The featured photo is of a quarter we used to decide where our next vacation will be. I think “In God We Trust”should come off of our currency, too… But that’s just me.
It’s been an interesting news week. A few days ago, I read about a new law passed in Louisiana requiring every classroom in every public or charter school to hang a sign that reads “In God We Trust”. This new law, which went into effect on August 1 of this year, replaces an old one from 2018 that simply required an “In God We Trust” sign to be hung somewhere in every school. The law, known as HB8, was authored by Rep. Dodie Horton. Ms. Horton, a Republican from Haughton, Louisiana, explained her reasoning behind writing the law, thusly:
“It doesn’t preach any particular religion at all, but it certainly does recognize a higher power.”
Naturally, this policy is controversial. Not everyone is Christian. Not everyone is religious. Not everyone believes in a “higher power” of any kind, nor do they necessarily want public schools to be pushing religious beliefs on their children. Moreover, it seems to me that given the sorry state of education in the United States today, legislators have much bigger fish to fry than ordering every school to hang a paper sign in every classroom reminding everyone that “In God We Trust.” Quite frankly, not everyone DOES trust in God, and it’s wrong to make that assumption. I would much rather Ms. Horton and her ilk do something about crazed lunatics killing kids in public schools with their high powered rifles, than hanging a stupid paper sign about God.
I am, myself, a Christian. I don’t go to church anymore, but I was raised Christian, and I do have a basic belief in God. I think this policy sucks, though. Louisiana residents may be mostly Christian and Republican, but not everyone there is. And taxpayer funded public schools should not be places where there’s any hint of religious indoctrination. These signs– make no mistake about it– refer to the Christian God. That’s not right. If you want your kids indoctrinated, send them to a private, religious based school.
I’ve got no problem whatsoever if religion is taught about in school, as long as the instruction isn’t just about Christianity, and it doesn’t push kids to choose one belief system over another. I actually wish I had known more about different religions than Protestantism when I was a young person. It would have spared me significant embarrassment when I ran into more worldly people in my early 20s.
Frankly, I hope the ACLU sues the hell out of Louisiana for this, although given our current Supreme Court makeup, with an actual “handmaiden” serving as a justice, I doubt it will do much good. Dodie Horton obviously “pooh poohs” the concerns of the ACLU. She said:
“It’s a positive message in this world that throws so many negative things at our children,”
Yeah… tell that to many struggling adults who suffered from religious trauma and abuse when they were kids, Dodie. It is a thing. Check this blog for the many book reviews I’ve written by people who have turned those nightmare church experiences into published memoirs in an attempt to process what happened to them when they had no choices or control over their own lives. Many kids get enough religious bullshit at home and in the churches their parents force them to attend. This should have no place at a public school. At best, it accomplishes nothing, as a lot of kids don’t care about religion. At worst, it might lead to indoctrination or trauma.
I see that charming Dodie Horton has also supported a “Don’t Say Gay” bill, too. She’s not a mental giant, is she? Sigh…
I was relieved to see that voters in Ohio showed good sense in rejecting Issue 1, a Republican backed ballot measure that would have made it significantly more difficult to enshrine abortion rights in the state constitution. The measure would have raised the threshold of support required for future amendments to Ohio’s constitution. Currently a simple majority is necessary; if Issue 1 had been approved, 60 percent support would have been required. It also would have required that any groups proposing amendments get signatures from voters in every one of Ohio’s 88 counties. Currently, only 44 counties must be represented on petitions. Issue 1 also would have eliminated the ten day “curing” period, which allows groups ten more days to gather more signatures in the event that any collected are deemed invalid.
Since Issue 1 was rejected, that means that a proposed amendment that would protect abortion rights by enshrining them in Ohio’s constitution has a higher chance of successfully passing in November. All that will be needed is a simple majority, rather than 60 percent approval. Republican lawmakers have admitted that Issue 1 was dreamed up as a means of preventing abortion rights from being enshrined in the constitution. They want to please their constituents, even though it’s pretty clear that more citizens want abortion rights to be protected than restricted.
I have not made it a secret how I feel about the extreme importance of abortion rights. I’m no longer directly affected by this issue, except that I see the restrictions as a violation of healthcare privacy. Moreover, as I have pointed out MULTIPLE times, sometimes people need abortions for truly heartbreaking medical reasons that are no one else’s damned business! Other times, people simply aren’t ready to be pregnant or to parent… and it should NEVER be up to unintentionally pregnant people to gestate babies to supply to would be adopters. The prospect of that makes me sick to my stomach… because the next thing that will come is forcing pregnant folks to seek medical care and put aside their own civil rights in favor of the developing fetus’s. They’ll also come for birth control.
Mention this to the anti-choice crowd, and they usually come up with comments that amount to “slut shaming”, and offer zero accountability to the men who got them pregnant. Nor does it take into account the fact that besides men who rape and molest, there are also men who cajole, whine, and pressure women to have sex, and lots of women who, for whatever reason, feel they can’t say “no”.
It’s still pretty early since Roe v Wade was overturned, but I really think these extreme abortion bans are going to cause huge problems on several levels. There will be more poverty, child abuse, substance abuse, and domestic violence. And states that enact these ridiculous laws are going to find a significant decrease in the availability and accessibility of decent healthcare, as good doctors leave those states, refuse to train in them, and go where they can practice the way they were trained without interference from law enforcement or government officials who have NO MEDICAL TRAINING WHATSOEVER.
For more on this, have a look at Mama Doctor Jones’s recent video…
It’s not just OB-GYNs who are going to leave, either. Other doctors will also leave, especially if they happen to be married to an OB-GYN, or someone who has high medical risks and needs competent care. Because if they came for the OB-GYNs, who’s to say they won’t come for other doctors? And who wants to practice medicine in such an oppressive environment, anyway?
What’s sad, though, is that so many people still don’t get it. They don’t understand why abortion rights are so important and extreme bans are so very dangerous to ALL females. Read the comments on MDJ’s channel, and you’ll see so many people who aren’t thinking critically about this. They keep spouting off how fetuses should have rights that supersede those of the person who is growing them in their bodies. It really is tragic.
Anyway… neither of these issues are situations that will ever directly affect me. I just feel like the country is going backwards. It’s depressing. But I’m glad to see that people in Ohio still have some good sense.
In other news, Bill says his molar just “sheared” off, and he’s probably going to need an extraction. 🙁 Guess he’ll be joining me on the dental implant train.