in the Bible is God's revealed word, then you have no exegetical right to pick and choose which passages in Leviticus matter to you today and which don't.

The word marriage is an important one ...to each and every one of us. Before the Civil Rights Act of 1964, African Americans had to drink out of their own, separate water fountain. They were considered "beneath or less than" their fellow Caucasian Americans. Here, you can have water! But, you are not clean or pure enough to drink from our fountain.

Is this not the same in considering Proposition 8? Here, you can have a commitment ceremony and some legal rights, but NO you can not have OUR marriage. You are not pure or worthy enough to take our word marriage.

And...you might be contagious. Yes, there are many people out there who still think that homosexuality is a choice. Oh, YES. Who in their right mind would choose to be gay in America? No one would choose to be gay in our society today. Being gay means discrimination at the very least, and at worst... It's been 10 years, but doesn't anyone remember Matthew Shepard?

This is what it comes down to for me. Proposition 8 is a violation of our human rights. We may have elected an African American President last week, but our fight for equality in this country is far from over.


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For further reading, please check out Cheri from Blog this Mom. Her posts on gay marriage and Christianity here, and what we can do here.

Also, Tootsie from Vintage Thirty did a post on Proposition 8 here.


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15 comments:

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

The unfairness of this is breathtaking.

Nora Bee said...

I agree, I was so elated about the election that it has taken awhile for this to sink in. And sink in it has, deep. WTF? Thanks for this post.

Jen said...

What gets me is how they think if homosexuals can marry, that their marriages are threatened somehow. I don't understand how some "religious" people can be so unloving towards others. Which Bible are they reading?

Janet said...

Very well said. I spent 12 years in that sort of bigoted religious (I won't dignify it with the word Christian - more un-Christ-like people I never met) interpretation of the Bible. The indoctrination backfired though, because all that time they were making me read the Bible, I was actually PAYING ATTENTION TO IT. They definitely chose the passages they wanted to highlight. I'm sure all those people are reeling about President-Elect Obama (did I mention they're racists, too?).

barbra said...

I just can't stop thinking about Prop 8. My husband thinks I should stop talking about it. I said to him, "sure, it's lucky that you and I have the option of 'not thinking about it.' It's not staring us in the face, slapping us with the hand of disapproval, while we're just trying to live our lives every day. Doing nothing about this is not an option. We just can't sit back and say, 'okay, I guess that's over.' Morally, that just doesn't seem right. There just must be more that we can do about this."

I don't know WHAT to do, but I feel like we need to do something.

(Like me, my husband is also FOR gay rights, but he is very non-confrontational.)

Jennifer H said...
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Jennifer H said...
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Jennifer H said...

I cannot fathom how a majority of Californians voted for this. Here in Arizona, our similar prop passed, though I was more prepared for it, given our demographics. It's colossally unfair, wrong, and shameful.

(Sorry for the deletions...I accidentally posted a comment for Slouching Mom here, but accidentally deleted my real comment for you...I'm okay. Nothing a glass of wine won't help later)

Kellan said...

Well said, J!! We take 2 steps forward and 10 steps back, don't we?!

Hey - did you hear the BlogHer conference is going to be in July in Chicago? You going?

Have a good day - Kellan

Lisa Milton said...

Until last week, I never thought much on the subject because where I live - just north - it seemed like a given.

Prop 8 would fail.

I'll still stunned by it, but I say it has made me think on the subject more and the news has opened up conversations with my kids about it too so maybe it's going to be a catalyst for change? I don't know.

Thanks JCK, for bringing it home to us.

MamaGeek @ Works For Us said...

Man what a powerful post. A freaking men sister. I hope our generation can make that change.

Immoral Matriarch said...

I would stand up and applaud this if you could see me. Thank you for writing it.

Madge said...

just drives me crazy. thank you so much for this post.

phd in yogurtry said...

Always good to quote Leviticus in this debate, so thanks for doing so. Cafeteria Christians is what we've got here, folks. I'm so effing tired of the picking and choosing according to which oppressed group we're judging and discriminating against. The true meaning of Jesus is LOST on those voting Yes on these Props.

Hang in there gay peeps. Its not if the change is coming, its when.

painted maypole said...

wonderful post. I wrote a post on gays and faith last december.

http://paintedmaypole.blogspot.com/2007/12/god-loves-fags.html

it's obvious to me that those of us christians who are A-OK with Gay Marriage need to speak up. because we're allowing the other side WAY too much air time.

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