The Missouri Legislature, a body of lawmakers not known for its unbridled intellectualism, is out trying to pass one of those red-herring bills whose primary purpose is to stampede low-information voters and angry rednecks to the polls. The bill, actually a proposed amendment to the Missouri Constitution would offer "protections" to certain classes of people and enable them to discriminate against others.
Senate Joint Resolution 39 would prohibit the state from "penalizing clergy, religious organizations, and certain individuals for their religious beliefs concerning marriage between two people of the same sex." It will be eventually be passed by both houses of the Missouri Legislature, go before the voters where it will receive a whopping big approval, and ultimately be ruled unconstitutional by the federal courts.
It's all just a game to get certain people to rush to the polls. The result will be a temporary infusion of an unnecessary bit of hate in the state constitution, anger on both sides of an issue that needs to be healing, and, most likely, an expensive economic boycott of the state.
This week a small group of Missouri state senators made national news when they began a filibuster of the discriminatory measure. Governor Jay Nixon, in praising the valiant senators, said they were "standing on the right side of history." And they were. The filibuster ended as a result of a political ploy by Republicans after thirty-nine hours, and the measure passed 21-11. It still must pass the Senate one more time before heading on to a vote in the House.
And then the people will have their say - God love 'em.
I saw a post on Twitter this morning suggesting that some people should have given up hate for Lent instead of chocolate. Missouri legislators, of course, probably did not give up anything - it's not in their nature.