Thursday, April 23, 2015

The Screed From Baton Rouge

In an op-ed in today’s New York Times, Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) gives a whiny defense to his stand against marriage equality.

I hold the view that has been the consensus in our country for over two centuries: that marriage is between one man and one woman. Polls indicate that the American consensus is changing — but like many other believers, I will not change my faith-driven view on this matter, even if it becomes a minority opinion.

Fine, but it’s been less than fifty years since marriage between one man and one woman was the consensus as long as they were of the same race or color.  Which means that in Louisiana, Mr. Jindal could not have married a white woman.  To a lot of people, that view was faith-driven.  And that law was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Those who believe in freedom must stick together: If it’s not freedom for all, it’s not freedom at all. This strategy requires populist social conservatives to ally with the business community on economic matters and corporate titans to side with social conservatives on cultural matters. This is the grand bargain that makes freedom’s defense possible.

In short, religious bigotry has a long and proud tradition in America, and no bunch of radical liberals and people of conscience are going to put an end to it.

I doubt that Mr. Jindal is self-aware enough that “if it’s not freedom for all, it’s not freedom at all” (just pithy enough to fit on a bumper sticker) is exactly what the fight for gay rights is all about.  No one is asking him to change his faith-driven view on anything.  You are free to discriminate against anyone you want in your church or in your mind, but if you’re going to sell cakes, flowers, and hotel space to the public, you have to sell to all the public or not at all.

2 barks and woofs on “The Screed From Baton Rouge

  1. I can hardly wait to read the letters to the editors in response to this screed that flood the Times’ inbox.

  2. I wish all those who think Jindal’s presidential timber would remember this: When he came in, Louisiana had a huge budget surplus. It is now broke, and it’s all on Jindal’s shoulders. Is this what you want as a president?

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