Reply from the Archbishop of Canterbury

Well, I got a response to my first letter to the Archbishop of Canterbury, from Dominic Goodall, “Correspondence Officer.”

TL;DR: The Archbishop has a great deal of influence, but his involvement in this issue so far has been only to “encourage respectful discussion” on this very complicated subject.

I have a great deal of respect for the Archbishop’s education, legacy, and influence, so this disappointed me. The best this great and learned man can come up with on this mostly-decided topic is the excuse of someone who cannot be bothered to see past his ass.

Dominic Goodall Correspondence Officer

20th September 2018

Dear Sal,

Thank you for your recent letter addressed to the Archbishop of Canterbury. Much as he would like to, the Archbishop is unable to respond personally and in detail to all the hundreds of emails and letters that he receives, and so I have been asked to reply to you on his behalf.

Archbishop Justin is under no illusions about the diverse range of opinions on human sexuality that are held throughout the entire Anglican Communion, nor about how strongly those opinions are held and the challenge this debate poses. In that context, the Archbishop is often asked to speak decisively on matters of human sexuality. Many of the issues such as those that you refer to in your letter will continue to be matters of debate for many Anglicans, and these debates will continue into the future.

Unlike the Pope, the Archbishop has no formal authority, though a great deal of influence. In the Church of England, the Archbishop has encouraged the start of a process of deep reflection on the topic of human sexuality. An episcopal teaching document is being worked on, led by bishops, but with the in-depth involvement of experts, campaigners, academics, scientists etc. There is no pre-determined conclusion for this document. Rather, it aims to bring together people who disagree deeply into dialogue that can help map out where we are, why we are where we are and what the next steps may be. This document will then go to General Synod, where it will be debated extensively, before decisions are made as to what could or could not be done. Synod would then need to vote — and people from the houses of laity, clergy and bishops would all have a voice. There is no way to short circuit this process of deep listening to one another and to God.

Many provinces in the Anglican communion are engaged in ongoing debate and discussion about the subject of same sex marriage. Moving to make provision for same-sex marriage, rather than blessing, or any other form of partnership, would represent a huge shift in terms of doctrine of marriage, but also in terms of how we understand humanity, gender, embodiment etc. These changes may happen in some provinces, of course, but they need to be discussed and prayed through thoroughly. There is no overall consensus on the way forward, and what Archbishop Justin has done so far is to encourage respectful discussion of how we, as a whole church, can move forward together.

Thank you again for taking the time to write to the Archbishop.

Yours sincerely,

Today’s letter – Donald Trumps

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

Can you do something about this woman who is using the name of California to spread lies about gay people?

You may recall that Miss California Carrie Prejean stated her beliefs about gay marriage during the “brains” part of the Miss USA competition. Then she spoke as Miss USA but without the Pageant’s permission in front of crowds opposed to gay marriage, while missing Miss California events she was contractually obligated to attend, constantly complaining about being muzzled and attacked for her beliefs.

Today The Donald rendered his decision on the matter. Who got punished? Co-executive director of the Miss California USA pageant Shanna Moakler, that’s who. Yes, Prejean’s boss got fired for speaking out her beliefs about Miss Prejean’s behavior.

As a gay dad I understand how the Opponents of Equality bully fair-minded Californians into silence by attacking their families. I get hate mail at least once a week. My religious belief in marriage is illegal in California. My Governor belongs to a political party with a platform that calls for my extinction. Why? Because of the hypocritical bullying of people like Miss Prejean, who in the name of California and God pass judgment on me and my family. Because of people like Donald Trump who choose to muzzle the voice of reason rather than the precocious bully. Because of people like you, who tolerate the Opponents of Equality.

I wish you would remind Miss Prejean what she was actually taught: that no good citizen and Christian would deny freedoms to others.


Today’s letter – dawdling is not courageous

Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –

In today’s New York Times Opinion section, the editors discussed New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine’s statement about same-sex marriage. In response to a commission’s report pointing out the second-class nature of Civil Unions, the Governor said he would sign a bill ending gay couples’ exclusion from marriage, “but not in an election year.” Doing so, he asserts, would be unnecessarily divisive.

The New York Times writes “we appreciate his candor. But to achieve real marital equality will take political courage, not more dawdling.”

Indeed, the Opponents of Equality have not hesitated to choose election years to deliberately divide this country. Through your dawdling, Governor, you have given them another opportunity to turn neighbors in this state against each other.

Governor, I wish you would find the political courage to tell the people of California and Supreme Court next Tuesday that domestic apartheid is not acceptable. All California families deserve access to the time-tested legal and social structure called “marriage.”


Letter to Dianne Feinstein – Leslie Southwick was confirmed on your watch

Senator Dianne Feinstein
11111 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 915
Los Angeles, CA 90025

November 5, 2007

RE: Senate Judiciary Committee Endorsement of Leslie Southwick

Dear Senator Feinstein:

I wrote to you in August about the nomination of Leslie Southwick to the 5th Circuit and your role on the Senate Judiciary Committee. Thank you for your kind reply. In it you wrote that a candidate “should be able to demonstrate a commitment to applying the law fairly and impartially” and mentioned his volunteer tour in Iraq.

Tell me what application of law lets a judge “fairly and impartially” take away
a woman’s 8-year-old boy just because she is – as Judge Southwick put it – a“homosexual.”

People who do not differentiate between sex and parenting are applying their intellect and analytical skills to politics and not judgment, as Judge Southwick demonstrated. You squandered your responsibility as a senior member of the committee and as a human being by passing along this demonstrated bigot to the senate.

As I told you then and I tell you now, if you cannot keep the power that California voters have given you through long tenure, then we will be more than happy to take it back and invest in somebody else.