Friday 3/16 – A walk down 3 dark alleys…

Action #1 – “This is the use of religion to hurt people because you disapprove of who they are.”

–  Harper Jean Tobin of the National Center for Transgender Equality. 

Part 1 – Written comments – Comments Due March 27th
Public comments are due on March 27th regarding these new HHS rules that would allow physicians and health care workers to opt out of procedures that conflict with their religious teachings. This will have a significant impact on women’s and LGBTQ rights, which are already not fully protected by the current system. In fact, according to the Center for American Progress, 29% of transgender people reported that “a doctor or other health care provider refused to see them because of their actual or perceived gender identity.” We can submit our public comments here (DUE MARCH 27).

Part 2 – Contact your legislators

Stop this hard-right religious bullying now. Make sure your legislators are co-sponsoring   The Equality Act, H.R.2282/S. 1006, which amends the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to protect against discrimination on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity.

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Rep./Sen. to support {Rep.- H.R. 2282/Sen. – S. 1006} the Equality Act. (Click on the links to see how your legislator voted.
Thank Rep. Brownley and Sens. Feinstein and Harris for their support.)

Legislator Contact Info. Continue reading “Friday 3/16 – A walk down 3 dark alleys…”

The separation of Church and State is what makes America special. This is the kind of wall we want.

Although some darkly mutter that that our secularity of our government was an atheist plot, it was actually a profoundly religious Baptist minister, Roger Williams, who gave us the gift of a separate church and state 400 years ago.

Here’s the short form as to why we’re not actually a religious theocracy right now.

In 1630, John Winthrop led 1,000 men, women and children to start the Massachusetts Bay Colony. These Puritans left England because they were disgusted with what they saw as corruption in the Church of England and the tyranny of the crown. Finally given complete freedom to create the simple worship and personal intimacy with God that they long desired, they proceeded remove religious freedom from others. “Puritan ministers were compelled—upon pain of imprisonment—to wear the surplice and use the Book of Common Prayer, and their congregants were compelled to participate in what they regarded as rote worship.”

In other words, having risked their lives to escape an oppressive religious regime, they immediately started to set up one of their own. Humans! 

However, Roger Williams, actually paying attention to history, felt that they should use this chance in a new world to do better than their forebears in protecting religion from the games of politicians.

“Williams believed that preventing error in religion was impossible, for it required people to interpret God’s law, and people would inevitably err. He therefore concluded that government must remove itself from anything that touched upon human beings’ relationship with God. A society built on the principles Massachusetts espoused would lead at best to hypocrisy, because forced worship, he wrote, “stincks in God’s nostrils.” At worst, such a society would lead to a foul corruption—not of the state, which was already corrupt, but of the church.” Continue reading “The separation of Church and State is what makes America special. This is the kind of wall we want.”