Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Christianity Of Dot-Marie Jones

Who is Dot-Marie Jones?  She is an actress who plays one of my favorite characters on "Glee."  If you don't know what "Glee" is, then, "Google it, Boot."  She is also a lesbian, married to the lady she loves and has been with for a long time.

Is Dot-Marie Jones a "professed" Christian?  I have no idea.  But, what I do know is that she acts like one.

Here is a case in point.


To me, this is Christianity in action.  She is doing as Jesus instructs us.  She is doing to others what she would have them do to her.  She is turning the other cheek.  She is showing forgiveness.  She is showing charity to those who persecute her.

In the face of nasty attitudes and comments, Dot-Marie Jones could be justifiably angry and hurt.  And maybe she is.  I would be.  But, look at the example she sets for others.  She is a peacemaker.  And what does Jesus say about peacemakers???

I hope Dot-Marie Jones would not mind me making these comments.  I don't mean to imply that I think she should become a Christian, if she is not a Christian.  I hope I don't make her a target of more nastiness.  I don't wish to turn her into some kind of symbol for the "culture war."  It's just that I've seen a lot of terrible things said to and about LGTB individuals by Christians, even by those of my own faith, and it feels like a knife to my heart.  I think it is scandalous.

In fact, I am seeing a lot of things being said and done by Catholic individuals and institutions lately that disturb me.  The other day, for example, I read about a single woman who teaches at a Catholic school.  She is pregnant.  She got fired.  Because -- horror of horrors -- she had SEX.  WITHOUT BEING MARRIED.  Hello.  But, did I fall asleep and wake up in the Middle Ages!?!?

Yes.  The Catholic Church teaches that sex is for marriage.  But, you know, sex happens.  It can happen more easily than you think.  I mean, I don't know this lady's story.  Is she engaged?  Is she dating someone whom she loves?  Is she lonely?  Did she want to feel close to somebody, if even for a little while?  Did she encounter a hot man and lose control of herself momentarily?  Did she encounter a hot man and just decide, "I AM GOING TO HAVE THAT HOT MAN."  I mean, that could have happened.  Ovulation, you know.  And she was obviously ovulating.  Was she raped?  But, you know, whatever happened, IT DOES NOT FREAKING MATTER, AND IT IS NONE OF OUR FREAKING BUSINESS, BECAUSE SHE IS NOT OURS TO JUDGE." 

AND -- if a dude teacher from that same Catholic school went out to a bar on a Friday night and picked up a hot woman and had sex and got the hot woman pregnant, he could just keep it a secret and nobody would ever have to know and he could just keep his dandy reputation and his job and his health insurance and retirement benefits. 


ALSO -- This woman could have had an abortion.  Yes, she could have gotten fired for that, too.  But, it would have been much less likely, because it would have been very easy to keep it a secret.  A pregnancy, though?  And a wee little new baby?  Not so easy to hide, eh?  And if she had a secret abortion, she could have kept her sterling reputation and her job and her health insurance and retirement benefits. 

But, now?

The single pregnant mother-to-be has no job and no income.  Perhaps she is keeping her health benefits, because of COBRA.  But, COBRA is freaking expensive for a singe lady with no job.  Perhaps, the care of Obama will help her out.  Thank God for Mr. Obama.  Maybe she has family and friends who will come to her aid.  Maybe the daddy is around.  But -- the thing is -- this Catholic institution, all pro-life and moral and stuff like that, took away her means of supporting herself at a time when she is most vulnerable.  Fuck that.  "Well," you may be thinking to yourself, "she can just get another job."  But, HELLO, have you checked this economy lately?  And a single pregnant lady is not exactly the most appealing candidate for a prospective employer.  Personally?  I hope she sues that Catholic school and wins an absolute PILE of cash.

And why did this school feel justified in firing this lady?  Because, probably, in violating Church teaching, the Powers-That-Be decided that she had become a poor example to the kids.  I ask you, though, who is being the poor example here?  If my kids were in that school, I'd yank them out so fast that the principal's head would spin.

I look at this stuff, ya know?  The stuff that is being said and done in the name of keeping the Church and her institutions "pure" or whatever?   The stuff that is being done in order to "defend the 'truth'?"  And I am just ashamed.  I hear Jesus' words about the "scribes, pharisees, and hypocrites" echo in my mind. 

I guess there's one piece of news I feel better about.  At my son's college, they are building a special place for single moms to live while they undertake their studies.  I tip my hat to that.  Because that is what Christians do.  They take people, in whatever hurting situations they find themselves in, and lift them up.  They don't judge them.  They lift them up.

And the same goes for how we should treat the LGBT community.  My daughter follows the blog of a Catholic gay man.  This man is trying to live out the Church's teaching, and so is abstaining from sexual activity.  He seems to have chosen this for himself, freely.  He doesn't seem to feel that it has been imposed on him.  I will take him at his word.  But, one thing that he expresses quite beautifully is how DIFFICULT this choice is for him to live out.  It is painful.  And I wonder, if I were a lesbian, if I would make the same choice, or if I would choose to be with somebody.  Because I know myself.  And I know that an intimate relationship has always been important to me, almost like life-blood.  And I hope, that if I were a lesbian, and if I had a partner or a wife, that people would understand about that.  I would hope that people would still accept me and love me and not judge me.  And not fire me from my job.  Or slash my tires.  Because I know of at least one case where a married lesbian couple had their tires slashed by those who disapprove of them.

And if there is a Heaven, and if I somehow manage to get there, I guess I hope my company will be Dot-Marie Jones and the brave single mom, rather than the tire-slashers and the employers who are trying to keep their institutions "pure."

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