Friday, December 23, 2011

Civil rights in America today

When the Founding Fathers drafted the Declaration of Independence some 240 years ago, the small part about "all men are created equal" was only held to be true for white men who owned property, disenfranchising those of different races and of certain sub-socioeconomic creeds.

Slavery was a common practice then, with many of the founding fathers themselves owning slaves and operating large plantations.  Yet, supposedly, all men were created equal, though at the time true equality was not practiced.

But as time passed after the interpretation of the Declaration changed with society, African-Americans and women were eventually given the same rights as what the white man had had prior, like the right to vote and land ownership.

Yet, though, there is a group of Americans born from the very fabric and definition of this country, defending it, dying for it, who do not have the same rights as everyone else.  For a country that was built upon equality, even with its biased and troubled beginnings, one sould think that a developed and educated society would understand the definition of equality:

1. The state of being equal, esp. in status, rights, and opportunities.



Yet for a gay or lesbian couple to receive the same marriage benefits as those who are married to members of the opposite sex, they have to, against there will and personal pursuit of happiness, marry some one they do not want to, while being denied the right to marry the one they love and care deepest for.

Why?  What is wrong with one man loving another or one women finding warm loving comfort in another woman and deserving the same rights as those who find love in their opposites?

One would argue the religious foundations that this country was built upon is enough to limit the rights of homosexual behavior.  Though believing that is blindly ignoring history and replacing it with loose theological understandings of American history.  Even with no clear separation between church and state written in any founding American documents, and the term not widely applied to the states themselves until 1947, the Founding Fathers believed there should be separation.

Yes, many of the Founding Fathers attended church, believed in God and were religious, but staples of American folklore like Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine and Benjamin Franklin were declared and open Deists.

But what brought many of us to this land was fear of persecution from the government as they wielded religion unjustly over the people, much like religion is tossed upon the dreams of gay and lesbian activists, today.

George Washington was so fearful of being labeled a religious man to his constituents that he stopped going to church after being confronted on why he was not taking communion, attending Sunday church just as sporadically as most American's do today; 16 times in 1760 and just 14 times in 1768.  He did, however regularly attend church while on business, usually participating in Anglican, Quaker, and Catholic services.

Who, today, attends three different denominational services?

Laws have been wrong and unconstitutional and always, laws will change for the better of all.

To deny gays and lesbians of their marriage rights to one another of the same sex harkens back to the 1960s when the African-American way of life was segregated from the whole of America, when they were not given the same respect in a country that declared, and still declares itself an equal nation.

I guess equality is obtained so long as a bigoted status quo is met.