All the World’s a Stage
For some cartoon-like politicians, holding public office is akin being an actor in a Shakespearean play in which you get to mouth world-famous words without necessarily understanding what they mean. Case in point: Colorado state Senator Pat Steadman, who threw a bit of the Bard into the legislative debate over establishing civil unions for homosexuals. John Stonestreet of BreakPoint girds up his codpiece and writes:
In response to concerns about the bill’s potential impact on religious freedom, he replied, “This bill does not reach into anyone’s church or mosque or synagogue. You can have all the free exercise there that you want.” He then added, “Don’t claim religion as a reason the law should discriminate.”
From there, he stopped pulling punches altogether. Anyone wanting a religious exemption, he said, should “get thee to a nunnery. ... Go live a monastic life, away from modern society ... away from the people you can’t see as equals to yourself. Away from the stream of commerce where you might have to serve them, or employ them, or rent banquet halls to them. Go some place and be as judgmental as you like. Go inside your church, establish separate water fountains, if you want. But don’t claim that free exercise of religion requires the state of Colorado to establish separate water fountains for her citizens.”
Brings to mind a passage from the Scottish play:
But I remember now
I am in this earthly world, where to do harm
Is often laudable, to do good sometime
Accounted dangerous folly.
—Lady MacDuff, MacBeth, Act 4, Scene 2
And where to speak stupidly and with hate inspired
Is inevitable in a politician drunk on power.
—Fischler, made up on the spur of the moment
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