Sunday, March 06, 2005

Here's your Sunday morning "Ah, hell, they're at it again" story:

"...There is an evangelical resurgence in this country and what is happening here in Kansas is symbolic of much of the nation," said First Family senior Pastor Jerry Johnston.

Indeed, a host of conservative Christian causes are moving forward: on April 5, Kansas voters will take up one of the strictest anti-gay marriage amendments in the nation; the state school board is embroiled in arguments between evolution and Biblical beliefs about creation; and fresh battles have begun over book banning and abortion rights.

This is one of those scary articles that makes you realize that consie Christians are really in a position to take over large chunks of the country. Large chunks of the country that we need, I feel I should point out, if only because they tend to produce a great deal of our foodstuffs out in the flyover states.

And, really, I can just about feel empathy for 'em, if not sympathy. I mean, hasn't the same kind of stuff gone down, in reverse, in most of the big urban areas? The coastal urban areas are where the gay folks came to live, the atheists, the artists, the free thinkers, the leftists all came West or East and settled in the big population centers and changed the angle that the population was coming at societal control. It's democracy in action, really: majority rule. If enough of your citizenry is sympathetic to a particular cause, you will change your rules to reflect that. It's about as simple as it gets.

And that's all that's really going on in Kansas. Buncha folk who THINK they're following the bible (which they are, so long as they stop with the Old Testament...which, I think, actually means that they're adhering more to Judaism than Christianity, but that's just me) want the laws they have to live with to reflect that. They're not calling for national change (at least, not yet), they just want to have their home they want they want it. Which, again, is exactly what happened on the coasts twenty, thirty years ago, and which is happening again. Massachusetts Yankees don't necessarily want to see a couple of guys making out on Cambridge Square, but otherwise they're pretty much okay with guy/guy, girl/girl stuff. Maybe they're just more cosmopolitan, maybe they're all closeted queers. Either way, their laws make it cool.

What's interesting about this story is actually THIS story, which ran in the Seattle Times today:

The state Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on whether the state constitution entitles the Rainier Beach couple and 18 other gay and lesbian couples to marry. All are challenging Washington's Defense of Marriage Act, which limits marriage to a union between a man and a woman.

If the justices rule as the couples hope, Washington could become the second state in the country, after Massachusetts, to grant gays the same marital rights as heterosexuals. And it would be the only place — at least for a time — where gays and lesbians from any state could marry each other.

And what's interesting about Washington State voting on same-sex marriage comes down Washington's dualistic nature. See, Washington's got The Cascade Mountain Range running just East of Puget Sound (which is where Seattle and Tacoma and Olympia are located), and those mountains are the dividing line for politcal thought in the state. All the abortion-loving, queer-postitive, tax-and-spend liberal types are on the western side of the mountains, which also happens to be where the majority of the population resides. The gun-toting, fag-bashing, Christianity-lip-service-paying, we-hate-outsiders types are roaming around on the eastern side of the mountains, keeping a hairy eyeball on all us nutty shitheads over here. CNN's 2004 election results show it pretty clearly. Everything to the East of the Cascades is Red State, and everything to the West is Blue State.

So in local elections, no problems. The hippie liberals get what they want in the cities, and the God-fearing illiterates get what they want out in the countryside. But when it comes to state issues, like same-sex marriage, all the bullshit suddenly comes flying out, and Washington becomes the country in microcosm. But reversed, with the Dems controlling everything (after the state Supreme Courty decided that the Dem won the gubernatoral election) and the Reps bawling and scowling and sucking their thumbs every time something doesn't go their way. So there's a really good chance that same-sex marriage will go through, if only because so many of the people want it that way. And that will get the Red State Washingtonians and the Kansisian puritans all fired up and there'll be more chanting in the streets and people passing legislation that tells people how they can live, how they can feel, what they're allowed to want and there will be fire, and riot and death and pain and hatred (in the name of Christianity and morality, no less), and, hey, won't that just be the most fun?

I dunno. I look at this stuff and realize that it doesn't make any sense for a country this large and divided to exist. I mean, really, who thinks this is working? You've got at least two distinct camps trying to wrest power from each other, you've got different ideaologies driving different economies driving different values driving different populations towards different goals. You've got endless squabbling at a national level that clogs up resources the rest of us could use to, y'know, get on with our fucking lives. You've got a situation in which a large portion of the population willl ALWAYS be dissatisfied with what's going on in the country.

So, for real, let's break up. It's not you, it's me, okay? I just want different stuff than you, that's all. It's not like one of us is right and one of us is wrong...we've just grown apart...we've stopped moving towards the same goals...we're both looking for something different in this relationship...we're, really, just two wildly different people, and while opposites attract in the short-term, the only way you can have a successful relationship, a successful Union, if you will, is if the partners are working with the same ideals. And we're not. You know it as well as I do, so let's just call this whole thing quits, split the assests down the middle, and go our separate ways. I love you, but I'm not in love with you, if you know what I mean. No, there's nobody else, it's just time to end this farce and get on with our lives. Is that harsh? Okay, then it's harsh, but it's time. You know it as well as I do. Let's put some walls up along the coasts, around Chicago and Austin, man the gates, issue passports for The Western Republic, The Union of Eastern Territories, The New Confederacy.

Man, wouldn't that be nice? Small, self-contained territories that can deal with their own issues and nobody else's. Your little country passes laws against free speech? Who gives a shit! Move fifty miles away and you'll be in a whole new place with new rules and new concerns. Don't like those rules, but love the place you live? Not a problem. It'll be small and streamlined. Most of the legislature will be your neighbors, people you grew up with, people you've invited over to your house for dinner. Changing the laws, when most of the people around agree, is like initialing a company memo. It's presented, it's voted, it's done. Life is simple, and you don't have to keep changing and compromising to make sure that the liberals and the consies and the religious nuts and whoever else are all happy.

Okay, that's been nothing but a big long ramble, but I think maybe I've hit upon something here. Let's split up the fucking country. For real. Let's just find the obvious idealogical borders and lay down a fence right there and start picking out new names. Let's burn the old flag and come up with new ones. Let's all design our own currency. Let's have the atheists and agnostics in one place and the theocracies in another. Let's stop having an ego about how important this piece of land is and slice it up into sections that we can actually handle and get on with our fucking lives.

Okay, everybody start thinking up borders and picking out names. I call The Death Star...

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