Saturday, July 18, 2015

No Mr. Anderson - Marriage equality was never about YOU

Ryan T. Anderson

Uber Catholic, Ryan T. Anderson, is obsessed with his public persona (and fragile ego). Saturday, at Heritage Foundation's blog, he writes “Will Gay Marriage Dissidents Be Treated Like Racists?” Anderson requires parsing because, lacking persuasive skills he is inherently manipulative. A “dissident” is opposed to the policies of an authoritarian regime.

North Korea and Iran have dissidents. Anderson is not a dissident. Absent critical thinking he chooses to adhere to the fundamentalist teachings of the Catholic Church which disapproves of gays and their marriages. Here's a guy with a loud microphone who appears on TV frequently, writes columns that are published widely and has books for sale. Who is persecuting Ryan? Who?

In point of fact Anderson believes that gay people are “objectively disordered.” That makes Anderson a bigot. If he chooses not to be a critical thinker then he suffers the consequences. How he will be “treated” is entirely up to him. We don't punish people for their religious beliefs — no matter how offensive they might be. However, as a community I think that we have about had it with religious conservatives, self-absorbed Catholic bishops and millionaire evangelical Protestant pastors.

Discrimination cloaked in religious arcana is still discrimination. It is we who have been (and will continue to be) on the receiving end of denigration — not him. There are young gay men and women who got the crap beat out of them every day in school for years. Who is ultimately responsible for that? About the worst thing that has ever happened to Anderson is a grade on a paper lower than he thought he deserved.

We are not out to settle scores. But, if you refuse service from a public accommodation in order to demonstrate your disapproval and if that refusal is contrary to law, you are going to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. If a public servant chooses a display of disapproval that takes the form of denying gay people certain civil services then that should cost him or her their job. Religion is not an acceptable excuse. If a public servant cannot serve the public then they should not be a public servant.

I find this interesting. Brian Brown often expressed the same concern. In Justice Alito's dissenting opinion in United States v. Windsor he wrote that the legalization of same-sex marriage would expose him to being considered “a bigot or a superstitious fool.” It is as if they are stuck with the Church doctrine and they were never really concerned with anything associated with gay marriage. It has all been about what other people think of them.

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