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July 2009

June 2009

Being on the opposite side of We Shall Overcome

Okay, it really bothered me.  Here's the background.

The UCC is currently governed by four independent boards.  There has been a multi-year effort to consolidate into one board, and the synod and various bodies of the church have  expressed that desire.  Recently the whole process was stalled when the Justice and Witness Board, which had previously approved, voted not to approve the consolidation because they felt that minorities would be underrepresented.  I must clarify that the new single board would require that 50% of its make-up be from minority groups. 

Well, it has caused a lot of upset and has been the major topic at synod.  The Synod cannot now make the consolidation happen--the Justice and Witness Board will still need to vote for it.  We can, however, express our desire.

The committee to which this topic was assigned drew hundreds of folk.  The committee did its work diligently over two days and came back with a well thought out proposal that, if anything (in my opinion) errs on the side of just repeating the process of the last two years (of getting feedback from all the groups). 

Another thing I must say, is that many minorities are for single governance.  So, it isn't like they are all of one mind. 

During the meeting, those who are opposed to the plan held signs up (non-committee members cannot talk once official deliberation begins).  One of the signs charged it was an undemocratic process. The other signs made similar sorts of charges.  During pauses in the committee work, the opposition would sing protest songs.

I found the entire thing an attempt at intimidation and manipulation of a process that, if anything, bends over backwards to be deliberative.  The committee (of well over 50 folk and including many minorities, including the chair) ended up unanimous with its proposal.

The weirdest moment for me came when the protestors sang, "We Shall Overcome."  I am not usually on the other side of that song.  I'm usually with whatever group is advocating for their rights.  I could help but feel that I was being called a racist.  And that seemed manifestly unfair and itself an attempt to thwart the deliberative, intentional process.

2030 Clergy Group

Last night I was invited into the young clergy group, which I really didn't know about before, and as I walked into their reception and started meeting people, I was overcome with the sense of "Finally, I've found what I'm looking for."

Lucinda Williams

Last week I didn't write anything about Lucinda when I was listening to her albums.  I first heard her in person.  I was in Fville at the time and David Breckenridge (my pastor) and John Meadors (the husband of the other associate pastor) wanted to go and asked me along.  I fell in love immediately and had to start collecting her albums.  In fact, it was the first concert I ever attended.  I've seen her in person one other time, at ACL.  She was in OKC last week and I thought about going, but didn't.

Dispraise the Catch

I guess I should have listened to this album under the T's. But I have it under the Y's for Tim's last name, though he doesn't use it on the album. 

Tim is one of my good friends--he was a groomsman at my wedding.

This is really a marvelous album. Everytime I listen to it, I am reminded of that.

One of the songs is about me.  It is entitled, "Go Away" and was about his grief when I moved from Shawnee. 

I know most of the folk the others songs are written about too.  It is a highly personal album for me. 

You can listen to most of his songs here.

Download 08 Go away

"Equality Before the Law" and other Gazette articles

Be sure to check out this week's Oklahoma Gazette.  You should grab one in person, but if you live out-of-state, check out the website. 

Here is my column on marriage equality.

Rep. Sally Kern's counterpoint.

An article on the Right to Save campaign, featuring my husband.

An article on Expressions Community Fellowship, which is opening in a new location on the Strip.

And much, much more.  Check out the website.

Proclamation of Morality

Rep. Sally Kern is urging fellow law makers and clergy to sign a "Proclamation of Morality" on July 2 at the State Capitol.  We've been monitoring the situation the last couple of days and have a full text of the proclamation.  It is choice, as you can imagine.

I don't want to post that text yet, however, because I don't want to promote this effort but want to wait and see what traction it gains before I respond too much to it.

In fact, I wouldn't have said anything here, except that now the Oklahoman is reporting on it.

Ponnuru on the activism of conservative judges

Justice Thomas is, in my view, right to consider the law outdated. But is that really for him to say? Congress is the proper body to make that judgment. In 2006, it decided to renew the law for 25 years. Its determination that the law was still necessary may have been mistaken, but it is not clear that the Constitution authorizes judges to second-guess it.  . . . [Read more]