The Helena City Commission has voted unanimously to give its preliminary approval to a non-discrimination ordinance they’ve been considering for some time. In case you missed the hearing, there were some really bizarre statements made in opposition to the idea.
To give you the flavor of who’s against ending discrimination, check out the opposition’s website. The main argument appears to be that “our values have not changed since the dawn of time” and so we should not be changing a Helena city ordinance either.
It’s hard to calculate the myriad of ways in which this premise is flawed. There are many traditional beliefs have gone by the wayside “since the dawn of time”–and many more have been added. For example, 14th century dwellers valued burning cats, believing they were Satan’s minions. With all the cat burning, rats ran rampant– spreading the bubonic plague which killed 200 million people. So that value’s out.
The use of toilet paper wasn’t even around at “the dawn of time” to be valued, yet our beliefs have evolved so that TP it is now widely supported–though perhaps not by everybody if the website’s creator is to be believed. And slavery, much used in biblical times, is now thankfully illegal. Many kinds of discrimination are now illegal too — though there is still more work to be done.
As to who is behind the opposition site, this man is already taking credit for it, as you can see from this screenshot:
The author, who calls himself only “Jim,” says he’s from Tennessee and is a teacher at an unaccredited local religious school. This is probably Helena Christian School or Last Chance Academy. In his spare time, he hunts with Rep. Mike Miller (R-HD 84).
Jim says he attended a theological seminary but appears to have dropped out saying he “found that it wasn’t “theological” enough.” Among the problems Jim found with the the theological school was that it had an Office of Women’s Concerns:
“as if the Bible doesn’t say enough against the role of women’s general LEADERSHIP over the local church.”
He believes that environmentalists are “evil” and that environmentalism is “a religion of human sacrifice.” As proof of this, Jim explains that the ban on the carcinogenic chemical pesticide DDT was a government conspiracy to “exterminate” more people with malaria than Mao, Stalin, and Hitler killed combined.
If you live in Helena, and do not want these views incorporated into your city government, do not dispair. Send an email in support of the ordinance and against a bizarre amendment (more on that later) to the city commission at firstname.lastname@example.org The idea will have its next hearing on December 17th.