“…it behooves homophiles not to make the oversight of missing what transpired for Blacks in the past, whose predecessors did sit in this very same position.”
“On 2 July 1964 President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act…it had been nine days since the Act had been signed…Penn was slaughtered.”
Trouble In Black Paradise: Danger In The Shadows Of “Victory”; pages 429-430.
Greetings fired-up readers!
Trouble in Black paradise clearly impacts all “rainbow” humanity.
What’s happened in Rowan County, Kentucky should be no surprise to every gay marriage celebrant. Elected clerk Kim Davis defies court order, refusing to issue gays a license, going to jail on a professed God backed “mission” rather than resign.
A virtual circus of Davis supporters camp out at the jailhouse, led by elected Kentucky lawmakers. Claimed of course is that even though she’s a government official sworn to serve “all” Americans (based on separation of church and state) her right to selectively deny certain citizens is being violated—because of her particular “religious” affiliation.
Davis’ particular religious affiliation—flaunted in our pluralistic society’s face as the domineering U.S. ideology (even over other Christian sects)—is absolutely entrenched in the nation’s fabric, coloring and swaying psyches across broad spectrums (which include both Blacks and gays).
The brand is colonial Protestant Christianity built upon the worship of “white politic.”
Main media outlets stoking this debate take great pains to not depict it this way (claiming to merely offer an “objective” counter position) but holier-than-thou actions of adherents clearly scream louder than words.
Last Saturday morning CNN anchor Martin Savage interviewed one official supporting Davis, rallying among a sea of religious belligerence, waving white crosses at the jail. The rep’s anti gay rationale stuck tightly to a narrow familiar script, political correctness attempting to shroud acidic bigotry—his stance dripped with tricky “altruism” (the illusion of “healthy noble” intent).
I waited for Savage’s observation that would finally drop a key bomb, pointing out that whites justified refusal to serve Blacks—parading the same religious cloak. Caucasian Christian zealots touted the very same slogans and “symbols” (some glaring ironically on the walls of Black churches nationwide) hot to kill integration—the bomb finally came.
“That’s a different issue,” predictably tumbled out as the rep scurried back to his cover-up code of mumbo-jumbo.
Here, a thing is certain: more clerks and government officials dealing the same defiant refusal are surfacing elsewhere. Clear perpetrators are using age old power-tripping (“oppression psychology”) to paint themselves as the religiously wounded victims.
Brazen civic defiance quickly unfolding against gays in the equal marriage decision’s wake was clearly foretold in a parallel frontrunner legacy. The next phase of Civil Rights campaigning is being rescued from the brink by a new tide of youth: the Black Lives Matter Movement.
An old cliché clearly shows that unresolved history persistently repeats itself:
President Lyndon Johnson in 1964 signed the Civil Rights Act, yet a chilling story is rarely told. Nine days later Lt. Col. Lemuel Augustus Penn (a decorated WW II veteran) and 2 other Blacks drove through Georgia and were spotted by Klan members looking for revenge. Penn was killed by a shotgun blast.
Now, fifty years after the enacted Voting and Civil Rights Acts, rainbow protesters still must rattle the nation’s streets. Unarmed Blacks especially expose (for all segments affected) a system’s still rotten underbelly, being murdered by cops or “mysteriously” dying while in custody. The movement also keeps spotlight on Black social conditions—the worst of any group—directly tied to corrupt, ongoing American legacy.
The garnered 1964 Acts are critical, finally providing for a means of recourse for violations, which eventually brought convictions in Penn’s case—outrageous trial travesties occurring nevertheless (the event is much more fleshed out in my book Trouble In Black Paradise).
The Marriage Equality decision now also provides that critical means of legal recourse for law violators. The immediate Kentucky travesty shows actual state lawmakers flagrantly supporting Davis’ clearly breaking the law, celebrating her socially discriminating religious “beliefs.”
That no standard pundits are stressing this blatant violation of the constitution’s 14th amendment (making this an unadulterated constitutional issue) to challenge supportive violators exposes the media’s complicity in the disgrace.
Obviously CNN clearly remains anti gay at heart, notwithstanding the belated “coming out” of Anderson Cooper (who nonchalantly just goes along with the privileged “program”).
Marriage Equality being directly tied to reforming the system’s treatment of “Black lives,” offers perfect opportunity (and blatant cause). A gay community’s white majority could show they’re about much more than marginal bridge building here—or celebrating their own private victory. Whites could especially absorb priceless transferable Black organizing enrichment.
How ironic that Alicia Garza of Oakland, CA, one of 3 female founders of Black Lives Matter, is openly lesbian—a Black women naturally exhibiting the LGBTQ community’s broader universal tie.
Alicia represents multiple segments where Black gay and transgender lives should matter far more significantly, in particular showing a white male dominated gay leadership the “heart” to actually connect (outside a narrow privileged sphere) and how “initiating” cross communal building is done.
Clearly revealed is an interesting historical continuum: Black gay leadership skills offered to the masses have been persistently self-initiated regardless of fiery resistance, sharing organized resource, relieving multiple fronts dating back to a suffrage movement’s history (a central item where readers find fascinating testaments streaming throughout my book). Many of those beneficiaries (white gays, Black civic mainstreamers, etc…) remain hostile, lukewarm and indifferent to this day.
But one white gay man’s literary “warning” in lieu of Marriage Equality, seeming to go hand-in-glove with my book’s jolting focus, catches my eye. Michelangelo Signorile’s book is titled, It’s Not Over: Getting Beyond Tolerance, Defeating Homophobia and Winning True Equality.
Long time activist Signorile has written several books. The author is an editor of Huffington Post Gay Voices and hosts The Michelangelo Signorile Show on SiriusXM radio.
I’ve not read his work or heard his radio show. Perusing his work though, I like what I see. And in the contents of It’s Not Over two chapters among others stand out: 6. Not Up For Debate (Abandoning the Media’s “Both Sides” Delusion) and 7. Winning True Equality (How the Grass Roots Are Vital to Full Civil Rights).
Again, like the “resource packed” strategy of my book, It’s Not Over professes to offer a key battle plan. The hints of fleshing out critical “grassroots” connection necessities for a white gay mainstream (rarely done from that conventional side) are intriguing.
I cautiously have encouragement hope Signorile may be an “initiator” himself, rather than simply yet another riding celebrity and look forward to the read.
Regarding the Kentucky battleground this certainty can’t be overlooked: a Black official refusing to issue marriage licenses to white “Klan” members would definitely have drawn huge “majority white,” cross waving crowds, but for a totally different reason—they’d be demanding that official’s job and insisting they sit in jail until complying (maybe longer).
What about a Jew refusing licenses to Nazis and Muslims, or Muslims refusing Jews, all strictly upholding a particular fundamentalist “brand” of their own major religious branch? I guarantee you right wing extremists Mike Huckabee and Ted Cruz would be exploiting the situation for a whole different reason—and not to toot horns on their behalf.
The “beliefs” of the resistors exemplified immediately above would be obliterated and then run out of town on rails.
White politic driven colonial Christianity is about power—the opportunity to absolutely govern, make decisions about and totally deny “others” their life, liberty and pursuit of equal happiness (in this monumental human experiment in history called the “United States”). Such is a clear constitutional issue.
Over centuries, branching out into factions (conveniently modified to suit the power seeking purposes of the time—or moment) barbarous white male led adherents have pounded the notion into U.S. white psyches that they are holier than even all other whites. Huge masses of whites were force-fed extreme discomfort (often causing gross mental short-circuiting) regarding a totally new notion: sharing social equality.
The well suited indoctrinating vehicle was the “new kid on the block”: fundamentalist Christianity.
Thug like retaliation, to keep the non conformant (or “resistors”) in line, was not only absolutely religiously acceptable, but became a duty toward salvation by obeying this new fundamentalist God’s excluding law.
Hence U.S. police, being charged with frontline civic duty, ensuring this legal “enforcement”—by any means necessary (their open ended brutality exploding from the Black slave pens to underground homosexual dens—its momentum driven to the forefront of this century).
Scholars are tightlipped on a thing here:
If U.S. whites held to the intent of their religious “founder” (given my in-depth studies) more strictly than the ideologies of subsequent “changers” of Biblical doctrine—or modern charlatans of scripture—they would be something else: fanatics pushing for peaceful co existence and a harmonious refinement integrating spiritual life.
And if modern followers of that same “founder” (Black, white, Asian, Hispanic or whatever) actually adhered to his doctrine they all would be something else—Jewish.
I’ve not seen Kim Davis or any of her circus ilk proclaim themselves to be steadfast Jews.
I’ll not hold my breath.