After years of tense waiting, Jerusalem's lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community will finally receive funding from the city's municipality for its Open House center, the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday. The court criticized the municipality for rejecting the Open House's pleas for funds, and ruled that it must hand over a sum of $120,000.
Frankly, this is absolutely insane. Pardon me for being so blunt, but for the moment, let's forget the Torah. Okay, so the Torah prohibits homosexual sex (not homosexuality), fine, yofi. But let's put that on the backburner for a moment, and focus on something else disturbing in this whole affair.
Justice Hayut added that the gay community should be granted the special status it receives in other cities in Israel, which would guarantee that funding be provided for its activities.What????!!!! Because other cities fund them, Jerusalem has to too? What ever happened to social contract and fiscal responsibility? It's not within the government's jurisdiction to build community centers for homosexuals, and just because other cities did so, doesn't mean Jerusalem has to join them in their illiberal violation of basic principles of basic justice in politics.
We then read,
Justice Amit stressed that proper behavior towards the gay community was one of the criteria for a democratic state, and what separates Israel from "most of the Mideast states near and far, in which members of the gay community are persecuted by the government and society".
Excuse me????!!!! This is not an issue of Jerusalem discriminating against anyone. Jerusalem is not hurting the homosexuals in any way. The homosexuals do not have any right to any money or any government largesse, and neither does anyone else in society, for that matter. Government funding is *not* a human right. Lest we forget this, we should remind ourselves that government funding comes from taxes, i.e. money that belongs to other people. You do *not* have a right to other people's money. Jerusalem is not discriminating against the homosexuals; it is merely saying that the homosexuals do not have a right to take money from heterosexuals.
It would be one thing if homosexuals were being barred from government office, or something. At least then, the claim could be made that active denial of rights and active discrimination was being carried out. But here, it's that Jerusalem is failing to imitate everyone else, in using taxpayer money to subsidize homosexual recreation. This is absurd. This is *not* part of the government's authority or jurisdiction.
According to the Associated Press's Court: Jerusalem must fund gay center, we read,
The court said the city must help fund the center because it serves a significant chunk of the city's population.This is ridiculous. The government must fund everything that "serves a significant chunk of the ... population"???!!! One could make a reductio ad absurdum argument that if so, then murderers and wife-beaters must be funded as well, since, after all, they are also a significant chunk of the population. But one could just as well argue, far more moderately, that not every significant chunk of the population, even decent and law-abiding and moral ones, must be funded. Just because one is a significant part of the population, even a legitimate and ethical one, does not give one a right to other people's money.
Okay, so let's take the Torah off the backburner. It turns out that the issue is not of the issur of homosexual sex, but rather, of the issur of stealing. Theft is prohibited, even if you're a homosexual.
In short, the government has no jurisdiction to fund such a community center, or nearly anything else, for that matter. The jurisdiction of the government is to protect life and property. The government is to imprison, fine, or execute thieves and murderers, and furnish an army for the defense of the country. That is it. Nearly anything else is outside the jurisdiction of the government. Perhaps the government can also act in the general welfare, and provide things which benefit everyone equally, such as water, electricity, and use eminent to appropriate property for the construction of structures that will benefit the entire society uniformly. But that is pushing it, and even if that be within the jurisdiction of the government, it is the absolute final frontier of that jurisdiction, already on the distant outskirts of the government's rightful authority.
According to Heinrich Bullinger, a 16th-century Swiss Protestant divine,
For, as no emperors or kings are permitted to grant any privileges contrary to justice, goodness, and honesty; so, if they do grant any such privilege, it ought not be received or taken of good subjects for a good turn or benefit, but to be counted rather (as it is indeed) their utter destruction and clean overthrow.I hope the homosexual community makes the right choice about what to do with their new government-granted privileges. The same goes for Haredim who accept funding to build kollels.
P. S. For those interested, I present a fuller quotation of Bullinger's, including its original context:
The magistrate therefore is the living law, and the law is the dumb magistrate. By executing and applying the law, the law is made to live and speak; which the princes do not consider that are wont to say, Wir sind das recht, "We are the right, we are the law." For they suppose that they at their pleasure may command what they list, and that all men by and by must take it for law. But that kind of ruling, without all doubt, is extreme tyranny. The saying of the poet is very well known, which representeth the very words of a tyrant:
I say, and it shall be so;The prince, indeed, is the living law, if his mind obey the written laws, and square not from the law of nature. Power and authority, therefore, is subject unto laws; for unless the prince in his heart agree with the law, in his breast do write the law, and in his words and deeds express the law, he is not worthy to be called a good man, much less a prince. Again, a good prince and magistrate hath power over the law, and is master of the laws, not that they may turn, put out, undo, make and unmake, them as they list at their pleasure; but because he may put them in practice among the people, apply them to the necessity of the stae, and attemper their interpretation to the meaning of the maker.
My lust shall be the law.
[Hoc volo, sic jubeo; sit pro ratione voluntas - Juv. Sat. VI. 223. - P.]
They therefore are deceived as far as heaven is wide, which think for a few privileges, of emperors and kings granted to the magistrate to add, diminish, or change some point of the law, that therefore they may utterly abolish good laws, and live against all law and seemliness. For, as no emperors or kings are permitted to grant any privileges contrary to justice, goodness, and honesty; so, if they do grant any such privilege, it ought not be received or taken of good subjects for a good turn or benefit, but to be counted rather (as it is indeed) their utter destruction and clean overthrow. [Emphasis added] Among all men, at all times and of all ages, the meaning and substance of the laws touching honesty, justice, and public pease is kept inviolable; if change be made, it is in circumstances, and the law is interpreted as the case requireth, according to justice and a good.
(Heinrich Bullinger, The Decades, second decade, seventh sermon, "Of the Office of the Magistrate, Whether the Care of Religion Appertain to Him or No, and Whether He May Make Laws and Ordinances in Cases of Religion", Parker Society translation, pp. 339f.)