AT the end of February, I was about to report on the findings of a Gallup survey that shows that the number of American adults identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is steadily rising, and is now at its highest level: 5.6 percent.
But I decided to wait a while to see what reaction there would be from conservative Christian quarters, who can always be relied upon to say something utterly stupid when it comes to the issue of sex and sexuality.
I didn’t have to wait long before far-right Christian site – LifeSiteNews – seized on the survey. Under the headline ‘This is social engineering’: Gallup finds huge jump in young Americans identifying as LGBT” it included a tweet by Daily Wire “pundit” Matt Walsh, above. The Bible-believing Christian said:
The number of kids who identify as LGBT, especially trans and bisexual, has absolutely skyrocketed. If you think this is a natural or organic development, you’re deluded. The media, Hollywood, and the school system actively recruit children into the LGBT ranks.
Walsh describes himself on his website as:
A writer, speaker, author, and one of the religious Right’s most influential young voices. He is known for boldly tackling the tough subjects and speaking out on faith and culture in a way that connects with his generation and beyond.
Not to be outdone , the Christian Post found a “pundit” of its own to explain more about the “problem” and what the solution could be.
“Bigger doses of Jesus” is what Ryan Ries, above, prescribed. He is co-founder of The Whosoevers:
A movement that seeks to deliver the message of the Gospel to schools and empower students to live boldly for Christ.
He told CP:
Anxiety, depression, suicide, identity issues — all of these things are at an all-time high right now. We’re seeing it across schools, we’re seeing across the country.
He added that, thanks to social media, young people are able:
To sin in the most radical ways. When we were young, we had to figure out how to sin. We’re living in a whole different time, where kids who are 9 years old have the mind of teenagers because of the content that they’re exposed to. They’re getting immune to it, callous to it, and corrupted by it.
But, according to Ries, the “harvest is ripe” for the Gospel. He said that he’s seen an unprecedented increase in teens and young people dedicating their lives to the Lord in recent months.
The fruit is so ripe that it’s literally falling off the trees up to this point. Everyone is giving their life to the Lord. You’ve got to have a conversation with them, be genuine with them, let them know that you love them and that God loves them. They are so eager for the freedom and truth the Gospel gives.
This is pure bullshit, coming from a man who confesses to having taken shedloads of drugs before finding Jesus.
Writing for Pacific Standard in 2019, Christel J Manning referred to Pew research that showed Generation Z was the least religious grouping in America, turning away from religion in ever increasing numbers:
All you ever wanted to know about Buddhism or Islam is only a click away, and there’s evidence the Internet has helped young atheists who live in religiously conservative communities find like-minded youth.
It doesn’t help when traditionalists dig in their heels. Too often young people see organized religion connected to intolerance and abuse: images of Islamic jihadists attacking concertgoers in Paris, or conservative Christians at home waving Confederate flags and opposing the rights of gay couples to marry.
For young people with minimal religious commitment, these sights can be a turn-off.
Post-Millennials live in a culture of choice, self-actualization, and freedom of expression. Young people today, as never before, feel free to express their sexual orientation and gender identity.
Bottom line: Young members of LGBT communities are no longer afraid, and are prepared to aggressively face down Bible-bashing bigots who seek to shame and demonise them. These zealots are now are watching with horror as their influence wanes at a pace that’s alarming to them, but extremely heartening to us.