The government of North Carolina (and a number of other states) is in the process of passing various kinds of legislation designed specifically to make it easier for the Christian fundamentalist and conservative evangelical owners of businesses to oppress and persecute LGBTQ people. In many states, counties, and cities, American citizens who are LGBTQ are not formally protected by laws against discrimination like people of other protected classes are (members of racial minority groups, members of religious groups, the handicapped, etc.). This state of nonprotection and the new laws and ordinances designed to ensure the continued nonprotection of LGBTQ people is primarily the work of Christian fundamentalist and conservative evangelical zealots. It is their way of inflicting punishment on LGBTQ people for the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in favor of gay marriage last summer. They are angry at LGBTQ people and want to maintain an open legal pathway to allow Christian fundamentalist and conservative evangelical business owners the right to take out holy revenge on LGBTQ people—and then claim they are the Hand of God in doing it.
For 150 years of American history, the Christian fundamentalists and conservative evangelicals have drawn moral and spiritual lines in the sand and told all of the American people: “Thou shalt not cross this line.” Historically, in nearly every case, it turned out that they had drawn that line in the sand in the wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong place. They have a string of major failures 150 years long; God has failed to support them with even one victory; and ultimately a majority of the American people has failed to support them. They see their once great religious influence on American society bleeding away toward the number zero. They stand isolated and alone, they are angry about it, and they need to take revenge against an already hurting LGBTQ minority group. The fundies want to punish innocent, law-abiding LGBTQ citizens for their own fundie folly, their own fundie failures, their own fundie abandonment of God’s admonition to love their neighbors as themselves, and their own self-centered fundie wickedness.
So, this is about baking wedding cakes for gay weddings. Right? Not exactly. It is about much more than that. Under the First Amendment, fundie pastors already have the right to refuse to do LGBTQ weddings. No new laws are needed to keep them safe from a refusal. These new laws are designed to make sure fundie business owners have a continuing legal right to:
- Refuse a new hairdo for an LGBTQ person
- Refuse to sell a cement trowel to an LGBTQ person
- Refuse a taxi ride to an LGBTQ person
- Refuse to fill a life-saving prescription for an LGBTQ person
- Refuse a computer repair for an LGBTQ person
- Refuse to sell any sort of goods or services to any LGBTQ person
It is more than just a little ironic that people who claim to be Christians want to press the Biblical Anti-Christ Economic Solution on the people they regard as their enemies and the enemies of God—but who Jesus instead regards as their neighbors.
And he [the Anti-Christ] causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand or on their forehead, and he provides that no one will be able to buy or to sell, except the one who has the mark, either the name of the beast or the number of his name (Revelation 13:16-17).
This Christian fundamentalist and conservative evangelical lust for revenge against LGBTQ people makes me more than just a little angry. Most injustices do. However, there is a way to protest this sort of injustice and stop it dead in its tracks—and it hinges on a hypothesis I have held for a long time:
When push comes to shove, the real trinitarian god of most American Christian fundamentalists and conservative evangelicals is really their money, the things they own, and their economic security. Faced with the loss of this false tripartite god, they will run away from the real God and do whatever is necessary to keep their false god.
I know not what others may do in the face of this gathering storm of Christian fundamentalist and conservative evangelical injustice against LGBTQ people, but as for me and my house:
In the area where I live, any business (be it a large corporation or small business) that refuses service or sales to an LGBTQ person because that person is LGBTQ, and I find out about it, that large corporation or small business will no longer have my business, the business of my nuclear family, the business of the people in my extended family, and the business of some of my closest friends. As the old saying goes: “News travels fast!!!” News of injustice travels even faster. Now, what do I mean by all this?
If I am a regular shopper at your grocery store and I spend $150 in your store every week (all year long), it means I will take my business to your competitor for that whole year. If I eat your sweet shop’s ice-cream cones every Saturday, your competitor is going to get all of my family’s ice-cream money. If you cut my hair and you are a fundie discriminating against LGBTQ people, I will get someone else to cut my hair for the entire year. If you repair my electronic devices and discriminate against LGBTQ people, my shadow will never darken the door of your business until you quit discriminating against LGBTQ people. If you are my favorite restaurant and you are discriminating against LGBTQ people, then I, the members of my family, and many of my closest friends will no longer eat at your restaurant. And this applies to all offending businesses in our area. Capiche?
And just to give you a little history, my family takes it very seriously when a major corporation or small business mistreats its employees and customers. We have a favorite chain pizza restaurant where members of our family like to eat. We got word through the news media that this business had mistreated one of its employees—and it turned out that they really did. Our family refused to do business with that pizza maker for six months to express our displeasure—and we stuck to it—and never went through the front door of that business again for the whole six months. We have done this with numerous other businesses, and we stick to our guns religiously until the period we set is finished. The offending businesses do not get one penny of our business during the specified period of time.
I am not going to advise the readers of this article what they should do in the face of this very real gathering storm of Christian fundamentalist and conservative evangelical discrimination and persecution against LGBTQ people. You will have to decide that for yourselves. Your answer may be to sit still and do nothing. Your answer may be to do something entirely different from what my family has decided to do herein. What you do is entirely up to you.
But just to reiterate, if you are a local Christian fundamentalist or conservative evangelical business owner in my area and you have an agenda to discriminate against and persecute LGBTQ people at your business, you will not get any of my business. In my eyes, you and your business are dead meat!!! Do I make myself crystal clear?
I shall give the last word to Thomas Jefferson on this matter because he and I are like-minded about such things:
I Have Sworn Upon the Altar of God Eternal Hostility Against Every Form of Tyranny over the Mind of Man.