Gordon Klingenschmitt, who says the penalty for homosexuality is spiritual death, and who believes atheists should undergo exorcism, said on his show, Pray in Jesus Name, Monday, that people who can’t enter church should not be allowed to use public restrooms.
Big surprise, right? I mean, this IS the guy who wrote a book about Obama, “proving” he is ruled by gay demons and “worthy of death.” He hates gays and atheists. He suggested he would be more than happy to shoot readers of Right Wing Watch. Go figure he hates transgenders.
But if this whole church/bathroom thing makes sense to you, raise your hand.
First of all, who can enter church? Anyone know?
Klingenschmitt goes to the Old Testament of course to find an answer, Deuteronomy 23:
No one whose testicles are crushed or whose penis is cut off shall be admitted to the assembly of the Lord. Those born of an illicit union shall not be admitted to the assembly of the Lord. Even to the tenth generation, none of their descendents shall be admitted to the assembly of the Lord.
If you’re an Ammonite or a Moabite you ain’t getting in either, so forget about it, not even to the tenth generation. Egyptians are okay.
The Scriptures say in Deuteronomy 23, that he that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord. And if they can’t enter the congregation of the Lord, they certainly shouldn’t be allowed to enter the ladies bathroom.
Alright. So the Bible does say at some point that certain people can’t go to an assembly of the Lord, which Klingenshmitt takes to be church. But Deuteronomy 23:15 also says if a slave escapes to you, you have to give the poor slave back to his or her owner.
Nice huh? So much for the Bible’s anti-slavery stance.
Anyway, the Old Testament isn’t talking about church. They didn’t have churches in ancient Israel. And it’s a whole ‘nother religion we’re talking about: Judaism, not Christianity, so I’m not sure why this stance Klingenschmitt is adopting is even relevant on a religious, let alone a civic level. After all, Christians already pretty much ignore everything they find too restrictive about the Old Testament and have been doing so since the days of Paul of Tarsus, a mere generation after the Romans executed Jesus for sedition.
Is this pick and choose time again?
But let’s pretend the word church still applies on the basis that a church is also an assembly of the Lord.
Where does the Bible mention public restrooms?
Oh dear. It doesn’t.
Maybe David Barton, who can tell us how Jesus addressed the issue of capital gains tax, can offer us some hints of where to look. I’m sure he can invent something.
Klingenschmitt says “if they can’t enter the congregation of the Lord, they certainly shouldn’t be allowed to enter the ladies bathroom” and I just don’t see it. Certainly? Where does certainly come from? Does one logically follow the other?
For me, that’s like saying “If you can’t eat peanut butter you certainly shouldn’t be allowed to eat steak.”
So where, logically, is the connection between assemblies of the Lord and bathrooms?
Again, if you see one, raise your hand.
But there is another problem here and that is that, what does what the Bible says have to do with our laws? The law of the land is the U.S. Constitution. Does the U.S. Constitution say that those who have had their penises cut off or damaged can’t use public restrooms?
Does the U.S. Constitution say that the Bible is the law of the land?
Far from it. The U.S. Constitution does not even mention the Bible. Heck, it doesn’t even mention God. Any god.
The proper answer to Gordon “Chaps” Klingenschmitt is therefore a resounding, “So what?”
But “so what” won’t get the job done.
The problem for Democrats is that Republicans think Klingenschmitt, despite his court martial and discharge from the Navy for disobeying a lawful order of a senior officer, is a righteous dude.
Klingenschmitt has lied about the events that brought about his discharge and successfully turned himself into a martyr, and Republicans are more than willing to accept these lies.
He has shown his opinion of First Amendment by attacking Right Wing Watch for posting videos of his hate speech. To top it all off, he has won the Republican primary for House District 15 in the Colorado House of Representatives.
It is past time for liberals and progressives to take people like Klingenschmitt seriously. It’s hard not to laugh at him, I know, but if the people voting for him are going to take him seriously, so too must we.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.