Insomnia Log

This is what keeps me awake at night???

Who needs sleep? (well you’re never gonna get it)
Who needs sleep? (tell me what’s that for)
Who needs sleep? (be happy with what you’re getting,
There’s a guy who’s been awake since the second world war)

-- words and music by Steven Page & Ed Robertson

Location: Boulder, Colorado, United States

Everything you need to know about me can be found in my posts

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

I Know Plenty of Kooks (but I wouldn't let my daughter date one)

If you are a regular reader of my essays, you know that I don't have much respect for Pat Robertson. Personally I think he is no more than a religious nut that somehow gets a significant number of folks to listen to him spew nonsense into the atmosphere.

Pat Robertson does have one redeeming value, however: What he does is protected by the Constitution of the USA. He can believe anything he wants, and he can say anything he wants. And, fortunately for me, I am just as free to label him for the kook that he is.

Ray Nagin, on the other hand, is the Mayor of a major city. When he spouts off, in his official capacity, he is not just proving his nuttiness. He is likely violating his oath of office.

Now, I don't know what the oath of office for Mayor of New Orleans is, but I assume it includes something about supporting the laws of the city, the state, and/or the country. When he talks about New Orleans having to be a "chocolate" city, he is not simply insulting people of multiple races. He is also advocating for one segment of the population, and presumably against another segment of his constituency.

In addition, Nagin has said that God wants it this way. He also accuses God of punishing America for Nagin's specific list of sins with the hurricanes of the past year. The honorable mayor is welcome to believe what he wants. But when he starts to perform the duties of his office to advance his own religious beliefs, that is clearly a violation of the constitutional separation of church and state.

Ray Nagin, be a kook if you must. But, given your official position you need to be an equal opportunity kook -- a kook for all the citizens of New Orleans, not just the chocolate-flavored ones. And if you are going to impose your kookiness of the citizens of your city, make sure your kookiness is not just your religion's kookiness, but rather one that we can all enjoy together.

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