(As posted to my Gazette blog on May 21)
An Associated Press article on the ABC News website about gay marriage being on hold in Idaho has this statement, from the writer:
Critics note most (U.S.) states still do not allow gay marriage and that in most of the states that do, it was the work of courts or legislatures, not the will of the people.
Courts have been busy overturning the will of fundamentalists in favour of constitutional rights in many states these days as same-sex marriage gains acceptance: some 19 states have legalized it, and several others are in appeals processes, like Idaho.
Many states where same-sex marriage is not legal have held referendums on the issue, and fundamentalists have succeeded in dictating the parameters of relationships, according to their belief systems.
So, I have a question for them now: if you truly believe that the will of the people should prevail, do you support the will of the people in, say, Sudan, where a pregnant woman faces a death sentence simply because she is a Christian? I mean, the people who have condemned her have done it in the name of their religion, which seems to be accepted by the vast majority there. To them, the ruling is justified.
Of course, it’s a stupid question. No Christian in their right mind would support the ruling. Surely Christians would feel the decision is based on superstitious, exclusionary (i.e. intolerant) and archaic beliefs. And, no doubt, would feel that the state has no business telling people how they must worship.
So, how are Christians who deny equal civil rights to LGBT people any different? How is it they can’t see that many people view their belief system as superstitious and archaic? How is it they don’t understand that they shouldn’t be allowed to oppress others in the name of their superstitious, archaic beliefs?
Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for religious freedom. I’m just against imposing it on others who don’t share your beliefs.
We’re seeing an extreme example in the Sudanese case. But fundamentalists in places like Idaho who deny equal civil rights to LGBT people are no better than the people of Sudan who support the flogging and hanging of a woman because she is a Christian. Fundamentalists who openly campaign against equal rights for LGBT people are oppressing them — and persecuting them.
When it comes to matters like these, the majority should not rule.