Stop Censorship Now

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hey kids, here’s a fun tip!

if you ever feel discriminated against because you’re cisgender or heterosexual, just try closing your computer, getting up, and walking out your front door! now you can feel free to be your gender or sexuality without having to worry about being called names because everyone is just like you!

this has been the children’s fun fact science corner

For a cake decorator to really feel like he really needed to take a stand…it just makes absolutely no sense. It’s petty, it’s small…this man has wrapped up his hatred in the cloak of religion.
Duff Goldman’s followup comments, which I think are just as awesome
I saw this story and I was like, “Wait — I can do something, there’s injustice involving a cake!
Duff Goldman, executive chef of Charm City Cakes and “Ace of Cakes” star, on his reaction to hearing of the Gresham lesbian couple denied a wedding cake because of their sexuality

There are so many people doing so many things right in this story

A blood drive at an Olympia church on Thursday was organized to draw attention to a nearly three-decade-old government policy banning donations from gay men.

Twenty-five people showed up at the First Christian Church to give on behalf of Matthew Shrader, a gay man who believes the ban is outdated and unnecessary.

The Puget Sound Blood Center is bound by FDA rules, but agrees the ban against donations from gay men is antiquated, especially with advancements in HIV testing and the fact that every blood sample is screened for HIV.

"This criteria does not match with science,” said Tori Fairhurst, donor representative with the Puget Sound Blood Center. “So it’s a big deal because we’re applying the rules differently to different people.”

More than half of the people who came on Thursday said they were first time donors.

Churches (surprise!) unite in advocating for overt discrimination

And, of course, wrote a manifesto about it.  Now, this isn’t unexpected - Christians discriminating isn’t exactly anything new here in the good ol’ USA - but this paragraph particularly made me break out my “you deserve it” evil laugh:

For example, in New Jersey, the state cancelled  the tax-exempt status of a Methodist-run boardwalk pavilion used for religious services because the religious organization would not host a  same-sex “wedding” there. San Francisco dropped its $3.5 million in social service contracts with the Salvation Army because it refused to recognize same-sex “domestic partnerships” in its employee benefits policies. Similarly, Portland, Maine, required Catholic Charities to extend spousal employee benefits to same-sex “domestic partners” as a condition of receiving city housing and community development funds.

Man, you’re really pulling at the hearstrings.  Let me recap:

  • The government was giving you money to run a scenic wedding-hosting site.  You told gay people they couldn’t use it.  The government stopped giving you money.
  • The government gave you $3.5 million dollars in contracts of some sort.  You told gay people they couldn’t get their spousal benefits.  The government stopped giving you money.
  • The government gave you money for doing good things.  You said you didn’t want to give gay people their spousal benefits.  They said they would stop giving you money.  It’s not clear, but it sounds like you may have (heaven forbid) bitten your lips, taken the money, and stopped discriminating.

Sorry, but I just can’t really muster any sympathy for organizations that discriminate, get government money, and then whine when it gets taken away for discriminating.

In short, the refusal of these religious organizations to treat a same-sex sexual relationship as if it were a marriage marked them and their members as bigots, subjecting them to the full arsenal of government punishments and pressures reserved for racists. 
This sentence is also a nice little follow-up.  Getting all riled up at the implied comparison to racists?  How dare the government decide that discriminating based on one in-born, un-chosen physical trait is just as bad as discriminating on another in-born, un-chosen physical trait.  The nerve.
One bright spot: in the not-insignificant list of cosigners, I didn’t find a single Presbyterian - which is notable on a list that includes national-level leadership of Vineyard, Assemblies of God, Foursquare, Pentecostals (IPCC), Anglicans, General Baptists, Salvation Army, Evangelical Friends, Nazarenes, Evangelical Free, Lutherans (Missouri Synod), and Open Bible as well as several bishop-level officials from the Free Methodists, Lutherans (NALC), Catholics, and LDS.  I went to a Presbyterian church up in Seattle, and really appreciated the discussions I had with my pastor about such things, and there is a significant portion of the church advocating for change at the national level.  There was some minor progress at the last General Assembly, and the next one is coming up in July.  Here’s hoping for more progress.  And there’s always the Episcopal church right next door to my apartment that gladly accepted my PGMC poster.  Love those Episcopals.
“The law discriminates against rape victims in a manner which would not be tolerated by victims of any other crime. In the following example, a holdup victim is asked questions similar in form to those usually asked a victim of rape. “Mr. Smith, you were held up at gunpoint on the corner of 16th and Locust?”
“Did you struggle with the robber?”
“Why not?”
“He was armed.”
“Then you made a conscious decision to comply with his demands rather than to resist?”
“Did you scream? Cry out?”
“No. I was afraid.”
“I see. Have you ever been held up before?”
“Have you ever given money away?”
“Yes, of course–”
“And did you do so willingly?”
“What are you getting at?”
“Well, let’s put it like this, Mr. Smith. You’ve given away money in the past–in fact, you have quite a reputation for philanthropy. How can we be sure that you weren’t contriving to have your money taken from you by force?”
“Listen, if I wanted–”
“Never mind. What time did this holdup take place, Mr. Smith?”
“About 11 p.m.”
“You were out on the streets at 11 p.m.? Doing what?”
“Just walking.”
“Just walking? You know it’s dangerous being out on the street that late at night. Weren’t you aware that you could have been held up?”
“I hadn’t thought about it.”
“What were you wearing at the time, Mr. Smith?”
“Let’s see. A suit. Yes, a suit.”
“An expensive suit?”
“In other words, Mr. Smith, you were walking around the streets late at night in a suit that practically advertised the fact that you might be a good target for some easy money, isn’t that so? I mean, if we didn’t know better, Mr. Smith, we might even think you were asking for this to happen, mightn’t we?”
“Look, can’t we talk about the past history of the guy who did this to me?”
“I’m afraid not, Mr. Smith. I don’t think you would want to violate his rights, now, would you?””