A mighty cheer rang out across teh Interwebs and beyond, as the Supreme Court of the United States struck down the ironically-named “Defense of Marriage Act” and Proposition 8. Now same-sex couples can marry in California again (plus in a couple other new states that recently passed laws allowing it), and the same-sex marriages in all states where they are legal will be recognized by the federal government for federal rights and benefits such as immigration! Contrary to the alarmist rhetoric marriage is going strong — better than it used to be, really — which is why marriage equality is such a huge issue.
And boy did this news make for a joyous pride week! Yes, even for Mormons! Lots of (NSFW) dancing for joy!! Lots of happy endings and hilarious tragic endings!! Plus analysis of what the CoJCoL-dS has done and should have done on this issue, and even some laughs.
The official response of the CoJCoL-dS was to complain that the result wasn’t democratic which led to some interesting discussion of how the judicial process works. I agreed with ExMoHoMoDon that the process had gone correctly — and the same point was persuasively argued by Geoff B (someone who is generally squarely on the church’s side). Then, in an ironic twist, Ed Brayton (squarely on the separation-of-church-and-state side of the spectrum) argued quite persuasively that the doctrine of “standing” is problematic because it artificially keeps some laws from being heard before the court. Now I think Ed may be right, and — even more importantly — I find it very encouraging to see people on both sides of the aisle arguing in favor of making sure the government functions the way it should, rather than taking an attitude that whatever makes my team win is great. Another interesting legal point is that Scalia correctly noted back in the 2003 decision striking down sodomy laws that that decision would imply this current decision about gay marriage.
Also, the United States’ national holiday was this past week, and Americans expressed hope for improving their country, including thoughts on the fourth for the fourth and a Book of Mormon story as American history.
In scandals, you’ve probably heard that a disputer over seats at Sacrament Meeting led to blows, and the Abbottsville 4th ward has instituted some new policies to avoid such violent encounters. Another interesting scandal was that a southern cook on the Food Network got dropped like a hot potato for saying “nigger.” Hopefully she’s learned something. The Overeducated Housewife criticized what happened to her (plus told an unrelated story of someone treated unfairly by the police) while Johnny Townsend explained what’s the big deal:
Iâ€™m from the South, too. I grew up hearing the N word. In fact, almost every single member of my immediate and extended family still use the word, even today. As a child, I was forbidden to watch television shows that featured black characters. I belonged to a church that was almost exclusively white, and when blacks began joining in small numbers when I was a teenager, my family still used the N word when talking about their Christian brothers and sisters.
But you know what? I donâ€™t use the N word myself. I make every effort despite my upbringing not to say or do anything which is demeaning to people of other races or religions or ethnicities.
So bully for me? Iâ€™m just doing the MINIMUM of what anyone raised in an environment that endorses discrimination should do. Paula Deen can do the minimum as well.
What I find curious is that almost without exception, the people who just donâ€™t understand what all the fuss is about are white, like my three fellow employees who were feeling so sorry for poor Paula Deen.
I noticed, however, that they chose to discuss this when our African-American manager wasnâ€™t present. It isnâ€™t that my white coworkers subconsciously knew they were wrong and thatâ€™s why they didnâ€™t say anything in her presence. Rather, whites very often believe that blacks are simply overreacting. â€œTheyâ€™re just so touchy on the subject. We have to walk on eggshells all the time.â€
Now let’s see some life journeys, about a new appreciation for life! Even after leaving the church, it can be challenging to set boundaries and avoid avoidance (as a conflict resolution strategy). Some journeys have a soundtrack (mine does!). Kullervo reviewed the Quakers. Regina came out as a non-believer, and here’s a review of her book!
Speaking of books, Brad Carmack’s book is on Amazon, and ProgExMo reviewed An Imperfect Book: What the Book of Mormon Tells Us about Itself and Emily Pearson gave a wonderful insight about “the three stories”!
In Science, Bill Nye contradicted some wacky Mormons, and Simon Southerton discussed DNA and human migration. In Theology, some stuff that didn’t happen, Book of Mormon stories that don’t apply to the modern leaders of the CoJCoLdS, trying to make all these stories consistently fit together, lying (to yourself) for the Lord, and Talmage and the Nonexistence of Reasonable Atheism.
And, folks — I am really sorry to lump twice as much great stuff to read together this week (after rounding up nothing last week) since it makes it harder to find the time to read all of these fascinating articles!! Sorry about that — I just got that other idea stuck in my head and didn’t have time to write up both. And I actually have two non-SiOB posts ready for you in the upcoming week: a new book review and another post that I’ve already written up in my little notebook. I hope you’ll read the great bunch of posts above and stay tuned!!