Bad Faith | Letters | Chicago Reader

Bad Faith 

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To the editors:

The Chicago City Council voted in bad faith when they voted down the Human Rights Ordinance for the civil rights protection of gays, lesbians, the handicapped and aged ["Homophobia," September 23]. With a national reputation for neighborhood racism and bully politics from the Old Guard, there was a chance this fall for our city aldermen to reveal a more human, humane face. But this did not happen.

For sure religious homophobia will be named as the culprit. When aldermen shout "animals!" to gay and lesbian citizens in the gallery, we know what we are up against. Bigotry no matter from whence it comes is evil in its intent. The clergy of these 26 aldermen need to be confronted for their ill advice and collaboration in this.

Since most of the opposition came from the Christian (sic) tradition, I would like to remind them that:

Jesus warned against judging others. The boomerang of justice means that the wrongdoing we do will come back to haunt us later.

Jesus welcomed deviants and sinners, especially the oppressed, into God's domain. He warned that intolerance only points out our own self delusions.

Jesus set a standard of equality as "the" mark of ethical excellence and not elitist superiority. The last were to become first in terms of economic justice.

Church historians will remind modern church folk that the earliest known baptismal rite was the call of discipleship found in the letter of Galatians:

". . . For you all have been baptized into union with Christ. There is no Jew or Gentile, there is no Slave or Free, there is no Male or Female, for in Christ you are one." (3:28)

It was bad faith that defeated the Human Rights Ordinance September 14th. It will be wise faithfulness that will eventually pass it in time.

Reverend Timm Peterson

Reconciling People

Chicago

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