Thanks, Christians, for making me live a lie

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You meet a lot of good people blogging. One of the best I’ve met is Mike Moore of Asheville, NC, a man who, like most LGBT people, has every last reason to consider Christianity his enemy.

Sometimes Mike’ll write me an email filled with such well-said passion that I’ll turn it into a blog post (with his permission, of course), as I did with Would You Confront a Pastor as This Gay Man Did? and A Good Week to Hate Christians.

Mike recently wrote me the below. I wanted to share it because I think what it says about life for gay people can’t be said often enough. I don’t know when LGBT people will never again have reason to give such testimony, but it sure as hell won’t be soon enough.

Take it away, Mike.

Many of us in the LBGT community must lie to survive—physically, emotionally, and psychologically. We must lie to survive our families, keep our jobs, stay in our schools … have you seen the brutal, off-shore camps of abuse endured by kids sent off by their “loving” parents in order to be made hetero? Kids die at those places.

We survive by lying. In twenty-nine states, any employee, from a file-clerk to a CEO, can be fired for no other reason than that he or she is gay. Someone is convinced that being gay is a moral abomination—and just like that you’ve lost your income, you and your family’s health benefits, your work relationships, the structure of your daily life.

A mere two months before my graduation Westmont College threatened to expel me because I had homo-sex off-campus. No Westmont straight couples, living and sleeping together off-campus, were threatened with this penalty, even though they were also breaking the school’s honor code. Well, I lied my ass off: phony repentance, crocodile tears, counseling filled with lies and promises I never intended to keep, prayers that were jokes. Two months later I walked away with the diploma I had earned. And to secure that diploma I would tell the same lies all over again. I would have to.

Lying has kept us LGBT people alive for generations. Do we want to lie? Of course not. Does our society at large provide a safe place for us to be honest? It absolutely does not. If you want to see the hatred rained down upon us by “respectable” people, check out some gay blogs—Towleroad and Joe.My.God come to mind—or watch some of the Christian leaders doing the rounds of talking-head TV shows. What you read and see will turn your stomach. It should, anyway. It does ours. And a lot of that churning inside of us is raw fear.

Even now, states like Arizona and Kansas are trying to make discrimination against the LBGT community legal. Read those laws yourselves. Then ask yourself: How would people react if those exact same laws were targeting Christians? Imagine sitting in a diner, and having the owner or manager come up to your table, and say, “I saw you pray over your meal. I want you Christians out of my restaurant, right now. We don’t tolerate Christians in this place. Get your things together, and leave. Right now.”

I built an amazing, 28-year marriage that I wouldn’t trade for world or God. And that marriage is largely built upon lies: lies to our families; lies to our neighbors; lies to work colleagues who made it clear they considered gays as perverts and pedophiles; lies to hotel clerks in hostile locations; lies to hospital staff  (“He’s my brother”) in order to get hospital visitations.

And then there are the lies that hover over us, daily and constantly, like dark and heavy clouds. I’d love to hold my husband’s hand as we walk down the street together, just like all those straight couples doing the same. But it’s not safe for us to do that. Just like straight couples, my husband and I would like to hug and kiss and jump up and down with excitement upon seeing each other at airports. But we dampen our natural reactions, so as not to suffer hearing “Fags!”, or worse, as we know we would.

Every time I want to throw my arm around my husband in public and pull him close—be it in a restaurant, club, bar, movie theater, or just strolling down the street—I check myself by wondering, “Is this a safe place for that?” The answer is usually, “Better not risk it.” And I live in liberal towns: New York City, San Francisco, Hollywood, Asheville!

Every time this society forces me to “check” my actions to ensure that my sexuality will bring no harm to my husband or myself, I am forced to live a lie. I cannot be honest about who I am, what I think, how I live, or how I wish to behave. I am prohibited from publicly showing the same light-hearted romantic affection that no straight person thinks twice before showing his or her love.

I am a liar. I have no choice but to be. And for that I have mostly to thank religion—especially, of course, Christianity, which has always been eager to propagate the real lie, which is that there’s anything at all unnatural, aberrant, or offensive about being gay.

On his Facebook page, Mike wrote along with his link to this post, “For all of my Christian friends … I know—I hope—you know I’m not referring to you. You guys actually believe in Jesus, which is cool.”

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  • http://mikemoorehome.com/ mike moore

    thank you, John.

    • http://johnshore.com/ John Shore

      thank you, buddy.

    • http://ricbooth.wordpress.com/ Eric

      Yes — Thank you, Mike.

    • Andy

      Your letter was both amazing and tragic. Thank you for sharing it with us.

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

    Beautifully poignant. I hope so much for the day where you no longer have to lie, and you, and everyone else, can openly, joyfully express and as frequently as you wish, your love for the person you are so lucky to have in your life. I would love for it to be today.

  • Valerie Barlow Horton

    My heart bleeds for the way “Christians” have used the beautiful Word of God to inflict so much pain and fear in people we should be accepting and loving. If you were in the room with me, Mike, you could hold your husband’s hand all you wanted. Peace and blessings on your union.

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/kimberlyknight/ Kimberly

    Fantastic post John, thank you for sharing this.

  • Jennifer Rahner

    Amen. I identify as pansexual (attracted to all genders romantically, emotionally, and sexually), and I am monogamously married to a member of the opposite sex. When I look back over the history of my significant relationships, the majority have been with members of the opposite sex. Is that because I lean more hetero- than homosexual on whatever sexuality continuum? Or is it because expressing love for a member of the opposite sex was the path of lesser resistance? I honestly don’t know and don’t think I ever will, because I grew up in this culture rather than a vacuum. Without disparaging any of my opposite sex partners, I often do wonder if I would have had more deep and lasting relationships with those of my gender if society didn’t make it so difficult to do so; if I never had to ask that internal “is this a safe place” question before expressing affection. This is something so basic and important to me in a relationship that it is quite possible I have opted, however subconsciously, to be with people whom I can express affection anywhere at any time without fear. I also understand that because I was born this way, I had a degree of choice in whom to love but I’m often loathe to describe it that way because I did not have a choice in finding myself attracted to others regardless of gender. That’s just the way God made me.

    • AtalantaBethulia

      I see this hesitation to express affection publicly extend to same gender, platonic friendships and family members as well. It’s not the same as living in fear of real persecution, oppression, and violence as a member of the LGBTQ community, but, I think, it is a consequence of the same societal prejudices.

      It shouldn’t be that way. My friend and I, or my sister and I, shouldn’t have to think twice about how closely we walk down the sidewalk, if we walk arm in arm, hold hands, whether people are noticing in a questioning way if we are laughing a little too freely, leaning in a little too closely, feeling too—GASP!—comfortable with each other and ourselves and our relationship.

      I’ve had strangers in the grocery store just flat out ask me if my sister and I were a couple, but with less couth: “Are ya’ll lesbians?” People will use a confused and questioning–probing–tone in their voice when they ask my friend and I how we are related. It’s part of a larger–what business is it of yours how we are connected?–issue, as if we need to compartmentalize people into definable boxes before we can understand them and decide how to treat them.

      No one should have to pretend not to care about someone else for risk of being harmed, judged, or treated differently because of it, no matter who they are or the nature of their relationship.

    • Jill

      Jennifer, I relate to your story only too well. Wow.

  • Guy Norred

    This is one of those things so few people, even those who try much less those who won’t try, can understand. This gets so ingrained that after years of living in Boystown in Chicago, I am just starting to not be too self-conscious about holding hands with my husband in public (and by public I mean not too far outside the borders of the world’s gay ghettos). Actually I even still make quick little judgement calls on when I might refer to him as my husband or use some other less charged euphemism despite our eleven and a half years together. People who question why things that happen at pride celebrations happen should think about this. Even the most reserved of us eventually get tired of worrying about others’ feelings. If they really understood, they would be surprised by how quiet they generally are.

  • Ted Garvin

    I’ll tell you the true abomination: intolerance.

    • karLcx

      after reading this post, how much tolerance are we expected to have for those who wish us harm? you miss the point, perhaps.

      • http://www.whoaisnotme.net/anakinmcfly Anakin McFly

        Not sure if you replied to the right post, but – love your enemies, do good to those who harm you, and all that.

        • Lamont Cranston

          You go ahead and offer your other cheek. Both of mine are raw and scarred.

          • http://www.whoaisnotme.net/anakinmcfly Anakin McFly

            I find people less willing to hurt when the offer is explicit. Even most bigots do at least find something wrong about attacking someone metaphorically unarmed and unresistant; it’s when I fight back that they thrash me and take pleasure in it.

  • JenellYB

    One of those events in my life that worked toward shaping and defining me and my view of reality was learning of the death of a man that had been my elementary school music teacher, and to whose home I had gone after school 2 days a week for some years as he patiently (unbelievable patiently!) did his best to teach this most unmusically talented kid ever, how to play piano. I caught occasional glimpses of his wife sometimes, through a doorway, as she came home from work, while he and I sit at the piano. They were active in their church, Methodist, where he was the music and youth choir director. His life was music and children. I was barely out of my teens when I learned of his death. His wife had decided to “come out,” to end their marriage of mutual “cover,” to live openly with her female partner. Divorce alone in that time and culture would have devastated his life, that it was for the reason it was, ended it. He was fired from the school, made unemployable at any school. He was ostracized from his church. He took a job as a sales man and music teacher at a music store. Six months later, he took his own life, if it be possible to take one’s life that had already been taken.

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

      That is so heartbreaking.

  • Michael Brian Woywood

    Your honesty is the greatest gift you can give the nation – and even the Church. Until we can all look in the mirror and see what we’ve done to the LGBT community clearly, we’ll never be able to follow Jesus.

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

    I did a bit of quick research. Matt’s city is one of the lucky few in North Carolina, having sixteen churches that claim affirming. It is the second largest such grouping in the state. The state capital of Charlotte has more at 21. My entire state only has 34 total. Tiny little Rhode Island has more!

    I used this resource, which may help someone find a welcoming church in their area. http://www.gaychurch.org/list-churches-by-state/
    I hope more churches, more Christians, more people from every spectrum of faith, more communities from every walk of life start working together to end the need for people to lie, just to live thier lives.

    • Guy Norred

      Cool resource. Did a quick look to make sure my church was included–it is.

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

        Nice. Mine isn’t, but I know we have affirming members. There are only two affirming churches in my city, and one isn’t listed…the Unitarian. There are hundreds of churches here, most Southern Baptist.

        • Guy Norred

          Well not that many years ago I don’t think I believed there were any, anywhere so this is a big improvement. I have also lived places, that in a quick search, would still be hours away from any church on this list.

    • http://www.facebook.com/haggios haggios

      Charlotte is NOT the state capital of North Carolina. That would be Raleigh, my hometown. If you’re going to go spouting off factoids about us, make sure you have them straight. :) Charlotte, however, is where I live, and it is one of the most open communities to gays that I have ever lived in. Of course, I used to live in Key West, and you would be hard pressed to find many communities that are more open than that. I am straight. I keep my sexuality to myself. I am not prone to public displays of affection, having spent ten years in the military, where it is frowned upon. And frankly, I don’t want to know about, nor see, anyone else’s sexuality on public display. This author talks about living a lie. Here’s a thought… we ALL do. Everyone has things about themselves that they do not put on public display.

      • http://mikemoorehome.com/ mike moore

        good job! you suckered me in.

        I just spent 15 minutes writing a reasonable and, to my mind, fair-minded response to your comment.

        I just deleted that. Realized best response is, “F.U.”

        If you can’t handle ANY couple, gay or straight, holding hands as they stroll down the street or giving each other a hug and kiss (a kiss no major tongue action … ew, agree with you on that, even if it’s Ryan Gosling, about whom I give a pass on everything … woof) …. then, baby, you got waaay bigger problems about which I cannot help.

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

          Haggios would hate me and my sweetie then. We are unashamed of our public displays of affections, even though we are both in our fifties. We don’t plan on stopping, either, having found each other late in life.

          I think we need lots more examples of couples holding hands in public, dancing to the muzak in the cereal aisle of the grocery store, touches and hugs while waiting for a table at the resturaunt. I propose a month of Public displays of affection with your love. Who’s game?

          • Guy Norred

            There is this straight couple in our building in their 70’2/80’s (with one of the sweetest stories I have ever known about–will write about it someday when I have more time) who I see walking down the street hand in hand all the time. This never ceases to put a smile on my face.

        • Pjs8200

          At the age of 38 I finally came out as bisexual. I’d been living a lie for almost 30 years of my life at that point. I wish these so called “christians” could understand what it’s like to *never* be able to let anyone, not even those you’re closest in life too, know who you really are as a person. I can’t think of a worse way for anyone to have to live.
          It was only on the verge of suicide that, luckily for me, I had some divine intervention that changed my entire life.
          Thanks for writing such a great blog Mike. I hope that your words are able to help others see how many of us didn’t just on a whim choose to be bi or gay or trans, that this is just who we are.

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

        You are correct. Raleigh is the capital. Silly me. I lived in North Carolina, near Asheville for 18 years, you’d think I’d remember such a fact.

      • http://mikemoorehome.com/ mike moore

        Sorry, not good with self-edit or control … as my long-suffering husband would agree. I sometimes forget, with admission of my own callousness: Bigotry hurts many people, especially those who can’t lie about their skin color.

        Recently, the _____ (insert Chairman, Director, and/or CEO … I have hope for him and don’t want to “out” him) of one the biggest banks in the US, as I was headed out of his home after a dinner party, warned me “don’t turn left at %$*@ Drive, as it will take you to “‘dark’ side of town, and you how those people are … ” The sad part? He didn’t think twice about his comment or even give me the “knowing eye” or significant look. He knew that I knew exactly what he meant. Even with all I’ve seen, my jaw dropped, with a thump, to the floor his hand-hewn-oak entry hall.

        Prudishness, if not outright bigotry, like yours cuts many directions. The LGBT community hates when I say sh*t like this … but at least us white Episcopalians can “blend.” And yes, my husband was with me … I guess “gay”is the new “white” this season.

        • Pjs8200

          No Mike, we don’t hate it when anyone speaks the truth. But then again, I’m honest to a fault, have no filter and my greatest weakness is tact and diplomacy. :)

      • Pjs8200

        Lady, you have *NO* idea.

      • Lamont Cranston

        If you’ve ever put a picture of your significant other, or children, out on public display then you are shoving you sexuality down somebody else’s throat.

  • karLcx

    well said. agree with every word.

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

    RE: off-shore camps of abuse

    Guantanamo II. That is disturbing outright criminal. RICO ’em. “There is also a provision for private parties to sue…collect treble damages…”~/wiki/RICO

  • JohnVHedtke

    Wow. Yeah.

    My eldest is gay. She and her wife and their daughter live in Philly. I haven’t ever asked her what she has to go through to deal with the world at large. I think she doesn’t have to lie a lot for the most part, but I am also sure that this is something that is in her mind somewhere at all times. And I really hate that.

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

      I think certain parts of the country are more welcoming and accepting of the diversity that is humanity than others.

    • Guy Norred

      Do ask her. She will appreciate it.

  • Jason Adams

    I want to express my concerns regarding this blog.

    I am a Christian (a minister of a church as well) and I do NOT agree with the way the world treats those of a homosexual preference.

    I do not agree with the views of the homosexual culture. According to what the Bible says (and looking at God’s condemnation of homosexual behavior) I believe it is just as sinful as a GOSSIP and just as punishable.

    However, I also do not agree with the left-winged radical attitudes about homosexuals that is in our society.

    To single out homosexuals because of their sexual preference is NO different than singling our a race because of their skin color. It is all WRONG.

    I do believe that a person who is a homosexual AND proclaiming to be a Christian is no different that a person who is a drunk/gossip/hetero-sexually active AND proclaiming to be a Christian…it is VERY HYPOCRITICAL.

    I believe a person who is homosexual and claim nothing to Christ is just living the life they feel is best in their interest. (I pray they see the truth before the judgment, but I won’t condone their choices, nor condemn them in a negative way)

    The PROPER approach to show someone in Biblical error (in my opinion a drunk/gossip/homosexual/sexually active unmarried heterosexual person, these people are in BIBLICAL error) that proper approach is LOVE.

    I will show them the truth of God in love and then it’s THEIR CHOICE.

    If they so chose to love God and do what He commands, PRAISE THE LORD

    If they so chose to continue on the past of life without Him, I will pray for that person…I will not damn them to hell, I will not shun them, I will continue to LOVE them as a person and despise the sin they chose to live in.

    In conclusion: I don’t condone the homosexual community, I’m against their lifestyle choice. I don’t condone the way they are treated as the blacks were treated during segregation, I am against they hate style of treatment.

    If you wish to reply to me, please email me…

    thanks!

    • Lamont Cranston

      I hope people treat you the way you deserve.

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

      All you are doing, is stating your beliefs. To call people who are Christians, hypocritical, because, in your opinion they are not living your ideals according to your interpretation of scripture is just that, your opinion. That you drag out the so tired, overused, and largely incorrect “truth in love” statement, that is ONLY dragged out when it comes to people who just can’t handle that people happen to be gay, through no choice of their own….which some people just can’t seem to accept, OR the fact that God created that much diversity in our species.
      You are welcome to your opinion. Just don’t expect it to be shared, or accepted in this forum.

      • Jason Adams

        allegro63 Are you a Christian? Do you believe in God? Do you believe in the Bible?
        If yes, then we can continue this correspondence with God’s Word as our soul source of authority.

        If no, then we need to not continue this correspondence, because it will be a he said she said situation leading no where.

        So please, is the answer yes or no?

        • AtalantaBethulia

          Yes, Jason. We are Christians.

          • Jason Adams

            Wonderful! Then we can continue.

            I have some things to attend to today but I will get back to you…

            Since we are God fearing people I want you to think about a few things that you said, I will be responding to these things, here they are…you said
            All you are doing, is stating your beliefs

            To call people who are Christians, hypocritical, because, in your opinion…
            That you drag out the so tired, overused, and largely incorrect “truth in love”…

            … people happen to be gay, through no choice of their own which some people just can’t seem to accept…

            OR the fact that God created that much diversity in our species.

            I will be addressing the above statements you said.

            Have a great Day

          • AtalantaBethulia

            I’m a little more than troubled that it would appear that you wouldn’t continue to converse with us had we said we aren’t Christians. And, just to be clear, just because we are Christians does not mean we hold the same views on God, scripture, doctrine, or scriptural interpretation that you might.

          • Jason Adams

            A person who is NOT a Christian is less likely to listen and heed the words of the Bible, therefor it would be a “he said she said” discussion.

            And to the other thought…”there is not room for interpretation”, God has made most of His word very clear. Romans 1, Genesis 19 (the doom of Sodom), Galatians 5:19-21, etc.

            Please consider what God has to say on this matter, not how others may think or feel about it.

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

            Guess what? People who are Christians aren’t all that likely to listen to what you have to say either, nor your misuse of scripture to condemn people, something you have no right or business doing. We’ve heard it all, and found it not a representation of what God has to offer us, or tell us.

          • Jason Adams

            Please tell me on how I misused the Bible to condemn others?

          • Guy Norred

            Jumping in before having to jump back to my own busy day so I completely understand not having time…

            But really–Sodom is where you go that quickly? Even if we look only to the Bible, it is clear from Ezekiel 16 what the sin of Sodom was, and as to that rather egregious episode of extreme inhospitatality and gang rape from Genesis 19, if that is your example of homosexuality then I think you need to re-think. Later.

          • Angie Abunga

            THANK YOU! Emphatically seconded. There are so few passages to even choose from to condemn homosexuality but to jump right to that one…

          • Guy Norred

            I guess it shouldn’t be surprising since lately homosexuality seems to be equated with so many things (murder seems to be coming up a lot) that have even less to do with it, but I really am getting tired of this one.

          • Sheila Warner

            I don’t get the “inhospitality” part of Sodom. Lot was very hospitable to the angels. He only denied entrance to the men who wanted to rape the angels. Lot’s big sin was to offer his daughters to them for rape. And THIS is the man that God rescued out of Sodom? And, that his daughters were also bad actors is revealed when they commit incest with Lot after they flee the city.

            I think that the actions of the would-be rapists are why Sodom was destroyed. People were cruel and unjust in how they treated each other.

            Just my two cents. It’s all moot, anyway, because I believe that the story of Sodom didn’t happen. Just like I don’t believe there was a Noah’s ark or a whale that swallowed up Jonah. These are all just stories, parables if you will, that demonstrate a larger spiritual truth.

          • Guy Norred

            Yes in the story Lot was hospitable, it was the other people of the city who were inhospitable–extremely so. Hospitality was a very important thing at this time as people could easily die if they were turned away into the wilderness. Also, rape was (and is) used as a way of humiliating and subjugating those who one defeated or looked down upon. In Ezekiel, God says that Sodom was arrogant, wealthy, and did not care for the poor (which actually harkens back to the idea of hospitality also). In other words, as you said, they were cruel and unjust. As to the historical reality of the story, I honestly have not looked into this specific one, or for that matter think it matters either.

          • Giauz Ragnarock

            Except we do not know that ‘know’ was being used as a sexual euphemism (why would such men use a euphemism rather than ruder phrasing?). What we do know is that Lot wanted to get them away from the angels, and “do whatever you want with my virgin daughters” is probably the most titillating argument you can give to cruel men (however, the men clearly didn’t want to be “screwed” with).

          • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

            “Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee.”

            That’s how Jesus rolls.

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

            I so love this.

          • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

            I’m a Christian, and I think Romans and Galatians were written by an imposter that corrupted Jesus’ teachings. Can you stick with Jesus, please?

          • Guy Norred

            I have a couple of goals for the next few months–one of them is to sit down and have a long “conversation” with Paul. I honestly have no idea where it will go. I had rather ignored him of late but I keep finding myself reminded of his words lately. If push comes to shove I still say Jesus trumps Paul–I also pretty much think Paul would agree but he was as human as any of us so he may have stumbled.

          • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

            My biggest beef with Paul is his penchant for hierarchy. Jesus was expressly egalitarian, and evolutionary biology* and anthropology** evidence that humans evolved into one of the most egalitarian species on earth. Jesus is my kind of fellow. Paul? A RWA “authoritarian submissive” personality. Every knee shall kowtow? Not mine. 😉

            • Call no man your patre/patron/pastor/boss on the Earth. ~Jesus

            • Rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. ~Jesus

            * Christopher Boehm (1999) Hierarchy in the Forest: The Evolution of Egalitarian Behavior. Harvard University Press.

            ** Elman R. Service (1975), Origins of the State and Civilization: The Process of Cultural Evolution. New York: Norton.

          • Guy Norred

            I agree. Of course when you look where he started, Paul did evolve a bit. You can knock a guy off his horse and blind him, but this will only get you so far.

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

            I have read a bit about the writings of Paul, In fact I have a book by Marcus Borg that puts the New Testament in chronological order. He agrees with several scholars that several of the books credited to Paul were not written by him at all. In fact, a fair amount of the authorship of the Bible is annonymous.

          • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

            I concur! So much of it is so murky, I had abandoned the Bible for two decades. Actually threw my Bible (and concordances, commentaries, and dozens of religious books) away to lighten up for a move.

            Just the last couple years did I dust off my wife’s Bible from her parents. Still got that one! :)

          • Julia O’Brien

            I don’t think “he said, she said” means what you think it does, Jason. But please feel free to dismiss that observation, since I am not a Christian. I am sure you will, because you’d rather wrap yourself up in your “beliefs” than operate with good sense and reason.

          • Jason Adams

            you accuse me a being wrapped up in my beliefs and yet you have your own beliefs…this is the “he said she said” I’m talking about.

          • Giauz Ragnarock

            Please, go ahead and explain that doom of Sodom. I fail to see how it relates to gay people.

          • http://rolltodisbelieve.wordpress.com/ Captain Cassidy

            Well, he needed to make sure he could browbeat you with a borrowed authority source you’d respect. If you were, say, a pagan, he’d have nothing at all to cloak himself in.

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

          Even though my faith is quite frankly none of your business, I will let you know that I am a Christian, but being a very diverse faith, likely a different version of it than your.
          And I don’t use a book as my soul source of authority, I use God, who doesn’t reside in a book, or use it as the only means to interact with us.

        • Lamont Cranston

          Believe in the Bible? You, sir, are an idolator.

    • AtalantaBethulia

      Jason, your use of the terminology “homosexual preference” and “homosexual culture” and “homosexual behavior” and “their lifestyle choice” and likening begin gay to being drunk and a gossip (besides also showing a misunderstanding of alcoholism) suggests that perhaps you may not have ever talked to gay people and may not believe that people are “gay”, rather they simply choose to have “gay sex.”

      This is a fundamental misunderstanding of homosexuality–an unfortunately all too common one–among our more conservative brothers and sisters in Christ.

      Let’s talk about some of these misunderstandings.

      • Jason Adams

        I have not only have spoken with those of the homosexual preference, I have both an aunt and uncle who have been married to someone of the same sex for 25+ years…I do have an understanding of this misunderstood lifestyle.

        My comments come only from what the Bible says…if God is not against such things as homosexualility, drunkness, gossip, pre-marital sex, etc, then why does he condemn it in His book, the Bible?

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

          Two long term monagamous relationship in your family? What a beautiful example of love and commitment, despite their knowing that a nephew doesn’t like or understand what they have accomplished.

          As for the Bible condemning premarital sex…geez…really? The family tree of Abraham is full of extra marital sex, and God didn’t condemn one lick of it, even when Lot’s daughter’s decided to get knocked up via daddy. David’s family tree was also full of sex without benefit of a pastor. No condemnation there. And for crying out loud, Jesus has a prostitute in his family tree, who was considered a heroine!

          Please stop using the Bible to go around condemning people. That is not why it was written.

          • Jason Adams

            I am headed out now…

            I will respond to the statements you said in this response and the first one later today…

            Have a great day!

          • Giauz Ragnarock

            He also has Lot and one of his daughters who bore Moab, too.

        • EPatchAdams

          Your aunt and uncle, who have been “married” to their respective partners for 25 years… Were not. It wasn’t legal. That’s the point of this conversation.

          Your beliefs and your book kept us from having what you take for granted.

          I will never judge the Christian or stop you from having your faith, rituals, and ways of living – but how dare any Christian think that they are the one with all the right answers. I don’t believe in God. You might think it’s sad. I grew up in the church. I think it’s liberating to be able to live my life and reap the benefits or consequences from my actions… And not have to think that some deity is responsible for my successes or will forgive my eff ups.

          I’m an adult. I own what I do.

        • Angie Abunga

          As Chrisians, we follow Jesus. Tell me where Jesus condemns homosexuality. In the same breath that the OT condemns it, it also condemns eating shellfish and wearing mixed fabric. Tell me, do you keep the Sabbath holy? Meaning Saturday? Do you cook, clean or do any work at all? If so you are being a hypocritical Chrisians also.

        • AtalantaBethulia

          If God is against homosexuality why does God keep making gay children?

          What the Bible condemns is pedophilia, rape, prostitution, promiscuity, sexual slavery and temple/idolatrous orgies.

          If we aren’t going to actually look at what scripture says in historical and cultural context and through the lens of what Jesus taught, then there is little reason to look at scripture at all.

    • http://rolltodisbelieve.wordpress.com/ Captain Cassidy

      Nothing you wrote sounds loving at all to me. I take it you never learned that it’s the recipients of your behavior, NOT YOU, who get to decide if you’re behaving in a loving manner? All you’ve done here is redefine love as abuse, judgementalism, and overreach. Just as a start, you seem to want to peel people away from their sexuality instead of seeing them as a glorious whole, and you want to break up monogamous relationships and families by showing them “the truth of God,” which I suppose means you want them to stop making their “lifestyle choice” of belonging to “the homosexual culture.” (None of these exist except in fundagelicals’ minds, which already makes your screed problematic, but let’s ignore that for now.) So what happens when a woman in a 20-year-long marriage with her wife and their three kids finds “the truth of God” and “chooses” to become straight? Their innocent children lose a mother, someone loses a wife, a family gets torn apart, but that’s totally okay with you, because TRUTH OF GOD.

      That’s revolting to me and as hateful as anything the Westboro jerks shriek. You just hide your bigotry under a big ole Jesus smile and a “bless your cotton socks,” like anybody is fooled.

  • CroneEver

    I believe people are born gay or straight; therefore I have no more right to discriminate against, humiliate, or reject people for being gay than I have to reject people because they are born straight, black, white, Asian, Hispanic, European, male, female, or anything else. Period. So sayeth a person born white, straight, female.

    • Sheila Warner

      You go, girl! Love this!

      • CroneEver

        Thanks!

  • Chuck Dickinson

    Not fair to lump ALL Christians into this ‘hate’ group. It was a Budhist that once said, “I would have been a Christian, if it weren’t for the Christians”. Sadly, I know a
    exactly what he meant/means. I refer to myself as a Christ follower in lieu of Christian as not to be ‘lumped’ in with those who judge others just because they sin differently.

  • EPatchAdams

    Jason –

    Your aunt and uncle, who have been “married” to their respective partners for 25 years… Were not. It wasn’t legal. That’s the point of this conversation.

    Your beliefs and your book kept us from having what you take for granted.

    I will never judge the Christian or stop you from having your faith, rituals, and ways of living – but how dare any Christian think that they are the one with all the right answers. I don’t believe in God. You might think it’s sad. I grew up in the church. I think it’s liberating to be able to live my life and reap the benefits or consequences from my actions… And not have to think that some deity is responsible for my successes or will forgive my eff ups.

    I’m an adult. I own what I do.

    • Kanerispirit

      And we as the christian society are behind that, enjoy your life!

  • Jason Adams

    let’s take all “opinions” and set them aside.

    the origin of this blog is about equal rights for those whom are gay.

    I agree that if you are gay that you should not be treated with segregated actions.

    if you are gay, if you are heterosexual…how you are treated by society should be determined by your personality not sexuality.

    if you act like a butt head, you’ll be treated with disrespect…if you act like a civil human being, you should be treated with respect.

    end of discussion

  • Jason Adams

    this is for all who have responded to any of my comments

    you say I am bashing you or misusing the Bible, grant it, you are entitled to your opinion, as I am…

    But do you really think bashing me in return is helpful?

    I’ve been called an idolator, pig ignorant, arrogant and hypocritical Christians in these thread responses.

    Those of you who chose to use such language towards me, a person you DON’T know on a personal level, are NO different that those who are walking the streets using negative/abusive language towards those you are defending here in this comment thread.

    Not once have I belittled any of you, all I did was ask questions.

    Your negative responses have revealed your true colors and I regret to have even entered this discussion group.

    My initial comment was saying I do side with those who are degraded and belittled by society based upon a choice. Never should a person be belittled. Never should a person be brought to shame because of a choice they make.

    If a person wants to discuss something it should be done intelligibly and not in a threatening manner. It is obvious that many here chose the latter.

    In the end, when we die, it doesn’t matter who was right or who was wrong, what happens will happen according to the choices we make.

    good day to you all

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

      You entered this conversation pretty much stating that you disagreed with pretty much everything that the author of this most poignant letter represented, and that your only problem was that he was subjected to negativity. Of course you are going to get pushback. Why? Because these are living breathing human beings who have been deeply hurt by such beliefs and the people who stand behind those beliefs.

      Part of the problem I see, is the statement that all people should be treated equally, regardless of race, or sexual orientation, and then you go right ahead and signal out LGBT folks anyway, lumping them in with sinful hypocrites. You then proceed to declare that it is your job to “show them the truth of God in love” which all of us know is code for, “you are a sinner, but you are an extra henious sinner so let me show you just how horrible your sin is, which I find so horrible, that I take special interest in it”. So of course people are going to take offense.

      Your compassion against prejudice and bigotry is admirable. But I suggest complete honesty, which I don’t think you’ve allowed yourself. You have gay family members. Sit down and try to see things from their point of view, listen to them, hear their stories, watch how they interact with one another and prepare to be very enlightened. I don’t doubt they have much to teach you, and it will be a beautiful thing to learn.

    • Joey Lee Ledford

      What choice are you talking about?

    • Angie Abunga

      Lololol REALLY? I called you a hypocritical Christian because I was using your words. If you think me calling you that was belittling then YES you belittled us as well since you used those words first

  • Sheila Warner

    Ok, this one broke my heart. I was very close to a gay man years ago. We met at work. I was privileged that he invited me into his world, where I met so many other gays that I came to love dearly. But outside of his home, my friend had to lie. His worst torment was that he could never come out to his father or his brother. Thankfully, he had a wonderful mom who loved him just because he breathes, if I can steal that phrase from a blog with that name.

  • Jennifer Rose Avery

    This letter makes me sad. It’s just one more person who has been lied too so much they think that being gay means they can’t be Christian and they view Christianity as pure evil. It’s people like this that show me I have to do a better job at representing interpretations of scripture that are fully accepting of LGB(TQAI) people.

  • http://rolltodisbelieve.wordpress.com/ Captain Cassidy

    That’s heartbreaking. The world cannot change fast enough. This cannot be allowed to continue, this life of lies. That’s an absolutely cruel existence to force on anybody. Best wishes to them both and may they have many happy years together despite all that society does. Love is worth everything. I wish I could help.