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Thursday, October 28, 2004

Do not believe the Christian right when they tell you they love gays

They are lying, which is breaking one of the Commandments, but I won't get into that. I got into a tangle with some right wing Christians at Hugo's blog over this issue and I'm going to vent here because people at his blog are courteous and a flame war is not necessary. My basic point was simple--the Christian right's incessant harping on homosexuality, especially considering that they use dehumanizing words like "base" and "unnatural" and rhetoric that paints gays as monsters, has helped create the enviroment where gay-bashing flourishes. Duh--if you hear that Jesus hates gay people all the time in terms that imply they are little better than animals, it's a lot easier to justify kicking the shit out of a gay person to yourself.

Well, no one likes to have to face the ugly consequences of his actions, so of course the responsible parties swarmed to deny responsibility. First, I hear it's tedious to harp on gay-bashing. It was tedious for the NAACP to harp on lynching, no doubt, but it sure was necessary. And of course, the argument is brought out that hateful words don't lead to hateful action, a laughable argument coming from the same sector of society that just knows that a flash of Janet Jackson's boob ruined the morals of young men around the country. For people who are unclear on how it might be problematic for authority figures like preachers, etc. to harp on a class of citizens and how this might lead to people in the community to actually start thinking those citizens are lesser, I would suggest reading David Neiwert's blog on a daily basis.

And after the preliminaries are out of the way, time for the biggest bullshit of all--that they love the sinner and hate the sin.

Fuck that. Loving the sinner and hating the sin doesn't include reciting the pain of hellfires in tones that barely hide the speaker's glee in imagining the "loved" sinner's anguish as God gives him what for.

And even those who conceal that pleasure well are still not making the sort of sense they think they are making. They claim that they are judging homosexuality like any other sin, like gossip or bad manners or whatever. I am not naive--I know that homosexuality is not condemned in anything even resembling strong terms in the Bible. It is not comparable to adultery, which is condemned in strong terms. Anyone who claims equivalency between the two, once again, LYING. Hell, the way that the Christian right is carrying on about homosexuality, you would honestly think it's worse than adultery.

I get two or three emails a day from Focus on Family about homosexuality and I have yet to get a single one on adultery. There are more adulterers in this country that homosexuals. There are probably more fundamentalist Christian adulterers in this country than homosexuals. I'll bet my money that adultery factors into more than half the divorces in this country. Adultery is a direct violation of the sanctity of marriage and you don't have to make a bunch of nonsensical arguments in order to demonstrate this. One of the big 10 is spent condemning adultery specifically and another one condemns just thinking about it. So why are homosexuals considered a bigger threat than adulterers?

I also pointed out that people gay-bash because they think that it's appropriate to pass out a little of god's justice here on Earth, and the wingnuts disagreed, saying that they don't believe in passing out punishment here on Earth in god's stead. Is that so? Then why the hell do I get email after email after email after email requesting that my cat, who is a fake evangelical as well as a fake Republican, boycott P&G until they fire all their gay employees? I don't get emails suggesting that any other sinners lose their job for their sin, which seems like it's punishment on Earth to me. You know, like gay-bashing. Why is it that the Christian right advocates for sodomy laws so that they can make sure that homosexuals go to jail now? Isn't god going to roast them on a flame for eternity after this? Why then the rush?

They hate gays and they hide their ugliness under a thin and easily punctured blanket of platitudes about love. Don't believe it for a second.

56 Comments:

Blogger Finding my way said...

I hear you, it's inconsistent and hypocritical. Worst of all is trying to justify their bias through God. God is love. Once you know that truth you can weed out the crapola that people try to feed you...

10/28/2004

 
Blogger Lanoire said...

I mostly agree with what you've been saying. The conservative Christians argue that they love the sinner but hate the sin--that claiming homosexuality is wrong isn't the same as hating homosexuals. The thing is, I don't think there's a bright line between hating the sin and hating the sinner. There's one hell of a lot of overlap.

10/28/2004

 
Blogger Amanda said...

The line is extremely clear to me. They can believe whatever buttfuck thing they want--but when they call down the force of the law on people for behaving in ways that hurt no one but offend what THEY think THEIR god believes, and they will never convince me that this is about HELPING people. And to dodge responsibility when their hateful rhetoric is taken seriously by others who then beat and even kill thinking that their victims are somehow lesser because they weren't fortunate enough to be born with the holy sexual urges is pure, unadulterated cowardice. Just as the rhetoric that comes streaming out of the supposed Christians who advocate racism gives a lynch mob its sense of satisfaction, so do gay-bashers feel justified in their behavior.

10/28/2004

 
Blogger The News Writer said...

That hating the sin, loving the sinner crap is just that ... I still get chills sometimes when I remember a day some years ago, when I was a young intrepid reporter for the gay press, and I was covering a right-wing rally in support of an anti-gay resolution passed by a Georgia county that denied rights to lesbians and gay men. We were in a parking lot, which was surrrounded by a chain link fence. The podium area backed up to one side of the fence. In front of the podium were all of us media types, and all around us, in a big semi-circle were hundreds of those Christian rightwingers. And while the good reverend of the First Baptist Church was up at the podium loving the sinner but hating the sin, all the good Christians around us were whispering about "fucking queers." It remains the only time I was ever unnerved while working. A local TV station correspondent was next to me with her cameraman (who happened to be her husband) a noticed I seemed a little nervous (we'd done quite a bit of coverage together so she would notice the difference, plus, she heard the whispers too) and said to me not to worry, she'd protect me. I cracked a joke about how was she gonna do that in heels and she said she'd just have her husband chuck his camera at 'em and we'd all run.

We survived. But I don't think those feelings will ever totally leave me.

10/28/2004

 
Blogger mythago said...

I suspect those types can also see themselves committing adultery (if they haven't already), but can't see themselves as homosexual, so they're hedging their bets.

10/28/2004

 
Blogger delagar said...

Mythago may have something -- it may be that these Christians are hating the sin they're pretty sure they won't commit -- but I think it goes deeper than that.

A certain brand of Christianity, represented by fundamentalists and (in my area) Pentacostals, is all about hating the Other.

They have run out of all other socially acceptable others to hate -- they can't hate blacks, or women, anymore, and get approval from the outside world -- and gays are where they are dumping all the fury of their hatred.

They *have* to hate the other. It's all their religion is based on: Be Exactly Like Us or Roast in Hell.

And, believe me, it is *not* just gays they are hating. Get them aside, listen to them when they think they are speaking to someone who shares their worldview, and they have an equal amount of hatred for women (especially evil women who work outside the home or want educations or to have sex from time to time), blacks, Asians (you should have heard this woman in my class go off on the Chinese in San Francisco the other day, daring to teach their kids Chinese instead of English), and, in this area especially, Hispanics.

It has nothing to do with sin. It has to do with hating those who are not like them. It's tribalism, pure and simple.

10/29/2004

 
Blogger The News Writer said...

The tribalism thing is right on, in my experience. Currently, gays are the "thing" you can openly hate, still. At least in some circles -- and as much as they decry so-called "PC thinking," it's still very clear to me that such whining is nothing more than a smokescreen to keep that bigotry afloat.

10/29/2004

 
Blogger Linnaeus said...

One of the things I've noted about anti-gay folk is their oversexualization of gay and lesbian people; they define them solely by their sexual practices as if having sex is all gay and lesbian people do.

10/29/2004

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, this is THE boundary issue of the day for a certain type of self-professed Christian. The gay/lesbian is an unassimilatable evil, and the supporters of tolerance (a dirty word in right-wing fundie/evangelical land) are by definition Not Christian, even if these supporters are impeccably heterosexual and apparent upstanding members of society. The emphasis on millenialism has made Jews appear necessary in order to fulfill Revelation prophecy, and so the right-wing fundies/evangelicals (RWFE) no longer have the option to bash Jews - in fact, certain types of pro-Israel activities and sermons are faddish at the moment (new since 9/11/01).

These RWFE are essentialists despite their stated support of ex-gay organizations and statements of "hate the sin, love the sinner". It is hard for me to explain the venom directed towards gays in any other way. If they truly believed that gay orientation was a free choice and easy to change, and believed in the power of Christ's forgiveness, they would not get more worked up about gayness than about murder, for example.

Gays serve a purpose for these RWFE. If there were only one gay, one lesbian, one bisexual, and one transgendered person in America, the RWFE would be expending as much hysteria as if there were 20% lgbt in America. The rank and file RWFE believers can define themselves as "not lgbt, therefore godly in at least one aspect of life", and the RWFE leaders can use lgbt fearmongering to raise money and build organizations and engage in the sort of product branding that offends none of the current believers or likely believers. I have to think that a lot of the hoopla is specifically driven by the American free market in religion, and consequent competition for congregants in a religiously highly mobile society. (I seem to remember a general book on religious "marketing" in US history by L. Moore, "Selling God", which addressed 19th and early 20th century, and had little to say about homosexual scares; also a book specifically about glbt v RWFE conflict and its uses for organization building BY BOTH SIDES, by D. Herman).

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