Friday, January 29, 2010

The Fight for Equal Rights Isn't Over

It's just shifted to a new battlefield.



These past couple of weeks, I've been absorbed in info about the current Prop 8 Trial.



In case you have no idea what I'm talking about, it's a case attempting to overthrow the ruling making gay marriage illegal in California. There's lots of good info on http://www.time.com/ covering it.



This is an issue that affects not only the GTBL, but all of us. No matter what side you're on, this is absolutely a moment in history that will be remembered. No matter what the outcome of this trial, America will be changed forever. Every minority has had to fight for their civil rights, and at this moment in time, it's the gay community.



As a Christian, I'm extremely passionate about equal rights for all. I try to live by the phrase "love you neighbor as yourself." That goes for every aspect of my life, from how I vote, to how I treat those different from myself. I believe everyone is equal in God's eyes, equally loved, and equally deserving of civil rights as well as respect.



I'll be waiting with bated breath to see how this goes. For those interested, on either side of the issue, you can find full transcripts HERE.



This is a deciding moment for all of us.



What are your thoughts?



Have you been following this trial? How do you think this will change America?

14 comments:

Jacob said...

Rebecca,

Thanks so much for posting this. I, as well, am watching this trial closely. I really appreciate your support, especially being a Christian. I am always confused when Christians cite their faith as a reason for opposing gay marriage. Can't we all just get along?

Rebecca Knight said...

You are so welcome, Jacob! I totally agree :). Jesus wasn't exactly a hater ;).

Jacob said...

haha, no. Jesus was a radical. He taught us to even love our enemies. Turn the other cheek and all that. In any case, as a lapsed Catholic myself I just couldn't resist commenting to this post. I wish Christians like you were more vocal in their acceptance of gays. We're not all that bad. I mean, come on, who doesn't love Ellen?

Rebecca Knight said...

I'm glad you did! For the record, I think Ellen is hilarious ;).

I think that's the thing that's been troubling me the most, is Christians using religion as a shield for bigotry. It gives the rest of us a bad name. Thanks for the love on this post!

Cole Gibsen said...

Great post, Rebecca. I couldn't agree more.

Rebecca said...

As Christians, I believe we sometimes blur the lines between loving someone and condoning their actions. And the reverse is true as well. We can be so "offended" by their actions, that we end up hating them instead of loving them.

Opposing gay marriage is not necessarily a symptom of "homophobia" or "gay-hating." But it is a demonstration of someone standing up for their own core values--values that they believe keep our country strong.

As a Christian, I believe I can love people, and support their right to live as they choose, without going against my deeply held beliefs in what is right. What marriage IS, what God created marriage FOR--this is only one example.

"For this reason, a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife. And they will become one flesh." (Genesis 2:24) -- This is marriage.

As far as prop 8 goes--the people decided. It wasn't some court ruling that decided for them. What will happen to our country if people keep trying to overturn what the voters choose?

Rebecca Knight said...

Cole: Thanks! :D

Rebecca: Thanks for joining in the discussion :)! I definitely respect that point of view--thank you for sharing!

The issue I have with Prop 8 is that, as you said, the majority voted for it, but it takes away the rights of a minority group. Tyranny of the Majority is exactly what the courts system is designed to protect people from in the US. Just as Christians in the 50s and 60s couldn't make it illegal for blacks to marry whites based on their core beliefs, we cannot strip rights away from a minority by vote today, no matter what the reason. If we were able to let those votes stand, (my personal opinion) we women probably wouldn't be allowed to vote, interracial marriage would be banned, etc. The courts are there to protect the "outsiders" rights from the rule of oppressors who vote to take them away.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tyranny_of_the_majority

What do you guys think? I really appreciate different points of view in this discussion :), so thank you for participating!

Kate said...

Great post and it is really nice to see someone standing up and shouting about this kind of prejudice.

Kate xx

Rebecca said...

Yes, Rebecca. Just because the majority votes for something doesn't make it right. But, a court ruling in favor of something doesn't make it necessarily right either. This is why the people of a state/country have the right to stand up for what they believe--often times with their votes.

This is the point of having a government that is "of the people, by the people, for the people." If the people want change, they can make it happen.

Rebecca Knight said...

Kate: Thanks, dude! :)

Rebecca: I think the main issue here is why gay rights are under scrutiny for being "wrong." We have a separation of church and state under the constitution, so if people think gay marriage is wrong based on religion, we cannot turn it into a law to take away their rights. Just like we can't ban atheists from marrying, or make it illegal for couples to fornicate.

So, I guess I"m saying that not only does a majority not have the right to ban something based on religious reasons, but it is unfair to ban one thing you find wrong based on faith, but not ban all the others. It smacks of bigotry, since gays are singled out.

(I also happen to think that God doesn't have a problem with gays, but that's another matter entirely ;). )

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Ann said...

I too am watching this with interest. I hope right wins and prejudice bites the dust. Why do people feel threatened when a section of society just want to live their lives with the same equal rights they experience. Where is the Christianity in that?

Lisa and Laura said...

Awesome post Becca. I love seeing Christians stand up for gay rights in the name of equal rights for all and loving and accepting everyone without prejudice. I hope everyone comes to their senses soon.

Kat Harris said...

I find this battle fascinating because there are some really interesting viewpoints. One argument, like you've stated, claims the civil rights are being violated because gays aren't permitted to marry.

Another side claims gays aren't being denied rights, but are asking for "special" rights. Their argument is that straight men and women are prohibited from marrying someone of the same sex, why should gay men and women receive that right?

And yet another side claims to be defending the traditional definition of marriage.

As a Christian, I've spent A LOT of time praying about which side is right on this issue. It took a long time for me to come to a conclusion, and all I can say is this: If something causes a person to feel hate or animosity or anger or fear, then the devil is winning the battle. A sin of the mind is just as detrimental to the soul as a sin of the flesh.

I also will say that it breaks my heart when I hear stories about couples (gay or straight) who are denied access to each other during end-of-life situations because of legal formalities.