It has just been pointed out to me that my family does not technically live in the city limits of Springfield. There's a little narrow strip of "not Springfield" that runs from Twin Oaks Country Club south, bordered on the east and on the west by "Springfield" proper. We live in that little narrow strip.
(I work in, shop in, and basically do everything else in the city limits. But we don't "live" there. How messed up is that?)
The good friend who alerted me to this fact wanted to give me a "heads up" before next Tuesday, so that I wouldn't blow a gasket when I went to the polls and didn't see Question 1 on my ballot.
So basically, in all the posts I've written about Question 1 ...
"Thou Shalt Fire the Lesbian"
"Three Questions for Christians"
"Resigned to Respond"
"I Wish I Didn't Have to Write This"
... you need to mentally edit every "I will be voting NO" to "I would be voting NO if I could" when you read it.
I thought I should say something online, because of how much I have already shared. In the spirit of full disclosure, I won't be voting on Question 1, because I live outside of the city limits.
However, everything else I have written stays. I would be voting NO on Question 1 for many reasons. One of them is because I am a follower of Jesus, and I try to live my life according to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
A cornerstone of that Gospel is that every single person matters; everyone is worth something. And I want the community in which I work and shop and (almost) live to reflect that idea, with explicit language that condemns discrimination against people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.
I would be voting NO because I believe that religious freedom does not give you the right to oppress another person.
I would be voting NO because sexual assault in a public women's room is illegal now, will be illegal on April 7, and will stay illegal after the vote no matter what the outcome.
I would be voting NO because the ordinance includes an exception for churches and religious groups, anyway.
I would be voting NO because I love my friends who happen to be gay or transgender and I don't want them to be treated any differently than any one else.
I would be voting NO because this is the United States, and we have already had this conversation, haven't we? Like, dozens and dozens of times? And we didn't learn from all those times?
I would be voting NO ... but I can't. And I'm incredibly bummed about it.