[Vision2020] Pot Calling Kettle AGAIN: Church "Oversight", Domestic Partnerships . . . and How Much More???

Saundra Lund sslund at adelphia.net
Fri Aug 13 08:00:33 PDT 2004

Well.  Now we have confirmation that there have been more than our three ELECTED
commissioners voting on "certain" county issues.  This is a sad, sad day for
Latah County citizens. 

For those who are interested (hit DELETE if you aren't), I can't say as I'm
surprised that Wilson's comment (http://www.dougwils.com/) was made with respect
to the possibility of the County extending health insurance to domestic
"Doug Wilson reported that Paul Kimmell, in his role as County Commissioner, is
open to oversight from the elders on certain issues, such as the current
domestic-partner issue." 

I remember when this came up back in 1999 (when Kimmell was a new commissioner
and an unknown Kirker), and I remember how thrilled I was that Latah County was
examining the financial feasibility of doing the right thing!  Most regrettably,
financial concerns ostensibly kept the county from accomplishing what I'd hoped.

What was Kimmell's, or perhaps more correctly the Christ Church elders',
position on the issue?  Well, I happen to have some information handy from some
research I did last year, but in light of the absolutely stunning revelation
that Kimmell's commissioner votes were subject to Christ Church elders'
supervision, there are really no surprises:

- "I'm not trying to discriminate against anyone, but proceeding in this
direction continues to erode our moral turpitude," said Paul Kimmell, the
solitary Republican commissioner.  Kimmell said the policy change might bring
the county into legal jeopardy by seeming to allow same-sex marriages, which are
illegal."  (LMT; 4/7/1999; Latah County studies providing benefits for its
employees' domestic partners)

(But allowing UNELECTED Christ Church elders to supervise a commissioner doesn't
erode moral turpitude???  Please give me the choice:  I'll choose health care
coverage for domestic partners and families every single time!)

- "Kimmell also said the commissioners received a petition Monday with 200
signatures opposing benefits for domestic partners."  (LMT; 4/13/1999; "Latah
County studies ways to cover domestic partners")

(Gee . . . there's another of those petitions with a small number of County
voters.  Anyone wonder where that came from?  For those who don't remember,
that's about 100 signatures *less* than those on a petition against the old Card
Barn in the Palouse Empire Mall mounted by another Kirker back in the early
1990s.  I'm no math wizard, but it looks like the so-called "Moral Majority" has
undergone some serious shrinkage in the past decade.  Are they still the "Moral
Majority??? )

- "Paul Kimmell, the lone Republican commissioner, said the county was not
denying rights in disallowing domestic partner coverage.  "There is also a
section in the Pledge of Allegiance that says 'one nation, under God' and I ask
you if you know what that plan means as far as family is concerned.""  (LMT;
4/28/1999; "Extending coverage may prove too costly")

(That comment alone is enough to make me totally support removing the "under
God" part, which wasn't added until ***1954*** -- talk about revisionism run

- "Since that time, Republican Commissioner Paul Kimmell had declared including
domestic partners immoral and said it would cause higher insurance premiums."
(LMT; 7/13/1999; Decision expected Wednesday on Latah insurance coverage;
Domestic partners not mentioned in options for employee benefits, but one choice
does include coverage for any one relative or friend)

(Yeah, right . . . allowing health care coverage to domestic partners is
"immoral," but allowing UNELECTED church elders to call the shots of an elected
official isn't?!?!?)

NO ONE has any excuse for being surprised at Christ Church's position on health
coverage for domestic partnerships . . . or on feminism . . . or on human rights
. . . or on freedom of choice . . . or on slavery . . . or on public education,
etc., etc., etc.  These are all topics that have been discussed on V2020 and in
local newspapers and even on the news.

However, I think we have *every* reason to be surprised and monumentally
disappointed that Christ Church elders were -- and still are --- calling the
shots on the voting by one commissioner.  None of their names were on the
ballot, so they certainly weren't elected by our community.

IMHO, this is a betrayal of public trust of huge proportions.

And, I can't help but wonder what other "certain issues" the unelected Christ
Church elders voted on, and continue to vote on???

As an aside, for those who are interested, Latah County Prosecutor Bill Thompson
came up with a draft definition of domestic partnership.  The following comes
from a 4/7/1999 Lewiston Morning Tribune article entitled _Latah County studies
providing benefits for its employees' domestic partners_:
"According to the revised definition drafted by County Attorney Bill Thompson,
domestic partners must be at least 18 years old, mentally competent, domestic
partners for at least six months, financially interdependent and the sole
partner of the employee. . . . To reduce the risk of lawsuits, employees must
state that they have not had a marriage ceremony or common-law marriage with
their partner, Thompson said.  Employees are not asked if their relationship is
sexual.  "We want to stay away from whether they have a sexual relationship or
not. That is none of our business," he said."

It is interesting to note, IMHO, that the definition does NOT address the sexual
orientation of the domestic partners.  Even the County Prosecutor admits that
it's none of our business, so other than for homophobic reasons, it's
unfathomable to me why the Christ Church elders would think their noses belong
in the private business of others.

Unless, of course, they really DO have a political agenda.

Just Another Intolerista "Nutjob" Loose on the Palouse,
Saundra Lund
Moscow, ID

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do
-Edmund Burke

-----Original Message-----
From: vision2020-bounces at moscow.com [mailto:vision2020-bounces at moscow.com] On
Behalf Of bill london
Sent: Thursday, August 12, 2004 2:57 PM
To: Vision2020
Subject: [Vision2020] church oversight

Doug Wilson verified on August 12, in a posting to his blog website (at 
http://dougwils.com/index.asp?Action=Anchor&CategoryID=1&BlogID=398 ), 
that the Christ Church minutes of April 8, 1999 did include this message 
to the church leadership:  "Doug Wilson reported that Paul Kimmell, in 
his role as County Commissioner, is open to oversight from the elders on 
certain issues, such as the current domestic-partner issue."
The date of this message is interesting, since Paul Kimmell was 
appointed by Governor Kempthorne to his commissioner position in March 
of 1999, just a month before this report from Wilson that Kimmell will 
take his marching orders from the Christ Church leadership.
But wait, wasn't it Doug Wilson who repeatedly said that neither he nor 
his church are political?
And wasn't it Paul Kimmell who became a commissioner to serve the people 
of Latah County, not just the members of his Church?

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