QUESTION: “On a scale of one to 10, how faithful would you say you are, in terms of religion?” US Senator Lindsey Graham (R), South Carolina.

RESPONSE: “… there’s no religious test in the Constitution under Article VI.” Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, nominee, US Supreme Court .

QUESTION: “Can you provide a definition for the word ‘woman’?” US Senator Marsha Blackburn (R), Tennessee.

RESPONSE: “Can I provide a definition? No. I can’t.” Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, nominee, US Supreme Court .

STATEMENT: “I think you’re the only Supreme Court nominee in history who has been unable to answer the question, what is a woman.” US Senator Ted Cruz (R), Texas.

STATEMENT: “I know that I’m a woman,” Jackson to Cruz who constantly interrupted her. “I know that Senator Blackburn is a woman, and the woman I admire most in the world is in the room today, my mother.” Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, nominee, US Supreme Court .

STATEMENT: “Judge Jackson has a pattern of letting child porn offenders off the hook for their appalling crimes, both as a judge and as a policymaker. She’s been advocating for it since law school. This goes beyond ‘soft on crime.’ I’m concerned that this a record that endangers our children.” Senator Josh Hawley (R), Missouri, on Twitter, March, 2022.

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, the nominee of President Joseph Biden for the US Supreme Court, is a woman, a Black woman. The reactionaries — they are not conservatives — who seem to control the Republican party today could not attack Judge Jackson for being Black. They went after her sex/gender and her record on sex crimes, specifically sex crimes against children. And her Religion.

Cynical people use sex and religion to control and divide us. They use sex and religion to divide us against one another and ourselves. Make us feel shame and guilt. Control our behavior and our feelings. They use governments and churches to punish us with laws that make us criminals and sinners.

WHY? Because sex is powerful. Politicians — unscrupulous politicians — employ its power to manipulate us and to win elections. In their attacks on Judge Jackson for being ‘soft’ on sex crimes, Cruz, Hawley, Blackburn and their ilk echo the bizarre accusations of QAnon conspiracy theories which claim that powerful globalist elites run secret child sex trafficking rings as part of their efforts to world domination through liberalism. In attacking the religiosity of Judge Jackson, they insinuate the cause of her “weak” response to sex crimes is her lack of the type of religion they espouse and wish to impose on one and all in order for them to obtain power and wealth.

The use of sex and religion to enflame people against tolerance and diversity in the name of defending the family and children from evil is nothing new. What is new to our civil society is how normal it has become: it no longer seems disgusting to us to have a proud, competent woman subjected to such vile provocative behavior on the part of our civil servants who are supposed to represent the best of us.

The word sex comes from the Latin word secare: to cut or divide. Section/sectionalism and sect/sectarianism come from this root.

The reactionaries know well how to us sex to cut and divide us.

It dismays me when our sexuality continues to be used against us by governments, religions, churches, revolutionary movements — yes even at times by our own queer movements which seem to forget that divisions are used to destroy us.

In his work the “Philosophy of Liberation,” the Mexican-Argentine philosopher Enrique Dussel suggests that we free our imaginations from the unproductive, restrictive — often either/or — categories of our thinking so that we can see the creative possibilities of oppositional thinking for our civil society.

Oppositional thinking need not be destructive. People of good will who are Pro-family and Pro-life can find common ground with people of good will who are Pro-Women and Pro-Choice. Pro-Life must include the poor, the homeless, and all who are in need of basic human requirements. Pro-Choice must include all that is necessary for the raising of healthy children.

The strength of oppositional forces can build a bonding together more powerful than the forces in isolation. Pro-choice and pro-family are stronger together.

The arch is an example of such strength. The stone masons who built the great arched bridges of Rome understood the power of oppositional forces: The strength of the arch is derived from the forces of the stones in opposition to one another — their energies holding each other together in unity . Opposing forces constructively in tension with one another create an enduring and rugged structure.

As E.O. Wilson and other biologist/sociologists have shown, biodiversity and history give testimony to the contributions the unmarried and the queer make to the health of families and the flourishing of children.

Our diversity — sexual and religious, political and cultural — can be such a creative opposition of forces making us a united, strong, just civil society.

Let us queers show the way.

April 2022 © [email protected]

Published 03 April 2022 Windy City Times