Good morning, y’all. Clear and cold. So much for our first day of Spring 2016. I guess we’ll have to wait to see if the “April Showers” will bring May flowers. There has not been much rainfall in March to speak of. I hope we haven’t angered the Whiz O Meter Gods. I suspect they are a vengeful Gods.
Speaking of God, Mulva didn’t have to shake me awake twice today. After last week’s performance/service at The Full Gospel Original Church of God, I was up and at ’em at first light. I can’t remember when I’ve been this excited to attend services on Sunday. To be truthful, I was not excited enough to go to church to ride in with Mulva, but I wasn’t too far behind. I’m still maintaining my independence by us taking two cars. Who knows, this week’s service could be standard issue, plain vanilla, straight from the evangelical handbook. I hope not. I’m driving separate from Mulva just in case.
Well even though I arrived earlier than last time, I had to park further away than before. In spite of the cold there were folks milling about all over. A large number of people were crowded about the Channel 99 remote broadcast truck in the parking lot of the Crystal Palace. I assumed they were watching Channel 99’s programming prior to the cutover to the live feed of the services at The Full Gospel Original Church of God. I was surprised to see that the big screen on top of the truck was showing Channel 11 from Atlanta. I was about to hurry past the screen, lest any of my weather presumptions become tainted by the exposure to the Whiz O Meter. To my surprise, there was a discussion of the new “Georgia Religious Freedom Restoration Act” in full force on the screen.
For you folks unaware of the latest insult to our intelligence propagated by the Georgia Legislature, some nitwit has designed a bill that says “if I feel my religious freedoms are being violated by some everyday thing, I can refuse to do that thing and not be prosecuted for being a bigot, homophobe or racist”. This being the Georgia Legislature, the bill’s author found a bunch of other nitwits who agreed to sign on. Now the bill just awaits Nathan “Can We Make A” Deal’s signature before being the rule of our state. From the sounds of the discussion on the TV, Nathan is going to have a tussle with this one. You see the core issue is that some preachers don’t want to marry gay couples. We already know that bakers don’t want to bake for gays, and florists don’t want to be a part of gay weddings.
The bill hopes to immunize these “true Christians” from having to do what they would normally do for anybody else, if their “religious feelings” might get hurt. It is easy to see where some holier than thou twit will not serve blacks in his restaurant and feel he can do it legally if this bill passes. Extrapolating that a pharmacist might refuse to fill prescriptions for birth control pills or plan B because of his “religious feelings”, is not that hard to do. I’m sure that the ones who profess to “love others as they love themselves” will come up with dozens of ways to discriminate against folks that I never dreamed of.
What the “good Christians” didn’t anticipate was the backlash from the only people Nathan Deal cares about, the rich and powerful. The NFL has already notified Arthur Blank and the Falcons that there will be no Super Bowl if the law goes through. Is a billion dollar stadium really worth a billion dollars if no one wants to play in it? Would the new stadium become a Dustbowl so that some twits can exercise their hateful religious freedoms? The new stadium is just the tip of the iceberg.
What would the financial impact to Atlanta be if the SEC championship moves to a more tolerant area like Birmingham? What if the Final Four decided that the participating schools would be happier playing where there was a little more religious tolerance? What if Coca Cola and other world wide corporations felt like their brand was tarnished by being affiliated with a backwoods state? All burning questions that Governor Deal will be sleeping on while tries to make up his mind as to what is best for all of the people of Georgia, and his friends with money.
Mean time, I’ve cut my entry into the church as close as I can. I make it to my seat while Channel 99 is running the commercials that precede the live telecast. Mulva gives me about a six on the stare meter and I concentrate on the stage. That’s where it’s all happening.