In order to understand a religion, we need only to look at the relationship between the believer and their god(s).
Old testament, pre-Jesus – believers were asked to sacrifice all the time, from behaviours, foods, to crops, animals and children.
Jesus was God’s covenant to never ask for sacrifice again.
Basically, God, by allowing Jesus to die, promises to never ask any believer to sacrifice their children. Children are no longer god’s hostages to ensure their parent’s continued patronage.
But what this means, and what the hard core Christians don’t seem to realize and that moderate Christians do, is that this means that it’s okay to love your children more than god.
By promising to never ask you to sacrifice them, it’s telling you that it’s okay to love and cherish them. That’s the real take away message from the Jesus story.
That hard part is that this also means that you have to let them be who and how they are – and the best part, is that they can have all the things that you want for them, if you are just willing to love your children enough to let them be who they are.
Getting to love people more than god, because faith, not the intensity of the faith, is what your god is asking of you. That means that you can have your faith in your home and leave others to manage their faith, their morals, and their life decisions themselves. You can look after you and your relationship with your god and leave everyone else and their god or whatever to manage their own.
No longer do we need to sacrifice collectively as a community nor as individuals, not our livestock, crops, children, each other or ourselves.
After all, you wouldn’t want the government to be legislating your morality to you? So why should the government be allowed to legislate anyone’s morality?
Least of all, legislating any particular idea of morality to be applied to any and all and in all circumstances, regardless of the person’s particular beliefs, morals and ideas.
It is not the government’s job to legislate morality, only to ensure equal treatment under and access to the law.
Everyone who is living and breathing currently is equally deserving of life, liberty and happiness – we have to be able to agree to that, because global peace means being willing to work and play well, to get along with each other with indifference to our differences.
In the long run, no skin colour or language or clothing or any of the diversity of 7 billion people, won’t matter one little bit if we can’t pull it together before someone, somewhere, goes batshit crazy and unleashes real weapons of mass destruction or some natural event 10 times worse than the 2004 boxing day earthquake – which, by the way, did shake the earth on it’s axis – and who knows, maybe it shook up the molten magma layer and with the earthquakes, the planet is preparing to supervolcano blow like a half frozen or half molten can of pressurized soda and once again, reduce the human and other animal species across the globe to barely survival levels to occur in a brutal nuclear winter.
Heck, on the upside, it would delay global warming at least.
But, I digress.
With everyone responsible for their own morality, then there’s no need to fight over matters that pertain to private morality – which would mean, no more challenges to family decisions, such as abortions or life support or organ donation or marriage and divorce, having or not having children, how many and all the things that make up our daily lives.
We can all just live our lives – and there’s no reason why gay people being able to marry and have all the same employee and tax benefits as any other law abiding and tax paying citizen should have any impact on anyone who’s not gay and how they manage their lives.
The reality is that there are gay people who are religious and there’s gay people who want to be married because we feel all the same things, we have the same desires, to be loves and cherished, to have someone special to come to home at the end of the day, and just because that someone special can use the same public restroom legally, why does that concern anyone?
It’s not harming anyone and frankly, straight people shouldn’t have to ever worry if the person that they love and married, had children with, that they shouldn’t ever have to worry that the person they love would rather be having sex with someone else, worse, someone wholly other than what you are and what you offer.
No one should have to live with that kind of pain, having lives a lie, of having been deceived or even worse, being the deceiver.
If you want to keep straight love between straight people, then that means that gay people have to be no different, that gay is of no consequence, so that anyone who’s gay can be so without fear of being murdered, beaten, denied housing, denied love, friendship and family, without fear of being marginalized and outcast.
Because that’s why the gay community has had an historic bad track record of relationships that don’t last, drugs, alcohol, criminality and sexual diseases and early death – because we’ve lived below the radar, criminalized, hunted and outcast. Denied a place in the sun to live openly and honestly, and so we make the best of what we can and we still argue for legal recognition, gay marriage, and we work for that goal through peaceful and legal means.
Unlike so many other groups who seek to maintain the status quo or who seek to impose new inequalities, use intimidation and violence to bring about their vision or to be the voice to their words. Telling that it’s religious groups who use intimidation and violence, while gays and lesbians use the law of the land.
But we won’t live like that anymore and you know that the laws and times and society has changed; being gay is not automatically means you’re an enemy of society to be locked up in a mental ward, beaten and abused, criticized and accused, walk a mile in the shoes that you’ve made us walk.
We aren’t going to stop being gay, so can’t it be enough that we want to be law abiding, tax paying married and family rearing members of the same society?
Isn’t that conformity enough?
I am reading a book about the various People vs Lenny Bruce cases and I wonder why Elvis was never actually charged with public obscenity for his performances.
Lenny Bruce mostly seems to have been persecuted by police for obscenity, which then and now is defined as dirt for dirt’s sake – but also for the sole purpose of sexual arousal without any redeeming social or artistic merit or commentary.
Lenny Bruce’s performances were verbal with some gestures and often accompanied by free form jazz.
He did biting social commentaries on hypocrisy and especially religion – so many of the cases appear to be driven to punish him for blasphemy under the guise of obscenity
Lenny Bruce was charged under obscenity laws, but he was persecuted for blasphemy and exposing the hypocrisy of religion in plain and vulgar terms – something that is protected as a first amendment and not obscene in that it does not make anyone horny. Lenny didn’t make people horny, nor was he morbidly obsessed with sex or excretion – he was obsessed with truth and expressed that in the language of the people.
While Elvis’ performances were pretty much, as close as you could get to doing a sex act with your clothes still on. They definitely were sexual arousing.
So I have to wonder, if it was because Elvis himself was so well mannered and deferential to authority – not to mention being a huge money maker – being responsible for 50% of RCA’s total sales in 1956 – that he was never charged by police for obscenity
While Lenny Bruce, who’s entire act was about pointing out the hypocrisy of authority, was hounded to death
Deemed obscene and being legally obscene were (and are) different things
I think while Elvis was filmed by police and subjected to a lot of media negative coverage, cries from parent and religious groups – Elvis didn’t offend police – he worshiped them, hired them and respected them.
Elvis was the only performer to break Ed Sullivan’s secular show and perform a religious song.
I think Parker was actually smarter to take something of a long view and remake Elvis’ image as a good boy and his show as being innocent -rather than the revolutionary that he stumbled into being as a matter of being a decent person.
Lenny Bruce’s entire act was question authority – thus, authority cracked down on him – and went after him for blasphemy under the guise of obscenity – because there wasn’t much to turn you sexually on in Lenny’s show – while Elvis’ shows were pure sexual arousal and often, release.
So Lenny’s real crime wasn’t obscenity – he wasn’t any more concerned with sex than anyone else, which is to say, very concerned with only the religious being more concerned with sex, being that they are very concerned with the sex that other people may or may not be having, as opposed to being concerned with obtaining sex as often as you’d care for like a normal person.
Separation of church and state was intended to protect the state, which is about earthly concerns and existence, from religion, in which is earthly existence is a dress rehearsal for the afterlife
The various censorship and anti-vice waves that have gone through apparently secular law was religiously motivated and driven as a means to insert religious morals into secular law.
Lenny Bruce was charged under obscenity laws, but he was persecuted by law enforcement for blasphemy and exposing the hypocrisy of religion in plain and vulgar terms – something that is protected as a first amendment and not obscene in that it does not make anyone horny. Lenny didn’t make people horny, nor was he morbidly obsessed with sex or excretion – he was obsessed with truth and expressed that in the language of the people.
Religion can’t help but interfere with the state and attempt to impose it’s narrow view of morality on the public, regardless of whether the public subscribes to the religious ideas.
That’s not only the problem of asserting community standard, but also the problem of that same community voting for politicians based on the stated religion, rather than any qualifications, experience of the would be legislator.
The community is religious and as such, assumes that the law conforms to their beliefs – and being certain in their beliefs – they don’t have to expose themselves reality or law or even their own bible.
Which is why anyone with certainty of their beliefs is suspect, because if you have clarity, you are most likely, ignoring the bigger picture and certainly anything that would challenge that clarity.