Respect for All Families — Including Mine

So.  Blog Against Theocracy.  I’m trying to think of something brilliant and profound to say, but right now my daughter is across the hall with my nephew and his boyfriend.  They’re IM’ing funny cat pictures to me, and I’m supposed to react to each one.  It’s hard to focus, but they’re making me laugh.

If the people who want to make America a “Christian” nation had their way, how would my life change?  Well, for starters, men like Roy Moore would be in a position to actually use that “power of the sword” that he wants to hang over the heads of gay people.  My brother, my brother-in-law, my nephew, and his boyfriend would all be considered threats to my children.  We wouldn’t have fun mornings, hanging out and laughing.  More likely, our house would be a stop on the Underground Railroad for gays and lesbians trying to get out of the country.

You think it can’t happen?  Only if we refuse to let it.  Those same people who want to make their interpretation of Christianity the official faith of the United States have been using gays and lesbians as scapegoats and fundraising tools for years.  They’ve fomented hatred and violence against those who are different.  It’s the fear of the “other” that is essential to authoritarian faith and government.

Right now, I live in a world where I can associate openly with my gay and lesbian friends.  No one can keep my daughters away from their uncles or from our adopted nephew, a young man whom they treat as a beloved brother.  Still, he’s part of our family because his parents disowned him — after the pastoral “counseling”, public shaming, and exorcism (yes, exorcism) failed to make him straight.  My brother and his spouse can’t legally marry; they can only breathe mutual sighs of relief that their families love them dearly and would never interfere in their life decisions.

The religious right has made common cause with political conservatives at the national level to say that the majority, on a state-by-state basis, should decide the rights of this particular minority.  And then they’ve followed up with the money and demagoguery to ensure that states like mine get busy re-banning gay marriage.  And not only that; there have been repeated attempts to ban adoptions to gay parents (despite the hundreds of Alabama children in state care waiting for loving parents), and two years ago one of our state Representatives introduced a bill that would have banned books and plays by or about gay people.  If the federal government had taken that approach during the civil rights era, we’d almost certainly still have some states with segregated schools, bans on interracial marriage, legal employment and housing discrimination based on race, and blatant denial of voting rights for people of color.

Gays and lesbians will never have the numbers necessary to win at the ballot box.  That makes it essential for allies like me to speak up, loudly and often, and insist that their rights be protected just as ours are.  We must stand up against those who use their particular religion as a basis for state-sponsored bigotry.  Remember, they need scapegoats.  If we don’t act now, we might find ourselves, somewhere down the road, with targets on our own backs.

First Freedom First — for all of us.  My family.  And yours.

26 Responses to “Respect for All Families — Including Mine”

  1. Anna says:

    Beautiful post.

  2. Kathy says:

    Thanks, Anna!

  3. Blue Gal says:

    A perfect, perfect example of how the personal must transcend and define the political. I love this post. Thanks, Kathy.

  4. Kathy says:

    Thanks for the kind words, BG, and for putting this whole thing together.

  5. bill says:

    For my family members and friends who happen to be gay, God loves you all. But you already know that. One day some misguided folks will learn it too.

  6. chris says:

    great post Kathy – thank you!

  7. Del says:

    I’ve just gotten back from the Easter vigil service at All Saints, where young couples with babies, old ladies, sulky teenagers, middle-aged “pillars of the church,” and gay and lesbian couples all sat in the darkness together, lighting one another’s tiny candles from the single Paschal candle flame. Makes reading your post all the more meaningful.

  8. Del says:

    I’m in mod and I posted about church?

  9. Thorne says:

    *bravo* and Thank you.

  10. Kathy says:

    Sorry, Del. Who knows the ways of the moderation queue? ;)

    And thanks — to you and Chris and Thorne.

  11. ALmod says:

    Beautiful post, but you know I’m going to have some snarky remark somehow… :) I’m just wondering, after reading about the exorcism… Does Zach’s head ever spin around, and does he ever spew pea soup?

  12. [...] From Kristim (at MPS) The Aristocrats Montag at Stumplane life’s journey Chip Berlet (at T2A) Frederick Clarkson (at DKos) A poetic justice (several poems) Driftglass The Quaker Agitator Balls and Walnuts Zaius Nation Birmingham Blues do not read this blog Pandagon commander others otherwhirled Journeys with Jood Fitness for the Occasion after the bridge Reconstitution Hard-boiled Dreams of the World The Daily Pulse Midget Queen The Jewish Atheist Fetch Me My Axe North of Center Doing My Part for the Left (podcast) Liberal Street Fighter Blue Wren Laughing Goo Robert Colgan (at MPS) Flatus the Elder Progressive Historians Virus Head Club Lefty Blue Gal Recovering Liberal Blast Off! Ordinary Girl The Neo-Skeptic Not Soccer Mom Hullabaloo Mock Paper Scissors A Blog Around the Clock An American in Melbourne Everything and more Atheist Revolution About Kitty Half Nixon I Speak of Dreams Feminists Don’t Bake Bread Americans United Blog Dog Emperor At Center Network God Vs. Darwin Action Skeptics Creekside Rascality Frank L. Cocozzelli (at T2A) Biblioblography The Largest Minority Facilitate Wonder Reconsititution From Sorghum Crow (at MPS) Mauigirl’s Meanderings Chris Rodda (at T2A) The Spiritual Humanist Blog The Stormy Days of March The Springy Goddess The Shikon Jewel Clyde the f-ed up cousin of Jimmy Dean (at MPS) Vagabond Scholar Ron’s Blog Journeys with Jood The Learning Curve Pissed in NYC (at MPS) This *is* it. Tangled up in Blue Guy A Stitch in Haste One Act in the Eternal Play of Ideas commander other (at MPS) Thoughts in a Haystack We Are All Giant Nuclear Fireball Now Party Coffee Messiah RadRobin Fitness for the Occasion Peace, order and good government, eh? [...]

  13. chris says:

    Great post, great support. You’re so right.

  14. Lynda says:

    It may not be considered profound in some snooty, intellectual circles, but it was brilliant. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Red Seven says:

    Kathy, I found you via Pam’s House Blend, and commented on your beautiful post over there … God love ya and keep fighting the good fight.

  16. Kathy says:

    ALmod, no Linda Blair action as far as I know. :)

    Thanks to you and Chris and Lynda.

  17. Kathy says:

    Thanks, Red Seven!

  18. Demetria says:

    Kathy, I found you via the blogswarm and really enjoyed reading your post. It was simple, elegant, and a desperately needed view in TN as well as Alabama.

  19. Jennifer says:

    AMEN!!!!!! I always read a post like this right after I’ve posted something particularly stupid and childish; thanks for making me feel like a pea brained twit!! But you are a voice of reason in a dark and troubled world.

  20. Kathy says:

    Thanks, Demetria. I’m glad you found me; you’re always welcome here.

    Jennifer, you keep me sane with your humor. No pea-brained twit could ever make me laugh the way you do.

  21. bill says:

    Jennifer,

    I don’t think you’re a pea brained twit…I think you’re an acorn brained twit. :)

  22. [...] The links so far: From Kristim (at MPS)The AristocratsMontag at Stumplanelife’s journeyChip Berlet (at T2A)Frederick Clarkson (at DKos)A poetic justice (several poems)DriftglassThe Quaker AgitatorBalls and WalnutsZaius NationBirmingham BluesGod is for Suckers!There are no Barking SparrowsBeep Beep It’s MeCause for ConcernThe Jaded SkepticCassandra Waites (at T2A)Hot Cup of JoeBig Brass BlogDawne Gee at Clean Cut KidxcsharpshadowxCross LeftTen PercentKilling time, making noisePhillip AllenLive and times of an ex(2)-pat YankDarwin’s DaggerLes EnragesLaelapsDavid 2’s Brutally Honest Random ThoughtsRunesmith’s Canadian ContentNonsensical Ravings of Finely Tuned InsanityBarefoot BumNo More Mister Nice Guy!do not read this blogPandagoncommander others otherwhirledJourneys with JoodFitness for the Occasionafter the bridgeReconstitutionHard-boiled Dreams of the WorldThe Daily PulseMidget QueenThe Jewish AtheistFetch Me My AxeNorth of CenterDoing My Part for the Left (podcast)Liberal Street FighterBlue WrenLaughing GooRobert Colgan (at MPS)Flatus the ElderProgressive HistoriansVirus HeadClub LeftyBlue GalRecovering LiberalBlast Off!Ordinary GirlThe Neo-SkepticNot Soccer MomHullabalooMock Paper ScissorsA Blog Around the ClockAn American in MelbourneEverything and moreAtheist RevolutionAbout KittyHalf NixonI Speak of DreamsFeminists Don’t Bake BreadAmericans United BlogDog EmperorAt Center NetworkGod Vs. DarwinAction SkepticsCreeksideRascalityFrank L. Cocozzelli (at T2A)BiblioblographyThe Largest MinorityFacilitate Wonder ReconsititutionFrom Sorghum Crow (at MPS)Mauigirl’s MeanderingsChris Rodda (at T2A)The Spiritual Humanist BlogThe Stormy Days of MarchThe Springy GoddessThe Shikon JewelClyde the f-ed up cousin of Jimmy Dean (at MPS)Vagabond ScholarRon’s BlogJourneys with JoodThe Learning CurvePissed in NYC (at MPS)This is it.Tangled up in Blue GuyA Stitch in HasteOne Act in the Eternal Play of Ideascommander other (at MPS)Thoughts in a HaystackWe Are All Giant Nuclear Fireball Now PartyCoffee MessiahRadRobinFitness for the OccasionPeace, order and good government, eh? No Comments » [...]

  23. Sam says:

    Wonderful post – thank you!!!

  24. [...] Look at everybody who participated in the blogswarm against theocracy! Take a look. There are some great reads here. From Kristim (at MPS)The AristocratsMontag at Stumplanelife’s journeyChip Berlet (at T2A)Frederick Clarkson (at DKos)A poetic justice (several poems)DriftglassThe Quaker AgitatorBalls and WalnutsZaius NationBirmingham BluesLihan161051BrianChaotic GoodDangerously Subversive Atheist PenguinNorthgate ScienceAustin AtheistThe GreenbeltEssential SaltesKnight of PanEvil BenderI doubt itXarkAbnormal InterestsTengrain (at MPS)Deleted ItemsBratfinkReligious Right WatchIseBrandMillard Fillmore’s BathtubTimeline of Theocracy (at T2A)HypnocritesProgressiveUThe Skeptical AlchemistDark ChristianityThe Rational ChristianAnother Ravan PerchUnrepentant Old HippieCycleAP Lawrence, BloggerHappy Jihad’s House of PancakesGod is for Suckers!There are no Barking SparrowsBeep Beep It’s MeCause for ConcernThe Jaded SkepticCassandra Waites (at T2A)Hot Cup of JoeBig Brass BlogDawne Gee at Clean Cut KidxcsharpshadowxCross LeftTen PercentKilling time, making noisePhillip AllenLive and times of an ex(2)-pat YankDarwin’s DaggerLes EnragesLaelapsDavid 2’s Brutally Honest Random ThoughtsRunesmith’s Canadian ContentNonsensical Ravings of Finely Tuned InsanityBarefoot BumNo More Mister Nice Guy!do not read this blogPandagoncommander others otherwhirledJourneys with JoodFitness for the Occasionafter the bridgeReconstitutionHard-boiled Dreams of the WorldThe Daily PulseMidget QueenThe Jewish AtheistFetch Me My AxeNorth of CenterDoing My Part for the Left (podcast)Liberal Street FighterBlue WrenLaughing GooRobert Colgan (at MPS)Flatus the ElderProgressive HistoriansVirus HeadClub LeftyBlue GalRecovering LiberalBlast Off!Ordinary GirlThe Neo-SkepticNot Soccer MomHullabalooMock Paper ScissorsA Blog Around the ClockAn American in MelbourneEverything and moreAtheist RevolutionAbout KittyHalf NixonI Speak of DreamsFeminists Don’t Bake BreadAmericans United BlogDog EmperorAt Center NetworkGod Vs. DarwinAction SkepticsCreeksideRascalityFrank L. Cocozzelli (at T2A)BiblioblographyThe Largest MinorityFacilitate Wonder ReconsititutionFrom Sorghum Crow (at MPS)Mauigirl’s MeanderingsChris Rodda (at T2A)The Spiritual Humanist BlogThe Stormy Days of MarchThe Springy GoddessThe Shikon JewelClyde the f-ed up cousin of Jimmy Dean (at MPS)Vagabond ScholarRon’s BlogJourneys with JoodThe Learning CurvePissed in NYC (at MPS)This *is* it.Tangled up in Blue GuyA Stitch in HasteOne Act in the Eternal Play of Ideascommander other (at MPS)Thoughts in a HaystackWe Are All Giant Nuclear Fireball Now PartyCoffee MessiahRadRobinFitness for the OccasionPeace, order and good government, eh? [...]

  25. jennifer says:

    Whatever Bill….we both know I’m nuts!!!

  26. tom cady says:

    signpost:
    it looked so easy, our heritage beckoned
    the nation was, after all, christian
    and so they began their crusade marching toward theocracy
    and as they plodded the children wailed “are we there yet?”
    and god whispered back “you’re going the wrong way”

Leave a Reply