Wednesday, February 2, 2011

2011.02.02 A Costly Wound to Clean Up

Today, according to the Church’s liturgical calendar, we remember the Feast of the Presentation today.

Briefly it’s when Jesus goes public. His parents bring him to the Temple to be presented, declared holy to the Lord God, and get circumcised into the covenant—the first of many wounds to his innocent flesh.

I think of this day as the feast of vulnerability, a time to be aware of the limitations of our common humanity.

When I was being rejected, unjustly I thought, in the Episcopal church for ordination many years back a wise woman told me something I never forgot. The now late Madeleine L’Engle, author and faithful Christian who died a few years ago, said to me. “When you get ordained, and you will, do not become a little man!”

Do it differently, I took that to mean.

It does not escape my, yes feminist non-nazi type, notice that it is women who will pay the price now for becoming part of the patriarchal ways of cheating the system as if it doesn't matter much because of the value of "good" patronage for "sound" political gains!!  

Two immediate examples: Dianne Wilkerson and Patrice Tierney. Of course I am generalizing to make a point and severity of misconduct varies, but when the men decide at last that we all are equal, with respect to crime and punishment, under the law, it may be the women who end up in jail. 

Of course it is possible that the public will conclude that it was because Patrice Tierney was a woman that her tax fraud crime happened, too soft, helping her brother, her family, etc, etc. But I think it's a good chance for Congressman John Tierney as a good man and husband to do a role switch: to stand behind his woman while she is handcuffed and led off for her body search and prison garb.

That noted, it is still time to clean house. I'm proud of Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick for doing so in the Parole Board.  Public safety and public health are transcendent goals.

Personally I am sad that people think it’s okay to cheat, to be immoral. It hurts all of us.

But if the good God spirit has a say in this, these women and others who pay the consequences of a long corrupt system may serve also as noble and humble examples in a system where true justice, not classist/racist/sexist manipulations, will prevail.