Come Out of the Woods, Christian Soldiers: World War Gay Has Ended

Unaware that their cause had been lost, a small number of Japanese soldiers deep in the jungles of the Philippines continued waging guerrilla warfare against an imaginary enemy years after World War II had ended.

Via dropped pamphlets, newspapers left everywhere, and even relatives at the jungle’s edge hollering at them through bullhorns, the diehard soldiers got the news the war had ended. They just didn’t believe it.

It’s as obvious as a stunning rainbow in the sky that within, say, ten years, any church or denomination still fighting against the marriage of gay couples and the ordination of gay clergy will be like those recalcitrant Japanese soldiers living amongst the mangrove trees of Lubang Island long after everyone else has accepted peace as a fact and adjusted to the new world order.

And that’s ten years tops. At the rate things are changing now, I wouldn’t be surprised if by Thursday the Pope was a drag queen.

Okay, I’d be a little surprised.

Okay, fine: the Pope (despite the full-length resplendent robes and the tiara-on-testostrone headdress) will never be a queen. But as surely as the cessation of gunfire and your cousin screaming at you through a bullhorn, “Come out! It’s over! Stop embarrassing me!” means the war you were fighting has ended, men and women of the gay and lesbianic persuasion will ‘ere long be fully welcomed into every American Protestant church, where a great many of them will step up and assume their usual place in the pulpit.

It took longer for some Christians than others to understand that the Bible does not, in fact, sanction slavery.

It took longer for some Christians than others to understand that the Bible does not, in fact, forbid women civil rights.

And now it’s taking longer for some Christians than others to understand that the Bible does not, in fact, decree that moments into their afterlife anyone who dies an unrepentant homosexual is immediately issued a one-way ticket on the Hell Crosstown Express.

Here’s the headlines-making Gallup Poll released a couple of weeks back:

 

Don’t you wish that green line was the U.S. economy? Well it’s not. It’s the percentage of the population that believes same-sex marriage should be legal.

Want a tip for improving your economy? Invest in same-sex wedding cake toppers.

Ka-ching!

“The blue hairs” is a phrase sometimes used by Christian publishers to refer to the conservative Christians who own the Christian bookstores in which the publishers want and need to sell their books. One of the massive factors that for a great many years has kept Christian book authors and publishers from coming out and saying what they privately believe about same-sex couples and Christianity is that they literally cannot afford to offend the ever-vigilant blue hairs. Should the blue hairs take offense to something in your book — which they do vet for orthodoxy — then no book sales for you!

Well, Christian publishers and authors can stop worrying now. Today the blue-haired lady has either died, gone out of business, or changed her mind. Today’s blue-haired lady takes yoga classes; today, the blue-haired lady has a gay grandchild or nephew whom she loves with all her heart.

The Presbyterian Church (PCUSA), the Episcopal Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church, and the United Church of Christ now favor the ordination of gay and lesbian clergy.

Science continues to affirm homosexuality as inborn (not that anyone who’s ever actually known a gay person doubts it).

The Biblical scholarship supporting the idea that Paul never wrote a word proscribing natural homosexuality is at least as credible and persuasive as the scholarship (if not typical Bible translations) claiming that he did.

Young people — Christians very definitely included — fail to understand why the church makes such a big deal, or any deal at all, about gays and lesbians.

The bottom line on the whole gay/Christianity issue is that, in an astonishingly short period of time (yay Internet!), we have reached Ye Oldyee Tipping Poiynte. And that seesaw will only continue to further tip in the direction it is now. Which (let’s face it) is to the left.

And I won’t deny that works for me personally. For verily am I already just ever so slightly weary of calling into the jungle through a bullhorn for the deeply confused, bizarrely obdurate combatants in there to come forward and step out into the open: to enjoy the sunshine, to relax, to get a hug, to finally be at peace with an enemy who isn’t even there.

To finally and once again see not just trees, but the whole beautiful forest.

 

Read the Wikipedia entry on Hirro Onoda, the last of the Japanese soldiers fighting WWII — or of any soldier anywhere, ever, I would think — to surrender. OR you can read what I consider one of my greatest online finds ever: Badass of the Week: Hiroo Onoda.

Print Friendly

About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. John is a pastor ordained by The Progressive Christian Alliance. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. And don't forget to sign up for his mucho awesome monthly newsletter.

  • http://sparrowmilk.blogspot.com Shadsie

    How in the hfl did Onoda and his guys get ammo for their guns? I can see using a sword for 30 years, I can see scavening food in the jungle… Must have gotten bullets in raids, but matching them to one’s particular model of gun… Er. That guy gets the medal for “determination” I guess.

    The Pope as a drag queen. I’m never going to get that mental image out of my head, but thanks for it. It amuses me.

  • Matthew Eagleton

    Hi John,

    When I read “I wouldn’t be surprised if by Thursday the Pope was a drag queen”

    I laughed a great deal! As I read through your blog you continue to make me smile.

    I am fortunate to be married but have gay friends & together we know we can bring change to peoples ignorance. Nearly all the people I speak to who believe being gay is wrong know nobody who is gay!

    I must confess I also used to be ignorant on this issue but my wife helped to open my eyes.

    Keep writing & I will keep reading (so profound hey……maybe I should have a go at writing myself)

    Cheers

    Matt

  • Don Rappe

    The first drag queen to get the votes of the college of cardinals. Good luck with that! Still, I don’t think there are any other requirements.

  • Leigh

    It will indeed be a beautiful world in which nobody cares what anyone else does in the privacy of their bedroom (given that said activity is between consenting adults). There are so many things in this world to actually worry ourselves about. It’s so ridiculous to me that who another person loves is such an issue.

    Not many Christians know about or choose to recognize this, but right in our own backyard, there are groups of “fundamentalist” Mormons (that the official Mormon church rightfully does not recognize) that are actively engaging in the sexual slavery of young teenage girls. Thirteen and fourteen year old children are being “married” off, against their will, to older men. Forced into almost perpetual pregnancy. Often abused in other ways, as well. And God forbid they should bear sons.

    But is the so-called Christian right invested in their cause? Are “we” fighting for them, for their rights? If we’re so interested in the sex lives of other people, why do they go unnoticed? Because we’re too busy having our delicate sensibilities offended by consenting adults who choose to be in mutual relationships with people of their own gender. WTF.

    And when you said this, “Want a tip for improving your economy? Invest in same-sex wedding cake toppers”, OMG, I laughed so hard. That’s been one of my primary arguments for marriage equality. Every town, however small, usually has a caterer, some sort of venue, a band or DJ, a florist, a bakery, a stationer, a party equipment supplier… Can you imagine what would happen economically if suddenly an enormous percentage of the population were allowed to shell out cash for a wedding? Economy problem: solved.

  • http://aebrain.blogspot.com Zoe Brain

    Wisconsin gave Gays unemployment protections in 1982. The idea was that they’d come back for Intersexed and Trans people later. They’re still waiting.

    And Texas has just voided all marriages of Intersexed people, as “in God’s eyes” they are neither men nor women, so may not marry *anyone* under the Texas Constitution. Tennessee has just amended its state laws to remove employment protections for them too.

    Change is not always progress.

    • Mindy

      It sucks, Zoe, but I still believe it is a “two-steps forward, one step back” process. There are those who simply can’t let go that quickly of their biases, and we are seeing the knee-jerk reaction to progress for both gays and women all over the country. BUT – the net effect is still positive, because what is also happening is that people are starting to quietly realize the utter pointlessness of passing these obnoxious laws. It isn’t happening fast enough, no. But it’s happening.

  • denver

    You say Protestant churches, and while I have a difficult time imagining the born-agains suddenly accepting us as humans in ten years or less, I do agree it ain’t happening in the Catholic church any time soon… I think, unfortunately, any acceptance of gays being equal human beings or, also, women being ordained, for that matter, would take a third Vatican council, which just isn’t going to happen with the current pope. Fabulous hats, shoes, etc., or no. Sigh.

  • http://ricbooth.wordpress.com Ric Booth

    This deserves a WOOTETH!

    Thank you for drawing such a appropriate analogy, John.

    • Don Whitt

      Nice one, John. Thank you. And I do believe the Pope already wears transvestments.

      • Mindy

        You guys are hilarious. This is great, John – and a much-needed breath of fresh air, as I have been arguing mightily with a couple of pin-headed fundies over on HuffPo about the Catholic Charities adoption funding issue in Chicago. A much-needed reminder that while they are loud and obnoxious, they are the minority, and their numbers are dwindling.

        Thank God!!!

  • Wes

    Great post! I do believe “tierra” shoud be “tiara”, though.

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

      Yes! Duh. Thank you!

  • Robyn

    “I wouldn’t be surprised if by Thursday the Pope was a drag queen”

    Well, you do have to remember the fact that one of the distinguishing characteristics of a Catholic priest is that he is a man who dresses up like Mother and still wants to be called Father…

    • Heather

      And the Pope’s red Prada shoes are absolutely FAB-U-LOUS!!!

  • http://progressivechristianalliance.org Roger McClellan

    That is a profoundly accurate metaphor for the current state of affairs. i can but hope and pray that you are correct and we can put this issue behind us and work together as agents of God’s grace.

  • http://www.proclaimthegospel.org Mo Johnson

    Wow, that gallop poll is stunning. Quite a reversal if it’s accurate. I would think that future gay marriage ballot issues would go the other way. And, that will be a huge change. I do have to say that most of the church that I see is not there yet. Yes, the Lutherans, Episcopals and Presbyterians have moved. But, only to allow gays to serve as pastors — if the local church wants it. And, in so doing, there have been massive splits in those denomenations with strong conservative moves to split. And, of course the largest denomenations have not budged an inch (Catholics, Southern Baptists, even Methodists, etc).

    So, I’m not so sure it will happen so fast in church circles, but it appears it will in society generally. And, the church will follow suit as it always has. In time.

    I’ve been engaged in numerous debates on this issue and I must say the conservatives are much more quiet then they used to be. The biblical scholarship pointing away from Paul talking about loving homosexuals being crucial. There isn’t much for conservatives to stand on any longer on this issue. I think.

    • David Milton Greer

      you might enjoy this youtube from a methodist reverend (with a PhD in divinity, no less).

      http://youtu.be/rOtVq1XZeUw

  • selene

    Unfortunately, there is still quite a large sect of Christians who still think the Bible justifies racism and sexism. I wish it were 10 years tops that this battle would be won, but I feel like we’re still largely fighting latent discrimination and prejudice against non-white races and women, both of which have been fought for over 200 years now. It’s an encouraging thought, though, that the majority of Christians are starting to come around.

    • David Milton Greer

      sadly, i agree. now, in ten years i can see this going the way of the dinosaur (oops! did i say that) among the mainline protestant denominations…but the fundamentalists and evangelical movements will cling to their homophobia (and misogyny) as long as they also cling to the notion of biblical innerancy (thinking that the KJV is an accurate translation)…it’s so said that so many CHRISTians are more wed to the (mistranslated in many cases) teachings of the PAULine texts than the CHRISTian (gospel) texts.

      when the SBC affirms glbt folks (much less marriage equality), i want to still be living and thriving to see it.

  • cat rennolds

    Anybody ever heard of Pope Joan?

    There’s a special chair in the Vatican that the Pope has to sit in before they invest him as Pope. This chair has a hole in the bottom….so the candidate can be verified as a male.

    This would tend to indicate that at some point in history, there was a Pope who wasn’t:)

  • http://www.BrianWendt.com Brian W

    World War Gay? When did it start? Who ended it? Why wasn’t I told about this? Did NPR or CNN cover the action?

    • Don Whitt

      It was on a need-to-know basis, BW.

      • http://www.BrianWendt.com Brian W

        That explains it Don and why by gay brother-in-law was always leaving on covert missions…

        • Kara

          Yes, it was all explained in the weekly emails that detailed the Gay Agenda™. The debate over Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was all a ruse to cover up the real war we’d been fighting.

  • http://kenreads.wordpress.com wken

    If I’d take issue, it’s with the timing. I wonder if we could set up a long-term betting pool. Or how we could determine the winner. Hmmmm … tell you what, I’ll hold the cash while we work out the details, okay?

    Anyway … yeah, I agree. It’s time to get over the whole thing. It in no way hurts me if Bob and Jack want to get married. As for defending marriage … yeah, it sure would be a shame if we let homosexuals wreck marriage. I mean, we heterosexuals have been taking such good care of the institution, after all.

  • melissa

    Heading toward my sketch pad now to design some cake toppers.

  • http://whydowehavetodothissir.blogspot.com Jack

    Thanks for this piece. I enjoyed it immensely for its upbeat message of hope.

  • Lee Walker

    as one of your regular gay christian readers, thank you, for putting into words what so many already sense. Wow, what an amazing change in my own lifetime!

  • roger flyer

    John-In my opinion, you are the premier and reigning bad-ass of the christian corner of the blogosphere.

    • Don Rappe

      John; John; Bad-ass John! I think I feel a song coming on.

  • Mark

    It’s weird that you didn’t quote any scripture to back up any of this. Maybe you don’t have any scripture to support it. You’re simply claiming that if a person is born more with a tendency to sin that they should be allowed to sin just because they want to gratify themselves. Is there no self control? The desire is the sin nature that we all have.

    • DR

      Welcome to the side of the tipping point that’s losing ground (thank God). In a few years, gay men and women will be able to marry and we’ll all see that life is normal like it is now, no thunderbolts have shook the earth we just have gay men and women enjoying the same tax benefit you as a straight man – if married – get to enjoy. The only difference, hopefully, is that gay teenagers won’t kill themselves as frequently as a result of your theology, nor will the “loving Christian parents” with whom I unfortunately share a Christian tent be kicking their kids out of their home for “choosing to sin by being gay”. But only because they’ve been exposed and subsequently shamed for their horrific, damaging behavior. How about posting some scripture to explain that? Good luck finding it.

    • Matthew Tweedell

      In what way does, or should, the Bible support any premise consisting in concrete, situational, objective facts? For instance, the frequency of my trips to my local Meijer supermarket is on the rise, but I shouldn’t expect to be able or to be required to involve any sort of sacred scripture in proving it! If you’re looking for scriptural arguments that homosexuality is… how to say this… not an abomination, then your looking in the wrong place—there’s plenty of GLBT-friendly exegesis out there, but it would not seem the author’s purpose in this particular piece to review it. In any case, that’s quite an unusual line of reasoning that is behind any expectation of it: For the Bible is not a testimony of what is *not* so. (And why should it be? Infinitely many more things are not than are.) Rather, it speaks of what is (or else is speaking of nothing at all). Now, as far as I know, eating shellfish is some sort of abomination; having more money than you need will keep you out of heaven; but being in love (and acting upon that love in what, for you, arises as natural, sexual behavior) with whomever you are destined to, cannot be evil if God is good and God is love. But maybe you’re right: Maybe He isn’t. That would explain why his “Word” could be so misleading about such things.

    • Dirk

      Mark,

      John has written on this topic before, including discussion of biblical verses. I suspect strongly, nothing he writes or discusses on the matter would change your feelings on the subject by the slightest.

      Permit me to ask you a question or two.

      First, one can easily establish through a literal reading of the King James Version of the Bible that enslavement of Negroes is right. What are your feelings on this matter? Should we, as good Christians stop treating black people as our equals, should those Christians who happen to be black (and does the one-drop rule apply?) immediately submit themselves to slavery?

      I ask the question in all sincerity – the Bible is far clearer on this than on many controversial topics.

      Second question. If we follow your literal interpretation of the Bible, must not homosexuals like me then be stoned to death (alongside children who talk back to their parents and all those Southern Baptist Christians who love to wear polyester-cotton blend white shirts)?

      Again, the questions are genuine. I truly am curious as to your answer. My assumption here is that you are familiar with the Bible. Should you not be, I shall be happy to quote chapter and verse

      Oh, and in case you are a New Testament only Christian, no problem – I should think Jesus’ affirmation that every single word of the Jewish texts written prior to his time on earth are still to be followed applies, but, again – happy to cite chapter and verse in case your knowledge is based more on what you’ve been told to believe than actual literacy.

  • Todd

    Thanks for this charming peek at a future imagined through rose-coloured glasses.

    The reality I come back to, however, is that the Southern Baptist Convention is still HUGE – and any denomination so deeply invested in retaining power and membership will continue to be a stumbling block and inject toxic rhetoric into the societal mix.

    Case in point: SBC was founded from a desire to retain the right to oppress, enslave, and “own” other human beings. And after the Civil War was lost, and after a new century had come, and after the Civil Rights Movement (and passage of the Civil Rights Act), and after the rise of the Moral Majority political groups . . . in 1995 the SBC copped to having been wrong and offered an apology.

    Ten years? More likely around 50.

    • DJT

      I tend to agree with you. I grew up in an Assembly of God church and all of my family still attends that church. They aren’t ordaining gays or letting them marry any time soon. I mean that as a denomination as a whole. There are plenty of individuals whose hearts have softened in this area, especially among the younger people. I wouldn’t be surprised to see church splits on the horizon.

    • DR

      While this is true, those like John who are pretty active in speeding the timeline up and making it happen probably don’t need the reminder of how impossible it is. This is a David and Goliath kind of fight we’re in here, reminding him and those in the fight with him probably don’t need a reminder of how big the giant it and how small the stones are.

  • http://apprising.org Ken Silva

    “…the Bible does not, in fact, decree that moments into their afterlife anyone who dies an unrepentant homosexual is immediately issued a one-way ticket on the Hell Crosstown Express.”

    No, the truth is, God’s Word clearly condemns the sin of homosexual activity.

    Same-sex sexual relations will always be outside of the marriage covenant ordained by our Creator, and therefore, is the sin of sexual immorality: http://tiny.cc/62kej

    • Dirk

      Nonsense.

      Total, complete nonsense.

      Jesus never said one word against two men or two women loving each other.

      Given the enormous value which you hateful people attach to destroying our lives, causing our children to commit suicide and ripping us from our partner’s death beds in hospitals, I should think Jesus would have at least taken a moment to say something about how evil we are.

      But no, He lost not one word on the subject.

      Your arguments are the same tired hatred Christians like you used against blacks, the same hate you use against women who wish to have dominion over their own bodies.

      It’s hatred and calling it “God’s will” doesn’t make it any less so.

      • cannby

        Wow–how can you say its nonesense when its found in Genesis, Leviitcus, Judges, Romans,

        1 Timothy 2 Peter Jude–and in everu other place where it states that sex outside the confines of marriage is sin–which would include in the NEW TESTAMENT– Matthew, Mark, Acts, 1Corinthians, Galatians Ephesians, Colossians, 1 Thessalonians and Revelation.

        Like Christ, Christians want to see people set free, not dead. Pretending God didn’t say this won’t accomplish that.

        men can love each other–agape love not eros love. Friendship not lust.

        And Christs word is the entire bible, not just what he spoke on while on earht–he kept spekaing from heaven–to all those who wrote the rest of the New Testament,. Those are his mind, thoughts and words that he wrote. And anyone who calims to be a CHrsitn and thikns they only have to abide by the words in Matthew Mark Luke and John are cherry picking. (But Btw Jesus did affirm marriage was between a man and woman–he quoted Genesis 2 on it.)

        • Suz

          You know what else is nonsense? The mere possibility that any human could comprehend God’s will, let alone put it into words. Please reread you comment. See what we do to OUR OWN thoughts when we try to put them into words? Do you think you’re the first person in history, to render incomprehensible an idea that may or may not have had merit in the first place?

          For 2000 years, Christians have been playing with the wording of the stories in the Bible, trying to reach the Truth. If it were possible to express the Truth with words, the Truth wouldn’t be divine, would it? Christian “authorities” have turned God into Just Some Guy, by attempting to understand Him through historical accounts, rather than simply experiencing his Grace personally and trying to share that Grace with ALL of His children.

          Ask yourself a few hard questions: Does your personal brand of Christianity spread Grace, or condemnation? And are you absolutely certain that condemnation is yours to share? Divine Grace is a gift from God; condemnation, in this life, is a human issue (unless God has “given” you divine condemnation, in which case you’re toast anyway.) Aside from simple human justice, where did you get the authority to judge and condemn? Your pastor? Your selectively translated and interpreted Bible? Politically powerful Biblical “scholars?” Are you sure of THEIR authority, of their absolute knowledge of God? Do you know God, is He in your heart speaking to you? He is, but are you listening? You won’t hear Him clearly until you tell those self appointed “shepherds” to STFU!

        • Mindy

          Oh, cannby, get over yourself. You have a lot of learning ahead of you. You really need to carefully read every single comment on this blog, and turn your back to the kind of hate about which you are blathering. Truly. Join us in this century and let go of your bigotry. And until you can get to that point, as Suz says, STFU. Please.

        • DR

          Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I agree with you, cherry-picking is something to avoid at all costs, it’s important to address all facets of an issue. So please also let us know your response to this exact kind of comment – your theology that you’re confirming that you believe online – contributing to gay kids committing suicide and getting kicked out of their Christian homes (as testified even on this thread alone). Please let us know how you are helping these children that you’re responsible for hurting in the first place. In the name of not cherry-picking. Looking forward to your reply.

    • DR

      Dear Ken,

      God’s Word also clearly outlines what happens when you hurt little children. Gay children are the #1 group to commit suicide in large part due to the rhetoric you sponsor and call it “theology”. You are responsible for these kids killing themselves and you’re also responsible for the “loving Christian parents” of gay children kicking their kids out of their home to be exploited by the depravity and evil on the streets. Even Dobson has admitted this is a problem. So clean up your own house before God (not that I believe for a second that you care about these kids at all but it would be nice to be surprised).

    • http://www.maiamadness.com/ Maia

      Wait, your source is an article you wrote yourself? How… convenient.

      • http://apprising.org Ken Silva

        “your source is an article you wrote yourself?”

        And that has to do with, what? I’m a pastor-teacher, it’s my life to preach and teach God’s Word.

        Perhaps you’d like to engage with the evidence therein.

        • DR

          Ken, please address this comment – why are you avoiding it? Why don’t you be a righteous man of God and address it? Or do you only deal with the comments you can handle? Here it is for reference:

          “God’s Word also clearly outlines what happens when you hurt little children. Gay children are the #1 group to commit suicide in large part due to the rhetoric you sponsor and call it “theology”. You are responsible for these kids killing themselves and you’re also responsible for the “loving Christian parents” of gay children kicking their kids out of their home to be exploited by the depravity and evil on the streets. Even Dobson has admitted this is a problem.”

          What are you doing about this? What are you doing to help these children, they are the #1 group of teens to commit suicide, in part due to your theology that they are going to hell if they “stay gay”. What are you doing to deal with it? Looking forward to your reply.

    • Adrenalin Tim

      the huge straw man erected…

      That’s what she—or in this case, he—said.

  • civics101

    “…deeply confused, bizarrely obdurate combatants…”

    “…pin-headed fundies…”

    to whom it may concern: if you want Christians “still in the jungle” to begin agreeing with a pro-gay point of view, you might want to swallow your anger (however justified) and quit the insults. after all, if your goal really is to change minds and hearts, ending such rhetoric should be easy—and you’ll gain more ground to boot. (of course if you are that angry and actually do want to hurt those “pin-headed fundies,” then i can see how ending such rhetoric is a challenge…) no one’s mind is changed via insults…your call.

    • Dirk

      Did you see the CNN reports on those poor children whose lives were ruined by those Christians who hate us gays?

      Have you not noticed the number of young people who have committed suicide because of the persecution they were subjected to by those Christians – often their own parents – who hate us?

      Have you perhaps missed the legislation – still pending – in Uganda, sponsored and paid for by American Christians which will condemn homosexuals to death?

      And you dare say we should quietly take the hatred, the murderous attacks and the vile abuse of our civil and human rights quietly?

      You will find, the more you folks on the Christian hateful side of the Christian family attack us, the more we refuse to take it anymore. You may still win the next battles. Ultimately, justice will prevail.

      By which I mean, when you stand before Christ and He asks why you drove so many gays and transgender away from him.

      Or are you going to drag out the tired old “by making life for gays hell on earth, we are saving them because they will see us as the way to the Lord” argument?

      I am furious, I am committed. I shall overcome. Your hatred, whether put in quiet arguments or couched in the rudest tones is based on anything but the love to which Christians are called.

      We shall overcome. The closet door is closed, we will never return. We will die, first. Killed by Christians like you, but we will die as free humans.

      • civics101

        Dirk, sadly you are replete with assumptions about me.

        And you more than made my point.

        • DR

          Of course you didn’t even acknowledge anything he wrote. It’s just all about you and your feelings. Those of you who share my Christian tent reveal quite a bit about yourselves when you completely dismiss what is offered to you about kids who are gay and instead, prioritize defending yourself. It’s the most self-aborbed, narcissistic behavior I’ve ever seen in my life. Thank God your 15 minutes of Christian fame is going to be over with soon. I’m tired of you speaking for my Church – for Jesus Christ – you’ve held the Church hostage for decades and the sane Christians who are actually educated, who don’t use the Bible to justify our hostility are taking it back, standing up against the mess you’ve made and repairing it since all you seem to care about is how the world makes you *feel*. Welcome to the world that *you* have created.

          • civics101

            DR, why would i (or anyone) acknowledge accusations and assumptions, which is all you and Dirk have offered in response to my post? you both wield the same very tired (but very well-crafted) broad brush that consistently paints anyone with an honest, civil question in response to this issue as the second coming of Stalin—and attempts to “shut them down.” it’s as if you and your ilk are in socio-political lock step. your version of mob rules is just bad discourse and makes you both sound childish. worse than that, it’s far from Christlike.

          • DR

            Perhaps you’d acknowledge them if it meant some kids get to stay alive? But me being angry with you, even hurting your feelings and/or offending you is what you continue to prioritize – not them. What you don’t get is that I don’t care about *you*. I don’t care about your feelings, I don’t care about your agenda, I don’t care about knowing you. I don’t care if we’re friends. I care about you waking up to what you’re doing to kids and stopping it. That’s all I care about, if me being nice to you is the only thing that will make you consider what Dirk offered to you then your decision to only learn from people who cater to you feelings is more about your own emotional maturity vs you pursuing the Truth of Christ.

            Here’s the deal. This is theology/those who offer it that you seem to be advocating for here are causing gay kids to hate themselves, feel they are unworthy of God and decent society and many of them kill themselves as a result. It’s not mine. So you can call this a “broad brush” all you want to but I’m not here defending the actual theology that’s driving many of them to this, nor am I defending those who spout it, worried about their feelings when people like me bring it to their attention and are honest about how angry we are.

            I’m not in this to make feel better about yourself. There are kids dying and a lot of us can’t stop those of you from prioritizing being right about gay sex being unholy vs, them staying alive. I don’t care what you think about me or my ‘mob’. I find it fascinating in the last exchange of comments, you’ve never acknowledged the issue of how your theology impacts children in the ways that both Dirk and I have brought up. Consider, perhaps, setting your injured feelings aside and actually commenting on that. Or don’t, stay out of the way and let the people who actually care about that do the talking. There’s too much to do rather than worry about you getting your feelings hurt. Educate yourself, I’m done doing the heavy lifting for those of you who expect to be handed the details of what these kids are going through on some silver platter. All of the data is there. Go find it yourself.

          • civics101

            “This is theology/those who offer it that you seem to be advocating for here are causing gay kids to hate themselves…”

            again, you don’t know a thing about my theology.

            “…you’ve never acknowledged the issue of how your theology impacts children in the ways that both Dirk and I have brought up…”

            once again, you don’t know a thing about my theology.

          • DR

            It doesn’t matter what you believe because while I’m sure you’re well-intended, it’s throwing noise into a necessary straight talk conversation.

            You’re here asking those of us to tone down our anger at those who are doing it which is you focusing on them. Do you understand that? While I appreciate where I think you’re coming from (I do, I think you mean well). what you don’t understand is that your pleas for civility prevent people from the consequences of their actions. If someone wants to use my indignation at their role in kids harming themselves as a reason for letting themselves off the hook? Then I don’t control that, it is absolutely due to the fragility of their own ecosystem. They need to believe they can “hate the sin and love the sinner”, that their hands are clean from these kids harming themselves.

            The depth of the self-absorption that drives one to embrace the above posture is like addiction – addicts can’t *hear* kindness, they don’t care they are hurting the family that is in such pain over their addiction. The analogy is exactly the same thing with Christians who are operating under the deception of “I can tell a gay person I find them repulsive but somehow magically, they still believe I love them and are better off emotionally as a result of me letting them know that God believes them to be an abomination.” They refuse to acknowledge their role in hurting these kids. They are like an addict denying responsibility. Tough love is required for both.

          • http://www.maiamadness.com/ Maia

            DR and Dirk, I think you’re both overreacting and misunderstanding here. civics101 never advocated for anyone, and he made a pretty decent point. While I interpreted John’s post as an article written for like minded people, stating a belief that people will change their minds, had it actually been an attempt to change anyone’s mind on the issue right now its rhetoric might have defeated its purpose. Intelligent people are convinced by way or reasoned arguments, not insults, and when enough of them have changed their minds, the sheep will follow. Which is essentially what John was saying.

            That said, civics101 could have done a better job of explaining what he meant (and where his position came from) rather than what he didn’t mean.

      • DR

        Dirk, I’m one Christian who is standing along side of you. But more importantly, I take responsibility for not standing up to these kinds of people a long time ago and just allowing this kind of thing to happen while I was focused on my own needs to be the “good” Christian. You’re owed an apology for that, but more importantly those of us who are Christian need to start standing up to these people and shutting them down so you don’t have to, so you can be protected and enjoy the rights that all American citizens have.

        • M. McM.

          DR – I’ve lurked on John’s blog for quite a while and just wanted to hijack this conversation to say I love you in the best meaning of those words. Thanks for taking the time to offer your thoughts, I do appreciate it!

    • DR

      With all due respect, your theology is contributing to gay children committing suicide at an alarming rate. I’m not super concerned with your feelings getting hurt as a result of expressing how angry I am with you for polluting the Gospel of Jesus Christ with your hostile, neurotic rhetoric and making them feel like they are unholy and unloved by God. You’re self-esteem should be emboldened and reinforced if you possess this alleged Truth that those of us on the Liberal side of Christianity apparently don’t (according to many of you) possess so stop being so skin-thinned and be grateful that while you are feeling angry that your grown up feelers are injured? You made it through your teenage years alive.

      • civics101

        ah, respect. thank you.

        let the floodgates of civility open wide…

        so…what do you know for a fact about my theology based on my post? i simply called for a respectful discourse. (and it wasn’t about me—you and Dirk made it about me, however.)

        please don’t tell me that—-based solely on my post calling out the venom i detect against anyone with an honest, questioning point of view—-i was showing my theological or political stripes.

        please tell me how you know that i have ever contributed to gay children committing suicide.

        please tell me how you know that i have ever made gays or lesbians feel unholy or unloved.

        and can you please cite the times and dates that i’ve stood with the “anti-gay Christian” crowd? please enlighten me.

        again, you and Dirk have more than proven my point that a little challenge in regard to your MO gets an immediate shutdown. you guys have become the bullies here. so just stop. if you truly want change, don’t be hateful and insulting. but if you want to be a mob of bullies and hurt other people, change will take much, much longer.

        • DR

          You calling for “civil discourse” is a manipulative move I’ve seen people do a thousand times because they are quite simply, not able to handle conflict and they believe that being kind means being gentle. Even Jesus called people vipers. And some are unable to deal with the damage that they’ve done as a result of the theology they believe. I find it amazing that people get more angry with me being angry than what I and others like Dirk point out. It always shocks me but now I’ve come to expect it.

          Anger is an activating agent. Conflict is productive and so is people getting uncomfortable, we don’t change when we’re uncomfortable and we don’t often listen until we’re shaken. I have no idea what you believe about the GLBT community. You calling for “civil discourse” is nothing less than trying to dampen and diminish the rage, grief and anguish that many of us who are trying to save these children (literally) feel when we see another one killing themselves because “they’d rather be dead then disappoint their Christian mom and dad”. They’re scared of hell and don’t want to postpone it. These are quite literally, two suicide notes I’ve seen written from children. And Christians refuse to pay attention and I am sick to death of dancing around the issue. If you’d like to politely spar about the issue with someone who is dancing around your feelings or someone else’s – someone who I know votes the way they do and actually speaks to the GLBT community as though they are repulsive creatures – then look elsewhere. Those kids who’ve died deserve our indignation – it’s a shame you don’t feel the same.

          • DR

            typo: we don’t change when we’re ‘comfortable ‘.

        • DR

          PS. Congratulations. You proved your point (to yourself). As you did that? Another gay kid just got kicked out of his Christian home. I wonder how much he got out of it. But you keep challenging those of us who are angry about that to be nicer to those that did it – people whose interest in being “educated” couldn’t be detected via a microscope – and the rest of us will express our indignation and grief about that child being exposed to some of the worst predators that could step out of hell and you can stay focused on how inappropriate we are. Life goes on as we debate on the internet. Unfortunately, probably not for that kid. Enjoy your victory.

          • civics101

            DR, there’s a difference between righteous anger and being a bully.

            here’s hoping you (and others) learn what that is sooner than later.

          • DR

            There probably is. And those who actually care about kids dying and what they are inadvertently doing to cause it probably don’t care about figuring out which one is which because they’re so freaked out about even one child hurting themselves as a result of a message about Jesus and the wires getting horribly crossed and how they – we – can start repairing it. Are you one of them? Only you know but it sure doesn’t look like it. I hope I’m wrong.

          • Dirk

            civics101,

            Are you implying that the cessation of the violations of my human and civil rights is dependent upon my behaving in accordance with your desires?

            What an, shall we say, unusual position for a person using the alias “civics101″ to take.

            The time for quiet discussion has past. There are only four positions left for Christians to take on this matter. I won’t dare to suggest which position you – so terribly concerned that I not make any assumptions about your unrevealed positions occupy. One of the four does, however, apply to you.

            The four positions:

            1) Gay bashing Christians. The Bible said it, God wrote it, I believe it and that’s that. Be thankful we don’t stone you to death, after all we are supporting the Ugandan attempts to make killing gays legal.

            2) Christians show are sheeple. They don’t have a personal feeling on the matter one way or the other, they just do what they are told. The ‘Mitläufer’.

            These are the good Christians who spent $78 million dollars taking away my rights in California – out of obedience, of course. The money was spent by group #1.

            3) Christians who just don’t see it as a Christian issue. Gays should just crawl back into the closet and let things go back to the way they were. This is the only group which is subject to changing their minds. Let their son or daughter, their mother or father, sister or brother come out of the closet and then they might change positions.

            4)Christians who actually seek to follow Jesus’ two commandments: Dt 6:4 “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.”

            Lv 19:18 “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

            What? That ain’t the version you are used to reading. So sorry:

            Matthew 22:37-40 Our Lord is asked by a lawyer “which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus says this…”You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself’ “On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

            Old and New Testament orders from above. Well, it was a long time ago and let’s hope it wasn’t meant quite the way it was reported. Here, let me fix it for you, civics101:

            Love God as long as it makes you feel all righteous.

            Love the happy, shiny people who confirm how righteous you are.

            There – now that is, no doubt about it, what the Bible truly said, God wrote and you believe.

            Civics101, in case you’re still with me here (your ego demands that you are, if only to feed your outrage that a darky should dare to be dissatisfied with his place on the lowest stoop, at the end of the veranda), we have tried speaking quietly.

            Children continued to die, adult gays and transgender continued to be murdered, beaten, raped.

            We have tried going to court – and we are winning, slowly, battle by battle.

            And yet, children are being turned out of their homes – the independent surveys across the Western culture all show somewhere between 30 and 40% of the homeless children were turned out by their good Christian family because they were gay or transgender.

            And Uganda, with funding by American Christians, is still working to pass the Kill the Gays Bill.

            We argued theology and encountered hypocrisy. We argued separation of church and state and got “that doesn’t meant freedom from MY religion”.

            We begged to be allowed to be by the bedsides of our dying partners and were thrown out of the hospital, with our – and their – children.

            The times are changing. Silence equals death. The fence you are sitting on is now a picket fence. Whoops. Another assumption. Dear, dear. Back to denying me my rights because I don’t play your game by your rules.

          • Dirk

            Not:

            2) Christians show are sheeple.

            Rather:

            2) Christians who are sheeple.

          • Todd

            civics – I think we really are that angry.

            By we, I mean, “the gays”. But enough about me. It’s about you. Your feelings. Your having been bullied.

            Your scoring of points, verbosity, and your short, repetitive, empty responses stuffed with words circling back unto yourself.

            And your use of “again,” to bring us back yet again to you.

            And you.

            And the way you suck more and more time, energy, and attention to yourself. BPD? DID? NPD?

            Or perhaps, in the end, BFD.

            Again (to use your rhetorical style): you and you and you.

            The multiplicity of you.

            Is legion.

            And your repetitive discursions.

            that lead always

            to you.

            And the way it drains all meaning.

            For all except you.

            Positively vampiric.

            And mesmerizing

            And positively poetic

            The fascination of you with you.

            And the names roll on.

            Billy Lucas

            Brandon Bitner

            Justin Aaberg

            Tyler Clementi

            Dominic Crouch

            And Caleb Nolt

            (Especially him for me)

            Notice how a discursion disrupts

            Trollishly?

            It is no substitute

            For a life

            Especially

            Those listed above

            With the angels.

          • Mindy

            Breathtaking. This is so spot on, and so beautiful all at the same time. Wow.

          • Rebecca

            fantastic. in the midst of anger, poetry touches the heart :)

        • melanie

          ” if you truly want change, don’t be hateful and insulting. but if you want to be a mob of bullies and hurt other people, change will take much, much longer.”

          I did not find the original post here to be quite as offensive as you did- I guess I saw it as aimed toward us gay christians and not toward the “fundies” themselves, so the specific language did not incite such strong feelings. But in general, yes, I would absolutely agree. There are quite a few christian brothers and sisters who would (and do) come to accept us much more quickly when we do not group ourselves off from them in a very loud, angry manner. Hence why you’ll never see me marching in a pride parade. I am many things- gay is but one of them. When I try to make that one word almost the entirety of my public persona, I am doing myself no favors in fostering acceptance in christian communities. Especially if I do nothing but insult them. Duh.

          • Dirk

            Melanie,

            I certainly agree with you that one should be open to respectful discourse.

            I can’t define myself in any other way than who I am, which is a married man (at least in Europe, in the US, of course, we are legal strangers) in a monogamous, loving, committed, faithful and true relationship of now over 28 years.

            It makes me furious, it makes me absolutely furious every single time we get off the plane and touch American soil and once again are treated as unmarried.

            Some gay people are OK with being sub-human and stripped of their civil rights, others are not.

            As for all these charges of being a bully. Have I beaten, raped, murdered, tortured, electro-shocked, imprisoned, turned out a child out of their own home onto the streets, spat upon, or even tread upon the toe of a single solitary gay-bashing Christian?

            No.

            Have I ever “shut down” an Internet discussion through uncivil discourse? Well, you tell me – anything about my exchanges with civics101 which denies him or her to continue to take their position?

            No.

            As for gay pride and being flamboyantly stereotypically tres fabulous – well, it doesn’t butter my muffin, either. But I support their right to be out marching and flaunting it. I also support the right of the hateful ones among us Christians to barricade their churches against us. What I demand – and loudly, clearly and with vigor is the immediate return of my civil and human rights.

            There is no excuse, there is no middle ground, there is no acceptable compromise. Should I ever again encounter the situation where my husband is taken to a hospital and I, despite having all the legal paperwork, am thrown out by a Christian who calls the cops to enforce her hatred – knowing that by the time a judge rules against her it will be too late – I shall probably make the ACLU look like exactly the group of quiet, well behaved little darkies singing in the fields which is exactly what civics101 is asking of me.

          • Mindy

            Keep saying it, Dirk. Keep saying it with all the fierce eloquence you possess. Just awesome. Your husband must be incredibly proud to be married to such a fighter.

  • melanie

    You are more optimistic than I am, but I do believe that within my lifetime we will see legalized gay marriage become the norm in our country. Perhaps not in our churches, but in our country. The closer this comes to being a legal reality, the more some churches will push backwards. And quite frankly, it’s their right to do so if they want to- that whole freedom of religion thing that our great nation has. I’d just be happy to get married (or civil unioned even) and be able to go to the hospital and put my partner of almost 4 years down as my next of kin rather than a blood relative. (Yes, they seriously will not put her as next of kin. I argued it forever in the ER intake with a crushed foot, to no avail. Not even a faith-based hospital. You’d think once I get past age 18, to age 28 even when i broke my foot, I’d be past needing mommy and daddy listed on my hospital paperwork.)

  • http://www.diannaeanderson.net Dianna

    John,

    Thank you very much for this post. This last week, I was arguing with some of my (very) conservative Christian friends about homosexuality, and I felt very alone in the fight. I have three friends whom I am very close to who are gay, and I consider myself a straight ally. The things that come out of peoples’ mouths in response to the issue of homosexuality and the church are just..unbelievable. What I’ve ended up praying for with those friends is that they would meet and become friends with a gay person, and understand that homosexuality is not a choice, it is not “fashionable” and the words that they use to put them down really do hurt real people.

    It’s awesome to remember that I’m not alone in this discussion, and that popular opinion here is on my side. Unfortunately, for many, popular opinion being in favor of gay marriage is just going to convince them that they are even more in the right (faux-persecution and all that).

    Anyway, thanks.

  • Soulmentor

    I’m gay. My parents died thinking I’m going to hell, sadly and I have evangelical type siblings who simply deny rational discussion of this issue. I’ve been trying to reach them for decades by pointing out books and writings of respected theologians, clergy, religious historians, etc, even sending them books like WHAT THE BIBLE REALLY SAYS ABOUT HOMOSEXUALITY by Daniel Helmeniak which they said they actually read….and still refuse to even question their “faith” on this issue. It’s not real faith of course, just fear of the idea that they might have to question their “faith” if they began to have doubts about the certain “truth” of their scriptures on this issue in which they have invested so much of their “faith”.

    And so, we are lost to each other and they do not even respond any longer even when I send them writings by John who’s blog I have urged them to become familiar with. I doubt they have but really don’t know, our estrangement has become so nearly complete. They know they must fear to engage me.

    They personify a quote by a former Senate Chaplain (who’s name escapes me just now) who wrote,”If what we think is right or wrong further divides the family of man, there must be something wrong with what we think is right.”

    Of course, they miss the point when they counter that with Jesus words about how he would divide even families, certain in their belief that they are on the right side of the division.

    Sigh.

    • Dirk

      Soulmentor,

      I regret this, deeply.

      Except for my parents, all my close relations are passionately “Christian” and define their Christianity through hatred of gays.

      I’ve given up even trying to reach them, at funerals and occasions where we must stand as a family, my parents stand or sit on each side of usand the rest – all eleven – literally will not sit at the same table with my husband and me.

      This is why I express my regret. The “Oh, I’m so sorry” and the “well, you wouldn’t want to be around people like that, anyway” overlooks the loss of a family and implies it’s somehow your fault.

      It isn’t.

    • Mindy

      I am so sorry for you, Soulmentor. Even more, I am sorry for your frightened family, because they are missing out on the love and company of a cherished sibling. Shame on them.

  • Dirk

    Maia,

    There’s no “reply” button under your comment of this morning.

    Overreaction is, I think, in the eye of the beholder.

    Clearly, civics101 is not the least bit interested in human and civil rights for gays and the transgender, he or she only wants us to shut up and go back into the closet. Their comments make this clear.

    My patience is at an end. We tried talking and reasoning for decades. Those who still insist on denying us our rights do so out of hatred.

    There is no reasoning with them possible, at least not on the part of us gays. Perhaps straight Christians might still reach them, although I doubt it. Their hatred runs too deep.

    That said, I think you should take a look at this link. This is the situation right now between the hateful Christians in our Christian body and the gay and transgender world.

    http://www.towleroad.com/2011/06/gay-men-kicked-out-of-public-pool-in-kentucky-and-official-cites-the-bible-as-reason.html#comments

    This is why my patience has worn thin. There is no possible excuse for a Christian doing this except out of sheer hatred.

    • DR

      Maia,

      Again – I know civics meant well and if I believed that Christians who are doing the things that Dirk and others have called out below would respond to it? I’d offer it, I’m capable of offering my thoughts in a civil manner. And there are a lot of Christians who just aren’t educated who actually do respond to the type of engagement you and civil suggest is needed.

      But we have an added layer that we’re dealing with here – it’s the layer of destructive behavior that can only be equated with addiction. These Christians doing the things that Dirk has once again offered – they are so mired in their own mental and emotional short comings that *reason* doesn’t work on them. I know it because I was one of them. Anger woke me up. Again I don’t disagree with you and for a lot of people, well-reasoned responses work. For others who are so deeply stuck in their own false idol worship of religion (there is a difference between being this and Christian), who are using Christianity as an escape from their own homophobia and emotional issues, anger actually works. I’ve been doing this for a very long time, it’s not my first time at the rodeo. All I care about are gay kids not killing themselves anymore, gay adults being able to have the relationships they want legally. I’ve no other ox to grind. I think you’re wise to offer a tempered approach to anger but there are times when it is the only appropriate response.

      • http://leap-of-fate.com/ Christy

        Hey DR,

        “they are so mired in their own mental and emotional short comings that *reason* doesn’t work on them”

        There’s a great book by Gordon Livingston, M.D. called Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart in which there is a chapter titled, “It is difficult to remove by logic an idea not placed there by logic in the first place”. Brilliant little book.

        We should chat more. I was pulled from the mire of fundamentalism by love and cognitive dissonance. And while going to a “secular” college and marrying someone outside my faith tradition all played a part, motherhood was the catalyst for this change for me. The *experience* of unconditional love, being open to it and fully *surrendering* to it instead of following old patterns of wrongheaded thinking about what was “right” and “wrong” about parenting…..this broke the “but this is the way it’s supposed to be done” mold wide open. This and a lot of reading and a willingness to be wrong and question everything I was ever taught and knew to be “true.” Doubt, I had always been taught was of the Devil……something to be shunned. When, in fact, wrestling with difficult spiritual questions is the fertile ground for emotional and spiritual growth. Doubling down and insisting on “knowing what is right” because the Bible says so or your church or your minister says so without doing the hard self-reflective work of following up on the why’s and what if’s yourself…….robs us of the necessary growing pains of spiritual growth.

        It was Muhammad Ali who wisely said: “The man who views the world at 50 the same as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.”

        This is the stuff of M. Scott Peck’s book the Road Less Traveled: facing difficulties including long clung to (incorrect) notions. He writes: “Only a relative and fortunate few continue until the moment of death exploring the mystery of reality, ever enlarging and refining and redefining their understanding of the world and what is true.”

        • vj

          “wrestling with difficult spiritual questions is the fertile ground for emotional and spiritual growth”

          Which is exactly why I love this blog and the great comments left by thoughtful people such as yourself; I am sure of very little, but I do enjoy considering the possibilities…

        • DR

          Christy, this was important for me to read. Thank you.

  • PDCH

    John Shore, Its really too bad you don’t read the Bible. The blog purports to be “Chrstian” as well as the author. So as a Christian where do you go for authoritaive teaching/truth– science? Did you know a new study was just published in which those conducting it studied the dietary habits of people as it pertained to salt use and found out that salf really didnt correlate to heart attacks as we have been told for years. Did you know the LA Times ran an article last year that stated that the findings of scientific reseach were wrong 30% of the time while being tauted and published under the banner of being accurate And this was due to scientists looking for grant support, or recognition and other such motives–and that doesn’t account for those who were just plane not good at what they were doing.

    If the Bible comes in conflict with some scientific “call in the media and lets make an announcement!” ‘ discovery,’ what should you do? Immediatly throw out the what the Bible teaches and embrace it? Do you know God’s word is actualy from God–not Paul, not Luke, not Jeremiah- theyre just the messenger boys-but God himself? I guess not. And don’t talk to me about interpretation on this subject –there are too many books of the Bible where the gay matter is spelled out clearly–at least 8. that address it directly or as a part of the sexual code for believers and this I know from years of studying the book and comoing into contact with those passages in the context in which they were written. .You have a mish mash of beliefs you call biblical but,a great many of them secular humanist/flawed science – based.

    If you do some research on this issue and find out that the removal of homosexuality from the Manual of Mental Disorders that the American Psycological Association uses as their diagnostic reference book/’bible’ removed homosexuality from the list of disoders in the early 70′s. This was done by vote of the membership of the APA. Do you know the decision to vote on the removal was taken after extreme pressure from gay activists on this issue–we are takiing their interruping meetings of the APA on a regular basis and all manner of pressure.–So the APA sent out ballots to the entire membership of the APA to vote on whether to remove homosexualit y from the manual–not based on some study results, based on gays pressuring them to do this, btw) and that only about 35% of those ballots were filled out and returned to be counted?,. So 35% voted,. and since better more than 1/2 of the 35%voted to remove it, it was removed. Which means that by a vote of LESS THAN 35% of the entire voting membership of the APA, homosexuality suddently was no longer a disorder,. Not becasue of a scientific study–but because a MINORITY of the membership of the APA took a vote.–a miniority, The rest didn’t even bother to vote. So then there you have the foundation of the ‘born that way’ scientific ‘proof’ on this. No proof at all, and only about 1/3 saying it should be declassified as a disorder. And clearly a membership afraid ofPC political pressure–most of them didnt want to even get involved in it so they sat it out and didnt vote. Then after than the APA wrote a summarytof this (which I found online) which stated that of anyone with homosexual desires still wanted to come for therapy to have them removed, they could becasue there had been success in the past for many who had sought treatment, Thats what the APA said AFTER they took it out of the manual of disorders. And you know science has been cowering and making PC findings about this ever since. But still NO GAY GENE has ever been found.

    You are a poor student of the book your are suppoed to know better than any other,. You put whatever science says far ahead of what the Bible says as though iscientists could never be flawed men doing the research for their own benefit or afraid to have a finding that iarent politically correct, Not all are like this, but clearly more than enough are (as in ALL OTHER fields–these types of people are in every walk of life.) Ok John Shore now go criticize Chrstians who take God at his word trusting He knows what he’s taking about even when science says he doesn’t. Turns out it was not a dumb thing to do after all and to stand on the truth of Scripture –and to do so is NOT to hate people who fall short of it, because we all fall short but to stand on it IS to honor God as the all -knowing and wise being that He is.

    • Dirk

      PDCH,

      There are so many inaccuracies, fallacies, falsehoods and incoherent conclusions in your comment it is hard to know where to begin.

      I think I won’t even try. It is better to just let what you have written stand.

      This – exactly this you have written is the entire basis for denying me full human status and for stripping me of my civil rights in the United States.

      Nothing more need be said.

      • Scott

        What Dirk said.

      • PDCH

        If htere are accuracies then you have to point them out as such., The information I presented here I found through researc and not at a anti-homosexual site either,. I also as I stated have along standing study of the bible that is not and has not been topical–i came accross the versses that talk bout homosexuality as part and parcel of my study and in the context of the passage, chapters and books thety were included in–no cherry picking to suit and agenda.

        You don’t say more becasue what I posted is true and correct and you can’t counter it

        You have the same rghts as me–i have a right to marry a member of the opppsite sex, so do you. Marriagehas always been fundamentally definded as the union between a man and woman.

        • A’isha

          @PDCH Based on your usage of language I think I’ll take any of your “research” with a grain of salt. It is probably just as flawed as your sentence structure and spelling. Seriously, dude, why do so many fundamentalists lack intelligence? Oh, I know, because those who are more intelligent and/or educated are smart enough to disregard what fundamentalist leaders try to force-feed their members.

          Further, if science disproves something the Bible says, it doesn’t mean the spirit of the Bible isn’t valid; it merely means that the authors of the Bible got some of the science wrong. So yes, if I find that science and the Bible don’t mesh on something, I’m sure going to lean towards science. That doesn’t mean I disregard who Jesus is/was or what he did.

          • PDCH

            “‘Im taking it with a grain of salt” is easier than doing the work of checking it out for yourself. That way you can avoid admitting you are mistaken.

            I have limited time to reply as I’m on a break so I made spelling errors and inadvertently clicked ‘post’ before I read back through. We’ve all done that before. But I know from having posted on other message boards that people who don’t have a thing to offer in reply to a someones post will often seize on a grammar error, call the person stupid based on it and smugly walk away, never having addressed the substance of that person’s post. Seems the same is happening here. If you want to remain ignorant on this topic, you can, however the information is out there, from sources that are not biased either way.

            The author of the BIble is God–written by men he chose through the inspiration of Spirit. None of it is wrong in fact or spirit

          • Leanne

            “None of it is wrong in fact or spirit”…

            Have ya read it all? Really? There are parts that blatantly contradict other parts. A couple of the lineages (those big long strings of begatting) outlining the same person’s pedigree don’t line up. Go try it.

            The same stories told by two different folks don’t line up exactly either. Nor would I expect them to, being written by two different people. If God were simply using the authors as living Dictaphones, the accounts would be identical. They’re not. That doesn’t make them invalid as a philosophy or guidance or even as a personal account, but if one section says A-B-C-D-E and one says A-C-D-F-G, some fact is off somewhere. Translations may introduce errors or corrections, and differing authors introduce different perspectives and narrative accounts.

            The bit about lineages not being identical is nitpicky, yes, but to claim none of it is factually wrong anywhere just shows you haven’t actually sat down and dissected it with an eye to internal consistency. Plenty of people have done so and still have their faith intact, so it shouldn’t be a scary thing, just an interesting exercise.

          • Joe

            “Written by men…” Did everyone catch this? No matter the inspiration or the influence, the Bible was written by many, many men. Humans are not infallible, no matter the inspiration. Period.

          • DR

            “I have limited time to reply”

            Have you noticed that people who often rush into this forum with the intention of teaching everyone – including John – how off-track and unbiblical they are that all of the sudden they “have limited time to reply” when challenged? Fascinating.

          • http://www.barnmaven.com Barnmaven

            The bible, while most undeniably inspired by God, was written by men, who have proven themselves throughout human history to be notoriously fallible.

            Depending on which version of the bible you happen to be reading, words are changed to suit the distinctly different styles of the group translating, so that meanings can be drawn from one version that are completely absent from another – or in some cases, in conflict.

            There are whole chapters written after Christ’s death that are in the Catholic bible and not in the Protestant versions.

            God inspires, man desires, and hence the dominoes fall where they may. You, my friend, live in complete fallacy. The bible is not undiluted truth, nor is gay marriage a new concept. Your opinion bears little weight due to the limited sources you utilize to inform yourself.

          • Mindy

            PDCH – I’d say that the substance of your post has been effectively discussed. The comments about your spelling and grammar – which are mistakes well beyond typos, my friend – are part of the a greater effort to show that you are not as educated as you’d like us to believe. That you are limited in your reading, whether it be about the Bible or anything else.

            As DR pointed out, saying that you have “limited time to reply” is another way in which those whose arguments have been sufficiently dismantled slink off, never to return and defend their statements. If you have slunk off, I hope it is to think about what everyone has said here and perhaps challenge yourself to learn more and open your heart. If you are still here, well, what say you now??

          • http://leap-of-fate.com/ Christy

            “Written by men.” Indeed.

            Ever wonder where we might be as a human society if women had been permitted to be equal participants in Biblical interpretation, scholarship, and church leadership down through the age?

          • Don Rappe

            I’m among those who think that considerable of the writings of the “Jahwist” were authored by one or more women in the Court of Solomon. I presume they had time on their hands in which to tell stories. Otherwise, being one of hundreds of wives and concubines could get pretty boring.

          • selene

            PDCH

            I have done the research. Referring to the OT law is moot because the Gospels, Galatians, Colossians, Romans, Hebrews, etc. all talk about how the law is 1) useless and 2) condemning to those who try to follow it. Moreover, you are cherry-picking if you use those verses because they lie smack-dab in the middle of passages talking about sacrifices and ceremonial uncleanness, leading many scholars to believe they were a condemnation of the temple prostitution that was popular during that day. The Sodom and Gomorrah passage is actually a story of gross inhospitality, hate, and gang rape by *gasp* all the people of the town. Homosexuality is NEVER mentioned as their sin, but their selfishness, lack of love and hospitality, and brutality towards the weaker people are definitely identified in other passages as reasons for their destruction.

            Let’s move on to the NT. Any in-depth study of the NT passage will tell you that the words Paul used that are translated as blanket condemnation of homosexuality are actually words that were made up and that NO ONE knows how to translate because NO ONE knows what it meant or how it was used. They go with the closest meaning of the root words, which would be the equivalent of someone a couple centuries from now translating “lady-killer” to mean someone who kills ladies or a lady who kills instead of its actual meaning of someone who is attractive to women. It’s sketchy scholarship, and I would be very hesitant if I were you to blanketly condemn a group of people on scholarship that even the scholars can’t agree confidently on, especially when you consider that Peter said in Acts 10 that God told him not to call any person profane or unclean . . . around the same time that he rescinded the food laws. You see, God is much more concerned with our causing hurt and harm to people who could come to him but don’t because we can’t set aside our prejudices. That’s another pretty prominent theme throughout the NT. Paul and Jesus both said that we need only act under the law of love, but unfortunately discrimination against glbt is NOT very loving. As a self-proclaimed biblical scholar, I strongly suggest you re-examine your position with up-to-date scholarship.

            In fact, you might find it surprising that some scholars believe the Roman Centurion’s servant that Jesus healed may have actually been a same-sex lover of the Centurion rather than a slave. And the Eunichs had a reputation of being gay, so the Ethiopian Eunich was doubtless stereotyped in that way, but that didn’t prevent him from being baptized. David and Jonothan, if you read their words without bias, sound very much like lovers, especially when Saul tells Jonathan he brought sexual shame (exposed the nakedness of his mother) on the house by his relationship to David—and this is the “man after God’s own heart.” Ruth and Naomi also sound more like lovers in their conducts and speech to each other than just close friends.

            You see, there are other (and I’m sure you’ll think them blasphemous) readings of the scriptures that not only don’t condemn monogamous, consensual same-sex relationships (instead condemning rape or inhospitality) but also seem to affirm monogamous, consensual same-sex relationships. You don’t have to necessarily believe they are accurate, but it should at least put enough doubt in your mind to act in tolerance, love, and mercy rather than condemnation and dismissal.

            You can find other, more in-depth scholarship that says much of what I have summarized, and I hope that you will go out and research this further before holding strongly to beliefs that cause so much pain to others.

          • vj

            “You don’t have to necessarily believe they are accurate, but it should at least put enough doubt in your mind to act in tolerance, love, and mercy rather than condemnation and dismissal. ”

            Selene, I just love how you have expressed this! We all know so little of the entireity of God, that we should all walk very humbly in whatever knowledge we think we have…

          • A’isha

            You’re wrongly assuming I haven’t researched this topic for years now. I’m to the point where I don’t waste my time debating it with people who come to the table with the same old arguments that a million other fundamentalists have used before. That tells me YOU haven’t done the work to find out what is true or not. Go back to your small group of small-minded people and pretend you’re being persecuted or whatever you spend your time doing. Nobody here wants to hear your vitriol that you seem to think comes from God. I pray that someday God will open your eyes.

        • Scott

          Marriage has actually changed definitions with almost every generation. Only a few decades ago it was illegal in many places in the US to marry someone of another national heritage. Biblical-age marriages often involved the older men in a village rounding up the young girls, 10-12 years old, and divying them up amongst themselves.

          In modern society, marriage has been redefined to be based on love, which is a fairly new addition in the grand scheme of things. If two people love eachother, why should the laws set out by man in the Bible, not by God, affect that?

          Clearly the “study” you have done has been done through very limited, self-serving sources. Perhaps you should go back and recheck your sources.

          • jess

            The fundamental–FUNDAMENTAL thing that has always defined marriage is that its always been between a male and female.

            But since you say all thats needed is love, then lets change it and make it between two male brothers, How about that? They say they love each other–so why not? They can’t have kids together that will be geneticallyl messed up–so why not a brother to brother incestous marriage?

          • Suz

            No, the HISTORICAL “thing that has always defined marriage…” The truly fundamental thing that has always defined marriage, is that it is the primary relationship on which to build a family. Any family.

          • Mindy

            Yes. Exactly, Suz. And historically, things change. Nothing stays the same. And most of the time, that is a good thing.

            “But that’s the way we’ve always done it!” is not a successful defense for anything, whether it be office protocol, what makes a classroom successful or how families come together. Sometimes, the traditional way of doing something holds great merit and can be justified on that. Sometimes, the traditional way is nothing more than what we’re used to and no longer is the best, most practical or only way to get something done.

            If building solid family foundations that give children a loving start in life is the ultimate goal here – which is typically where marriage leads – then I’d have to say that marriage, in general, in the US needs a big ol’ overhaul. Because more than half of them end in divorce, something isn’t working.

            Many have already re-defined how divorce works. It is often not only NOT divisive and spiteful, it is often quite amicable, with cooperation between parents, shared events and celebrations and even new spouses who are welcomed into children’s lives, because the adults act like grown-ups instead of selfish brats.

            That’s a whole ‘nother subject, obviously, but my point is that we change, we evolve, we LEARN. We gain understanding of what it takes to create a relationship, what works, what doesn’t. We now, as a general population, understand that gay couples can be as effective as parents as straight couples or single folks. It isn’t about orientation. It’s about being there for and loving your children.

          • http://www.barnmaven.com Barnmaven

            Marriage has not always fundamentally been between men and women. Spartan and Roman society both had contracts for male marriage to other males, and ancient Celtic and Gaul pagan rites included a betrothal ceremony where men bonded themselves to their male lovers.

            You anti-lgbt marriage people keep walking around spouting fallacy as fact, which on top of the completely un-loving nature of your attitude toward our fellow human beings, makes you look stupid, shallow and outright mean.

          • http://leap-of-fate.com/ Christy

            Eleven: The number of U.S. states where it is legal to marry your cousin.

            One: The number of U.S. states where it is legal to marry the person of your choosing who happens to be of the same gender.

          • DR

            This is just the stupidest argument. I’m sorry I can’t say that more kindly but for those of you who want to argue against gay marriage, this doesn’t even make sense to anyone but you. And I’m being serious, I’m trying to help you here. People laugh at you as a result of this comment because it’s so ridiculous. Someone has to tell you that, you’re embarrassing me as a fellow Christian. Start educating yourself and at least come up with something other than incest.

        • http://www.barnmaven.com Barnmaven

          “Marriage has always been fundamentally definded as the union between a man and woman.”

          Definded? I’ll asssume this is a typo and not complete ignorance, although the statement itself, according to some research, is completely ignorant. Wikipedia has an excellent page regarding same-sex marriage throughout history, complete with references. Go check it out. Then come back and let’s discuss some more.

        • Cheryel Lemley-McRoy

          PDCH: Re: the accuracy of the Bible. You may want to read “Misquoting Jesus” by Bart d. Ehrman. There have been errors in translations. Few translators were familiar with Hebrew idioms and euphemisms, and literal translations were made that lost the meaning of the Author. The Word of God is in fallible, but we don’t have the original manuscript. But His message is still there.

    • Scott

      Wow is all I can say. This line of thought right here is why America has a bad name on a global scale. I think the rest of the world thinks we all believe in scientific consperacy theories and general insanity. Hopefully in future generations we can eliminate blind hatred and fear like was displayed here.

    • Kara K

      PDCH –

      The Bible’s conflict with science isn’t the issue, it’s conflict with human decency is. And every time societal morality has evolved, Christianity has eventually caught up. Slavery, how to treat women, etc.

      The Bible says that a woman who has been raped must marry her rapist. Thank God the messenger got that wrong when writing God’s word and intent.

      The culture in which the Bible was written had no concept of a human being who’s brain was wired differently than the norm. Those people who were different were likely killed as children because they embarrassed their parents. For thousands of years people born different than the norm were either killed or learned how to hide. There is nothing moral or right about that. It’s completely barbaric. And not at all from a God purported to be all about love.

      Micah 6:8 tells us what is required: to act justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with God. Jesus is the only one God has authorized to judge the hearts of others.

      Christianity should be leading the fight for civil rights for all.

      • http://www.barnmaven.com Barnmaven

        Kara, eloquent and right on the mark.

      • Mindy

        Hear, hear, Kara! Well said.

    • http://ricbooth.wordpress.com/ Ric Booth

      But the real question is: can I install both the iscientists app and the ibible app on the same iphone? That won’t void my warranty will it?

      • Mindy

        No, but your iphone will buzz, rattle and burst into flames. Be very, very careful . . . .

    • Suz

      PDCH,

      Just for the sake of clarity: You’re OK with the science that once labelled homosexuality as a mental disorder, but you have a problem with the science that said it’s not? HMMM. OK. Got it. You might consider reading some research studies that are not paraphresed on ultra-right-wing websites. You might even consider reading the methodology and PEER criticism of those studies. I think you will find that one or two of them are valid. I’m pretty sure you’re already comfortable with the science behind things like, oh, antibiotics, and maybe gravity.

      DR, where are you? Could you please cut and paste you list of the progression of troll comments? We’ve got a live one!

      • Suz

        p.s.

        …but not for long, as usual.

    • Mindy

      Oh, dearie me. What a load of painful crap.

      Here’s the first link I found about the “study” that says salt is not bad for you. Seems said study might be just a wee bit flawed.

      http://www.newser.com/story/117834/wait-salts-not-so-bad-now.html

      Now, obviously, that has nothing to do with anything, really. But as an attempt to show how bad science is, it wasn’t a very good one.

      The good news is, PDCH, that you are in the minority now. You and those who think like you are finally where you should be – drowned out by the voices of reason and compassion and love and truth. Your false assumptions, based on questionable Bible verses, have been taken out of mainstream thought. We know better. Many more people know better now.

      As others have said, your inaccuracies are wide and deep, and honestly, I don’t have the time to waste picking them apart. You need to educate yourself, via real science – not pseudo-science filtered through a fundamentalist Christian lens. I wish for you enlightenment, and in the meantime, I wish for you to stay quiet and have as little influence over the lives of your gay brothers and sisters as possible – because your kind, the “I hate you because you are so sinful” kind, is the most hurtful of all. What you should feel, more than anything, is deep, deep shame. Once you feel that, you will be able to move forward in the love of Christ. Until then, you are lost.

    • Mindy

      PDCH – I would ask that you please share all eight of the books and passages in which “the gay matter is spelled out clearly.” I am sincerely interested in this. And please do not suggest that I do my own research. I am admittedly NOT a Biblical scholar, and you have presented yourself as such, so it seems you shouldn’t have too much trouble listing those for me. I appreciate your help in this matter, as it is counter to what I had previously learned.

      And I beg of you to please at least use spellcheck when you respond, as your missive was rather difficult to read.

      Thank you.

    • melanie

      Here’s a fact for ya…did you know the Bible is wrong 100% of the time when being interpreted by hateful idiots? Heh heh heh…

    • DR

      You are an ignorant bigot whose 15 minutes of Christian fame is now up. Those of us who share the Christian tent with you will no longer indulge you using our faith to escape from your own lack of education, your own emotional immaturity and your own lack of being able to think critically. Nor will we let you hurt gay children anymore – their blood when they kill themselves because of people like you calling them an abomination and other delightful terms, reminding them they aren’t fit for marriage according to your neurotic interpretation of what “God” says – the God that is more than likely a manifestation of your abusive parent – is on your hands and God have mercy on you when you have to face that someday.

      I’m done allowing you to speak freely without being countered. You’re like a bull in a christian china shop, wandering in all fueled with your righteous anger and you’re hurting people. You’re damaging the Witness of Christ and you’re pushing non-believers away and it’s time someone told you that directly. If you don’t want to listen? Your issue.

      You, my friend, are terrified. You’re scared of the GLBT community. You’re scared of your belief cage getting rattled. You’re scared of being wrong and most of all, you’re scared of having to change. You’re so scared that you’re more than likely going to take everything I’ve offered to you and react as though you’re getting spiritually attacked because of your willingness to “speak the truth”. You’re going to react as though you’re persecuted for the sake of the Gospel. And I know that because I used to be you. Thank God I was delivered from the evil and fear that encased me into actually believing that anyone who challenged my tightly-wound up belief system was “of the devil”.

      You find what you seek. The end.

      • http://blueberrypancakesfordinner.wordpress.com/ erika

        here here!

      • TygerEyed Jeannie

        I am almost in shock after reading only part of this page. I was raised in a strict Christian home, However, my parents and my church also taught me not to judge and that is what the entire gay rights argument is about. The bible tells us JUDGE NOT LEST YE BE JUDGED and WHOM EVER HAVE NO SIN CAST THE FIRST STONE…….I do not see one post on here from Jesus Christ nor his father. There is a reason that these lessons are there. It is to tell us that there will always be those around us that are different from us, those that we don’t agree with, and it does not make them bad, just different. Tall, short, thin, fat, gay, straight, bonde, brunette. In all honesty, the reason that gay marriage has had such a hard time being approved by MAN is this…..It is different from what we are used to. Just like Pilot was afraid of the consequences he would have to face from his peopleif he set Jesus free our judges today are afraid of not being re-elected, or of their peers looking down on them, even though in their hearts they know the right choice. It is not their place to make this judgement, and it is not yours or mine.

      • Maryb

        DR – Thank you from the bottom of my homosexual heart. I read these comments & John’s blog posts and for a moment I feel better. And then I go to work and hope that we won’t get another phone call about a kid being bullied because he/she may be gay or perceived gay or that another teen has been kicked out of his family ‘home’ because he/she is gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. And I don’t live in a big city area, I live in a county that seems to have a church on every block. In the 9 or so years that I’ve lived here it’s gotten better, but…for a lot of kids it hasn’t.

        So please, please John, DR, Dirk, Suz, Mindy & the other, please keep speaking out. We need more people like you

        • DR

          Maryb, I will never, ever stop. Thank you for being there for those kids, I’ve been there myself and once you hold one of these children who sob, wanting so desperately to “change” for their Christian parents who kicked them out of their home and then they were subsequently raped on the streets by a predator? You are never the same. I’m just sorry that those of us in the Christian community have turned our faces away from this – it’s our job to stop these parents (who I don’t believe even can be educated, I think there is pathology there that is dangerous and unteachable most of the time). It’s our job to raise our children to not taunt and tease which starts at the root of the theology we provide to them that allows this behavior to continue, It’s our fault and we’ve not done it and we owe you and your community so much. On behalf of those of my Christian people who just want to stay the “Hey I’m one of the nice Christians with lots of gay friends but this isn’t *me* that’s hurting kids! I love gay people” as we still vote against your rights and won’t take responsibility for those who damage in the name of Christ – I’m sorry. I take responsibility for them. And I’ll never stop confronting it so hopefully someday you won’t have to.

      • http://leap-of-fate.com/ Christy

        And all the people said….

      • Mindy

        You tell ‘em, DR – LOVE this!!!!!

      • http://none Dennis Gilbert

        EXCELLENT!

      • A’isha

        DR, that’s the absolute best ever! I nominate you for Best Blog Comment of the Year award. I imagine many others will vote for you, too. :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/MBWinkel Matthew B. Winkel

      PDCH:

      Science is not perfect.

      The Bible is not perfect (because it was written by HUMANS who couldn’t possibly have understood the spectra (yes, PLURAL — see link below) of human sexuality).

      Mix well. THINK. LOVE. Be good to each other.

      “Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.” –Albert Einstein, “Science, Philosophy and Religion: a Symposium,” 1941

      Here’s some real research for ya: http://media01.commpartners.com/AMA/sexual_identity_jan_2011/index.html

    • Gina

      “Do you know the decision to vote on the removal was taken after extreme pressure from gay activists on this issue”……so I am guessing, because you state this is WRONG and the ONLY REASON the APA change their minds about homosexuality…..you must also believe that Fundamentalist Christians who lobby for laws to change or even change the minds of the APA are inherently wrong, too? This argument is flawed. EVERYONE promotes their beliefs – the louder the better. To say if others begin to agree with you because you are pressuring them 100% of the time – as is your argument here – means it’s true for your views as well. Ah, but I bet you’d argue that…..

    • http://none Dennis Gilbert

      “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove ALL doubt!”

      Mark Twain

      PS-Couldn’t have said it better myself…

  • Mindy

    To Civics101 and Maia – I am with Dirk and DR on this. I am a straight, middle-aged woman, born and raised in the Midwest. Sometimes, I am capable of civil discourse on this matter – but then the pea-brains get involved in the discussion, and I want to slap them awake and into the current century. Their bigotry is toxic, and gay people have lived with it long enough. They, nor any of us who support their quest for equal rights and acceptance, should have to play nice with those whose hatred has caused so many to live their lives in abject misery or worse, to take their own lives.

    John’s words, and those of rest of us, are aimed at the folks who think nothing of making gay jokes, of having fun at the expense of people who have done absolutely nothing wrong, of insulting an entire segment of our population by openly saying they are an abomination, and attempting to scare them to death by insisting they will burn in hell for all eternity.

    THOSE people do not deserve civil discourse. They do not deserve to be treated nicely. They do not deserve to have the other cheek turned to them – because they have never, ever done the same for their gay brethren. They’ve hidden behind their Bibles, regardless of the fact that Jesus commands Christians to love one another as we love ourselves. They hide behind a couple of obscure passages, and their only intent is to keep those darned gay people in their places, subjugated and without rights. It has nothing to do with religion and nothing to do with faith. It is antiquated, questionable doctrine used to justify their own deep-seated fears and uncertainties at the expense of others.

    In this day and age, there is sufficient information, very easily accessible, that if any one of them wanted to really understand homosexuality, they could learn. They don’t want to learn, though. They don’t want to understand, they want to hate. They’d rather live under their rocks and come out only to attend church services where they can have their prejudices reinforced. They have no interest in greater understanding.

    If anyone ever says something like, “I was raised to believe homosexuality is an abomination, but I’m uncertain and want to better understand it myself,” – I am all over that civil discourse. But when he or she barrels out of the gate with their hate a’blazin’ and attempts to justify their wrong-headed thinking with pseudo-studies and right-wing fundamentalist gibberish, I will be the one with both barrels blazing. I’ll be with John Shore and Dirk and DR and the many other compassionate, intelligent people here who care far more about those being harmed by the bigots than the precious feelings of the bigots themselves.

    • Suz

      Are we twins, separated at birth? Only, you’re better at organizing your thoughts?

      You just said it ALL! Exquisitely!

      • Mindy

        Thanks, Suz. You are one who inspires me here, regularly.

    • Suz

      John, THIS is a comment to link on Facebook!

    • Don Rappe

      I’m with you Mindy. Still, John recommended the comment of PDCH on FB as a manifestation of “the crazies” so I read it. I am as interested in human psychology as the next person. I really miss Tildeb who could explain far better than me that PDCH is not really clinically insane. Nor was the still living Lt. Hiroo Onoda. Both live or lived deep in a form of self deception that is not unrelated to faith. The problem comes when the faith is Idolatrous and the object of worship is not worthy. Onoda worshipped Japan and its emperor. Within this context his actions were heroic. But when the idols are broken and the false God fails, then we look crazy. PDCH worships a false image of the Bible to the extent that he can no longer even make out its true content. PDCH can hear the bullhorns and read the leaflets but he cannot put away his notion of a very weak God who somehow needs his defense. Even though the very first sentence of his comment is obviously and blatantly false, He goes on later to ask someone to point out a mistake in his comment. John; John; Badass John! dum dum dee dum dum.

      • Don Rappe

        To put it another way: “I AM your god, and you shall have no other gods before Me!” This first mitzvah is a command to do critical thinking. God gave it through his prophet Moses. It is the first commandment because it is most important. Any faith devoid of the best critical thinking a person can make with his created gifts is idolatrous. This is #1. So says the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Elijah, Jesus and the apostles. The problem with PDCH is not that he is crazy or stupid, but that, he/she is idolatrous. She pretends to not notice the problems with her assertion in order to maintain the illusion of reality of the false god. I hope I haven’t sugar coated this so much my point has been lost!

        • Mindy

          Exactly, Don. Pretending not to notice all those problems with his/her assertion strikes me as not unlike pretending to believe. And if s/he rants about it long enough and loud enough, maybe s/he’lll really believe it.

    • tana

      Hero status has been granted, no?

    • http://www.st-andrew-umc.com Matthew B. Winkel

      YES!!!! :-D

    • Maryb

      This blog soooo needs a ‘like’ button!!!

    • http://allegro63.wordpress.com/ sdgalloway

      Oh so well stated. I’m getting in line with you on that.

    • http://leap-of-fate.com/ Christy

      Rock on, Mindy!

    • http://none Dennis Gilbert

      Well said!

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

    Shoot; I’m missing all the fun here, cuz crazy busy just now. But just from looking real quickly, I’m gathering PDCH is still … here? If he/she becomes just too annoying or toxic, and needs to be blocked off the site, somebody email me and tell me that, and ol’ PDCH’ll be outta here like yesterday’s Christianity.

    • Dirk

      John,

      I have been kicked off so many hateful Christian sites over the last years – never for offensive language, never for being rude, that I have come to the conclusion it is best to let the hateful Christians spew their venom for all to see.

      I say this because most American Christians actually believe that we, gays and transgender have legal protections (employment, anti-discrimination, etc. et al) which we do not. Such hateful speech serves as a clear reminder of just what we face.

      That’s just my two-cents, for what they’re worth.

      Oh, the best rejection of all was from Rod Dreher. I was too intelligent and well-spoken to risk having me continue to argue for my rights on his blog. This, despite the fact that my spelling, syntax, grammar and punctuation frequently set new lows even for Beliefnet.

  • http://outofthegdwaye.wordpress.com/ George W.

    When I was in 5th Grade, a black kid moved to our town of 1500 people and went to my school. I remember one of the kids in my class taunting and teasing this black kid every day, and eventually almost every one of the kids (me included) did also. During the summer break, I was out for ice cream with my dad and the black kid walked by and I made a comment about him, and my dad just stood there…in absolute shock.

    “What the F#*k did you just say?” he said sternly.

    I froze in fear. Oh, shit!

    “Who the hell do you think YOU are? Are YOU any better than him? Do you think that what he wears, the way he looks, or anything else makes YOU better than HIM?” he said. “That he walks by you and doesn’t punch you in the face makes him a better person than you. Do you know what ignorant means?”

    “But Dad, everybody else..” I’m cut off mid-sentence.

    “Everybody else is none of you’re business. The world is chock full of stupid f#$king idiots. Let them be ‘Everybody Else’; you need to pay attention to you. Don’t be stupid. Don’t be ignorant. Get your ass over there and apologize.”

    My Dad made me go and talk to Roman, and talk to his Dad, and we went to dinner at their house the next week. The next school year I beat the living crap out of any kid who said anything to Roman. I teased and bullied and tormented those kids, and eventually I got every other kid to tease and torment the few kids who still persisted. By middle school, not one person gave Roman a hard time.

    It may not be politically correct today to say it, but bullying works. It made me into a racist ignoramus, it made me stand up and listen when my Dad chewed me out, it made every other kid force the dumb-asses to STFU. Bullying works. That is why They do it, and that is why They get up in arms when we do it.

    At the end of the day, though, the most powerful things for me was the opinion of a great father and getting to know the person who I was hurting. And therein lies the problem. Bullies persist because of the silence of good people, and the ignorance of their audience.

    All that said, Civics, Maia: You must forgive me if I don’t take your “tone trolling” seriously. If there is anyone who needs to be pushed around and bullied, it is the people who stand around and silently let bad shit happen, even though they are good people. It is the people who refuse to abandon their ignorance and peer over tot he other side of the fence. It is the people who depend on those people.

    • http://outofthegdwaye.wordpress.com/ George W.

      On a different note: DR, I absolutely love you. Don’t ever stop doing what you are doing.

      Oh, and don’t get a big head over it either! ;)

    • Don Whitt

      Bravo for Dad. He said EXACTLY the right thing in EXACTLY the right way. But I think that your bully theory is off-track. If you actually bullied kids, you were wrong. There is a very real difference between fighting for what’s right and bullying.

      • http://outofthegdwaye.wordpress.com/ George W.

        Don,

        Perhaps you are right, and perhaps you are wrong. Perhaps what I did was fight for what is right in the wrong way. Perhaps what I did is fight for what is right in the only laguage that works in the playground. And perhaps…..just perhaps…..that is exactly what DR and Dirk and others are doing here. Fighting for what is right is relative, I guess, to what those who judge your actions think is right. Some people on this thread think that holding people accountable for the unintentional consequences of their actions is bullying. Other people see those comments as putting a human face on what amounts to passive-aggressive hatred. So who is right? I guess that depends on what side of the fence you are on.

        I used the term “bullying” when I talked about pestering and marginalizing those playground bigots because that is surely how they saw it. It is how my principle saw it when he called my dad. My dad came down to the school and asked the principle “So my son is in trouble for holding people accountable for their beliefs?”. Just like you did, the principle exclaimed “Yes! Because he did it in the wrong way! He should have reported it to the teacher on duty.”

        Maybe I should have. Maybe I should have let the school deal with bullying. They have done such a bang-up jub of dealing with the issue; I should have spent all my schoolyard capital, marginalized MY voice, become a “rat”….so I could do the “right thing”. Perhaps.

        Perhaps commenters here should just say “sorry to be a bother, but would you mind trying to see the issue from the other side?” Perhaps.

        Who can really say what might have happened if I had been kinder and gentler and polite? Maybe I would have still made a difference, maybe not.

        I’m a moral objectivist. I agree wholeheartedly that my actions were not perfect. In the ultimate sense they were “wrong”. But “wrong” actions stopped a greater “wrong”, and since I don’t believe in perfectly moral actions, I guess I’ll settle for being able to stand tall and accept the consequences of acting on principle-regardless of your perception.

        Ironically, principle is likely the same argument that drives the bigotry on this site….and consequences is precisely what those who oppose them want them to see.

        And that, perhaps, is the fence that divides us.

        • Suz

          Keep doing it. If your brand of “bullying” gets out of hand, your conscience will intervene. Of course, this wasn’t bullying in the classic sense; you weren’t a weak person trying to keep people “beneath” you, you were a true radical pushing the limits to accomplish something good. You were one gutsy kid.

        • Joanna

          i really dont believe in bullying george because i believe it’s stooping to the bigots level.. i was bullyed myself and it got me into a lot of trouble. im happy you stood up for ramon. there are other ways. people dont know what people are going through sometimes. i am glad there is an anti-bullying compange sweeping the nation.

  • Suz

    ***psst! hey. are they gone yet?***

    • Jack

      \ (despite the full-length resplendent robes and the tiara-on-testostrone headdress) \

      John, the Pope hasn’t used the tiara since 1964. Haven’t you heard?

      And the vestments are based on what every MAN in the Roman Empire wore once upon a time–after centuries of the ladies’ altar guild working on them.

  • DR

    Knock knock.

    Who’s there.

    “Cray.”

    “Cray who?”

    “Cray-Zay!”

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnshore/ John Shore

      Yikes. I should delete it. Well… I must. So … now your response won’t mean anything. But it’s worth it. Yowzer.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X