If you’re like me, there’s nothing you love more than having a conversation about where church ends and where public policy begins. Well, that and Caramel Apple Cider. And dried mangos. And that moment where spring turns to summer. And, actually, there’s a whole bushel of bagels I’d love to talk about besides the overthinking of the separation of church and state.
But, here we are, in 2012, where we have telephones in our hands that have little robots inside that could tell us anything about the world, and we have only to ask it…and we’re still talking about needing more God in the government.
This has come to a boil this year, obviously, because of the contraception debate, the abortion debate and the marriage equality debate.
I’m not going to drag your brain through the mud of the details of these debates again because I’m positive your Facebooks have all done that job for me.
I will bring up one redundant piece of evidence in this debate: the separation itself. From the Constitution:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…
I’m getting very sleepy, and I have the Oscars recorded from last night, so I’m making this quick. Prohibiting the free exercise of religion would be shutting down a church on Easter Sunday. Respecting an establishment of religion would be the government failing to investigate why Philadelphia Cardinal Bevilacqua allegedly destroyed evidence of 35 priests who had sexually assaulted children after having a meeting about said abuse with Msgr. James Molloy and Bishop Edward Cullen.
I know what you’re thinking. Those kids gotta watch out– they’re sex abuse hiding criminals AND sexy glistening vampires!
Here’s another, less extreme example.
Allowing free practice of religion means that a priest in Maryland is totally allowed to refuse communion to a woman because she’s a lesbian. Want more story? It was her mother’s funeral. Want more story? He left the service once the woman began her eulogy. Want more story?
He faked being sick and didn’t give the final blessing at the gravesite.
As a holy man, he is well within the boundaries of his faith to do this. He’s allowed. It still makes him an obnoxious prick. Hmmm, not sure that’s the right phrase. Sick asshole. No, that’s a little vulgar. Despicable, reprehensible, deplorable, an absolute wretch– eh, I’m not finding it, guys, I’m sorry. I don’t want to put words in your mouth. Just Mad Libs this for the print edition:
Father Marcel Guarnizo, in refusing communion to a lesbian on the sorriest day of her life and then later stomping out of the service altogether, is a (adverb) (noun) with the convictions of a (adjective) (Proper Noun) who believes in (noun) at the the expense of (emotion) and (virtue) .
Another free practice of religion is the thinking of a bigoted priest that this behavior will be tolerated within the church forever.
Calm yourselves, Catholic readers nervously tugging at your pant leg! It’s not my intention to spend this entire article bombarding you with facts about the misdeeds of shitheel holy men. Such a feat would be fish in a barrel, boring and could be done on your own with a simple daily Googling of “Catholic Controversy.”
I simply want to impress upon you the need for education on two topics that could affect a whole lot more people than a mere disgraced, grieving woman at her mother’s funeral:
1) RICK SANTORUM
He’s a bad guy. I don’t know a whole lot of people who trust this man, but then again, I don’t know a whole lot of people who watch Two and a Half Men and that’s a ratings juggernaut! So, not going by the pink circles I carry in, if Jon Cryer is rich enough to buy his own Oscars ceremony (I’ve reeeeeallly got to get to that soon), then certainly there are some people who think Rick Santorum is a straight shooter.
The only straight shot Santorum has in him is the one going across my back. Filthheads, I meant in the sense of personal injury, not whatever you were just thinking. Shame on you, cheeky monkeys.
Little Ricky spent yesterday talking smack about JFK (because fuck THAT guy). JFK is to date the only Catholic president, and Santorum is deadset on informing America that not every Catholic President will be all about keeping the Vatican out of the White House…and pleading for mankind to selflessly think of your country and the future ahead.
Couple things. In 1960, America hated hated HATED Catholics, and Kennedy was spending every waking second of his campaign convincing people that the Pope would not be pulling the puppet strings in DC. And it was not dirty liberal secular homosexual pornographer college boys doing the hating, it was the Protestants. Imagine the crack-baby fever cries over Obama being a Muslim and multiple that by 100…and if Obama were actually Muslim. That’s how nutty it was to have a Catholic in the White House.
I don’t know why Santorum is playing that legacy card more. Did I miss the meeting where we all talked about being over Kennedy?
“It’s almost as though social conservatives think that religion and government were kept separate because effete liberal elitists wanted a hedonistic society unfettered by the moral constraints provided by religious institutions. But nothing could be further from the truth. It was the Baptists and Thomas Jefferson who really lobbied hard for the initial cleaving. They saw the political power of the Anglican Church as a real threat to religious freedom and decided that the best way to preserve that freedom was to keep government out of church business, and vice versa.”
The separation of church and state is for your protection, dummies! Do you really want to start taking down these walls?
Sure, you’re all united now against unchained women and marrying gays, but what happens when those little battles fall away, and then we just start the whole damn Catholic/Protestant war all over again because some foolishly reactionary Catholic president got in there and started chipping away?
I say this because Santorum is ridiculous, but he’s gaining political ground every day. And 67% of Americans believe that the First Amendment requires a separation of church and state. That is a nice fat majority, but why the hell isn’t it 99.9%?
2) FRIENDLY DIALOGUE FROM HATE GROUPS
We all need to be concerned. This isn’t going to stop at the gays. It’s going to be women’s contraception next. Then for all you ladies who had trouble conceiving, you’ll be next, so I hope you’re sitting down, and I hope it’s not in your gynecologist’s waiting room. Behold this trailer for the upcoming movie Paper Dream, released by the film division of the America Family Association (officially designated hate group):
Eeek! It’s like those social danger movies from the 50′s. The AFA doesn’t roll out of bed unless it’s to scold someone about something, so this isn’t just some early grab for Oscar-embroidered hankies. I wonder what the message is gonna be? It’s either the evils of in vitro, or proof that you can make a weepy movie for women without any gays behind the scenes.
What if when this woman dies childless and goes to heaven, meets God, and God just shrugs and says, “Why didn’t you just fucking use science to make a baby? Alright. Ice machine’s on the third floor. Here’s your cloud’s key.”
Nobody has any interest in getting religion to shut up, except when they get in people’s faces. Take this whining from another toe within the AFA, big wig Bryan Fischer. He objected to school’s participating in GLSEN’s Day of Silence, a project to combat gay bullying. He talked last year to Fox News (WHAT?) about his proposed Day of Silence walkout:
“Most schools get reimbursed on the basis of average daily attendance. In other words, they don’t get taxpayer dollars for teaching students anything — they get taxpayer dollars for having their fannies in the seats. So if you have fewer fannies in the seats that’s less dollars for school administrators and that’s an incentive for them to do the right thing here.”
Man, these clean cut Christian guys creep me out. Why is him saying “fanny” so much squirm-inducing than when I say fuck, fuck, fuck? I guess it’s really about your intent, not the words.
Here’s this year’s answer to the Day of Silence. It’s sponsored by another hate group, Focus on the Family, and it’s called Day of Dialogue. It’s supposed to be about God-fearing kids finally being able to talk about their beliefs without fear of retribution. The Day of Dialogue handbook gives handy, ready-made answers if an LGBT friend insists that they were born this way:
“You can assure the person that you are listening to them, you hear what they are saying and you believe them when they say they have always felt this way… But the fact is that nobody knows how same-sex attractions develop — it appears to be a combination of factors (from biology to individual temperament to culture to environment). There is no proof that it is purely genetic.”
Remember, religious kids, if there’s no concrete proof that something exists, it is therefore bullshit.
Here’s a really cool video about the Day of Dialogue with really cool, totally not-gay kids:
Hopefully, this Day of Dialogue will finally finally put a stop to all those suicides of kids who felt pressure to not tell gay kids they are flawed and unworthy people.
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Written by Adam
Adam is a comic writer who truly hates politics, and he hopes you do too. He lives in LA with his nurse boyfriend and their dachshund. Keep up with what he’s drinking on Twitter @TheAdamSass. Read more finger-wagging opinion & gay news with the new Stay on Fountain e-book: “A Look at the Great Gay Tipping Point”.