Wednesday, May 11, 2005

This is not a test (or a joke)

Don't be alarmed. That soft thudding sound you've been hearing but can't figure out where it's coming from... well, it's coming from Framingham, Massachusetts. It is the sound of my head repeatedly being smacked into the wall. I do it to myself because I am too poor (ie too unemployed) to afford drugs to numb the pain that are many of my fellow citizens. I am not ashamed to admit it, I am a New England Elitist. Don't get me wrong, I love America. I don't think the rest of the country is bad (I drove cross country and I loved it, even the flat boring states thrilled me, I had my head out the window the entire time just absorbing the majesty of the country, it was amazing; awe inspiring in fact!) I just think New England is better. A good chunk of the best schools are here, many of the best writers and poets are from here, many of my favorite bands are either from here or the members grew up here, we have the best baseball team (though not with the best track record of course), we have culture, history, arts, foliage, but also the great rural stuff, farms, small towns where everyone knows your name, and so forth. I have some friends moving down to Louisville, Kentucky who are trying to get me to move with them. I'm awfully tempted; (the move won't be for another 3 months so I have some time to think about it) though, even if I move, New England will always be my home.

Putting all that aside, one of the reasons I like it here so much is I'm surrounded by like minded people. I'm proud to be from the first state in the union to legalize same-sex marriage. I'm surrounded by progressive thinkers. In fact even the Republicans I know are in favor of same-sex marriages (they are just more fiscally conservative). It's jarring to realize that so much of this country (in fact the majority) are of a different mindset. The most recent kick to the gut; this bumper magnet:


This image was taken from the website Bushfish.org and is no joke. The lead in the the website, written on the top of the page:

"Do you believe God belongs in government?
Do you believe President Bush is doing The Lord's Work?"


No, and no.

I've been a practicing conservative Jew for close to 25 years now (they say practice makes perfect, but I still don't think I'm going to go professional), I keep kosher- it's easy as a vegetarian -I observe the sabbath, I go to synagogue (though not as frequent as my father- a Rabbi -would like) and so forth. I am a religious person and I don't think God should be anywhere near the government. As a fan of history I have learned that anytime a government got involved with God, bad things happened to the Jews. To quote Mel Brooks:

"The Inquisition (What a show)
The Inquisition (Here we go)
We know you’re wishing that we’d go away
So come on all you heathens and you Jews
We got some good news for all of yous
You’d better change your point of views today
Cause the inquisitions here and it’s here to say"

Not that I'm comparing current christian doctrine to that of Torquemada. But the idea of god in Government is not something I'm very comfortable with, especially because I know it isn't my god they are talking about. Not that it would make a difference if it was my God. I wouldn't want to force a law on other Americans that all food made in this country be kosher, that just isn't fair. So too I should not be subjected to laws pertaining to Christian theology. Only about 2% of the country is Jewish, yet we make up the second largest religious population (though I think that is slowly changing, Muslims and Hindus are very quickly catching up).

The site goes on to say, "If this country's legislature and judiciary are supposed to reflect the values and beliefs of The People, then send them a message that they are WAY off course!" Yes, the legislature is supposed to reflect the beliefs of the majority of people, we voted them in. The judiciary is in place as a check to that power to ensure that the minority is protected and treated with equal protection under the law (it's for more than just that, but that is part of it). If it actually was subject to the majority, segregation laws would never have been deemed unconstitutional. It scares me how many people don't understand this, or choose to ignore it.

I can't stand that schools have to teach Evolution as a theory on equal standings as creationism. I've read and studied the bible (in the original Hebrew no less). There are at least two contradictory stories as to in what order the world was created. There is one version where man was created first, and one where man was created last. Which version do they teach? Creationism isn't science, it isn't history, it is religion and it is a parable. And what about the fast growing ranks of religious Americans whose religion is not in some way based on the old testament? Must they be subjected to this religious doctrination in our public schools? There is something horribly wrong with that.

The separation between church and state, though not specifically written into the constitution (at least not in those words), has been working pretty well since thomas Jefferson said that the first amendment created a "wall of separation between church and state." I'm not one to usually prefer the status quo, but in this case, I say let the separation between Government and God stand and let Bush do his Lords work on his own time, not while serving at the pleasure of The People, all The People, not just the ones that voted him in.

1 comment:

Stellito the First said...

I now have "The Inquisiiiition" stuck in my head. Thanks.