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More Silliness From Kansas

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More Silliness From Kansas

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“Discrimination,” he said, “is horrible. It’s hurtful. It has no place in civilized society…”

You would think that statement, delivered recently in the Kansas legislature, a noble sentiment no right-thinking person could argue with. But we are gathered here today to argue with it.

Because it turns out that when Republican legislator Charles Macheers said “discrimination,” he didn’t mean, well … discrimination. Macheers sponsored a bill — passed overwhelmingly by the Kansas House but killed last week by the Senate in an attack of common sense — that sought to exempt any business or government employee from providing “any services, accommodations, advantages, facilities, goods or privileges” related to any “marriage, domestic partnership, civil union or similar arrangement” if doing so would conflict with the employee’s “sincerely held religious beliefs.”

In other words, if the customer seeking these services, et cetera, were gay.

You see, Macheers’ idea of fighting discrimination is to protect the right of alleged “Christians” to discriminate against gay men and lesbians. Apparently, Jim Crow is alive and well and serving in the Kansas legislature.

The comparison is not an idle one. Macheers’ babblespeak, his brazen attempt to paint the oppressors as the oppressed, is straight out of the white supremacist playbook of the 1960s, when opponents of the Civil Rights Act bewailed it as an incursion upon their sacred rights — by which they meant their sacred rights to discriminate. Moreover, a state governed by Macheers’ law, a state where you could be denied a haircut, a wedding cake, hotel accommodations or police services based on sexual orientation, would out of necessity have to erect the kinds of signs this country has not seen for over two generations:

“We Don’t Serve Homosexuals.”

“Straight Only.”

“No Gays Allowed.”

This was a hateful piece of legislation (there are rumblings it may be reintroduced) but there was also something starkly ridiculous about it, some sense of the garage door being locked after the car has been stolen, the fence fixed after the cows have wandered off, some sense of fighting a battle already lost. Consider:

The bulk of the country now supports gay rights.

Most young conservatives now support gay rights.

The federal courts now support gay rights — as seen in a recent string of decisions approving same-sex marriage.

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Leonard Pitts Jr.

Leonard Pitts Jr. is a nationally syndicated commentator, journalist, and novelist. Pitts' column for the Miami Herald deals with the intersection between race, politics, and culture, and has won him multiple awards including a Pulitzer Prize in 2004.

The highly regarded novel, Freeman (2009), is his most recent book.

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32 Comments

  1. disqus_ivSI3ByGmh February 24, 2014

    “No Irish need apply”
    “No Italians or Poles allowed”
    “No Germans allowed”
    “Women must use the side entrance”
    “No Coloreds Served Here”
    “If your skin is Brown, don’t be in town when the Sun goes down”
    Aren’t we all tired of BS like this? All the statements above have effectively been modified to become anti-Gay sentiments.
    Just as these same “good Christians” used the Bible to justify Slavery and Segregation, they are now using the same book (but nowhere in the four Gospels does Jesus ever denounce homosexuality, even though he denounces other things) to justify anti-Gay legislation.
    The Supreme Court could extend “Loving” as there are states where Gays can legally marry, stating that other states cannot deny those legitimate marriages without having to set new precedents.

    Reply
    1. disqus_fsqeoY3FsG February 24, 2014

      This law is an opening to enact all the statements you listed to be utilized once again.

      1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

        yep

    2. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      ……

  2. Bill Thompson February 24, 2014

    Fascism is always clothed in a flag and carrying a Bible.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      On his date, February 24th, In 1920, the German Workers Party, which later became the Nazi Party, met in Munich to adopt its platform.

      Clothed with the Nazi flag and a white supremist Christian hate view of the Bible…

      1. jointerjohn February 24, 2014

        Let’s see now, the Bible, a book that teaches that god made all the thousands of different peoples of the earth, but he only really liked one tiny little tribe near the Dead Sea well enough to communicate with them. If you are looking for a true bigot look no further than the god of the Bible. Why should people who follow him and that book be any different?

        1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

          I can’t argue with a Baptist Minister! (nicely meant)

          Yu state: ” If you are looking for a true bigot look no further than the god of the Bible. Why should people who follow him and that book be any
          different?

          You have interesting posts in the past that offer a clue…

          jointerjohn • a month ago

          I am a former American Baptist Minister. I am very aware of what the New Testament contains. The New Testament contains the finest model for human behavior ever put to page. If it was faithfully practiced the world would be a better place. Instead it has been twisted by men.

          and here:

          jointerjohn • 2 months ago

          Pope Francis better have someone tasting his food for him. Inspiring that such a noble and seemingly well-intended man could rise to the top
          of such a corrupt, misogynistic, and wicked organization. Gives me hope for mankind.”

          Well—-do you follow “that book?”
          Thanks

  3. JD February 24, 2014

    I hope these spiritual bed-fellows of the so-called Westboro Baptist Church Hate Group, Inc.understand that what they are really doing is destroying any last claim to moral authority held by Christian Fundamentalists in this country. The same disgusting legislation has been introduced by robot representatives in at least six other states and soon, if any state legislature is stupid enough to pass such a measure, they will have the taxpayers paying for a slew of rightful lawsuits against it. On the other hand, hurrying the demise of the influence of these ersatz Christians can only be a good thing for this country and the world.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      Definately agree with what you stated:
      “…hurrying the demise of the influence of these ersatz Christians can only be a good thing for this country and the world.”

      Excellent!

    2. aldisiij367 February 25, 2014

      my Aunty Amelia got a new blue Land Rover
      LR4 only from working part time off a home computer… helpful hints F­i­s­c­a­l­M­a­z­e­.­ℂ­o­m

  4. jakenhyde February 24, 2014

    Does Macheers belong to the Westboro Baptist Church?

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      No—-

      According to journalist Steve Rockrodt, Macheers a lawyer. He got his law degree from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan. It’s not tied to any bigger university, as most law schools are. It’s also not ranked by the U.S. News & World Report, as other top and midlevel law schools are. Thomas Cooley Law School, in fact, has taken exception to what it calls elitist rankings by national publications…Macheers tried to run for Shawnee City Council in 2012 but lost to Jim Neighbor. …So he went to Topeka instead, serving his first term in 2013. He has taken money from Koch Industries and various payday loan companies…..He’s not in any leadership positions except as vice chairman of the sleepy Joint Committee on State-Tribal Relations, which meets infrequently. Other bills he’s sponsoring this year include measures to require drug screening for recipients of cash assistance programs and another bill to require that all Kansas schools celebrate Freedom Week in September, during which students learn about the Founding Fathers of the United States, including teaching of their religious principles.

      Meet the facist Macheers:

      1. jakenhyde February 24, 2014

        Looks like getting a law degree from Thomas M Cooley Law School would be something akin to getting a law degree from Falwell’s Liberty College or Rod Parsley’s Valor College.

        1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

          YEP!

      2. 4sanity4all February 24, 2014

        Thank you for the info. I didn’t want to like it so no one would think I like Macheers, or anything about him.

  5. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

    Can’t say it any better than Pitts:



    “So extremist bills like this one, promulgated by extremist people 
like Macheers, carry the unmistakable stink of desperation. One is 
reminded of how, as late as 1970, with the Civil Rights Movement won and
its aims vindicated, the state of Mississippi banned a certain 
children’s TV show. Seems they could not abide the fact there was 
integration on Sesame Street.

They didn’t know then — as people like Macheers evidently don’t know 
now — that history had overtaken them and that they were just 
dead-enders standing before the onrushing freight train of change, 
holding up a stop sign. Such people always look spectacularly foolish in
hindsight, their fears rendered cartoonish and buffoonish, their 
proclamations of noble cause silly and self-refuting. They are the last 
folks to “get it.”

    Especially this:
    “fears rendered cartoonish ”

    Reply
  6. jne4klpk February 24, 2014

    I told Zeus that making a Christian would lead to trouble. Zeus replied it was a good way to kill off idiots and the self rightist and fun to watch. the gods must be crazy.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      According to journalis Matt Slick, a lot of people, including some Messianic Jews (Jews who believe Jesus is the Messiah), will call Jesus by a different name: Yeshua…They say that Yeshua is the Jewish name that Jesus would have been called by those who knew him.

      Some messianics and other groups say that Yeshua is Jesus’ real name and that the name “Jesus” is wrong. Others say it is okay to use either one.

      But then again, there are those who say that the word “Jesus” is pagan in origin and should not be used at all. And if that weren’t enough, some say that “Jesus” is derived from “Zeus” and really means “hail Zeus.”

      OY! The Gods are crazy!!

      1. Allan Richardson February 24, 2014

        Since the Greek language does not have a “sh” sound, and Greek names do not end in the “s” sound, when Greeks tried to pronounce “Yeshua” it came out sounding like “yay-soose.” When they wrote the name in Greek it came out spelled “iota-eta-sigma-omicron-upsilon-sigma.” When translated into Latin it was spelled “IESUS” with the same pronunciation, and in Medieval Latin, when the letter “J” was invented and used for the initial “I” when it is pronounced as a consonant, the spelling was changed to JESUS. In the Latin vocative case it is JESU, hence the title of Bach’s famous piece “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring.”

        The great vowel shift in Middle English changed the vowel pronunciation from “ay…oo” to “ee .. uh” and that of “J,” resulting in “Jesus” being pronounced “Gee-zuss” in Modern English. In Spanish, it is a very common name, pronounced “HAY-soose.”

        And in the original Hebrew/Aramaic, Yeshua means “YHWH saves,” and is a variant of the name translated Joshua in the Torah. Western translators tend to leave the spelling, if not the pronunciation, of Old Testament names closer to Hebrew than New Testament names (compare “yah-cove” or Jacob in the OT to Greek “yah-cove-os” or “yah-co-mos,” Latin “Iacomus” or “Jacomus,” English James, Spanish Iago or Diego).

    2. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      Fantasy: After Jesus easily takes down all of the lesser gods, he goes
      head-to-head with Zeus himself, who offers to spare him if he admits the whole human race is lame and unworthy of Jesus’ sacrifice. Calling the human race lame would be an insult to Jesus’ mother, and you should NEVER make fun of another man’s mom, especially Jesus’ mom.

  7. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

    New news breaking story 11am today the 24th…

    Arizona businesses want veto of bill angering gays:

    “Arizona’s biggest business advocacy group is calling on Gov. Jan Brewer to veto a bill allowing business owners with strongly held religious beliefs to refuse service to gays. The legislation passed last week has triggered a national backlash from supporters of gay rights, and the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry is among business groups requesting a veto.
    The chamber said Monday the bill could hurt tourism, make it hard to recruit new businesses and open the door to lawsuits against businesses.”

    read more here:

    http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_ARIZONA_GAY_RIGHTS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2014-02-24-10-12-56

    Reply
  8. howa4x February 24, 2014

    In Arizona the same bill passed both houses and is on Jan Brewers desk. She will veto it because of the massive economic repercussions it can have for a state. Arizona has been selected for the next super bowl and by signing that legislation the governor would be chasing the game to a different state, since the NFL would immediately pull it. In Arizona as in Kansas the evangelicals allied with the tea party have shown America what it would be like to recreate a Nazi state here. Just like Jews in Amsterdam had to sow on a star of David to be recognized, and make it easier to discriminate against them, in these states the store owner could use what they felt are signs of gayness to refuse service. Maybe there will be signs put up saying no gays allowed akin to the signs that used to populate the south directed at Afro Americans, or signs that say only white Christians are allowed. Or the State could publish what it felt were common gay characteristics, or traits as a guideline for who could be discriminated against. I’m sure the show Modern Family would be ordered banned and not to be shown by network affiliates.
    This is what White Christian America has devolved to. So paranoid that their values can’t stand on their own, that they are threatened by to people in love.
    I wonder what this will do to real estate values ?

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      Excellent point about real estate as well!

      White supremist Christian Americans behind this are fear mongering at every level. In this case homophobia.

      Fear mongering elicits responses in Americans (like Westboro Baptist Church members) called Chicken Little syndrome: This means that it infers catastrophic conclusions possibly resulting in paralysis…This fear mongering is a irrational sense of despair.

      It is a tactic utilized not only by these anti-gay forces in Kansa….but nationally by the American Taliban known as The GOP/Teaparty.

      1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

        …American Taliban

      2. howa4x February 24, 2014

        Agreed this is the new white supremacist party

  9. Silver Fang February 24, 2014

    What century are we in again?

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      The 4th century….

      Homophobic sexual attitudes can be traced back to Ancient Greece from 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity 600 AD).

      In early 4th century Christian churches and Catholcism, a campaign against homosexuality. Certain church fathers, among them Augustine (a rather nasty piece of work himself, the first known zealous advocate of forced conversions), and Clement, a man who mistakenly associated homosexuality with a form of child slavery in which male children were often sold into slavery as prostitutes. These two men and others like them began to associate homosexuality not just with unsavory animal practices, but with other practices they didn’t happen to like, such as paganism, or pederastry, etc.

      The man who took this ball and ran with it was “Saint” John Chrysostom, who was the first church father who can clearly be shown to object to homosexuality based on the gender of its participants, not based just on procreative intent, or based on the ages of those involved, or whether the participants were pagans.

      Ironically, The word homophobia first appeared in print in an article written for the May 23, 1969, edition of the American pornographic magazine Screw, in which the word was used to refer to heterosexual men’s fear that others might think they are gay.

    2. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

      Great profile! AKA Silver Fang 🙂

      http://disqus.com/OmegaWolf747/

  10. daniel bostdorf February 24, 2014

    The fundamental point of Pitts article should not get lost. To realize that this Macheers sincerely attempt to legalize discrimination should not be taken lightly.

    It is fortunate that the Senate killed the bill….but it is scary it was passed by the Kansa House…

    Pitts:
    “Macheers’ idea of fighting discrimination is to protect the right of alleged “Christians” to discriminate against gay men and lesbians. Apparently, Jim Crow is alive and well and serving in the Kansas legislature. The comparison is not an idle one. Macheers’ babblespeak, his brazen attempt to paint the oppressors as the oppressed, is straight out of the white supremacist playbook of the 1960s, when opponents of the Civil Rights Act bewailed it as an incursion upon their sacred rights — by which they meant their sacred rights to discriminate. Moreover, a state governed by Macheers’ law, a state where you could be denied a haircut, a wedding cake, hotel accommodations or police services based on sexual orientation, would out of necessity have to erect the kinds of signs this country has not seen for over two generations.”

    This should serve as a warning o other extreme right states that propose to resurrect “Jim Crow” laws…

    And we as citizens cannot fail to learn the lessons of history as it relates to civil rights…

    Reply
  11. 4sanity4all February 24, 2014

    What are these legislators thinking, trying to institutionalize bigotry? What century do they think we are in? How can anyone that ignorant rise to hold political office? It seems like we are getting smacked by this ignorance across the entire country. It also seems that most, if not all, of it is being well funded by dark money puppet masters. We really need to defeat Citizens United. It seems to have unleashed the biggest wave of ignorance and bigotry since before the 60’s. And sadly, these people began crawling out from under their rocks right after we elected our first Black President. I foolishly thought that we had evolved as a country. Many of us did, but many did not. The good people among us will have to stand up to this type of ignorance and call them out, every time.

    Reply
  12. Daniel Jones February 24, 2014

    I hate to say this, but at the rate it’s going, some assholes in Kansas are bound to gun down gays or gay supporters for daring to exist. Those realizing they are losing grip of the moral high ground tend to devolve.

    Then they get lethal.

    Reply

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