"We're not in Kansas anymore."
I'm sure a lot of people in Kansas are saying that this week, after the State House of Representatives passed a bill to prevent lawsuits against those refusing to provide services to gays and lesbians for religious reasons.
Of course, there was sanity in the other chamber, as the Senate announced later this week, when Senate President Susan Wagle announced that the bill would not be passed "in its current form," according to The Associated Press.
I guess some members of the Kansas House never read Matthew 25:40-45: "The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.' Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.' They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?' He will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'"
The holy words of Bible can be so inconvenient, especially when they don't come from Exodus or Leviticus.
Wagle further stated that the bill "goes beyond protecting religious freedom," the report said, and the Republican senator was concerned about how the bill would affect businesses refusing to serve gay couples.
Ultimately, Wagle wants to see language removed and/or revised in the bill. For example, the removal of "language extending protections to individual state and local government employees, allowing them because of religious beliefs to refuse to provide services, such as fire and police protection, in certain circumstances to gays and lesbians," AP reported.
Even if the Senate makes some concessions in this bill and it passes through all the necessary channels, I am sure a high court will strike it down. Plus, a business should be able to refuse service to anyone for any reason without being required to disclose said reason. That's how the private sector works. And here's the beauty of competition: when customers figure out that those people are racists, bigots, homophobes, or just flat-out jerks, they will go somewhere else. Eventually, when businesses lose customers at an exponential rate, they go out of business.
Word of mouth is a very powerful thing when the criticism is constructive and honest instead of one-sided and hateful.
This is all just another way to legislate discrimination. You see, when white guys like me were forcing Native Americans from their homelands and buying, selling and trading slaves like cars, boats, and shotguns, we never imagined anyone would take our utopia from us. Now, we are sharing our land with minorities such as blacks, Hispanics and Arabs; and women are now taking an active role in business and government. They are, more than ever, our equals.
For anyone who thinks race and gender equality is a bad thing, you have my sympathy, but that's about it.
It's like that Coca-Cola commercial during the Super Bowl. I thought hearing "America the Beautiful" sang in multiple languages was beautiful. It shows who we should be Americans. We are a melting pot. This is the land of opportunity. When we used to aspire to be Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Jack Kennedy, we now aspire to be Rush Limbaugh, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz.
We've gone from Gandhi to Archie Bunker.
Hearing the far right say inflammatory things about that commercial was sickening. I can see we are far from where we need to be.
And to think – people often drop the name "Jesus" in their hateful rants. There was a notable organization that did just that right here in America, and still does it in some regions – the KKK.
Jesus Christ, whether you believe He was the Messiah, a prophet or simply a teacher, taught us to love one another.
I don't think passing a law to discriminate against the homosexual community for religious purposes is fair or even valid, because this isn't the Christian model.
If you think being a follower of Christ is giving a cold shoulder to men and women because of their sexual orientation, you really need some perspective.
If you want to increase the head count in heaven, you should rely on your actions when spreading the gospel. Without positive and meaningful action, your words are just hot air. Discriminating against gays does not honor Jesus; it only dishonors those of us who want to see a brighter future for the next generation.
Ponder that!