Approval-Seeking Missiles

As I sat listening to testimony about the D.C. Council’s “Same-Sex Marriage” Act, the key question that emerged in my mind is: Why is this happening?

To listen to all of the Council members and most of the witnesses at the hearing, the answer would be: It is happening became this is a matter of justice and human rights. “Marriage equality” is the civil-rights cause of our era. It is something that “obviously makes sense.” (Mary Cheh)

Mary Cheh
Councilmember Cheh

All of this, however, is manifestly untrue. Most of the witnesses who testified against the bill objected to the exclusion of District voters from the debate. The powers that be in the city government refuse to refer the same-sex marriage question to the ballot box. Councilmember Catania took it upon himself to lecture Bishop Jackson about 19th-century voter referendae.

It certainly would make sense to refer the question to the voters. But even if every citizen of the District insisted that someone was suffering an injustice over who can get a marriage license these days, there still wouldn’t actually be any injustice.

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Catching You Up

District_of_Columbia_building_1
John A. Wilson District Building

I think the last time I was actually inside the District Building was when John A. Wilson was still very much alive. My dad occasionally had business in there, and I entered those solemn halls with him a few times.

In other words: I was a youth the last time I was in there. There were no blogs then, and only madmen would have proposed that a man could marry a man, or a woman a woman. Homosexuals had no designs on the “right to marry.”

Bishop HolleyA quarter century later: I have just come from listening to two hours of testimony about the City Council’s proposed “Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Equality Amendment Act.”

I went to give moral support to Bishop Holley, the representative of the Archdiocese. (He is one of Archbishop Wuerl’s assistant bishops.)

I was also glad to shake the hand of Bishop Harry Jackson, senior pastor of Hope Christian Church–the most prominent opponent of the City Council’s same-sex folly. I assured him of my prayers and support.

Bishop Jackson
Bishop Harry Jackson, Hope Christian church
Anyway, I have been wracking my brains, trying to figure it all out. I have a few things to say, but…

I am behind, my dear readers!

I have other things I have to tell you first.

Then I will come back and explain the pain in my heart after listening to two hours of thoughtful testimony in Room 500 of 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

(The pain will probably only get worse after kickoff tonight…)

Credo in Deum Omnipotentem

John A. Wilson District Building
John A. Wilson District Building

Perhaps you recall: The transformation of the capering Prince Hal into the formidable King Henry V is the new “defining motif” of this humble weblog. (Scroll down if you click the link.)

falstaffThis same tranformation, however, broke the spirit of Prince Hal’s fellow-caperer, Sir John Falstaff. After the King broke off their friendship, Fallstaff’s dissolute life finally caught up with him, and he died.

In Henry V, when Falstaff’s friend Bardolph hears that the jolly knight is dead, he declares:

Would I were with him, wheresome’er he is, either in
heaven or in hell!
(Act II, Scene 3)

As the statement of a Christian, this sentence makes no sense. In hell, it is impossible to enjoy each other’s company. But as the lament of a friend, it is heartbreakingly beautiful.

John Wilson was a member of the D.C. City Council when I was in high-school. When I was in college, he became the chairman.

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