This is getting WAY out of hand.

The Charlotte City Council passed an ordinance aimed at adding protections to those in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community. Among the particulars was that transgender people could use the public restroom of the gender with which they identify. The reactions were predictable. The religious fanatics declared the entire city of Charlotte was going to hell (except for those religious protesters, of course, as they see themselves as without sin). There would be hell to pay, as God would react to such moral sewage becoming law. And, obviously, such “protection” would mean every sexual predator in existence would flock to NC, and they would spend the rest of their lives moving from one public bathroom to another, gleefully looking for innocent children to sexually assault.

Not that the other side is any better. You have a moral objection to this? That makes you a bigot and full of hatred. You are evil if you object to anything. Average accommodations aren’t enough; you must restructure the entire society to make it as friendly as possible to this 1% of the population, even if it’s a detriment to the other 99%.

My question was – and is – are we really debating the most important issue facing Charlotte and the state of North Carolina? Look around. Not enough has been done to move NC beyond an economy dependent on textiles, tobacco and furniture. Tens of thousands are under-employed, unemployed or homeless. Much infrastructure is in dire need of repair or replacement. Public schools are a laughingstock, primarily because teachers are leaving in droves due to poor pay and terrible working conditions. And what are we arguing about? Who is peeing in what room. Are you freaking serious????????????????????

You know what’s happening in Michigan, right? Since the 2007-09 depression (it was not a recession, it was a depression, I don’t care what the media says), Detroit has been a shambles. It was discovered a few months ago that the city of Flint has drinking water so contaminated no one can drink it. But a few religious freaks in the Michigan legislature were too busy telling their citizens that anal and oral sex were, eeew, icky, and no one should be taking part in them. The religious freaks talked the rest of the legislature to outlaw them, even among consenting adults in their own homes. Now, North Carolina has joined them in letting their religious freaks dictate priorities.

Yes, I’m using that phrase on purpose – religious freaks. I can’t speak for Michigan, but I can for NC. The religious freaks here are just insufferable. They’re mostly Baptists, with typical Baptist views – that everyone else that espouses another belief system is wrong, that if you aren’t reading a King James Bible, you’re reading a fake Bible, that any consumption of alcohol is a sin, because everything the Bible calls “wine” is really Welch’s grape juice, that anything that might possibly be construed as fun is an abomination before the Lord – you know, typical “I’m right, you’re wrong” self-righteousness. The other typical trait is that they believe it is their sworn duty given to them by God to force everyone else to believe exactly as they do. It’s a terribly insufferable stance.

As I’ve said in other spaces, I am a Christian, and nothing would please me more than everyone choosing that path. But not everyone is going to do so. Jesus even told us so – “But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:14, New International Version). This is what forms my viewpoint of the mix of religion and politics. We know that relatively few people will end up on the narrow path of Christianity. Therefore, attempting to force Christian principles through legislation is futile. Then there’s that pesky little First Amendment to the US Constitution, that government shall make no establishment of religion.

Getting back to the Charlotte city ordinance that sought to enhance discrimination protection for the LGBT community… I didn’t think the ordinance was necessary. If there is a business that doesn’t want to do business with you because you are gay or transgender, I would say, fine, your loss. Charlotte is big enough that there is no good or service that has only 1 business that provides it. Some business doesn’t want your money, give your money to a business that does. And as far as being able to use the public bathroom of the gender you identify with, whatever. I go into public restrooms for 1 reason only, and I have absolutely no interest in any interaction with the person in the space next to me. Why not just do your business and get on with your day? But the city felt the need to pass the ordinance, so that’s their call. It doesn’t affect me, so I felt no need to speak on it.

The NC legislature called a special session just to deal with this ordinance, and pass a law to overrule the bathroom portion (yes, the state can do that to municipalities in NC). To me, it was nothing more than a bunch of Baptists who felt compelled to force their beliefs on the city of Charlotte. Again, with all the serious issues that desperately need attention here, the religious freaks decided to spend time and taxpayer money on this.

As a registered Republican and a Christian, I am embarrassed. It was 100 years as the minority party before the Republicans finally gained control of the legislature in 2010. I was hoping we could get some genuine conservative policies in place, especially when a Republican won election as Governor in 2012. No such luck. As a Christian, I know very well that you will never convert someone to Christianity by forcing it down people’s throats. The way the Republican state legislature is trying to do just that angers me. It’s another issue I have to fight through if I’m trying to convince someone to become a Christian, these legislators that give Christianity a bad name by the way they try to force everyone to believe like them.

Time for me to change my affiliation to Independent. The Republicans in the NC legislature are making the rest of us look stupid, and are making many of us Christians look narrow-minded and something to be avoided.