Thursday, April 21, 2005

That Poor Whiny Oppressed Majority

One of the things that makes me a "bad liberal" is my rejection of identity politics. First off, freedom and justice for everyone is a universal value. If it is denied anyone for any reason then that's a wrong in itself. The notion of groups oppressed in similar ways is useful and important, but if people decide that it's membership in the group that matters, not the oppression itself, then it's counter productive. The other problem is if you give preference to identity over rights, you get garbage like this. ARE YOU EFFIN' KIDDING ME? Yes, fanatical theocrats in the most religious - also most religiously diverse - country in the world are screaming: "Help Help! I'm being oppressed!"

Sure, the old "liberal assault on people of faith" trope has been with us at least as long as the Scopes Trial, with a more recent incarnation by David Limbaugh(Rush's even more disgusting brother) and now is echoed by plenty of phony populist rich boy and girl pundits. I've even heard someone claim that Christians are living under a "tyranny of the liberal judiciary". This has now culminated in a bunch of whiny crybabies going on television to bemoan the fact that their own narrow view is being suppressed in the form of rejection of 10(yes, only 10) judges. Cry me an effin' river.

There is no "tyranny of the judiciary" and these people are about as oppressed as I am. If there were actual religious persecution going on the churches would already be closed down by heavily armed black suited agents of the government(please, do not mention Waco; that was not religious persecution). Oh, but some of their notions aren't universally accepted? Too bad. As Alan Simpson once said at the National Press Club, we live in a common culture, and if you want to have a civil society, then when you're in public there are some things you're just going to have to abide. For instance, if my dog craps on your lawn, or anywhere else in public, I'm bound by duty of civility to remove it from that space and put it in the trash. Same goes for them and their Ten Commandments in the public space. Guess what? No one is trying to stop anyone from practicing their faith. The only problem is when that faith preaches the infringment of the rights of others. No, no one can make anyone shut up. But there's no law that says anyone has to take anyone seriously either.

I've heard people say "I've got no problem with gays. I just wish they wouldn't be so gay in public. It makes me uncomfortable." Well, I say the same about theocrats. Why do they have to be so violently oppressive and hateful in public? And before anyone calls me a bigot, I'd like to point out that some of my best friends are theocrats.

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