Just As I Thought

Notes on hypocrisy

A couple of editorials. First, from the Washington Post:

Here’s what Republicans of conscience have to understand about the machinations of Karl Rove and company. Fear isn’t some emotion that can be easily bottled back up after it’s been — viciously — unleashed. It isn’t a once-every-four-years vehicle that can be wheeled out for a few months, then stowed back in the garage to be retooled for the next election cycle. Encouraging fundamentalist preachers to pound their pulpits and inveigh against gay people has consequences. It puts men and women in communities across this country at personal and professional risk. There’s nothing more despicable than creating a phony political issue (just how many gay couples are clamoring for marriage certificates in the state of Ohio, anyhow?) and preying on people’s prejudices.

… “Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid,” Lincoln wrote in the years leading up to the Civil War. “As a nation, we began by declaring that ‘all men are created equal.’ We now practically read it ‘all men are created equal, except Negroes.’ When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read ‘all men are created equal, except Negroes and foreigners and Catholics.’ When it comes to this, I shall prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretense of loving liberty — to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure and without the base alloy of hypocrisy.”

There are a lot of Republicans troubled by their party’s exploitation of contemporary know-nothingism. You know who you are. And before your party’s degeneracy is complete, you ought to do something about it. Because camouflaging the fear and loathing of gay people as “moral values” isn’t the base alloy of hypocrisy. It’s hypocrisy itself.

Next, this from the St. Petersburg Times:

Why is this now the moral crisis that deserves to be singled out in our Constitution, the civil law of Caesar, so we can create a lesser class of citizens who don’t have the same rights of civil contract?

Could it be because this is an alleged “sin” that only Those Kind of People commit, instead of equally serious sins that Decent People (even Baptists) commit every day?

If we are going to start ranking the “sins,” marriage between two gay people who love each other and seek a lifelong commitment doesn’t even make the Bible’s best-known top-10 list.

Sure, homosexuality is called an “abomination.” The Bible says so, not too far from where the Bible also says it’s okay to stone your headstrong son to death, and that you’d better stay away from menstruating women.

… On the other hand, you know what IS right smack in the Ten Commandments?


Adultery! Now, that’s a threat to the institution of marriage. You bet.

Half of heterosexual marriages in our society end in divorce. We heterosexuals are doing a lousy job of “defending” marriage. Adultery is a big part of the reason.

So if we’re going to rewrite our Constitution to “protect” marriage from sin because it is the “God-ordained bedrock of society,” then I would think that adultery would be a much better target.

The Florida Constitution should be amended to say that there can be no marriage licenses for anyone who has ever had sex outside marriage.

But wait, don’t stop there.

Adultery is not the only marriage-threatening sin.

There’s coveting.

That’s in the Ten Commandments, too. Coveting your neighbor’s wife can get you in big trouble.

Bearing false witness is one of the Big 10, too, if I recall. Lying is a pretty big threat to marriage.

No legal rights for liars! God created Adam and Eve, not Adam-You-Can’t-Believe.

So, you see, there are the sins that the majority of us Decent People commit, such as lying, coveting, failing to keep the Sabbath, worshiping the wrong things…

… Of course, Jesus said a lot of other stuff, too. Rich people almost certainly won’t go to heaven. They should give away their money. We should turn the other cheek to those who seek to hurt us. We should clothe the naked and feed the poor and house the homeless.

We also should pray in private, without beating our breasts loudly and rending our garments in the streets like hypocrites.

Jesus’ words, not mine.

Maybe he meant we were supposed to just pick and choose the parts we liked.

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