Sometimes I feel like we rip the News-Gazette too often around here. Sometimes it feels like we should just not acknowledge their antiquated and out of touch ramblings and columns. Sometimes it seems like ignoring them might make them go away.
Other times they write an editorial that is so unbelievably awful that we have to highlight it. Today was one of those times.
Today the Gazoo crypt keepers, or editorial board, wrote “Handle with care.” The editorial talks about adjusting to the Supreme Court’s impending decision on whether or not individual states can define marriage as between one man and one woman.
Here’s the thing about this — you are an idiot if you don’t believe that everyone should have the opportunity to marry whoever they want (obviously, as long as both parties are consenting). That’s it. That should be the end of this. But in our society, the “protecting religious freedom” crowd believes that they should have the authority to ban things they don’t like as opposed to, you know, just having a different belief.
For example, I don’t think grown men should wear shorts in public in the evening hours when they’re going out. It’s a personal choice of mine to think, “Hey you kind of look like a big child in shorts when you’re hanging out at a restaurant.” But I don’t think denying someone’s right to wear shorts is the right answer.
The News-Gazette doesn’t outright say they think marriage should be between one man and one woman. They disguise that opinion by saying that the Supreme Court overruling the states’ definitions is wrong and that it negates the opinions of the people:
But in states where marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman, the rules will change immediately, overturning any thoughts to the contrary by its people or elected officials.
That’s true! Do you know why?
Because those thoughts are in line with something that is unconstitutional.
Moving along here, though, the Gazoo then spouts off a smarmy sentence about Americans adjusting to gay marriage:
People can, of course, adjust to anything, particularly if they are not given a choice.
That sentence makes them the butt of Louis CK’s famous joke about the people who cry “HOW DO WE TELL OUR CHILDREN?” (Link is NSFW)
But maybe the most egregious thing in this awful editorial is their continuation of hammering home the idea of choice:
There is no question that some aspects of emotionally charged social issues, including abortion and same-sex marriage, impinge on religious freedom. President Barack Obama’s misguided efforts to force birth control mandates on the Little Sisters of the Poor in Colorado come to mind.
But there’s a huge difference between a public official asking to be exempt from carrying out statutorily required duties and a private citizen who seeks, for religious reasons, to be left alone.
Under Obamacare there are certain requirements. One of those is to at least offer an insurance plan that includes birth control.
You don’t have to use it. You don’t have to have the birth control. Nobody is forcing anyone to have sex and take the pill. It’s just part of the insurance. If you’re a nun, who cares if you have birth control available to you? You’re not supposed to be doin’ it.
Weed is available to these Colorado nuns every day if they CHOOSE to use it. It’s a choice! Just because it’s offered doesn’t mean it’s infringing on your religious freedoms. That’s insanity.
You see, News-Gazette, if someone else does something that does not affect your day to day life, it’s not impinging on your freedoms. If I choose to drink a dozen Busch Lights at the Brass Rail, I’m not impinging on a teetotaler’s freedoms. I’m exercising my freedoms to do that.
“The private citizen who seeks, for religious reasons, to be left alone,” is being left alone. Nobody is holding a gun to his head and saying, “HEY, YOU HAVE TO GO MARRY SOME GAYS TODAY!”
It’s not happening.
What is happening, though, is that people are being denied the same rights as their fellow citizens and that is not by choice. You can be left alone and you can choose to abstain from the stuff that bothers you. But to suggest that religious freedom has anything to do with denying someone’s right to marry is insane.
The News-Gazette editorial board ought to be ashamed of themselves for writing something like this. It’s not surprising that they feel the way that they do. The issue that I have is that if you’re smart enough to be a journalist on an editorial board, you should be smart enough to be able to realize that your argument is filled with holes.
They do, however, have the choice to not acknowledge those holes. Freedom. America.