Articles

Preacher, Shut Up and Hand Over Your Sermons!

October 17, 2014

Actually, we all knew it would happen, we just didn’t know when or where. Well, we’re at the where and the when now. The city of Houston, Texas, led by their lesbian mayoress Annise Parker, is not going to take it anymore. Take what anymore, you ask? American citizens freely expressing themselves openly about, well, we’re not sure just what yet. At the top of the list, for Houston City Hall, are references to homosexuality and “gender identity.” That kind of speech, we are told, violates “non-discrimination laws,” and so some preachers, suspected of having verbally crossing the line, have had their sermons summoned by City Hall for perusal by self-appointed language police. Yes, you heard it right. No, we are not in Tehran. 

The logical progression of such ordinances would include a lengthy laundry-list of forbidden subjects: not only anti-city-administration talk, but anti-county-state-nation-world talk. Maybe no more free speech on any subject between Islamic-Jihadism and, say, gender-colored soccer balls. And maybe everything in between. After all, sufficiently sensitive people can spot gender connections in the strangest places. In the end, every piece of clothing will be categorized as Discriminatory or Non-discriminatory (hereafter D and ND), every gesture, every look, every word, every product, etc., etc., ad infinitum, ad nauseum. Left-handers seriously offended by the right-handed majority, with ambidextrous folk screeching for laws against both. And demanding tomes of laws defending their “rights”. Maybe red-haired Irishmen venting their ire for being D’d against, like a billion other categories of minorities. Little-tree defenders against large-tree defenders.

For obvious reasons, sign-language is no solution to it all.  Alas for that which alone distinguishes humans from the jungle: human speech.  But, on the positive side, think of the windfall for the N and ND label-makers!

Consider one (there may be 578) simple unintended (?) consequence: this ordinance legally opens every woman’s restroom, every women’s dressing room, every YWCA swimming-pool shower-room to every cunning cross-dressed male pervert (or murderer) in America. That is true because the law is reported to “allow men to use the ladies room and vice versa.”

“You can’t yell ‘FIRE’ in a crowded theater when there is no fire,” broadly applied, once covered the waterfront of free and unfree speech in America. Takes two law libraries now.

My counsel? (a) Realize that it is a complex situation. (b) Understand that It’s made vastly more complex by the proliferation, myriads now, of mental midgets being outraged by every opening of a new Wal Mart because blue, to them, represents a male baby, and offensively so. (c) Know that it would be good if all humans would kindly consider the feelings of all other humans. (d) Let every American fall in love again with the entire Constitution, especially the first amendment. (Check it out.) (e) Let nobody expect to speak (or act!) like a moral imbecile in public and think he/she (can’t use the generic anymore!) is going to get away with it. Get thee to thy closet! (f) Know that none of this is new and its result is predictable. Over 2000 years ago a keen observer of humankind said, speaking of people-types like those who now yelp for affirmation of their outre lifestyles:  “For many walk (in such a way that) their “end is destruction, whose god is their belly (sensual lusts), and whose glory is in their shame.” There have always been those who glory not in their virtue, valor, or victory, but in their vice. Bad as that is, it would be tolerable if they did not try to force me to revel with them in their shame. That, however, would have the salutary effect, they tell me, of my staying out of jail!

In the late1860s, there was much talk about the US congress (Stephen Douglas was a leading figure) about passing legislation prohibiting the mention of slavery from pulpits in America. Preachers, on both sides of the issue, went right on their vociferous way, defending both sides, paying no attention to politician’s threats. As preachers will do, infallibly, on the current subject of debate.  They are writing sermons on the subject as we speak.  Sermons based, hopefully, on the First Book and the First Amendment.

Bill Anderson
Grapevine, Texas