Wednesday, May 6, 2009
How Goes Maine So Goes The Nation ?
The political saying above was about Presidential Elections that saw the State of Maine voting for the winner 90% of the time in the past century. Maine in the past seemed to be right in the middle but on the fine winning edge of how to judge the mood and course of the nation.
Gay marriage has come to Maine. There is obviously something going on out there in the world. Being the flaming liberal that I am, I believe in equal rights and opportunities for everyone. The liberal in me is also still a little bit homophobic. That is what I was taught in the American Culture that I grew up in. The American Culture I will die in someday in the future will have Gay Marriage almost everywhere. Theory is one thing. The facts staring at you in the face is quite a different thing. It will take some getting used to (for me at least).
I have known and socialized with Gay people in the past. Having lived on and off in NYC for close to a quarter century, it is impossible not to know any gay people. Live and let live has always been the common attitude for the most part. Hate crimes can happen just as easily here in NYC as they do in Wyoming. Social mores can change. Human nature remains the same.
This is where the paradigm shift happens in our Global Culture. This is where there are no real roadmaps. What was described in the Bible as a no-no is now getting mainstream secular attention. Without a Constitutional amendment supporting rights to gay marriage I would guesstimate this status will be a permanent civil function of a dozen to half the fifty states in the next decade. Once the novelty, fear and bias wears off, perhaps all or almost all states will recognize this as a legal status.
Isn’t it odd how so much of what the common culture now wants comes from the culture itself and not from tradition and not from sacred texts anymore? The secular state has arrived even with all the right wing evangelists screaming and kicking and spouting ancient words every step of the way.
What I first thought of as a Global Town Square and as perhaps a variation of the old concept of the “global village” is nothing quite as I imagined it to be – today.
We all not in a physical town square anymore. We are in a virtual town square and it is the same in Iowa as it is in New York City. We cling to our homes, our worlds and we wrap ourselves in a bubble with cell phones, iPods, earphones, laptops and centered around the virtual Yellow Pages, Webster’s Dictionary and Sears Catalogue of the new age – the Internet. We reinforce our own view of the world instead of the other way around as it has been for centuries.
My need to be spiritual depends on me. I do not trust the moral authority of the Christian or Catholic Church that I have seen reshape itself into its own financial and survival mode self interests and at the expense I think of the people who once sat in the pews of churches. Even the intimacy of being in a small church or chapel to pray or meditate is dwarfed by Mega churches designed more for rock concerts than spirituality that I feel comfortable with.
Part of my reason for writing this blog has been to keep an ongoing interest and observation of the day to day lives of people in the domestic end of my street and all the way to the national culture generated from Hollywood, NYC or Wash. D.C.. The view I see today is a remarkable but twisted view through a prism.
What I see through that prism I sometimes do not grasp easily or understand but stand by in cautious curiosity and feel that no matter what I see or feel does not matter much. The world and the culture is evolving all around us. I only hope that the end results or the discernible results down the road somehow match what is now, has been and will hopefully remain a human culture.
The future has arrived! (and we all remain pilgrims in search of something)