Today, we pause.
In the past, I haven’t been the shyest when it comes to criticizing our elected officials. That’s because I believe in big government. I believe in its ability to be a force for good. I believe in protecting rights and extending a compassionate hand to those in need. When our government fails to live up to its potential, I think it’s our duty to call them out and keep them honest.
For you, it may be fair trade. Or reforming our jail system. For me, it’s the basic creed of our Declaration of Independence that has yet to be realized. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,” wrote Thomas Jefferson.
I’m critical because I believe in the greatness of America, and I will try to do my part to direct your attention where inequality exists. That has been my goal this semester and for this blog assignment, and it’s for that reason that I will continue this blog after the assignment ends.
But there are those days when you do see your government live up to its promise, when they make the tough decisions. And you’re proud. Proud to live in a country like America. You don’t have to revel in the death of another, but it’s okay to feel a sense of relief and catharsis. Okay to feel that a man who was far more evil than good, who murdered thousands of innocent men, women, and children, will never harm anyone again.
Justice has been served. Today, we’re reminded that government serves a very real and very important purpose.
Tomorrow is a new day, but let’s enjoy this one while it lasts.
“All men have an emotion to kill; when they strongly dislike some one they involuntarily wish he was dead. I have never killed any one, but I have read some obituary notices with great satisfaction.” – Clarence Darrow
A reminder to all James Madison University students and Harrisonburg, Virginia residents that I will be hosting a panel discussion and Q&A tomorrow evening — Wednesday, April 27th at 7 o’clock — in Harrison 0118.
Four members of Madison Equality have been gracious enough to lend us their time to lead the discussion and answer your questions!
In addition to what I’m sure will be an enlightening conversation, I will be screening a selection of scenes from at least one LGBT-themed documentary.
Whether you’re gay, straight, or just looking to know more about the LGBT cause and become an ally, I strongly urge you to come out and support this event! I know it’s crunch time with final exams and presentations just around the corner, so why not give yourself a well-deserved break? Starbucks coffee and snacks will be provided!
Once again, I will be in Harrison 0118 tomorrow — Wednesday the 27th — from 7 to 8 o’clock! I know you’re out there, JMU Dukes! Please stop by and bring your friends!
In a move straight out of an Orwell novel, Tennessee state Senator Stacey Campfield’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill has advanced out of committee and will be sent to the Senate floor.
The bill would effectively criminalize teachers and school officials who talk about homosexuality before the ninth grade.
Conveying the message that being gay is neither appropriate nor suitable for public discussion, Campfield is attempting to further alienate and isolate a vulnerable population from seeking help and guidance from educators.
Supporters of the bill maintain age sensitivity is the primary goal, but Matthew Parsons, a socially conservative advocate and founder of the anti-gay “Something Better” campaign, may have spoken too soon. “If we’re talking about homosexuality, we are talking about specific acts that are going to be unhealthy for anybody to engage in outside of marriage.”
Let’s be clear. Campfield’s proposed bill has nothing to do with what is “age appropriate.” This is about fundamentally altering society. It would effectively prohibit speech and further push the civil rights struggle away from mainstream radar. Out of sight, out of mind.
“The ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill raises all kinds of issues about anti-gay bias, free speech and government overreach,” said Tennessee Equality’s Ben Byers. “It means [teachers] can’t talk about gay issues or sexuality even with students who may be gay or have [a] gay family.”
Once again, we are witnessing a scared GOP attempting to limit debate and stifle meaningful conversation. The party of small government seems perfectly supportive of government’s large hand so long as it furthers their culturally radical agenda.
Senator Campfield’s cowardly attempts to institutionalize discrimination are painfully obvious for anyone with half a mind to see. If it’s a debate about substantive issues you wish to have, I welcome that debate. But leave the children out of it.