Freedom of conscience and Federal Power (pt 2) — Marriage, the Divine and History

Since the horrific shootings in a Charleston, SC, church on Wednesday 17 Jun 2015, I looked forward to my next opportunity to write for you.  I wanted to speak to the life of Pastor (and State Senator) Clementa Pinckney and his eight parishioners whom a crazed, racist, lone-wolf, lunatic gunned down in a fit of rage and insanity.  I wanted to write about the amazing and transforming Christian love and forgiveness that led families to forgive the man who murdered their mothers, grandmothers, fathers, brothers, sisters –even before his first court appearance.  I wanted to write about Christian love and forgiveness that brought  the City of Charleston together in unity the wake of a tragedy instead of descending into riots, looting and arson.  And I intend to give this amazing demonstration of Christian love and American spirit more than a mere paragraph.

I also want to write about trade treaties, rule of law, a European space probe that came back online and Space-Ex landing a rocket on a barge. But the Supreme Court of the USA (SCOTUS) has preempted my writing plans with its decision on gay marriage.

I wrote briefly on Facebook yesterday — in the most civil flame-war I ever participated in — about the fallacy of creating rights out of whole cloth in a Judicial ruling.  If a court creates a right, another court can take it way.  But this is about far more than mere democratic process and preservation of individual rights.  This is about far more than whether or not this right, newly created by five Justices, will trump the rights given to us by Nature and Nature’s God: freedom of speech, freedom conscience, freedom of association, freedom of assembly and above all freedom of religion.  Religion is far more than worship for one hour a week and occasional rites, ceremonies and holidays.  Religion is way of life.  Religion is individuals, families and voluntary communities coming together to understand and serve the Divine, their fellowman and fellow-woman, and themselves. Religion is a quest to understand the Divine, the Universe, each other, ourselves and our place with respect the former.  In American’s founding document, the Declaration of Independence, we acknowledged the Creator, Nature’s God, the Supreme Being as the Supreme Judge of the world.  And now five Justices have ripped marriage away from the sacred and said they know better, they will define.

Justice Kennedy, writing for the majority, references Cicero, Confucius and philosophers and sages from numerous cultures and throughout history extolling the virtues of marriage.  Even the petitioners acknowledge that prior to 2001, no human society had included same-sex relationships in its definition of marriage.  Chief Justice Roberts, in his dissent, writes that traditional — heterosexual — marriage “formed the basis of society for millennia, for the Kalahari Bushmen and the Han Chinese, the Carthaginians and the Aztecs.” For Christianity and Judaism, Genesis 2:24 defines marriage as “a man shall cling to his wife, and the two shall become one….” An act or a way of doing something only becomes tradition because it works effectively to accomplish its intended purpose.  No one tries something, has it blow up in the face and says, “Let me do that again exactly them same way.”  Heterosexual marriage became traditional and sacred across all these societies throughout human history because it was an effective way to procreate, raise children and pass on the values and virtues of society, not by some white-supremacist, cis-gendered, prehistoric desire to exclude two percent of the population from the way the other 98% organized itself.  Heterosexual marriage isn’t just an American thing, or Christian thing, or a Jewish thing.  It isn’t something to be discarded into the memory hole like the battle flag of General Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia (commonly known as the Confederate Flag).  Likewise opposition to same-sex marriage doesn’t have to be based on one religious tradition, or even on religion.  Same-sex marriage flies in the face of six thousand years of recorded human history.

SCOTUS doesn’t always get it right.  The Thirteenth Amendment overturned the Dred Scott decision (citizenship denied to former slaves) and Brown v. Board overturned Plessy vs. Ferguson (separate but equal).

If same-sex marriage is about the gay community leaving behind adolescent promiscuity and embracing monogamy, fidelity, faith, and responsibility, then it could be a good thing.  If instead, it is an attempt sanctify promiscuity, it could all end in tears.

The facts are facts, opinions are mine and not necessarily shared by my employers.

Thank you for taking time to read my thoughts on these matters. It’s a lot of complex issues shrouded in layers of agenda and deeply rooted beliefs. Tell us how you feel about the legal or moral issues here, in the comments below. If you like what you read and you want to read me regularly, click the follow button or take another moment to scroll back thru my other posts. And don’t forget to bring ten of your friends back with you.

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