Bigotry, the Bible, and religious freedom

Bigotry is a lifestyle choice

Those following the “religious freedom” issue in Indiana and elsewhere should not miss Frank Bruni’s column today in the New York Times — “Bigotry, the Bible and the Lessons of Indiana.”

Bruni tackles the highly charged issue with thoughtful, wise analysis. An excerpt:

… the continued view of gays, lesbians and bisexuals as sinners is a decision. It’s a choice. It prioritizes scattered passages of ancient texts over all that has been learned since — as if time had stood still, as if the advances of science and knowledge meant nothing.

It disregards the degree to which all writings reflect the biases and blind spots of their authors, cultures and eras.

It ignores the extent to which interpretation is subjective, debatable.

And it elevates unthinking obeisance above intelligent observance, above the evidence in front of you …

Of course, Bruni’s arguments could easily be extended to include many other topics over which religious conservatives and liberals disagree. But for now, today, it is enough to address the “religious freedom” laws discriminating against the LGBT community.



Categories: Christian, homosexuality, Religion, Society

10 replies

  1. If you’re interested in another slant on the same subject, read Stonekettle Station: http://www.stonekettle.com/2015/04/object-lessons.html

    Instead of working the “gays aren’t evil” angle, he (with tongue firmly in cheek) suggests that Christians do two things: (1) read their Bible before spouting off, and (2) apply ALL the does and don’ts to themselves as well. It’s a fun read.

  2. I do believe SIN is a biblical term,so we can use the Bible to define sin. We are all sinners and there are no exceptions! The greatest man in the bible said”…go,and sin no more”.One would think we would all listen.Sadly most people believe that we will not have to answer for our sin. The consequences will be grave. If this is spouting off,I did read my bible first. Even when Grace and Mercy have been applied,it is not a fun read.

  3. Whether anyone thinks it’s a sin or not is beside the point. The media was irresponsible and as a result the poor woman who when asked the HYPOTHETICAL question of would she cater a gay ceremony said “she would serve anyone in her pizzeria, but would not cater a gay wedding” is now in hiding and in fear of her life. Where’s the Justice in that?

    As a former church school teacher, I know that the passages regarding sex are scattered throughout the Old Testament, and not always clear.

    Jesus said, “the old law is dead.” Given that premise, I always wonder why Christians use “the Bible” as an excuse when they really mean the Old Testament and the old law.

    BTW although Christians were singled out by the media, many others object(ed) to marriage of gays, including Muslims, who object to gays period.

    Many people of faith don’t want marriages between homosexual couples conducted in their churches. Many of these same people say civil unions are fine. I don’t think the State should force churches to conduct religious ceremonies against their beliefs.

    My granddaughter, who is gay, and has a partner, has joined the Unitarian church where apparently her sexual proclivities are not an issue.

    The law passed in Indiana is apparently very much like the federal law Bill Clinton signed, and that same law has among other things protected an American Indian who shot a Bald Eagle for religious purposes. It also protects Muslim women who wear headgear (illegal in France), and Jehovah’s witnesses who will not join the military if conscription is an issue (NAZIs put them in concentration camps). Okay, off my footstool.

    • You know, the really sad thing is I never did hear anyone in the media explain that the pizzeria woman was answering a hypothetical question posed by a reporter. I heard it from my son who read it somewhere. The media posed a hypothetical question (that smacked of entrapment), trumpeted the result everywhere, and just about destroyed someone’s life and business. That’s appalling, inexcusable, and irresponsible. Unfortunately, it’s also pretty typical of today’s media.

      I do have a real problem with religious freedom laws and the discrimination they would allow. And that’s true regardless of who’s being discriminated against. Yet businesses are allowed to refuse service to certain groups. “No shirt, no shoes, no service” is common. Would a business be required to serve me if my religion specified no shirt and no shoes? It’s a sticky topic.

      As far as I know, the State doesn’t “force churches to conduct religious ceremonies against their beliefs.”

  4. Religion is like a pair of shoes…..Find one that fits for you, but don’t make me wear your shoes.
    ― George Carlin

"Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance." ~ Plato

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