It’s Like This

Updated: May 4, 2018

California crazy

By Bob Palmer

A bill pending before the California legislature, AB 2943, may or may not ban the sale of Bibles and other Christian literature in that state.

A raft of fact checkers rush to assure the incredulous that the bill won’t stop the sale of Bibles. The din you hear is only the outpouring of opportunist scare mongers of both the religious and political stripe.

A simple reading of the bill which seeks to expand the state prohibition on attempting to convert children who self-identify as homosexuals into being straight, however, makes one wonder.

“AB 2943 would extend the ban to any person of any age and it would prohibit the advertising or sale of sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE) goods and services in the state,” Snopes reported.

Since the Bible does not mention SOCE, it seems quite likely the new law will not apply, unless someone starts reading verses about homosexuality being an abomination unto the Lord. Some books sold in Christian bookstores might be in trouble, however.

The logic behind the bill is the apparent belief SOCE doesn’t work and is basically quackery. I am sure it surprises no one in these parts that quackery like homeopathy and palmistry is legal on the left coast.

We are also told sexual orientation can, for some, be a fluid thing. If a person wanted to direct the course of that stream toward being straight, why should the state seek to stop them?

I remember when once every year or so, someone would bring me a letter warning that a bill before Congress supported by Madeline Murray O’Hare would remove preachers from television. The big scare was a lie to stir up the flock and donations.

This round of the culture wars appears a little more substantial. There is a bill. It has passed the California Assembly and now is before the state senate. While AB 2943 may not actually ban the Bible, it is definitely anti-Christian and seeks to further establish a secular gay-friendly religion.

Hopefully, the bill will be defeated, if for no other reason, for its limits on intellectual freedom. If AB 2943 wins passage and Jerry Brown signs it, however, the courts should crush it for violation of First Amendment guarantees of free speech and religion.

So, we have absolutely nothing to worry about? Right? Right?