Taxing time

Well, I decided to hold off blogging today until I was done with, if not my tax forms, then my estimations and extensions.

I normally look upon tax paying as a civic duty, but with the war in Iraq overseas, the administration’s war on gay families at home (I flinched at the “single” box on the tax forms), and the lack of any meaningful Federal representation from the District of Columbia — well, it was a bit more than unmitigated joy tonight.

Vandiver dies, Universalist ties

Ernest Vandiver was one of those bridge “old South-new South” figures that leaves most people scratching their heads. He was the governor of Georgia from 1959 to 1963: his career includes his famous “no not one” segregationist defence, but the relatively mild transition from legal segregation (compare Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas . . .) during his tenure makes him a man of his time if not ahead of it.

I met him exactly one time: at the funeral of a politically prominent relative. (If I’ve ever mentioned I conducted a funeral with then-Governor Zell Miller, this was that event.)

You see, Ernie Vandiver’s mother was a Universalist. The governor became Baptist (easier to find than Universalists then and now) but he didn’t forget his mother, Vanna Bowers Vandiver: the memorial Good Shepherd window in my former pastorate, Canon Universalist Church, was his gift.

I’m not embarassed to say I’m a touch sad. May he rest in peace.

Protestant divestment?

So what’s the news of American Protestant churches and South African-style divestment of Israel?

Seems that there are charges of anti-Semitism (so what’s new there?) and waffling from people who had already made up their minds that investing in companies that benefit the Israeli onslaught of Palestinians might actually be a bad thing.

But it is had to get hard news stories. Gossip over coffee after worship today suggested there were terroristic threats against American Episcopalians for making this move. Again, gossip, so I’ll be searching for the hard news. (Make a comment if you have a link to something unbiased and substantial.)

Later. Make that Presbyterian, both for the immediate divestment move, and for a letter from Queens, New York that threatens the arson of Presbyterian churches during Sunday services.

The devil

After watching several hours of Hell in a Handbasket 2004, I think I need a good long rest before commenting.

Demosthenians, note: for the first time since leaving active Society membership, I found myself scribbling down notes for a speech (as opposed to a sermon.) Shame that there’s no table from which to give it.

Well, he's gone.

I will not join in the general media orgy of lamentation after the death of the fortieth president. I think a lot of Americans have good reason to abstain. Or, as late beloved religion professor once put it: “It is a sin to wish for the death of another, but you might read some obituaries with more glee than others.” Indeed.

Unfortunately, the Reganistas are with us, until the end of the age. I expect to wake tomorrow and discover the District of Columbia has been renamed. . . .

Love and marriage

Good God, I might actually get married in my own country.

I’m at home today, ill, a bit fevered and with a hacking cough. Got up to try to accomplish some work, and (to that end) checked my email. Vanity led me to check if anyone had added a comment to my blog, and noticed my friend Terrance’s blog (The Republic of T) was updated.

He broke the news that the supreme court of Massachusetts has ruled in a split decision that the ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, and that the legislature has 180 days to find a solution.

The UUA’s website has a copy of the opinion.

And some reportage from the newspaper (which for the moment pushes the President’s trip to London and the results of one of the sniper trials off the top of the electronic headlines) where the man I love works:

Massachusetts Court: State Wrong to Ban Gay Marriage (Washington Post)

P.s. It seems I can receive permission to solemnize marriage in Massachusetts but reading between the lines, it seems that as a non-resident it would probably mean an extra effort.

How appropriate that on the CD player I’ve got a Katrina and Waves singing Walking on Sunshine (a UK purchase) because � despite the cough � I “gotta feel good.”