While brandishing aloft their expertise of the U.S. Constitution, America’s right-wing politicians ignore its Bill of Rights. They are so stuck in the 18th Century that – to them – the world must seem flat. Their blatant crusade against same-sex marriages and abortion particularly appalls me.
Passed around at Saturday’s TheTentacle.com breakfast was a pair of petitions; the one I signed has to do with the quixotic pursuit of revising the Sixth Congressional District to restore the Republican voters’ advantage. Before the 2010 census, Democrats in Virginia had the hope of gaining more desks on Capitol Hill. Richmond’s House of Delegates dashed the dream with its GOP majority.
The other petition was not offered to me – with good cause! It has to do with same-sex marriage.
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” Citing frequently those words, fervent churchgoers and their spokespersons raise a hue and a cry when they feel the government impinged on their faiths. They conveniently forget what follows next: “or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
Roman Catholics and some fundamentalists invoke brimstone and hell’s fire in teaching their members must marry the opposite gender. Yet three national surveys in the past several months showed that support for these same-sex marriages climbed to favorable; it had been negative in all the polls taken for years. Furthermore, the strongest in proclaiming their indifference about who marries whom were among young adults, those born between 1980 and 1991.
Among those who favor abortions both the mainstream Protestants (59 percent) and Catholics (52 percent) way outnumber those of other proponent religions. The Vatican is prominent in the opposition.
On the other hand, according to numerous studies, despite the 1968 Papal edict (“Humanae Vitae”) some 90 percent of their members practice artificial birth control, either taking pills or employing condoms. Part of the reasons the more faithful are slipping away from the Curia is the church’s failures in moral theology, instigated in more than several instances by Pope Benedict XVI himself.
This nation was founded by people who fled Europe, mainly to escape persecutions based on their faiths. Now we find the old-country bigotry around most U.S. corners. My belief rests strongly in individualism, as was the Founding Fathers’. Nobody, or no organization, must be so powerful that their eccentricities can be imposed on the total population. And I’ve heard and seen anti-gay vilification so vehement as to recall Nazi propaganda.
Other countries deride America for “Puritan culture,” but those men and women fled first to the Netherlands and wound up in Massachusetts because the English society at that time would not let them practice their faith.
Some form of Revolution could still occur in the future. As the original in 1776 shaped up, it will be because of tyranny of the few. It can possibly take place because of man-made laws restricting American freedoms. In any event, it will not occur tomorrow. But it still may happen, fomented by hypocritical bigots who insist on having their egocentric ways.