I’ve always felt guilty because I’ve never liked doing community service very much.
That’s probably why I practically haven’t done any of it since I was required to in high school.
With the exception of Habitat for Humanity, community service always felt boring and inconsequential.
But with the incredible number of calls to violate civil rights in this country, I think I’ve found my calling. Maybe I can volunteer at the ADL. They advocate equal rights, right?
It wouldn’t appear so, based on their press statement that states that the so-called Ground Zero Mosque should not be built.
Oh well, there’s always the ACLU.
This Park51 controversy has been joined by equally egregious calls to amend the 14th Amendment made by Senators McCain, Graham, Paul, McConnell and Kyl.
And on top of that, Prop 8 is back on our consciousness, as California still hasn’t decided whether it’s constitutional to prevent 2 people of the same sex from marrying one another.
Here’s the essence of how I feel about each of these civil rights violations:
- Opposing Park51 is conflating Muslims with Muslim terrorists.
- As a country of immigrants, why are we always feeling so threatened by the ones that come here illegally? Or in this case, their American children?
- Gays getting married have no negative consequences on the functionality of society.*
I could argue in detail about each of these points, but I think most of my readers agree with me and it would take too long anyway.
The point is, I prioritize civil rights before almost all other political issues. The recent news has made me realize this. How is it that a shocking number of people in this country unabashedly ignore what is legal and what isn’t? How is it that they allow their anger and fear to cloud their rationality?
Freedom to worship freely is constitutionally protected, as is the 14th Amendment itself. People are just too incensed by 9/11 and a wretched economy to value those laws. But wait. I support gay marriage even though it’s illegal. Isn’t that because I don’t value the current laws myself?
In fact, people want to change the 14th Amendment for the same reason that gay marriage supporters want to change marriage laws: because the law doesn’t fit into the way they see the world.
My best response to this incongruity is that one policy seeks to deny people of the rights granted to others and the other seeks to grant them said rights. And personally, I can’t fathom being a citizen of a country that prefers to deny equal rights than to grant them.
*If you think of a negative consequence, let me know.