6 years ago: The Gay-Hatin’ Gospel Part 3: The Innocent Backlash Theory

October 22, 2o07, here on slacktivist: The Gay-Hatin’ Gospel Part 3: The Innocent Backlash Theory

Proponents of the innocent backlash theory thus have to begin by arguing that this perception is inaccurate — that nine out of 10 young non-Christians and four out of five young churchgoers have somehow gotten the wrong idea. The contempt American Christianity displays toward homosexuals, these proponents say, is just the right amount.

Christians, this theory holds, do not regard homosexuals as particularly or especially deserving of condemnation, it’s just that homosexual activists have become so vocal in promoting their radical homosexual agenda that — purely in response — Christians have been forced to become equally vocal in reply. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction — that’s elementary physics. Christians have simply been reacting to the radical homosexual agenda, and this reaction has been equal and opposite (and therefore not at all “excessive”).

The explanation for the (mis)perception that American Christianity is inappropriately anti-homosexual is thus something that any grade-school child can understand: They started it.

  • Carstonio

    Occasionally I’ve asked such folks what constitutes the “homosexual agenda.” The only answers that haven’t sounded like overt fearmongering or paranoia amount to, “They want to make homosexuality normal.” I’ve said many times that normality is an invalid concept because it’s totally referential – it wrongly treats prevalence as a moral value.

    From what I can tell, folks who answer that way fail to understand that doing away with societal disapproval of homosexuality doesn’t mean replacing it with approval. It’s not about changing the shouldn’t to a should. The goal instead is for an individual’s sexual orientation to be none of the concern of others or the culture or the society.

  • Baby_Raptor

    I’d say “They want to make homosexuality normal” counts as fearmongering. The only reason that non-straights being seen as “normal” would be bad is if there’s something bad about us. The bigots have a pretty colourful list of insults and false predictions, but none of them are actually true…They’re all fearmongering, either out of no connection to reality or for a paycheck.

  • Carstonio

    While it does count as fearmongering, it’s not as overt as the old “Boys Beware” scenarios. Or the more recent hysteria about Christians forcing their homophobia on employees being forced to go against their beliefs.

  • Cathy W

    There may be some people who sincerely believe that people choose homosexuality in order to get the benefits of awesome sex without the responsibilities of a “real” family (i.e. babies and the need to provide for them), and therefore if we stop disapproving of homosexuality, society will break down into a gay orgy. I suspect most of those people are ignorant of actual gay people and actual families headed by same-sex couples, and are encouraged by the fearmongers of their choice to stay that way.

  • Carstonio

    I might put that into the paranoia category, except that every instance I’ve encountered of that belief has involved a huge degree of sexism. Essentialist notions about male and female sex drives, a martyr’s view of women and marriage to them as male burdens, and so forth.

  • Caddy Compson

    *coughorsonscottcardcough*

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Which is of course why they’re all so hell-bent to deny gay people the right to set up long-term, stable, monogamous relationships and raise families.

  • FearlessSon

    There may be some people who sincerely believe that people choose homosexuality in order to get the benefits of awesome sex without the responsibilities of a “real” family (i.e. babies and the need to provide for them), and therefore if we stop disapproving of homosexuality, society will break down into a gay orgy. I suspect most of those people are ignorant of actual gay people and actual families headed by same-sex couples, and are encouraged by the fearmongers of their choice to stay that way.

    My first thought on that argument is, “Why, are you saying that without social disapproval you would abandon your spouse and start shacking up with a member of the same sex?”

    It sounds more like the argument of someone in denial. If they respond that. no, of course they would not do that, then I ask them why they expect anyone else to either.


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