The immediate feelings I had after reading House Bill 2453 were sadness and outrage. Sadness that some Kansas leaders promote discord and distrust; outrage that religious freedom was used as a smokescreen to conceal their own prejudices. As a Kansas resident, I consider these actions to be a threat to our peaceful and civilized way of life.
The notion that religious freedom can be better protected through acts of blatant discrimination is preposterous. I am a Christ-follower, and the guiding principles for my life are found in Christ’s teachings. Love is the basis for everything He taught. Hate and discrimination are anti-theses to the lessons He communicated.
It makes me feel sad that 72 elected officials who represent the people of Kansas voted for this bill. I have to believe that these representatives have either never understood or have forgotten history. Most, if not all, of the terrible things that have happened in history can be traced to either greed or deeply held prejudices.
Our nation celebrates the Civil Rights Movement, but how soon some forget that people, people just like you and me who had feelings, hopes, dreams, and families, were kidnapped, transported to our land, and conscripted as slaves. Then, when the atrocities of slavery ended, legal discrimination began. Consequences of that terrible period of discrimination are still felt in all areas of our society.
As representatives of the people, what rationale or justification do you have for proposing and voting for a law that discriminates against citizens of the state of Kansas? Do arrogance and feelings of superiority serve as barriers to caring about and understanding others? Do you not have the ability to gather facts and think critically about issues? Do you not realize that the law for which you voted endorses oppression? Do you not recognize that oppression is unjust?
Hitler loathed Jews, transvestites, Jehovah’s Witnesses, gays, and lesbians. Mass graves hold the bones of the German citizens he hated.
Mussolini hated races other than his own. Under his dictatorship, life in Italy was a miserable existence for those of the races he targeted.
Hirohito despised other nations and detested the U.S. The Japanese soldiers’ abhorrence of, and disrespect for, others was so intense that, in addition to killing enemy combatants, they beheaded their corpses.
Stalin envied the rich and disliked the educated. His goal was to negate the influence of these people in Russian society. He spied on his own people and forbade the practice of any religion. The price for displeasing his regime was death.
Khamenei detests the “infidels.” His discriminatory brand of religion calls for all of them (us) to die.
We are a nation with an ideal of “liberty and justice for all.” What you did in passing this bill was to chip away at our foundation of freedom and justice.
I believe that Kansas House members who voted for House Bill 2453 owe the people of their districts apologies and promises to be more judicious when mapping the future of our state.
Unfortunately, humility is scarce in the world of politics and apologies will not likely be forthcoming. I can only pray for more sensible decisions in the future.
I have a voice. I have a vote. I will use both during the next election.
A Kansas Resident