Separation of Church and State…of Faith

I admit, I didn’t really “grow up” in the church. I went to vacation bible school many summers and was a part of a couple of youth groups and for awhile, my parents and I went to service at Fairburn United Methodist Church on many Sundays. I wasn’t unfamiliar with church. I had a decent amount of exposure. I just wasn’t a full-fledged “church person.” That was largely a result of my dad’s influence. He was very clear on his opinion that church often stood in the way of a relationship with God. One of his sayings was, “The biggest obstacle between man and his God is organized religion.” For a long time, I didn’t really understand that sentiment. I understood the words, but not in any really meaningful way. It stayed in the back of my head throughout childhood. Then, when I was 16, those words became real to me.

I was regularly attending youth nights at a sizable church in the town where I attended high school. I remember it being a good time and I think I got some good stuff out of it. But you see, I was still not baptized at that point and the pastor of that church approached me about it as well as about attending on Sundays and bringing my family. We began talking and he began selling and I immediately became resistant. I don’t like to be sold to. In fact, it’s one of the fastest ways to make me dislike a person and that has been true all my life. I don’t like to be pushed into anything. But, I listened respectfully. Until he got to a point in his preaching where he tried to convince me that I couldn’t have a relationship with God unless I went through the church.

To say I was immediately incensed is an understatement. He was telling me, in his preacherly way, that to get to God, I had to go through him. Oh. Hell. No. I let him have it. I explained to him that graduating from seminary and leading a church did not make him any better than me nor did it give him special privileges with or access to God.

Today, that preacher is still around and plenty of people fall all over him but I’m not one of them. I have no respect for him. It still gets my dander up when I think about it. Because, the net result was, that conversation turned me away from religion. And, for a long while, God.

In later years, I did put a toe back into the church waters and I was eventually baptized. When I was ready. But my underlying feelings on organized religion never really changed. I went for years waffling back and forth and eventually, I found a church where I felt very comfortable and I’ve had a pretty steady, healthy relationship with organized religion for a few years. I seemed to reach a realization with myself that church isn’t always about what you get out of it but what you can offer and that even though I may be at a bit of odds with it, I still have something to contribute on a larger scale.

But, I find myself back in that place again. having a real distaste for organized religion. Because, you see, it’s comprised of people. Fallible people, judgmental people, pious people, hypocritical people.

Now, I understand those characteristics are present EVERYWHERE, not just the church. We are ALL judgmental and hypocritical and it’s just plain funny when someone judges another for being judgmental – it’s judgment and hypocrisy all rolled into one – what a bargain!

I get that we all pick and choose parts of the Bible and that we all have our hot button issues. I do and you do too. You could say you didn’t but we both know that’s not true. And I guess one of my hot button issues is religious zealotry. Those who want to make sure everyone hears how often they pray and how well they know scripture and how many committees they’re on at church. It’s great to pray. It’s great to know the Bible and it’s great to be involved in helping others. And it’s okay that we know that you do those things. We just don’t want to be beaten over the head with them.

I sit back and think about all the problems I have with organized religion and the church and I can so easily see why the faithless have ZERO use for it. I’m full of faith and have a relationship with God but even I sometimes find myself downright disgusted with organized religion. I can only imagine how those without faith see it.

I fully admit that I’m not intimately familiar with the Bible. I haven’t read it cover to cover and while I know some scriptures and Psalms by memory, I can quote It’s a Wonderful Life with far more accuracy than I can most bible stories. Let me stop right here and ask you if you’re secretly thinking at this point that you’re a better Christian than I am. If so, I personally think you may not be comprehending those Bible verses you rattle off so well. But ok.

Back to the Bible. I happen to think it’s better used as a tool than a weapon but that’s just my opinion, based upon personal experience and observation. I’d actually be interested to know how many people were brought to faith using the tactics I find off-putting. I guess if you’re into being on the receiving end of condescension and guilt, then hallelujah.

And let’s talk about the church itself for a moment. Do we really think that God is pleased that the church is such a political monster? Do we think that God is pleased that churches are such big business-minded entities? I can’t imagine He’s okay with that. We spend so much time trying to make the church benefit us and bend it to our will that we end up kicking God out of it entirely. I don’t know about you, but I sure wouldn’t take kindly to being kicked out of my own house. I’m fact, I’m pretty sure I’d be really pissed about it. And we all know God can get really, really angry.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have personal convictions and boundaries. If the church is going in a direction which is strongly against your morals, then you should probably look for one which better aligns with them. But manipulating and maneuvering others to fit in to your brand of morality, I think, is ill-advised.

I’m not really sure where my relationship with organized religion will go. It’s in a state of flux right now, which is fitting seeing as my church is in a state of flux right now as well. I’d like for us to be at peace with each other and feel comfortable with it but time will tell. I can tell you though that seeing people splashing religious piety all over the place really doesn’t help. Convictions are one thing. Speaking for God is a little something different. He has the authority to condemn me to hell…you do not.

The church (and that includes all of us who consider ourselves a part of organized religion) has a choice – it can be an enhancement or a hindrance and so often, the latter is the result. Either way, the church will not affect my relationship with God. My faith will remain strong because I purposely separate the two entities. Organized religion is earthly. God is not.

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This Girl is on FIRE!

This Girl is on FIRE!

I have been tremendously busy lately. And all fired up. There have been many changes in the last couple of weeks. The first being I have discontinued my association with a certain purple-themed women’s shooting organization. Long story short, my time with them showed me that the organization’s founder was not someone I was comfortable being affiliated with for numerous reasons. That being the case, I also could not, in good conscience, encourage anyone else to be a part of her organization. I had determined I would be leaving back in December and such decision was consistently reinforced from that time until I left on April 17th.

I spent the last few months biding my time, trying to figure out a solution or find an alternative. Disbanding my chapter was not an option for me, as I had made a commitment to my ladies. This was a group which I built all on my own and I’d worked hard to develop it. I spent a lot of time and my personal money and throwing it away wasn’t a consideration for me.

God provides. I finally discovered a wonderful alternative. I had to sniff it out and hunt it down like a dog but I found it. I’ll share more about that later when the time is right. It’s a brand new organization and we’re working hard to get everything rolling. What I love about it is that it’s being built with integrity and a greater purpose. I’m so happy to be a part of it and I’ll be sharing more soon. But suffice to say, I have been working my tail off, happily.

Another wonderful thing that has happened is that HB 60, the Safe Carry Protection Act, was signed last week! I was invited to the signing but prior commitments kept me from going. It would have been fun to be there but the important thing is that come July 1, Georgia will be a much safer place to live.

And, speaking of a safer Georgia, I’ve been sitting on some other information for months that can finally be shared. Another bill, HB 826, was signed into law yesterday. While on the surface this bill makes great strides to remove the silly “zero-tolerance” policies in schools which have ended up in expulsion for kids with items such as seat belt cutters in their car on school campus, it does far more than most understand. This bill also decriminalizes campus carry.

Yes, you read correctly. Come July 1, campus carry will now be decriminalized for those with a valid Georgia Weapons License. Understand that it’s been kept quiet for obvious reasons but also please know that nothing was hidden. The bill has always been available for anyone’s survey and study as all bills are. Nothing was hidden or snuck in at the 11th hour. It passed the House unanimously and the Senate with all but two votes in the affirmative. I and others who were familiar with this bill have been encouraged to remain quiet about it though, as any extra attention to it could have derailed the bill in its entirety.

While the language is a bit confusing, I encourage you to read it. I would also encourage common sense and good judgment come July 1. Just because you can doesn’t mean that you should and we should all strive to be responsible citizens and balance rights with responsibility. Walking onto a college campus open carrying on July 1 isn’t something I would advise and would outright discourage. The two laws, HB 60 and HB 826 will need to be merged when writing the new code sections and there will inevitably be test cases to establish case law, so be smart here, I plead of you.

Here is the link to the full text of the bill.  

Sine Die 2014

I think I’ve finally recovered from my first Sine Die experience. I spent almost 16 hours at the Georgia Capitol on Thursday and it was quite the experience. I wanted to be there for not only the experience but also to give my support to HB 60. I wanted to be doing something rather than sitting back and spectating from home but I had no idea how I could possibly be useful.

I reached out to Jerry Henry, friend and Executive Director of GeorgiaCarry.Org (GCO) on Wednesday and he encouraged me to come on down and join him and others and assured me that while there’d be some standing around, there was also plenty to do. That’s all I needed to hear.

I got there at 9AM and found my way in and up to the third floor which houses the General Assembly. I immediately found myself speaking to others. Of course, I was wearing my bright orange “Guns Save Lives” button which seemed to be a bit of a beacon to others. Before the session began at 10AM, I had spoken with random strangers, Rep. Alan Powell, GCO lobbyist William Woodall and NRA lobbyist Daniel Carey. I then went into the House Chamber to view from the gallery for a bit and was there for the House Resolution in memory of the father of Rep. Rick Jasperse, who had just passed away a couple of weeks prior. It wrapped up with every single House member and gallery attendant rising in applause. The solitary exception was Kathryn Grant with Moms Demand Action. She was seated right in front of me and she ignored the entire thing. I found this to be completely disrespectful and rude. But not surprising, given their terrible displays of behavior throughout this entire legislative session.

I then met up with fellow GCO members and leadership just a few minutes later and the rest of the day was spent in complete awe of the insane political jockeying and posturing which occurs. I can’t even tell you how many reps we spoke to about HB 60 and helping clear up some of their misunderstandings of the bill. I like to think that may have helped some of them in making their decision on where they stood. It’s amazing that so many of them do not understand current law and proposed law. I understand that they have hundreds of bills to deal with during a session but bills become laws which have the potential to greatly affect our lives and they need to be given the consideration they deserve. This requires knowledge and understanding. I believe that we, as involved constituents, can help provide that.

It was also amazing to see what a playground the House and Senate floors really seem to be. It was like a room full of kindergarteners and the teacher had lost control a good bit of the time. I’d say that less than half of them were actually at their desks at any given time while in session.

Although you often hear that most of the work is done off the floor, this became clear to me, especially in regards to HB 60. Alan Powell took the lead on trying to get us an even better bill than the one the House had in front of them to vote on Thursday morning. I can’t even describe the bouncing back and forth, the games, the detaching and re-attaching of provisions and the behind-the-doors meeting of Speaker Ralston and Lt. Governor Cagle and the posturing and intimidation tactics. Holy crap. I’m tired again just thinking about it.

And, as they say, all’s well that ends well. And it ended well. It came down to the 11th hour (literally, it was 11:20), which was expected, and we stuck around to thank our representatives who worked so hard to get this bill through and make Georgia a safer , freer place for law-abiding citizens.

As for the experience, it was a good one. I think it’s important to realize that our say doesn’t just end at the ballot box. We can do more than sit at home and bitch. We can get out there and influence and support and guide our elected officials, form relationships with them and hold them accountable.

This legislative session has been very informative for me. I’ve grown in experience and knowledge and I’ve found that I enjoy it. A year ago, I’d have never imagined that by this point I’d have testified in front of two committees, found myself in multiple media sources and participated in Sine Die. Previously, I’d only emailed and called my elected officials. It’s been a big step to get involved but I’m glad I’ve jumped in.

And the Votes Are In

The Georgia Senate finally pulled out HB 60 (the new HB 875) for a vote. Those guys are some tricky bastards. They put in an amendment for hunting suppressors, knowing the House will hate that because they are beholden to the Department of Natural Resources and the DNR hates it. Because, you know, poaching is apparently a massive and widespread problem in Georgia. Hmmm.

A second amendment that was added was church opt-in. This one was a “blink and miss it” one that was snuck it by perhaps the quickest “voice vote” in Georgia history. Cagle wanted it that way. This way, it’s nearly impossible to know who voted for it and he can take the heat for it. He doesn’t care, he has no challenger in this election.

The problem with church opt-in is that it’s a pile of crap. Very few churches will make the move to opt-in, preferring to avoid the topic altogether. The Senate knows this, so they think they can pat us on the head and send us on our merry way and then, proud of their “sweeping” gun bill and their “stand for the Second Amendment” in an election year, they will fail to re-address any gun rights for years. Um, no. You see, I already bought a bunch of crap from the legislature LAST session when SB101 died and I’m not in the market for any more.

It seems most likely that HB60 will end up in Conference Committee now, with three senators and three representatives left to make a deal for both chambers to pass through. This is a risk to be sure, as it could very well die in committee but I’m willing to take that risk, as if it does die, then there’s no gun bill this year. People may get voted out. And then we can come back at it next year. Not exactly what I’d like, but I’d prefer it to having a bad bill shoved down my throat with no likely opportunity to come back to it for a long time. And, if we have to re-address it next year, the hope is that we have a new governor (David Pennington, please!) who doesn’t do his damnedest to kill gun bills behind the scenes and some fresh folks in the legislature.

I’m hoping that in conference committee that the house gives on the hunting suppressor language and the senate gives up church opt-in. That would actually be a win-win for the people of Georgia. Most states already allow suppressors for hunting and most states also respect the private property rights of churches. Georgia needs to get with it.

Mrs. Finch Goes to Atlanta (Redux)

It’s been quite a day. I headed back down to the Capitol to again speak in favor of HB 875, this time to the Senate Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. The hearing turned out to be a dog and pony show since by the time the hearing commenced most of the language in HB 875 was tacked on to HB 60, another gun bill which had already passed both chambers and had passed the House as amended and was on its way to the Senate floor.

You see, as explained and predicted in this Peach Pundit Article, it looks like Jesse Stone is scratching Nathan Deal’s back in order to get that judgeship that he previously denied was on the table. He was so convinced he was about to screw us all with his crappy little substitute bill. Until Alan Powell made an end run around him and refused to let him pull a fast one by cutting him off at the knees. So, now the hot gun bill in GA is now HB 60 and it includes everything HB 875 had except for the $100 civil fine for carrying onto a college campus. We’ll see how it fares on the Senate floor, whether it passes clean or ends up in conference committee. Either way, I’m pleased that Rep. Powell didn’t allow Stone to get away with doing Governor Deal’s dirty work.

If it passes, then we’ll find out if Deal will keep his commitment to sign any pro-gun legislation which crosses his desk or if he’ll just outright renege.

The Committee Hearing was still held, though. It was rather pointless, but it served as a great distraction for the psycho mommies of Moms Demand Action. They were pretty clueless about today’s happenings until long after the fact. And I still testified. I’d worked on my testimony and was pleased with it and I was hopeful that even if one anti there was open to listening that maybe it could make a difference. Although I had to condense it to three minutes due to time constraints imposed, here it is in its full version:

Mr. Chairman and Distinguished Committee Members,

I come before you today first and foremost as a citizen. I am also an NRA certified instructor, leader of a 50 member women’s shooting chapter and a supporter of the right and responsibility to defend oneself. As a woman, I am also part of the fastest growing demographic of gun owners.

I have read this bill in its entirety and you would be right to assume that I am strongly in favor of it. But please do not employ what you know of me thus far to form an opinion regarding the basis for my support. While most consider it a “gun bill,” I’d like to offer another perspective. It’s about much more than guns. It’s about private property and civil rights.

As someone who is active in my church as a Stephen Minister, Sunday School teacher and choir member, I often find myself walking back to my car located in one of the parking lots scattered about downtown Marietta in the dark. Current law prevents me from legally being able to defend myself properly in this situation should the need arise, regardless of my church’s position on the matter. Churches are private property and should be treated as such. No government should be able to grant certain private property rights to one private entity yet deny the same to another. It astounds me that any church official would be against HB 875. Do they not want to make their own choices? If that is the case, then perhaps the state should also mandate what Bible they must use and what sacraments they may perform and how much in tithes they may accept from each member and where they must be directed. I think we all know they would be livid if we were up here debating taking such choices from them. I’ve heard proponents make the argument that HB 875 places a mandate on churches. This fallacy is ignorant at best. HB 875 places absolutely no requirement on any church whatsoever. It simply returns to them the power to make their own choice. This bill empowers them to choose what is right and proper for THEIR congregation. And I can’t speak for anyone else but when I saw church officials standing before the House Committee decrying this bill, I felt a little less respect for them. You see, I am a member of PC(USA) and my church has about 2500 members. I have never been asked to cast a vote on where I stand on HB 875, nor have my fellow church members. So I was quite disappointed to see Rev. Gary Charles of PC(USA) speaking on my behalf because he does not speak for me. He does not speak for anyone in my church. Churches are private property. If church government wishes to make the decision to be a gun-free zone, church government should be responsible for that decision and not be allowed to pass the buck to the government any longer.

Likewise, bars are private property and should also enjoy equal treatment under the law. Granted, I agree that it’s highly irresponsible to mix guns with alcohol but why should I be presumed to be an irresponsible person incapable of possessing my firearm and good judgment simply because I walk into a bar? It’s legal to carry a firearm into any Longhorn restaurant and a person can drink just as much alcohol there as they can at any bar. Seeing as the ability to legally carry into restaurants which serve alcohol has not created mass violations, actually none that I’ve heard, of OCGA 16-11-134 which prohibits the discharge of a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or drugs under most circumstances, there is no basis to conclude that allowing legal carry of firearms in bars would create such incidents.

Shifting focus to civil rights, I would like to begin by pointing out that victims are not allowed the opportunity to know when or where they may be victimized. Being one of millions of women who have been victimized at some point in their lives, I’ve had the unfortunate need to defend my life and safety. In 1999 I found myself being chased by my ex-husband through my front yard with an ASP baton like many police carry. There was no help in sight and no one to depend upon to save me but myself. I felt with a complete absence of doubt that my life was in jeopardy at that moment. Thinking quickly, I drew my carry gun at that time from my purse and ordered him to not take another step toward me. That day, I was able to defend myself and deter him from the harm he intended to inflict upon me without firing a single shot. Had I not been properly equipped, I feel very confident in saying that I would not be alive today. I recount this event before you to point out that had I lived in public housing rather than my own private residence at that time, I would have been denied by law the opportunity to defend myself. That is fundamentally wrong. Rights cannot be bought and cannot be denied based upon someone’s socio-economic status. As a private property owner, I have that right to defend myself in my own home. Why should anyone in public housing not enjoy that same right? My life is no more precious than theirs and I am no more worthy of the right to defend myself than are they. We are all equal in God’s eyes and we should all have the legal ability to enjoy the same rights which are endowed to us by our Creator and our Constitution. This is an issue close to my heart. I recently was challenged by someone opposed to HB 875 and was actually asked why, as a “middle class white woman,” did I care about residents in public housing? In addition to finding such a question wholly offensive simply on principle, the fact is my mother grew up in public housing. Public housing residents are not second class citizens. My mother is not a second class citizen. She has experienced both poverty and wealth, neither of which had any effect on the value of her life. I would not want my mother or anyone’s mother to be denied the right to defend themselves because they cannot afford private housing.

In this heated debate over HB875, I’ve seen a great deal of input from other states and I have to ask myself why we have allowed one moment of it. I feel certain that if I were to walk over to my neighbor’s home and proceed to tell him how to run his household I would quickly be asked to leave and mind my own business. Tell New York, Arizona and other states who wish to control what happens in Georgia to mind their own business.

I urge you to represent the interests of Georgia citizens, not out-of-state special interest groups.

I urge you to listen to the voices of your constituents rather than the voices of a few who have no respect for liberty, choice or my right to defend myself.

I urge you to put a stop to the unfair treatment under the law created by our current restrictions

I urge you to serve at the will of your constituents, not at the will of those who may promise political favor in return for serving their personal interests.

I urge you to uphold the Constitutions of The United States and Georgia as you are sworn to do.

And finally, I urge you to recognize that current and further restrictions upon where carry is permitted by law is, at its core, rooted in distrust of the lawful citizenry and, as such, is not in accordance with a free society rooted in liberty.

I implore you to support and favor this bill as-is.

 

My 15 Minutes

Being a women’s shooting chapter leader, I have found myself in the midst of an incredibly huge and very public movement. Fellow leaders have been subjects of newspaper articles, TV news segments, documentaries, etc. I’ve always avoided any publicity though, preferring to work under the radar. I never sent out a press release for my chapter, never invited any media and never allowed myself to be around any of it. I didn’t really have any deep objection to it but I’ve had some personal circumstances and plans in the works in which I felt it best that any publicity of a controversial nature be avoided. And 2A rights are certainly controversial these days. I think we all know I’m not shy and I don’t mind public speaking when I have my thoughts organized. I don’t mind people in general knowing how I volunteer much of my time. I was just never comfortable with the idea of real publicity.

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “You plan and God laughs?” That’s been my experience lately. I was contacted a few weeks ago completely out of the blue by a reporter at the Marietta Daily Journal asking for a quote. The story was supposed to be about a recent attempt of the “knock-out” game. Keeping in mind my “no publicity” stance, I initially wasn’t going to respond. Then I thought, what’s the harm. It’s one quote in a small paper. Small stuff and it would be there and gone, quickly. So, I offered my quote.

And from there, it grew. The reporter then came back and asked me for a photo of myself or of my group. I sent her a photo of my group on the line at the shooting range, from behind. I’m careful to protect the privacy of my ladies. Her editor wanted something different. So they asked me to meet for some photos to be taken. And the reporter couldn’t verify the “knock out” game attempt. So, she asked me more questions. And it just got away from me. Next thing I knew, I was on the front page of the Marietta Daily Journal with an entire article about me. I didn’t even know it was on the front page until a few people in one of my church groups mentioned it. I had not even gotten a copy of the paper.

I was a little mortified. It was way more than I was expecting. I wasn’t mad with the reporter. While she was not quite educated on 2A and gun matters, she wasn’t unfriendly toward them and nothing occurred to which I had objected. Maybe I was a little naive with regards to my expectations but that’s on me. So, I chalked it up to a cool article which would hopefully die down quickly.

But, you see, I have this thing about being opinionated. And being vocal. Which would soon put me on the local news. My House Committee testimony on HB 875 earned me a spot on the evening 11Alive newscast:

I had no idea about this either until a friend messaged me and asked me for my autograph. I guess I should have expected it was a possibility but it just really didn’t occur to me that I would garner any attention other than from those present at the hearing. I was also quoted in the Atlanta Journal and Constitution.

Three news outlets in less than two weeks. I could hardly believe it. And the first article had nothing to do with the other two appearances. The last two happened to be two news outlets in the same room covering the same story and they both somehow chose to include me.

Craziness.

Of course, in this age of social media and given that HB 875 is a hot potato topic right now, coverage spread. I ended up on others’ personal blogs, Facebook pages, forums, etc. I’ve been recognized by a couple of people I don’t know…someone I bought a vehicle from and a store cashier. Nothing major, but it still felt strange. I don’t know how famous people keep their sanity. Oh, that’s right…they don’t. Nevermind.

I spent some time a little freaked out over the whole thing. I had no reservations whatsoever over my efforts in helping HB 875. It was just that whole media thing.

So when a local FOX reporter most recently contacted me wanting to do a story on me, I declined. I actually tried to pass it on to a fellow chapter leader and friend but she specifically wanted me. Still, I declined. I was overwhelmed and freaking out a little and concerned with how all this publicity may affect my aforementioned personal circumstances.

But, you know what? It doesn’t matter. My husband helped me realize that I need to do what’s important to me and embrace opportunities which help further the causes which are important to me. As far as the publicity and my personal circumstances go, it will be what it will be. Some people will love it and others will hate it and I cannot control that. I can’t worry about it too much. I especially can’t worry too much over something which may or may not even happen regardless of whether I find myself in the public eye over controversial issues such as the Second Amendment and civil rights.

So, I’m choosing to embrace it. I’m not going to be soliciting any media attention (I’m not embracing it THAT much) but I’m not going to work so hard to actively avoid it. Que sera, sera. I will do my thing and be myself and anyone who cannot accept that can just move along. I’ve been concerned with the possibility of not being acceptable as a result of the things which are important to me when I should be more concerned that if someone cannot accept me without judgement of the things which matter to me, then perhaps they are not acceptable to me.

Throwing Kittens Into the Mouths of Coyotes

I am very angry today. Actually, let’s just call it what it is. I’m pissed.

Rep. Sam Moore, who is sitting in a seat in the GA House of Representatives after winning a special election recently, has just introduced a heinous bill under the guise of “liberty” after less than a week on the job. It’s HB 1033 and if you’d like to read the entire bill yourself, you may do so by clicking here.

In short, HB 1033 is summarized on the House site as:

A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Article 2 of Chapter 11 of Title 16 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to offenses against public order, so as to repeal the offense of loitering; to provide that no local governing authority shall adopt an ordinance prohibiting loitering; to provide that under no circumstances shall a citizen be required to identify himself or herself to a law enforcement officer; to amend Chapter 1 of Title 42 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to general provisions relative to penal institutions, so as to repeal certain prohibitions against sexual offenders loitering in certain locations; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. 

What this means, folks, is that it welcomes child molesters on school property. On daycare center property. On playgrounds. And the police would be prohibited from identifying a sexual predator on such property.

Do you have children? I don’t but I still find this bill an egregious affront to the responsibility that we have to our children as a society. Some disagree with me on this, arguing that it’s a pro-liberty bill and that it’s an effort to roll back the powers of the police in many areas. Bullshit.

Let me repeat that. BULL-SHIT!

Rep. Scot Turner spoke at the well on this bill today and put it quite simply that, “This is not what the fight for liberty looks like.” I am pleased to see that no one signed onto this bill with Moore. What concerns me is that many of my fellow conservatives are not entirely outraged over this bill. Did they not read it? Do they not understand it? Or, do they just not care?

Does liberty mean throwing our children into the laps of sexual predators? Because that’s exactly what this bill does.

My favorite argument for this bill is that not all sexual offenders are sexual predators, so they shouldn’t have to be subjected to the same fates as true sexual predators. And exactly how does this bill solve that problem? I agree that some hormone-driven 18-year-old who has consensual sex with his 15-year-old girlfriend who said she was 16 shouldn’t necessarily be relegated to a lifetime of the consequences brought about by being on the sexual offender registry but I have two comments for that: 1) Choices have consequences and at times, they can be much larger than you thought so it behooves you to think about your choices before you make them and 2) a better solution which wouldn’t put innocent children at unnecessary risk would be to work to change the factors which determine who is added to the sex offender registry and to work toward more appropriate sentences for sexual predators, considering their recidivism rate and the fact that sex crimes are very different from other crimes.

It seems Sam Moore’s idea of liberty is throwing kittens into the mouths of coyotes. He describes himself as a “redneck from Cherokee County.” What a terrible insult to the fine rednecks of Cherokee County, GA. I certainly hope that he doesn’t have, nor does he ever have, children. I truly hope that he has no understanding of the psychology of sexual criminals. Then, at least he’s just horribly irresponsible. If he does have such an understanding, then he is a vile excuse for a human being.

I would suggest that if Sam Moore is so terribly concerned with the fight for liberty and justice, then he needs a new approach. And my suggestion to the folks of Cherokee County, GA is to kick his ass out of office this year. Regardless of whether this bill is a product of irresponsibility or depravity, he’s reckless and dangerous and is a terrible pustule on the butt of the Republican Party.