Monday, May 30, 2016

Nothing Christian about heinous discrimination

  Compassion. Compassion. Compassion.

  Thumbing through the Bible, I'm looking for something about compassion.

  Oh, that's right. It's everywhere. Start with that Golden Rule thing.

  No need to cite chapter or verse to know there's nothing Christian at all about the response attributed to conservative Christians regarding so-called bathroom bills. There's nothing remotely Christian about Republican state leaders saying they'd forgo federal funds rather than abide by the Justice Department's rules forbidding discrimination against transgendered people.

  It's all posturing on behalf of people who won't acknowledge that God doesn't create us with a cookie-cutter.

  Bob Dylan sang: "Don't criticize what you don't understand." But just listen:

  In Texas, for instance, you have a veritable goon squad trying to rationalize the rashest judgments about transgendered people. Attorney General Ken Paxton says this is about accommodating "men deciding one day they want to be women and then switching back the next day."

  Then you have Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, quipping, "When you go to the restroom, the M does not stand for 'make up your mind,' and the W does not stand for 'whatever.'"

  Yuk. Yuk.

  Not only is it unfunny, it positively drips with ignorance.

  These clowns are flexing their lack of understanding about something called gender dysphoria. It's not a "this today, that tomorrow" thing. It's a wrenching condition that way too often results in suicide. It's not something you acquire via the claw at the game arcade.

  Praise be to the Obama administration for seeing the injustice in the string of so-called bathroom laws that have sprung forth from Republican-controlled state governments.

  Praise be to performers like Bruce Springsteen and Ringo Starr who are boycotting North Carolina for legislation that heaps more angst onto the shoulders of people who deserve compassion.

  Praise be to Paypal for yanking 400 jobs from the Tar Heel State in cancelling a global operations center in Charlotte over the same concern.

  Oh, and the University of North Carolina has said it will disobey the new state law and not force transgendered individuals to use restrooms that don't comport with their sexual identities.

  These are entities acting out the Golden Rule. What so-called Christian conservatives are doing is acting out. Period.

  They can't handle the truth that not all of us are die-cast from the Eagle Forum manual. They've tried to convince us for generations that homosexuality is not only a matter of choice but a blight that can be cured like toenail fungus.

  The thing is, unlike same-sex marriage and "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," this issue isn't even about gay rights. The people in question aren't gay, and there's no confusion, no conflict, as to their genders. They are men and women, or boys and girls, and that's that.

  The similarity between this matter and the battle for gay rights is that those who would oppress others based on sexual orientation or being transgendered want to make presumptive insinuations about those who might benefit.

  If a person enters a restroom to prey on or peep on people, that's a crime. We can handle that. However, those who are transgendered are not going to be distinguishable from those who aren't. If they do anything that harms others, they have committed a crime. We can handle that

  How many times must we say this? It is wrong to discriminate against someone because of what he or she is. Judge someone by what he or she does.

  Throughout the ages, the most religious among us have been the most oppressive. That applies as much today as it did when Magellan tried to bully the natives of Mactan Island into accepting Christianity and got a poison arrow.

  You see, he thought he knew how the world worked, and he was dead wrong.

  Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email:

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