Thursday, March 29, 2012

Amendment One - Work with me through this one.

I am an unapologetic social liberal BUT… I am doing my best temper that fact for the purposes of a hopefully diverse audience so that I might appeal to you all.  However, at the same time, I realize that this is not entirely realistic.  That said, let's see if we can marry our perspectives for a moment and see if we can find a common ground because this is important.  I believe in the rights of all men and all women of all races, all colors and all creeds to live their lives as they choose.  I believe in the rights of all people to be free to live and to love in the purest capacity they they possibly can.  I believe that this freedom to pursue a truth of spirit and of soul… that this is the ultimate goal for all of humanity - to be true to our most honest selves.  Many people believe in a more rigid, prescribed code that interprets this ethos differently.  It would be hypocritical for me to condemn those whose beliefs and moral codes are in opposition to mine or to try to force my world view upon them given my previous statement.  While I don't personally subscribe to an interpretation of ethics that can be boiled down to a simple right and wrong or sin and righteousness, I acknowledge that that perspective exists and I know that this chasm is great and my words are more than likely not powerful enough to bridge such a vast divide.

So this is who I am.  These are my values.  They are set in stone for me and I can not imagine a scenario in this life that could possibly change them.  There is little chance, no matter who you are or how long I've known you or what life experiences we have shared that they are exactly the same as yours.  Here's the thing;  THAT'S OKAY.  I have this belief structure and it is so important to me that I feel a soul-wrenching obligation to live a life and to raise a child who, God willing, will share and reflect these things that I hold sacred.  I fully expect and respect your right and responsibility to do the same.  Perhaps, with patience and open hearts and love  we will fortify intelligent discussion and rational arguments that will allow us to grow together to be an increasingly self-realized people.  So this is our mantle and we wear it every single day of our lives.  We do this because it is important, it is critical and it is who we are.  I acknowledge all of this.  What I don't acknowledge and what I hope will give you pause, is a need for political legislation to affirm my belief structure.

This afternoon, I spoke to a dear friend whom I love deeply.  This friend is about as conservative as conservative gets.  I typically dance on pin heads to avoid political discourse with this friend because we are so very diametrically opposed.  Going out on a limb, I said, "I hope you will vote against Amendment One" (for those of you reading not in NC, this is  a very high profile amendment that will eliminate rights of same-sex partners and all civil unions).  I braced myself.  This friend responded with something to the effect of the following "You know, this country was founded by the most brilliant minds that have ever existed and the constitution that they created, founded on Christian values of course, is the most amazing document every created.  It is perfection.   I embrace the Founding Father's ideals and I believe that they were Christian men founding a nation on Christian values and they did a damn good job of it.  I am sick to death of politicians trying to corrupt something that is so inherently pure."  

Politically, this friend and I could not have less in common and that's okay.  We agree to disagree, we have lively debate and we respect each other as intellectuals and human beings.  He lives up to his responsibility to live his life according to his beliefs and I try to do the same.  He will likely be voting against Amendment One. 

Here's my point:  I believe in the rights of human beings to love and to live in the best way they they can and advocate for those rights given any opportunity.  From my perspective, God knows this world needs all of the love it can stand, so I will do everything in my power to raise my daughter, who will grow up in an essentially theocratic state which is as conservative as it gets, to respect and hopefully share those same values; That's really all can do but I don't need legislation to tell me that's right for me; I know it in my heart and in my soul.  I don't need legislation to make me feel more secure about my beliefs and I can honestly tell you, no legislation is going to make me feel less secure or doubt what my heart tells me to be true. 

If you are opposed to same-sex couples sharing the rights of couples who have a traditional marriage, that's obviously where your world view has taken you and its unlikely that any statistic or scenario that I could throw at you is going to change that.  Its also your personal belief and not mine.  Obviously that's fine and its your responsibility to live accordingly, to raise your children accordingly, and to make sure that your actions and your contributions to our society reflect that belief structure.  I champion your right to do so.  It is your God given right to exercise your freedoms in this way.  Utilizing this freedom to further restrict the freedoms of others, however is incredibly counter-intuitive.   Trying legislate morality and legislate belief structures is a basic cry of insecurity and frankly, hysteria.  We have so many crosses to bear as human beings.  There are so many people who suffer from hate and abuse and neglect - lets focus on building each other up instead of wasting our time with personal insecurities to break each other down.  

All I ask is that you think about your own responsibility to be accountable for your own morality before you cop-out in an attempt to legislate it for those who dissent.  Minds and hearts will not change.  People will continue to live their lives as they see fit and when its all said and done all that will have been accomplished is an excess of unnecessary red tape, state legal fees, and an era of divisiveness with less and less hope of resolution and reconciliation.  Less love.  More hate.  Please think before you vote for Amendment One.  As a parting note - if you can't get over the gay marriage things, here are a few other points to ponder:   


Dave Carroll said...


mantis1us said...

Very well put and passionate Julie. I couldn't agree more! Once you take away all our judgement labels all you have left are humans being. Nothing more nothing less.
These so-called Christians, and i use that in the most completely general way, oh and where the Fuck did right-wing come from anyways? Jesus was one of the original liberals so how could anything TRULY Christian ever be referred to as right-wing? It can't which means anything that is said by members of that self-proclaimed group should be acid tested to see if the walk matches the talk. The biggest challenge to changing this terribly misguided belief system is to get people to understand the difference between faith and fear. It is disheartening to watch supposedly loving people make such hateful decisions.