so much things to say.

the united states has elected its 44th president; the first black president. wow. i'm feeling quite amazed by the fact. i have always doubted the united states' potential in the way of destroying systematic isms and phobias that loomed like specters over the very existences of its citizens. even now, it may seem that the united states will not ever move beyond the constrictions of the isms which it so clearly runs on. the glass ceilings exist at different levels in various facets of life for people who live in the united states and are oft-accepted as the norm by those who dare not even tap, let alone try to break them.

i have always lived with limitations on the possibilities of black folks.

in my lifetime, the legal measures that have hindered black people have not always been as plain as jim crow-era laws. instead, they impact black folks disproportionately (e.g. minimum crack possession laws vs. minimum coke possession laws) and don't get the same attention as police brutality cases, mistreatment in retail stores or discrimination regarding housing or jobs. socially, as i am certain we are all aware, the limitations placed on black people are numerous and have shown themselves in all possible arenas. i'm not alone when i say that i've been discriminated against for being black and/ or for being a woman. that is not to say that white people are sole owners of discrimination against other groups, as discrimination is a symptom of the root illness of binary thinking. the "us vs. them" paradigm is inescapable in this society. we see it in everything from sporting rivalries to our very own neighbors who may be the same race, but from a different nation (black americans vs. caribbean black folks vs. continental african black folks). the election of barack obama suggests, at the very least, that american voters have moved past the politics of exclusion when it comes to whether or not a black man could be elected to the office of commander-in-chief.

but, along with this major shift came the removal of and encroachment upon the rights of others. in california, florida, arkansas, and arizona, voters (who may or may not have come out to support barack obama) decided that openly gay people in their states should not have the same rights as persons who are or perceived as heterosexual. voters in california, via prop 8 (aka prop hate) repealed the law allowing same-sex couples to be married & receive all rights afforded to opposite-sex married couples. this was not a denial of rights, but a removal altogether. in arkansas, a ballot measure was passed preventing unmarried cohabiting couples (both opposite-sex and same-sex) from adopting children or caring for foster children. the florida marriage amendment defines marriage specifically as a union between a man and a woman, stating that no other unions would be recognized as valid by the state. arizona voters also passed a similar amendment to the state constitution, called the marriage protection amendment.

the fact that any voter feels that she or he possesses the right to restrict the rights of other fully-functioning adult members of society makes me sick to my stomach. barring legitimate threats to the public safety (e.g. those who traffic humans, persons who are physically violent within their communities), none of us has the right to go push a button or pull a lever (or check off a freaking box on a piece of paper) to limit the freedoms of others. these measures are plainly set forth to target the rights of same-sex people. i could blame right-wing evangelical socially conservative christians, i could blame the fact that the amount of money spent to campaign for the passing of these measures far surpasses the amount of money available to the opposition (specifically in the case of prop hate). but, there's no one cause. simply, those who voted in favor of these amendments felt that it is their right to limit other autonomous, contributing members of society.

i do not understand what the problem is with same-sex couples marrying or caring for children. i presume that it's because i never understood any arguments against being homosexual, least of all those attached to religious dogma. i don't believe that homosexuality is going to destroy humanity (either by lack of procreation or general 'moral corruptness'). i don't believe that it's wrong to love, or be attracted to someone of the same sex any more than i could ever say it's wrong to be attracted to someone who is not of the same racial makeup as you. long before i was aware of my own queerness, i always questioned how any hetero-identifying person could ever legitimately have a problem with gay people. how could it be anyone else's business what you do as a private citizen in your own home?

if christianity is one's basis for discriminating against gay people (and it is discrimination, don't get it twisted), i have to ask how that's a legitimate basis. i don't question the bible verses referenced in any argument against homosexuality; i question the whole book for reasons that can be discussed later. i question how it's anyone's christian duty to be less concerned with their own goodness as a person of faith than they are with whether or not their neighbor is gay. i question how it's christ-like to disrespect the law of the land by seeking to overturn a law that does not even apply to you; i was always taught that the christian thing to do is to respect the law of the land. i question some of the assertions made: that gay marriage would be taught in schools as normal, that children would be "indoctrinated" in homosexuality, & the outright lie that the obama-biden ticket has ever supported gay marriage. what's christian about making stuff up to win people over to your side? i need to know, most importantly, how one can justify the use of their faith practice as a reason to oppress others. for the people who are anti-racism and are christian: the bible was used to justify chattel slavery of africans in the americas as well as miscegenation laws (see: loving v. virginia). i do not believe that christianity automatically lends itself to oppression. i believe, instead, that some people will pull out all stops and use anything as a tool of persuasion.

i want to know: at what point do you simply understand all other humans to be worthy of the same respect you wish to have? from the teachings on christ i received as a child, the thing that stuck to me was not the miracles he worked, not the quotes that my christian day school classmates regurgitated constantly, but it was the idea that you are supposed to act lovingly towards others. it said nowhere in the bible that you had to be loving to your neighbors only, or only to people who share the same exact values as you. if this were the case (with any faith, not just christianity), i don't think that there would exist charity without verification of the recipients' worldviews. love is limitless, isn't it?

so, i must ask this: if you are willing to limit any of god's children, are you not limiting yourself?


Morgan Street said...

HERE HERE! This is why I don't fully believe everything I was taught in Sunday school. It just doesn't make complete sense to me. Love ALL man is what I believe!

Great blog!!

creatrix said...

yeah, well, you know...

well said. you raise some excellent points, and ones that need to be heard.

my boss has been saying that when a way of life is dying, you often see it amplified just before the final throes. i think that's what's happening here. people are going back to the old ways, their cultural mainstays. life & love affirmation. goddess religion and philosophy is resurging (whether they call it that or not).

death-centered, phallic xtianity can no longer sustain this planet--and never really could. it just kept a few people in the right places of power for awhile.

but now it's falling apart, and it's starting to show.

maria said...

I'm loving creatix's comment. "Phallic Xtianity"? Awesome.

Seriously, though, I think Christ himself would be so very disappointed in the religion named after him. He told us quite specifically to love each other, no?