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Hatred and bigotry dressed up in religious clothing, including the Pope's funny hats, is still hatred and bigotry. As Jon Stewart so elegantly stated on one of his shows, not having everything continue to go the way you want it to is not the same thing as bigotry against christianity, even against the narrow-minded, judgmental brand of religion that the republican party has allied itself with, and that faux "news" keeps trying to claim there is a "war" against. The teachings of Christ included absolutely zero mention of homosexuality; to find bible quotes that support the hatred so apparent in the Westboro "Baptist Church" and the rantings of Pat Robertson and James Dobson, you have to go back to quite early in the Old Testament and pull it out of Deuteronomy. Where you will also find instructions for the size of rocks required to stone unruly teen-agers and "fallen women," calls for the death penalty for the eating of shellfish and the wearing of different fabrics at the same time.
Nothing was said by Christ regarding a woman's right to control her own fertility, either. Catholic proscriptions against birth control and termination of pregnancy came to be long, long after the days of Christ. As a matter of fact, Christ's teachings were that we should give away our wealth and follow him---something I don't see much of in the republican wing of the christian religion---that we should take care of the poorest among us, and that judgment of one another was the job of God himself, not earthly preachers and certainly not political pundits.
President Obama has tried mightily to create unity, but he has been stymied over and over by the republicans. And yes, they are old white men who see their position of power fading as the rest of the population---non-whites, non-christians, gays and lesbians, and most of all, free and independent women---step up to claim their equality and economic and political power. The more people who are equal, the less power each member of that group has. White males have had it great for centuries by keeping everyone else in thrall to them, especially women, who are more than half of the population. The republican party and their allies the right-wing media, are doing everything in their power to keep the rest of us down and powerless, mostly by controlling the engines of wealth, but it can only work for so long. We are claiming our position as equal leaders of this country, and will not be subservient any more. If those in power look at our determination and see hatred, they are simply mirroring their own feelings. We don't hate anyone, but we are no longer going to allow ourselves to be kicked to the curb and lick the boots of our "masters" any more.
A friend and mentor to many has gone to his reward. Kudos to everyone who is supporting Wanda through this difficult time.
When it makes it to national media, and even though nobody in this town but me probably reads HuffPo, since it's "liberal", it still is considered national media, the local media (U-B) has an obligation to respond. IMO, anyway.
I'd like to know if that's the case as well. Hope someone follows up on this.
There are a couple of questions about the original story that I wish I'd had answers to. Did the florist tell them that she wouldn't do their wedding because they were gay or did she refuse to do it and they assumed it was because it was a same-sex wedding? One thing I'm unclear about the law about is this: Does a business have the option of refusing service to someone without giving a reason? Obviously if they state that it's because they are gay they're going to be afoul of the law, but I still don't know about if they just say no and either give an excuse or give no reason at all. I'd like to know that.
Actually, no a franchisee is not allowed to change the menu at McDonalds, but that has to do with his contract with them, not the law. He is perfectly free to open his own restaurant and not sell beef, which is another thing altogether. He wouldn't under the law, be allowed to refuse to someone because they ate beef in their general lives. The law goes two ways.
It's unfortunate for Walla Walla in general that this staffer made such a cutting remark, especially considering how dependent we are on the tourist trade. It's more unfortunate, however, that Hewitt is co-sponsoring a piece of discriminatory legislation designed to undercut the will of the voters who approved same-sex marriage in the state.
However, the truth is that this is what Walla Walla is, for the most part. If I were someone thinking of retiring or otherwise settling here and held the---gasp!---"liberal" beliefs that the vast majority of Washingtonians hold, incidents such as this would cause me to think twice.
I absolutely detest that catholic hospitals, doctors, and pharmacists are exempted from the law. I believe that this is a secular nation of laws, and that if you think that your particular religious beliefs are going to cause you problems with the duties that your profession entails, then you should find another career.
When people come to this country from other nations and cultures, many of the traditions they prize are simply not allowed here. Examples: When Muslim families move here, they are not allowed to kill their daughters for any reason, much less because they have "dishonored" their families for getting raped. They also are not allowed to force their children into arranged marriages with their cousins or anybody else. They have to obey the laws on this country, and if they prize those traditions so much that they simply must be allowed to continue them, then they need to move back to wherever they came from.
There's lots more: Many, many countries and cultures not only allow, but have government-sponsored events that are wantonly cruel to animals, like bullfighting, dog fighting, and rooster fighting. Those practices are banned here, and when someone gets caught, the fact that it was a cherished tradition in whatever barbaric country they come from is not considered an excuse for their cruelty to animals.
What would you think if the person who served your food at McDonald's was a Hindu and refused to sell you a hamburger because his religion considers cows to be sacred? Even if he did ask another counter person to come sell you that Big Mac, wouldn't you feel a bit publicly shamed by his telling you that you were some kind of monster for ordering an animal he finds sacred? Please explain to me how that is one tiny bit different from the pharmacist who refuses to prescribe Plan B or other contraception option?
Most of the "organizations: that are publishing "facts" claiming that global climate change is not happening are funded directly or indirectly by the fossil fuel companies. They have quite a vested interest in seeing that their activities are not impeded upon, and they have virtually unlimited funds with which to buy scientists. Compared to the oil companies, coal companies, etc., investment in bribing senators and congressmen, scientists probably go cheap. Those with the most credibility say that climate change is real.
That said, I think cap-and-trade was nothing but a scam, and I have serious doubts about how much good limiting CO2 emissions in this country is going to do, considering that China builds a new coal plant---with virtually NO environmental regs---every couple of weeks, Brazil deforests another 100 square miles of rain forest a day, and the rest of the developing world is busy polluting the planet.
Personally, I think that climate change is something that we have to prepare for, but I'm much more concerned with specific threats that target this country. The Keystone XL pipeline, for example, and the whole idea of burning tar sands oil. Someday the oil WILL run out, and if we haven't developed some new forms of energy, we are going to wind up wandering in the desert like the current oil sheiks will do when their source of income dries up. It may not be in our lifetime, but most people have children and grandchildren that may or may not have a habitable world to inherit.
In terms of the destruction of the biosphere, the biggest threat to global weather is the deforestation of the Amazon basin. IMHO, of course. I'm not a scientist but I've done a bit of research, and while cutting down on CO2 emissions probably is a good idea, there are bigger fish to fry that nobody ever seems to mention. Our nation media is so thoroughly controlled by the mega-corporations that own them that I'm much more interested in the things they try to keep from us than those they shove in front of our faces every day.
Happy to read this news. I fully expected to read about the bankruptcy of the store, considering that it's unlikely he would have been able to pay the full fine. Kudos to Catsiff and the city for reaching a solution that allows him to stay in business. The expected conclusion---closing of the store and bankruptcy to avoid a huge fine---would have had a chilling effect on any business that considered standing up for its' rights in court.
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