I don’t have many phobias, but…fuck, who am I kidding? I have plenty of phobias. I’d make a nice case study for those of you interested in the brains of freaks.
One of these phobias is called musophobia and it means I have a fear of mice. And not like one of those “Ohmigosh I have a mouse in my house, I’d better get a jar and catch it because ew” kind of fears. More like being unable to move for 25 minutes because I just saw a mouse and even though it ran away as soon as it saw my ugly face, I feel like any move will make it come back with an army of little hairy wingless bats desperate to chew through me.
So here I am, at 4am, sitting in my bed, desperately trying not to wet my pants, because I saw a mouse two hours ago and now I’m afraid to step on the floor in case the beast attacks my toes. After half an hour of lying here, trying to regulate my breath and convince myself that no, a thousand mice won’t suddenly jump on my bed and crawl all over my body, I managed to move enough to get the computer from my desk and go online.
Facebook is very interesting at night. There’s only a handful of people online, half of them are drunk and the other half are either depressed or very tired but unable to sleep for various reasons. Also, there’s nothing interesting on newsfeed because, d’oh, everybody’s fucking sleeping in their pest-free homes.
However, after a lot of scrolling (hello, carpal tunnel) I come across an article shared by someone with the title: “The moral of the gay wedding cake row: the law can’t create tolerance”. The description of it says the following: “A Christian walks into a Muslim signwriter’s shop and orders a placard. He says it should carry a cartoon of the prophet and the slogan Muslims Go Home. The signwriter is deeply offended and says he cannot complete the order. The customer is outraged at the discrimination, is supported by the Equality Commission, sues, and the signwriter is fined £500 plus costs. I think most people would find such a saga absurd.”
When an article begins with such a ludicrous comparison, by putting hate speech and love together and saying they’re basically the same, I lose all interest in reading the rest of the piece. So I confess, for the sake of full disclosure, that I only read bits of it.
What I can say is that, for me, religion has no place in this debate. It has absolutely no value whatsoever as an argument in the issue of gay marriage. Law is above religion, period. Sure, everybody is entitled to their own beliefs, but making laws out of said beliefs, laws that millions of people will have to obey, is about as laughable as saying that the legalisation of same-sex marriage will turn more people gay.
Why is it that lawmakers keep religion as their ace in the hole, something to take out and flaunt when it’s beneficial and then conveniently put away when it’s not? A man beats his wife because she showed her ankles in public? Put that fucker behind bars. Where does he think he is? This is the West, we’re civilised here, people are free to show off some skin (although, if you’re a lady, keep your nipples covered, because that’s taboo even for the civilized and progressive Western society; not if you’re a man, though, because your nipples are special and can and should be seen by the world). A woman refuses to take off her veil for a license photo because of her religion? She’s a threat to national security, that freak.
Some old, white, Irish Catholic dude and his wife refuse to bake a wedding cake because it’s for a gay wedding? Well who the hell do they think they are? Oh wait, no. Actually, they can totally do that. It’s their right, because of their religion and their beliefs and… you know, all that freedom thing we have in the West. Sorry, gay dudes/lesbian ladies!
Yes, I’m aware this is not how it happened in this particular case, but it’s certainly the outcome a lot of people were hoping and arguing for. Because, in the words of this little genius who wrote the piece: “Law can’t create tolerance”. Well guess what? Law was just as unable to create tolerance back when black people had to ride in the back of the bus and use the back door to get into buildings. Same when women were not supposed to be in those damn universities, but at home nursing future misogynistic little shits and trophy wives to be. Yet it somehow changed and the world changed with it, because the fun thing about law is that it doesn’t give a fuck about your totally legit reason to break it.
It’s 2015, the world is going through economical, social and environmental crises that need our attention, so the fact that we waste our time and resources to debate the legality and morality of marriage between two people who are in love, based solely on their genitalia, is ludicrous to me. Can you no longer pray to whatever god helps you sleep at night if your male neighbour is touching his dick to another dick? Can you not attend your church on Sundays because there is some woman out there who just ate pussy for breakfast? And should your neighbour marry his boyfriend, will that make it physically impossible for you to breathe, blink, eat, piss, shit, reproduce, sleep etc?
I’ll go out on a limb here and assume the answer to all these questions is “no”. Based on that, I urge you to think of this: there was a time when Christianity was illegal and if you can now exercise your beliefs without fear of being executed it’s only because some people, thousands of years ago, fought for you to do so. Your battle is over. Now let others have their wins.