It was with a bit of sadness and great confusion as I read the column on Saturday, June 29, by Mr. Brian Mann entitled "What if the right is right about God and gays?" By the tone of the complete article I am unsure what Mr. Mann's stance is on this issue.
Lesbian and Gay marriage is an important and very timely topic today, one that is full of emotion. On one hand I understand the conservative religious have their views. On the other side, many who purport to be clergy and religious leaders in these organizations are themselves secretly a part of the LGBT community. Scandal often erupts when these same religious leaders are "caught" doing the very things they preach against. As we've seen in recent years, no religious group is free or clear of "injustices," to put things mildly. Offending clergy and religious were routinely "transferred" from one location to another in order to "keep things quiet." Where is the hypocrisy in this?
The editorial quotes several interesting statements from current and former high ranking members of Federal and State government. One such comment attributed to Fox News commentator Todd Starnes stated the "Supreme Court overrules God." Another statement attributed to former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee stated that "five people in robes are not bigger than God and concluded that 'Jesus wept.'" I am wondering if former Gov. Huckabee was present at the "weeping of Jesus"? If not, where did he find the validity in this statement? The irony in this is that the very First Amendment to the US Constitution guarantees "Freedom of Religion". This is often interpreted as the "Separation of Church and State" clause. So with this in mind how is the Supreme Court to rule? No matter how they do so, some group or another will have issues with the decision. The Supreme Court can only rule based on "Rule of Law" and what our US Constitution allows or disallows. The Supreme Court, in my humble opinion, is not trying to "rise to the level of God" as stated in the editorial in the opinions of Representative Michelle Bachmann, but attempting to interpret fairly and equally the laws that govern our land. I do not always agree with all the decisions the Supreme Court renders, but with time, social pressure and periodic adjustments to the courts membership opinions do change based on arguments brought forward.
The editorial as stated by Mr. Mann asks the question "What if God's wrath isn't triggered by domestic violence, or the rape of female soldiers in our military, or the crushing poverty in minority neighborhoods, but by consensual love and willing physical desire? What if the order of His created universe is truly insulted by two men joining in the union of marriage? What if the blessing of the Creator might actually be withdrawal from the United States of America not because we murder one-another, have high rates of infant mortality, but because two women might raise a child together or to avoid paying extra income tax?" My take is WHAT???? If our creator in what-ever form or name we chose to use based on our many religious affiliations is offended because two people, two spirits, two souls, two spiritual beings love each other in a committed way, I believe our Creator would be within their right to be "offended" by our inhumanity to each other. While the question was not raised in this editorial, I will ask it now based on my Christian upbringing, "What would Jesus say?" Jesus as both God and Man (in the tradition I was raised in) as all the great teachers both in our distant past as well as more current time (Gandhi, Martin Luther King and others) preached a sermon of love and acceptance. What would Jesus say? He already stated that in our Christian Gospels with the commandments and examples He gave us. Unfortunately I was not present when these were giving or spoken so I can only trust the text that has been passed down through the ages by supposedly "reliable" sources. Firstly, to love God with all our hearts, souls and very being. Secondly, to love our neighbors as ourselves. Lastly, Jesus gave the example of the woman who was being stoned by the crowd for allegedly committing the "sin of adultery." Jesus is purported as saying "Let those among you who is without sin be the first to cast the stone." The story continues saying that in time, members of the crowd dispersed with no stones being cast. Upon looking up Jesus asked the woman, "Is there no one here to condemn you?" "No" the woman replied. "Then neither do I," Jesus said. "Go and sin no more." If Mr. Mann, Mr. Huckabee, Mr. Starnes, Mrs. Bachmann or any other national, state, local or religious leader can truthfully attest they are without sin, then let them be the first to cast the stone against a community of people who only wish to live in peace, freedom, acceptance and love. Let us not "assume" what the will of God, Jehovah, Yahweh, Allah, Higher Power or however else we wish to define our terms. If two people, two spirits, two souls, two spiritual beings can come together to share that very special bond of love and caring in a committed union we all so desperately long for, we should, in this day and age, rejoice, cherish and share in that union with the power and protection of law as any other married couple would enjoy and benefit from.
Respectfully submitted, in my very humble opinion.
Kelly Metzgar lives in Saranac Lake.