I've been living to see you,
Dying to see you but it shouldn't be like this.
This was unexpected,
What do I do now?
Could we start again, please?
~Jesus Christ Superstar
Thank you for the conversation, and your patience with me. You didn't ask for it this. I stuck my nose right into your business, and you've responded wonderfully, with warmth and love (for the most part) and a whole lot of "gospel." If you'd be willing to be patient awhile more, I'd appreciate it.
Could we start again, please?
Okay, this part is in response to David's last post in reply to "Thoughts on God and Sex:" (I don't know how you "start again" with a response, but I guess with God all things are possible.)
So, David, if I'm hearing you right, when I ask to be allowed to marry someone of the same sex as I am, you feel worried and/or anxious. You've got a need for safety that isn't met, fearing that if I marry someone of the same sex, you won't be safe within this larger community of the United States of America, and your closer, personal community won't be safe, either. Need for community not met in that concern. Is that correct?
Also, when I read your comment on salt, I'm guessing that you feel sad, or confused by these people who want to change the way things have been, because you really value the sacredness of marriage and the long tradition that has held it as being between male and female. You've got a need for sanctity or sacredness that isn't met. Am I correct in that?
I'm wondering also if you feel a bit frustrated, because you have needs for choice and for control of your own environment and social structure that aren't met. Am I correct in that?
It may be rushing things to go straight from empathy to expression, but I think I'd like to try it.
When you compare thievery to getting married as two things that are equal both morally and in how they hurt others, I feel confused and puzzled. My needs for clarity and understanding aren't met. It's quite clear to me how, if someone steals from me, my life has been affected; I've been hurt. Likewise, if I steal from you, I see how you are hurt. What I don't see is how you are hurt if I marry another woman. Would you be willing to give me a specific example of how my marriage will hurt you?
(The reason I ask is that your example of a country that endorses homosexuality failing is vague to me. What about Greece? What about Rome? The two of them were among the greatest of the early civilizations, yet Greece lasted for hundreds of years, up to two thousand if you count the various city-states and periods. Rome lasted for over 600, and didn't fail until shortly after it adopted Christianity as the state religion. The Third Reich, on the other hand, institutionalized discrimination against homosexuals, even sending them to the gas chamber, and it only lasted about twelve years.)
When you say, "I feel that having God's laws be our laws helps preserve the country," I feel downright scared. I wonder, who gets to decide which laws are God's? I think of Afghanistan, where the Taliban ruled with God's laws; Saudi Arabia, where the Saudi royal family enforces God's laws; Iran, where the ayatollahs enforce God's laws; The Spanish Inquisition, where Christian leaders ruled with God's law. I think of my own Puritan ancestors who came here on the Mayflower to escape from God's laws, and yet set up a new rule of God's laws in Massachusetts Bay and ended up burning "witches." I have needs for safety, choice, autonomy, freedom, and sanctity that aren't met. I feel sad, with a deep, deep grief. David, I feel my emotions strongly triggered by reading this! I feel confused; I have needs for understanding and being understood that aren't met. My understanding of this country is that our Founding Fathers specifically wrote "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof" as the very first right of the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights because living free of God's laws that have been imposed by the state (others) is the most important right we have, even more important than freedom of speech. It allows each of us to live according to the dictates of our conscience – our own understanding of God – within the parameters of social equity and civility. It is the most basic cornerstone of our nation. Would you be willing to tell me, David, what you think that first clause of the Bill of Rights means, and whether it should be repealed?
I'd also like to reiterate Anne's point from "Not Quite Connecting," that for me, this issue is economic – it is about having equal access to the opportunities and protections provided by our system of laws, i.e., being able to file joint tax returns or pick up my kid from school.
Would you be willing to tell me what you heard me say with that comment?
Thank you all so much.