The Sign of the Fish | Street Jazz

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Sign of the Fish

Posted By on Wed, Apr 28, 2010 at 10:54 AM

Election years tend to make me overly sensitive, I think - in addition to being overly grouchy. Traveling along the roads of Northwest Arkansas the past few months, I’ve noticed that several candidates’ signs both carry the sign of the fish - which I understand is a message to the faithful that they are, indeed, one of them, and should be supported accordingly.

On television commercials, much is made of the fact that several GOP candidates have had Christian upbringings.

No, this isn’t going to be one of those dreary, cliche ridden missives about the separation of church and state. I’ve also never been big into the bigotry of general Christian bashing - yes, some of the most repressive legislation in this country has been brought about by those claiming that they are doing “the Lord’s work” - but there were also many Christians on civil rights marches, protesting the Vietnam war, and at the forefront of scores of other social and political issues.

I think it is the fish itself which bothers me. To my mind, it sends a clear signal that the support of some people is hoped for - hell, even expected! - and the support and/or interest of others who may not share the religious beliefs of the candidate is simply not welcome. And that seems a sort of bigotry to me.

Which brings us to the spectre of so-called “Family Values” - who gets to decide what they are, and aren’t? People of all beliefs (and non-beliefs) love their families, and are concerned about the spiritual and moral development of their children. So why has the discussion been dominated by the right-wing, many of whom espouse a form of Family Values I personally find abhorrent.

It’s not enough to simply have a bumper sticker proclaiming that “Hate is not a Family Value.” Instead of debating what isn’t a family value, let’s talk about what is. If we don’t, then the conversation is dominated by the lunatic Pat Robertsons, the genial menfolk of the Taliban, and the rabid Glenn Becks  and the rest of their ilk . . .

******

Quote of the Day

With all history to contradict us, it is hardly worthwhile to speak of  city life as entailing “spiritual loss,”  because it is out of touch with Nature. It is in touch with humanity, and humanity is Nature's heaviest asset. - Agnes Repplier, Times and Tendencies

*****

Abortion and Oklahoma: Bombing Women Back to the Stone Age

Speaking of the genial men-folk of the Taliban, the Oklahoma House voted to override Governor Brad Henry’s veto of two of the most restrictive abortion measures  in the country.

The first measure, which has wide-ranging implications not only for other areas of health care but for privacy in general, requires all women seeking an abortion to undergo an ultrasound and listen to a detailed description of the fetus. Such an ultrasound would require a vaginal probe, because it would provide clearer pictures.

Is there pain involved in this procedure? Do the Neanderthals in the Oklahoma legislature care?

The other measure Henry vetoed (but which was also overridden) will prohibit women from seeking legal damages against doctors if they withhold information (“What? Your baby is deformed? Too bad.”) or provide inaccurate information (outright lies?) during their pregnancy.

rsdrake@cox.net

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