A Windy Mess – MMM 071314

Its been kind of breezy around these parts the last several days, so Murf thought it would be an awesome idea to use Wind as a theme for this weekend’s show. In the playlist below you will find a collection of mostly “windy” music. This is part of a  monthly series of shows that will address the elements. Expect us to do Fire for August, Water for September, and Earth for October.

With quite a bit of the music in the first hour or so being music that Phil has podcast permission for, you can click on the image to the left to listen to “Selections from the Mess” and hear some of what you might have missed (or enjoyed live) on Sunday 13 July 2014. With any luck, Phil will be able to do these “Selections” on a regular basis again starting with this edition and continuing on. This edition of Selections was edited and posted to the Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel on Wednesday 16 July 2014.

Playlist for the Mess

  1. Wytches’ Chant ’98 – Inkubus Sukkubus – Away with the Fairies
  2. A Sign of the Dragon – Steven Vitali – Language of the Soul
  3. On Gossamer Wings – John Luttrell – The Dream Exchange
  4. Clear Night – Jennifer DeFrayne – by a wire
  5. Air – Louis Colaiannia – Closer
  6. Whispers in the Dark – Peter Calandra – Inner Circle
  7. Desert Wind – Ricky Kej & Wouter Kellerman – Winds of Samsara
  8. Chidakash (inner sky) – Nadaka & Gopika – Surya-chants of light
  9. Wind in the Pipes – Meg Davis – Captain Jack and the Mermaid
  10. Goddess of the Wind – Ancient Brotherhood – Nature Goddesses
  11. Aeolus the Wind – Ruth Barrett & Cynthia Smith – The Heart is the Only Nation
  12. Wind Whisper, Wind Wail – Chorus of Life – Gaia’s Voice
  13. the Wind of Keltia – Alan Stevell – Master Serie
  14. Into the Wind – Colette O’Conner – Web in the Corner
  15. Irish Handfasting – Tuatha Dea – The Tribe
  16. Singing on the Wind – Anne Lister – Singing on the Wind
  17. Four Winds – Peter Conover – Falcon
  18. Gone with the Wind – Blackmore’s Night – Under a Violet Moon
  19. They Call the Wind Maria – Ed Ames – Very Best of
  20. Wild Soul – Cernunnos Rising – Urban Druid
  21. Order of Wind – Christopher Caouette – Ring of Dragons
  22. Let the Wind Blow – Wendy Rule – Black Snake
  23. Wind Across the Ridge – Dale Bacon –  Poems
  24. Master of the Wind – Van Canto – Break the Silence

Playlist for Selections from the Mess

  1. A Sign of the Dragon – Steven Vitali – Language of the Soul
  2. On Gossamer Wings – John Luttrell – The Dream Exchange
  3. Clear Night – Jennifer DeFrayne – by a wire
  4. Air – Louis Colaiannia – Closer
  5. Whispers in the Dark – Peter Calandra – Inner Circle
  6. Desert Wind – Ricky Kej & Wouter Kellerman – Winds of Samsara
  7. Chidakash (inner sky) – Nadaka & Gopika – Surya-chants of light
  8. Irish Handfasting – Tuatha Dea – The Tribe
  9. Gone with the Wind – Blackmore’s Night – Under a Violet Moon
  10. Wild Soul – Cernunnos Rising – Urban Druid
  11. Let the Wind Blow – Wendy Rule – Black Snake
  12. Wind Across the Ridge – Dale Bacon –  Poems

Thank you to *K8 or typing up the original playlist as posted on Facebook.

Remember that you can tune into Murphy’s Magic Mess live every Sunday morning at 9 Central on KZUM-Lincoln/KZUM-HD (89.3 FM on radio in the Lincoln, NE area).

Murf, *K8, and Phil are always happy to try to meet requests from the listeners. Leave a comment here, on Facebook, or call us during the show (402-474-5086) to make a request. Even if we do not have the music with us that Sunday we will do our best to meet your requests for the next show.

Advertisements

PMP: Rev Judith Laxer, Along the Wheel of Time

Rev. Judith Laxer joined KaliSara and RevKess in this week’s edition of Pagan-Musings Podcast to talk about Gaia’s Temple and her new book Along the Wheel of Time: Sacred Stories for Nature Lovers. No stranger to being interviewed or public speaking, Judith also has her own podcast available through iTunes and PodBean. These podcasts are recordings of her monthly worship services she presents at Gaia’s Temple.

Author Bio: Rev. Judith Laxer is a modern day mystic who believes that humor, beauty and the wonders of nature make life worth living. She is the founding Priestess of Gaia’s Temple, an inclusive, Earth-based Ministry where she has written delivered monthly worship services since 2000. Her writing has been featured in Spindleweed Magazine, The Women of Wisdom Anthology, Witches and Pagans Magazine, Living in Season and The Medulla Review. A teacher of the Mysteries, Judith is a keynote speaker and has offered classes and workshops on the return of the Divine Feminine in conferences nationally. She treasures her profession and dedicates her work to restoring the balance of female and male energies in our culture.

Judith left her home in New York in 1989 and found her way to the Pacific Northwest. She’s worked as a stage performer and a psychic. She now has a practice as a professional psychic in Seattle and serves her community as the Priestess at Gaia’s Temple for the last 14 years. Along the way she put pen to paper and wrote eight short stories, one for each point on the Wheel of the Year. In October 2013 she submitted her manuscript to BookTrope and signed her contract for Along the Wheel of the year on Yule 2013. Nine months after her submission the finished project was released. In her visit on PMPChannel she talks in great details about the writing process through to the publishing and marketing of her book.

You can find Judith’s book through her website, on Amazon, and Barnes & Noble. Even better, go to your local new age/metaphysical shop or bookstore and ask them to order it for you. That is one way to help promote Judith’s book – getting the word to the shop owners.

MUSIC

  1. Annette Cantor – Gaia – Songs to the Goddess
  2. Kellianna – She Is Crone – Elemental
  3. Chronilus – Brigid – Prologue
  4. Wendy Rule – Shine – Deity
  5. Bone Poets Orchestra – Seven Sisters – Ecstasy in the Ruins

Music note: Kellianna will be performing at Gaia’s Temple in November 2014. Judith is friends with one of the ladies of Chronilus.

PWN S4E6: What we’re really say is….

On the Pagan Weekly News RevKess and Zaracon do their best to bring you news, views, and information that is of interest to the Pagan community. Along the way we often discuss religious intolerance/persecution and the brighter side of our religio-spiritual umbrella: festivals, books, and music. This week’s edition is no exception to that pattern. As the title of this edition implies, Zaracon and RevKess discuss some of the popular memes that are floating around on the internet, primarily on Facebook. What is a meme, you might be asking. It used to mean “an element of a culture or system of behavior that may be considered to be passed from one individual to another by nongenetic means, especially imitation.” It has come to mean “a humorous image, video, piece of text, etc. that is copied (often with slight variations) and spread rapidly by Internet users.” Many of the memes that we see in social media are political in nature, especially during an election year. Whether they are political or not, memes are often half truths at best, out-right lies at worst. Many of the memes that people share seem humorous at first glance, if you look at them again you note that they are insulting to one group or another. Here is a prime example of such a meme. It is true that many who use politically correct speech are sugar coating things, but not because they cannot handle the truth. More often than you might think it is because they are trying not to insult someone else. This one makes no attempt to avoid insulting people. It does, however, bring to light what many think of politically correct speech. An example of how politically correct can be more insulting than sugar-coated would be many of the attempts the straight community use when talking about the gay community, in particular the trans community. See, look there. In an attempt to be general and “politically correct” I left out lesbians and bisexuals, gender queer and gender fluid. Other attempts to be more encompassing of everyone who might fit into that community is the abbreviation “LGBTQA” Even that collection of letters leaves people out.  Some like the acronym “SOGI”, sexual orientation and gender identity. This term is confusing for some, a literal look at the term would encompass the entirety of humanity. Perhaps that is the point. Maybe, just maybe, people should call it as they see it, or to use a phrase “call a spade a spade.” And then you have the opposite end of the spectrum. Memes that point out something that many might consider to be true. In this situation, many might consider it a fault to need alcohol and drugs to be entertained. Agreed. Drugs and alcohol are not necessary to have a good time. They can make for a little extra entertainment – like when your friend gets so drunk they can’t walk without falling down. In moderation, though, alcohol is fine – even some drugs are fine in moderation. RevKess would rather enjoy a glass of wine at dinner or while watching a movie than toke up, or even go out to the clubs. Combing through several pages of racist memes, none could be found that weren’t in some way disgusting or too far into the racist field (I think I need a shower now). But it is easy to understand that a racist meme is just wrong, insulting. Whether they are directed at whites, blacks, Jews, Asians, Latinos, whatever. They are all disgusting and insulting. After all this, there are some memes out there that are just down right funny, cute, or enlightening. Here is an example of one that is inspiring – at least for the bibliophiles out there. Just look around at RevKess’s home and you will see bookcases in every room (save the bathroom) and stacks of books literally to the ceiling. Never enough bookcases. And of course there are the snarky memes.

LINKS

Before we start with the links, RevKess would like to apologize for a tidbit of misinformation. He failed to double check the publication date of an article about Andy Griffth. Mr. Griffth died on July 3, 2012.  The article he saw just before going live was in memorial of him.

  • In the New York Times, opinion columnist Nicholas Kristof talks about how religious freedom is in peril, focusing on how Muslims seem to be using the idea of religious freedom to persecute non-Muslims – primarily in the Middle East and “underdeveloped” countries.
  • The Pope apologizes to Buddhists for the Christian Colonial Rule of Sri Lanka. Is it enough?
  • Rev. Chuck Currie, a minister for the United Church of Christ and columnist for Huffington Post – Religion, writes about how religious freedom is in under attack, and not how you might think. His focus is on how the SCOTUS ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby’s religious exemptions for certain birth control coverage may lead to further misuses of the law and the protection of freedom of religion. “In a nation as diverse as the United States of America, it is critical that the federal government be trusted to follow — and indeed, to role-model — equitable employment practices. We believe that our mutual commitment to the common good is best served by policies that prohibit discrimination based on factors that have no relationship whatsoever to job performance. We are better and stronger as a nation when hiring decisions are made based on professional merit rather than personal identity.” – from a letter Currie wrote to President Obama.
  • On the Wild Hunt, Cara Schulz writes about the SCOTUS decision, after breaking things down in understandable terms she quotes several Pagans who voiced their opinions. RevKess is quoted.
  • RevKess’s full opinion piece on the SCOTUS decision for Lavender Hill.
  • In the days following the SCOTUS decision many businesses and organizations have begun prep work to petition for religious exemptions from Obama’s promised executive order to ban discrimination of LGBTQ employees of federal contractors, and the current draft of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act before theHouse. RevKess wrote an opinion piece for Lavender Hill after the announcement that  the Nation Gay & Lesbian Task Force, the ACLU, and other civil rights groups have withdrawn their support for the current version of ENDA.
  • In the current edition of the Pagan Community Notes on the Wild Hunt, Jason PItzl-Waters talks about the New Alexandrian Library Project and the special issue of Green Egg in honor of Morning Glory Zell.
  • Heather Greene has written a two part series on Pagans on campus for the Wild Hunt. Part 1, Part 2.
  • Cara Schulz, taking a step away from the seriousness of SCOTUS, birth control, and religious freedom, writes on the Wild Hunt about discovering Pagan ethics in modern secular life – Football.
  • Silverspring on her blog writes about why some people may choose to remain in the broom closet.
  • Writing on Witches&Pagans’ blog, author and lecturer Karen Tate talks about integrity in Pagan writing. Read an excerpt from her new book Goddess Calling on the blog Bad Witch.
  • On Patheos, T Thorn Coyle writes about public priesthood.

MUSIC

  1. PWN intro, courtesy Aetopus
  2. Damh the Bard – The Parting Glass – Tales from the Crow Man
  3. Big Bad Gina – Freedom Connection – Lake of Dreams
  4. Leigh Anne Hussey – She is Grandmother – Homebrew
  5. Mama Gina – Summer of the Fae – Goddess Kiss’d
  6. Spiral Dance – Weaving the Summer – Magick (also available on their best of CD, The Quickening)
  7. Frenchy & the Punk – The Circus Parade – Hey Hey Cabaret
  8. Celia – Carry Me Home – Carry Me Home

Lavender Hill: Op-Ed: ENDA, why LGBT activists are abandoning ship

LHv6AIn light of the recent Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decision (read Phil’s earlier piece) regarding the limited religious exemption for Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Woods in regards to the Patient Protection and Affordable Healthcare Act (Obamacare), the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force has decided to withdraw their support for the current version of the Employment Non Discrimination Act (ENDA) that is sitting before Congress. The Washington Post, through their blog, reported on this Tuesday, shortly after the announcement was made.

From the Washington Post:

[A] coalition led by the American Civil Liberties Union, Lambda Legal and the National Center for Lesbian Rights said in a joint statement that they also would be withdrawing support. The bill’s religious exemptions clause is written so broadly that “ENDA’s discriminatory provision, unprecedented in federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination, could provide religiously affiliated organizations – including hospitals, nursing homes and universities – a blank check to engage in workplace discrimination against LGBT people,” the group said, adding later that if ENDA were to pass Congress, “the most important federal law for the [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender] community in American history would leave too many jobs, and too many LGBT workers, without protection.”

It should be interesting to note that one of the best recognized “activist” groups for LGBT rights is absent from that every growing list of groups that has withdrawn their support of ENDA.  That group being the Human Rights Campaign. Listeners of Lavender Hill know that Corwin has a strong stand against HRC for their push for heteronormalizing of the LGBT community.

ENDA, as it is written right now, contains a religious exemption component. “ENDA’s religious exemption recognizes that the U.S. Constitution protects certain employment decisions of religious organizations and that some religious organizations may have a specific and significant religious reason to make employment decisions, even those that take an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity into account. It also acknowledges that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees of religious organizations should be aware that they could lose their jobs, even jobs that do not serve a clearly religious function, because of sexual orientation or gender identity.” This breaks down into three parts (from CivilRights.org):

  • A complete exemption for houses of worship, parochial and similar religious schools, and missions
  • A codification of the so-called “ministerial exemption” recognized by many federal courts, exempting positions at religious organizations that involve the teaching or spreading religion, religious governance, or the supervision of individuals engaged in these activities
  • A provision allowing religious organizations, for classes of jobs, to require employees and applicants to conform to a declared set of significant religious tenets, including ones which would bar LGBT people from holding the position

I own two businesses. I’ve worked in the real world for the better part of my life. I’ve worked fast food, retail, customer service. I’ve done a lot of things to pay the bills. In my experience I have seen the necessity of the accepted idea “We reserve the right to refuse service.” I can even see where certain small businesses, privately owned, may feel that they have the right to refuse service to anyone who represents a violation of their deeply held religious beliefs. What I don’t understand is the resistance to follow federally mandated regulations and laws that are constructed to protect not only the individual, but the business.

I live in Nebraska. There is only one city in the entire state that it is illegal for me to be fired because I am gay. Omaha passed a city ordinance a few years back that added protections for lesbians, gays, and bisexuals to their non discrimination law. Lincoln, Grand Island, and Kearney all three have tried to pass similar ordinances. Lincoln’s was passed, but it was put on hold by the same city council that passed it after a voter petition succeeded in gaining more than enough signatures to require the ordinance be put before the population during the general elections. The city council has not brought it forward for a ballot vote yet.

Though Lincoln does not have such protections, many of the companies I have worked for over the  years do have such protections in their non discrimination policies. In recent years the only exception to that would be when I worked for Hobby Lobby seasonally five and six years ago. Even the current company that I work for has such protections. At this point in my life, I would not work for a company that did not.

Almost immediately after the decision was announced by SCOTUS in regards to the contraception case with Hobby Lobby businesses and organizations across the country began petitioning President Obama and the courts for religious exemptions that could allow them to discriminate against people of color, other religions, national origins, let alone discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity. With the hotly anticipated executive order from Obama that would make it illegal for federal contractors to discriminate against the LGBT community in hiring, promotion, and firing of employees many of these companies are federal contractors. There has been hint, mostly rumor, that some small businesses might use the SCOTUS ruling to allow them to refuse service to individuals that are perceived to be “different” from those business owners’ religious beliefs.

I still maintain that privately owned businesses, in cities/states that do not have protections for the LGBT community in their non discrimination policies/laws, have the ability to refuse service to LGBT people. This means that a bakery specializing in wedding cakes can refuse to make a cake for a same sex wedding if that bakery is in a city/state that does not have such protections. This also means that a landlord or rental agency can evict a tenant that they perceive to be gay under the same legal circumstances. This does not mean that a privately owned business can refuse to provide their services to a black man, a Jew, a woman, or an elderly or disabled person. Those situations are covered by federal protections.

A grey area you say? No. An opportunity. When someone is refused services because they are or are perceived to be gay, lesbian, bi, transgender, etc then that person has the right to sue.  Such a suit may lead to legal precedent in that city/state that could lead to the addition of protections for LGBTQ people to local or state (or even federal) non discrimination laws.

Phil Kessler is one of the hosts of Lavender Hill on KZUM in Lincoln, NE. KZUM is Nebraska’s first and onlyPhil in Studio community radio station. Lavender Hill is perhaps the only LBT/SOGI news and talk program on Nebraska radio, locally produced or otherwise. The opinions expressed in this op-ed piece or his alone and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of his co-host, KZUM – its programmers, employees, underwriters, or board of directors – nor do they necessarily reflect those of the producers and hosts of programming on the Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel and contributors to the PMPChannel.com blogsite.

Tune in every Sunday at 11am Central for Lavender Hill with Corwin and Phil on KZUM-Lincoln/KZUM-HD.

PMP: Rev. Terry Michael Riley – Southern Delta Church of Wicca-ATC

KaliSara and RevKess are joined on the air for this edition by Rev. Terry Michael Riley. Terry is one of the founding elders of the Southern Delta Church of Wicca. SDCW was incorporated into the Aquarian Tabernacle Church in 1994. The coven existed for thirteen years prior to incorporation with the ATC. The ATC was formalized as a Federally recognized church in 1979.

In 1993, Terry was in the process of opening a metaphysical shop in his local community. The townsfolk too umbrage to the idea and started causing various problems for Terry, his family, and his coven. It was around then that he contacted the ATC and the ball began rolling for incorporation into the Southern Delta Church of Wicca.

Since then SDCW has become a mainstay in the Arkansas Pagan community. In the last twenty years SDWC has built a reputation and become affiliated with the Aquarian Tabernacle Church and several other affiliated congregations. Terry and the other church elders have educated themselves on local and state laws regarding marriage and other legal issues that may be of importance to their congregation.

Having a strong resemblance to the mythic images of Gandalf and Merlin, Riley has become a respected member of the community, not just the Pagan community. It was during an interview in the early 90’s that he discovered that mainstream media only uses the title reverend in their coverage when the person in question ha earned a degree from a seminary – has an education that would reflect such a title. That, along with other influences, led to the formation of the Woolston-Steen Theological Seminary. Woolston-Steen offers a variety of courses in which a student can everything from an associates to a doctorate in divinity.

The Aquarian Tabernacle Church has an online newsletter called Panegyria. Contributors to the site include various elders and members of the ATC. Alfred Willow Hawk from the Wite Rayvn Metaphysical Church-ATC, and a former guest on the Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel, is just one of those contributors.

During the conversation, Riley brought up the recent goings-on in Beebe, AR. He spoke briefly about the June city council meeting at which members of SDCW and other ATC and Pagan organizations appeared for moral support to Seekers Temple. The hosts of PMPChannel will continue to share updates on High Priest Dahl’s efforts in Beebe.

Brothers of the Sun: Pagan Men Mysteries

Click to order from CreateSpace

Riley is also the author of Brothers of the Sun: Pagan Men Mysteries. We did not have an opportunity during the broadcast to speak with Terry Riley about this work. RevKess is looking forward to taking the opportunity to read the book and perhaps inviting Riley on the show again to discuss men’s mysteries in detail.

MUSIC

  1. Damh the Bard – Pagan Ways – Cauldron Born
  2. Jenna Greene – Chapel of the Wood – Wild Earth Song
  3. SJ Tucker – Ravens in the Library – Mischief
  4. Emerald Rose – Freya, Shakti – Bending Tradition
  5. Leigh Anne Hussey – Rise Up Witches – Homebrew

You can find Pagan-Musings Podcast on Facebook and follow the channel on Twitter.

MMM: Independence 2014

fireworksOn Murphy’s Magic Mess we like to celebrate the holidays with music and stories. That’s just what we did this weekend for Independence Day. Murf, however, was at home with one of those miserable summer colds. *K8 and Phil managed to muddle through without her. Phil putting together the first hour, *K8 the second. As you can tell from the playlist, the show became something resembling Hindu Patriotism. Not intended, but it did come out that way.

This week is one of those special tracking weeks that we have to do at KZUM. That means that we have to track and report to SoundExchange everything we play, when we started the track and when we ended. This gives us the opportunity to play longer tracks. Sure, we could play 10-45 minute tracks every week if we wanted to, but we want to give the listener as much variety as we can every week. We’ll be doing this again in August.

Playlist from 6 July 2014

  1. I Am A Leaf – Spiral Rhythm – Roll of Thunder
  2. Dakshinam – Nadaka & Gopika – Surya: Chants of Light
  3. New Earth Calling – Ricky Kej & Wouter Kellerman – Winds of Samsara
  4. Love Serve Remember – Harnam – Kirtan Aid: Orphans of Rishikesh
  5. Guru Ram Das – Ashana – River of Light
  6. Jaya Shiva Omkara – Manish Vyas – Shivoham: a Journey into Bliss
  7. Sacred Pleasure – Shawna Carol – Goddess Chant
  8. Red Alabaster & Blue – Celia – Red Alabaster & Blue
  9. Daughters of the Earth – Kellianna – The Ancient Ones
  10. Precious Freedom – Brave Combo – Holidays
  11. America – Roy Zimmerman Faulty Intelligence
  12.  Coyote’s Gift – Amy Friedman (featuring Arigon Starr) – Tell Me a Story 2: Animal Magic
  13. Liberty – Bryan Bowers – The View from Home
  14. Good Old USA – New Generation Band – This Ain’t Your Daddy’s Polka
  15. The Sun in the Sky – Chief Jim Billie – Seminole Fire-Legends & Stories
  16. America the Beautiful – Brave Combo – Sounds of the Hollow
  17. Amerika – Brave Combo – Polka’s Revenge
  18. Origin of Fire – Greg Howard – Tales of Wonder
  19. Hills of America – Emerald Rose – Bending Tradition
  20. The Star Spangled Banner – Jimi Hendrix – Woodstock: Three Days of Peace & Music

Murphy’s Magic Mess airs live every Sunday at 9am Central on KZUM-Lincoln/KZUM-HD (89.3FM in the Lincoln, NE area). You can find the Mess on Facebook.

A note to anyone who may have attempted to call in during the show. A firmware or software issue has been cropping up on the weekends that deactivates the phones. The program manager and our station engineer are working with our phone service to correct the problem.

Op-Ed: SCOTUS & Reproductive Rights

Phil in StudioI’m going to start this out with a full disclosure. I’m a former employee of Hobby Lobby, I’m a man, I do not have children, and I am gay.  The store I worked in had a Jewish woman as a supervisor, a Buddhist working the sales floor, a Pagan (me), and at least two openly gay employees.

On Monday 30 June 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States delivered their ruling on the case involving Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Woods. These companies had challenged the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that companies pay for contraceptives. The ruling effects a limited number of contraceptives, “morning after” pills and IUDs, not contraception in general. And of course abortion. The USAToday has a list of examples of the contraceptives that this ruling does and does not effect.

Wednesday morning at work, a customer with whom I regularly have political conversations with came in. I noticed that he had a limp and asked him about it. That turned towards talking about health care, in particular the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). This man is relatively intelligent, compared to man of the conversations I have with customers, he is very intelligent. He’s a small business owner and a Christian. He agrees with Hobby Lobby and other companies that are owned (or the majority shareholders are) by Christians should not be required to cover contraceptives in their insurance policies. Saying that people who wish to use prescribed contraceptives should pay for them with private insurance or out of pocket.  (Note: the majority of Hobby Lobby employees work less than 30 hours a week, thus not qualifying for insurance coverage in most states. They are also paid minimum wage or slightly hiring, thus not being able to afford private coverage.) He went so far as to say that “he shouldn’t pay for these whores.” I looked him dead in the eye and asked him if my sister-in-law is a whore because she uses birth control pills to regulate her menstrual cycle.

These kinds of conversations are happening all over the place right now, of that I am sure. I see the memes and discussion threads on my friends’ Facebook pages. I’ve seen articles in the local and national papers that come in at work. People have been following this case carefully and continue to follow the outcome now that SCOTUS has made their decision, a decision of a 5-4 vote.

As a gay man without children, it seems odd to some that I might have a strong opinion on this case. I have a strong george takei on contraceptionopinion because I am a person living in the United States. I have sisters, nieces, and female friends that are effected by this decision. I am effected by the precedence this ruling makes.

Already companies have been filing suits or briefs requesting religious exemption from other Federal laws. This ruling can and will open the door to cases where companies, privately held or otherwise, want to use their religious beliefs to have legal discrimination. We’ve already seen, since the 2013 SCOTUS ruling on DOMA section 3, private owned companies seeking to deny marriage services (including wedding cakes) to same-sex couples. With this current ruling from SCOTUS these companies and others may have more ammunition in those cases.

Listeners of my community radio program Lavender Hill, have heard me speak out on these situations. I do feel that a privately owned business, single person or single family ownership, that has less than 15 or so employees should be able to determine what kind of clientele they serve. That freedom, however, ends when it encroaches on the civil rights of others. A company or business should not be allowed to discriminate against people of other races, national origins, or other similar criteria. But, those same companies may have a design that would preclude them seeking to hire person that does not fit that design – for example the YWCA (a large institution) may not want to hire a man to teach aerobics or some such as it may interfere with business. A “gentlemen’s club” may not want to hire a male exotic dancer, etc, etc.

That said, I am a realist. If we allow companies to pick and choose willy-nilly (or after long consideration) what “kinds” of people they will hire then we open the door to discrimination of all kinds. It may be a faux-news site, but I have seen articles where privately owned restaurants are seeking a religious exemption to not serve black people. Many feel that the SCOTUS ruling on the religious exemption in Obamacare regarding contraception coverage will open the door for companies to seek such exemption in the yet-to-be-Federalized Employment Non Discrimination Act (ENDA).

According to a TalkingPointsMemo from Wednesday, “Without a robust religious exemption this expansion of hiring rights will come at an unreasonable cost to the common good, national unity and religious freedom,” according to a letter of intent sent by 14 faith and business leaders to President Obama. This letter was sent response to Obama’s June announcement to use his executive power to require Federal contractors to provide an environment of non-discrimination for LGBT employees. Though the letter did not mention the Hobby Lobby decision, the timing of the letter and its intent makes it clear that these faith and business leaders wish to use this SCOTUS decision to sway the Administration.

I’m a man, I’m gay, but I am person. SCOTUS is granted the legal right to make decisions that may have direct effect on me and others in the United States. When others in the United States seek to use those decision to have discriminatory effect on other citizens then they, in this case business, are over stepping their bounds. Fine, Hobby Lobby and certain other privately owned multi-million (multi-billion) dollar companies have won their case with SCOTUS and do not have to follow the Obamacare requirement to provide coverage for certain forms of contraceptives, including abortion. That does not open the doors, on moral and ethical grounds, for other companies to apply for religious exemptions when it comes to hiring and firing of people that they perceive to be gay, people that are of another national origin or race. Etc. Etc.