November 30, 2005
Peanut gave us a little scare today. The doctor couldn't hear a heartbeat, so they did an impromptu sonogram to visually verify it. The heart was there and going strong. The whole episode upset Denise a little bit, but we got a second set of pics of The Peanut.
November 10, 2005
Gay rights is an emotional issue, especially in the buckle of the Bible belt, where I find myself. Well-meaning, church-going folks think nothing of deriding homosexuals for their "choice" of lifestyle, which is the root of the issue.
While the faithful seek to contort the Bible to fit their worldview about homosexuality, I think it's fair to say that the logic of right-wing religious folks derives from their definition of homosexuality as a choice, something that gays do, not who they are. If, as their reasoning goes, homosexual tendencies are a choice then they can be punished and ridiculed as aberrant behavior not to be tolerated, like writing hot checks and farting in public.
I, on the other hand, feel that homosexuality is inborn, part of who a person is, not what they decide to be. From that premiss, I find it hard to deny equal protection and rights to them based on their lifestyle. In fact, the language of the recent Proposition 2 denying gays not just marriage, but any sort of civil union, smacks of Jim Crow laws that made miscegenation illegal. After all, ethnicity isn't a choice, but yet a short time ago, it dictated personal freedom to a large extent. The premiss is different, but the spirit is the same: we fear the Other in our society, the thing that is not like Us. But laws about equality and freedom are there to counter just such irrational behavior. We profess to be a land of rights and equality, yet every advance in civil rights has cost pain and lives. Yesterday it was blacks and lefties, today it's gays. Will we live up to our own ideals in this country?
Now, I'm not calling for the sanctioned union, in a church, of a homosexual marriage; Church members must always be free to follow their creed. I am calling for legal recognition of a relationship between same-sex couples. Why? Because right now partners who happen to be the same gender are unable to function with the equal rights and protections of a heterosexual couple. Wills, insurance, finances, taxes, medical decisions, adoption--all legal and supposedly secular aspects of life--are cumbersome or denied and therefore unequal in practice for them, denying their "equal protection" under the 14th Amendment, a secular law.
A generation from now, we'll be just as ashamed of our mean-spirited treatment of homosexuals as we are of our treatment of minorities, particularly blacks, only a generation ago.
November 04, 2005
PGP Public Key
If you're really geeky, try to use my public key to encrypt a message to me at my the_tat address (you know it if you know me). I use Thunderbird and Enigmail, along with WinPT, but there are other combinations of proggies out there.
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Version: GnuPG v1.4.1 (GNU/Linux)
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