“This is not as much about human or homosexuality, but how fundamentalist interpretations of scripture can and have been used over the centuries as a weapon to hurt, hinder, harm and even hate people they fear, don’t understand or with whom they disagree. Inclusion believes we don’t have to go along to get along and that authentic Christ likeness, or Christ Consciousness, welcomes and affirms all human beings being human with love and positive reinforcement, enhancing their ability to recover their best selves and reach their highest potential in their earth experience and expression.”
I noted that the anti-gay speaker in the beginning of the video was “praying” for the gay person to be “delivered from his deviant lifestyle”, and then one narrator said that the gay rights activists who protested against the right-wing bigots were “destroying the moral fabric of this nation”, and added that that was why God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, and that was what was going to happen to this country because God hates this country. This is, to me, nothing more than following the Bible blindly and mistaking the words to be the “word of God” when actually the Bible is a collection of man’s subjective accounts and viewpoints about God. The people during the Old Testament times, and today even, were projecting their own bias and prejudices onto a god that mirrored their own hatred and discrimination. I have come to learn that the very thing that they hate and fear in others, is the very thing they hate and fear in themselves, whether it is homosexuality or differences in lifestyles and opinions, and so on, which they have not learnt to accept and embrace in themselves.
I have listened to the 1 hour 2 minutes segment in which a psychologist disagreed with James Dobson’s claim that homosexuality is a preventable disorder, saying this idea is completely misguided as there is no scientific research to back it up. It is not a disorder, any more than heterosexuality is a disorder. It is not something that can be changed at will, because it is inborn and natural. There is nothing to repair. By instilling fear and shame in those who are gays or lesbians, the conservatives had in fact gotten them to suppress their homosexuality in order to appear as if they have stopped being homosexual, when it is not the case. The psychologist added that suppressing that part of themselves will have consequences, and usually the consequences are very serious. I agree as it will result in them secretly harbouring self-hatred towards themselves, thinking there is something wrong with them, which may lead to suicidal thoughts, or constantly living in fear that others may not accept them if they were to find out that they remain homosexual at heart.
I have continued listening to the documentary in which a mother recounted how her daughter had written a letter to her, saying that she had done colossal damage to her soul with her shaming words, and her daughter wanted nothing more to do with her, and later on, she found out that her daughter had committed suicide. The video then revealed the statistics that “gay and lesbian people are three to seven times more likely to attempt suicide”. Jimmy Creech said that since the church taught that homosexuality was sinful and wrong, gays and lesbians found that they grew up in conflict with the world in which they live; it really shakes their thinking so that they hate themselves. Another speaker said they are afraid to talk to their parents and peers about what they are going through. So many gay people are forced to live in two different realities – in a world where they are pretending, and then another world where there are always fears, and they are always feeling guilt, shame and anger when they do not feel safe to divulge their homosexuality to the world that is judgmental. This reminds me of a blog I came across earlier which makes a similar observation:
“Numerous studies show that suicide rates among gay people, especially young people, are comparatively high. Church leaders sometimes use this data to argue that homosexuality is unhealthy when tragically it’s anti-gay stigma, propped up by Church attitudes, which, all too often, drives these statistics.” So many LGBT persons are broken by what you say and driven away from their families and their communities. So many have attempted to take their own lives, and some, sadly, succeeded in doing so.”
(From “Open Letter to Pastor Lawrence Khong” by Rev Miak Siew, Free Community Church)
Yes, it is mainly the anti-gay stigma propped up by church attitudes that drive gay people from their families and communities and even attempt to commit suicide. I am coming to realise that the more people speak out against discrimination of gays and speak up on behalf of them, the more these people can be helped to accept themselves and love themselves for who they are.
Same Love (Subtitulado Al Español)
I came across this music video two days ago while checking out a Facebook page called Holy Cross Lutheran Church which is a progressive christian community. I learnt that the song “Same Love” is about love between two persons of the same sex, as shown in the lyrics, and how the right-wing conservatives have been judgmental and condemning towards gays.
“A pre-conceived idea of what it all meant
For those who like the same sex had the characteristics
The right-wing conservatives think its a decision
And you can be cured with some treatment and religion
Man-made, rewiring of a pre-disposition
Ahh nah, here we go
America the brave
Still fears, what, we don’t know
And God loves all His children
Is somehow forgotten
But we paraphrase a book written
35 hundred years ago
I don’t know”
I think the song is relevant and important for this day and age in speaking out against discrimination and hatred from certain political and religious conservatives, as well as speaking up for those who are marginalised because of their sexual orientation, skin colour, gender, and so on.
“If I was gay
I would think hip-hop hates me
Have you read the YouTube comments lately
“Man that’s gay”
Gets dropped on the daily
We’ve become so numb to what we’re sayin’
Our culture founded from oppression
Yeah, we don’t have acceptance for ‘em
Call each other faggots
Behind the keys of a message board
A word routed in hate
Yet our genre still ignores it
Gay is synonymous with the lesser
It’s the same hate that’s caused wars from religion
Gender and skin color
Complexion of your pigment
The same fight that lead people to walk-outs and sit-ins
It’s human rights for everybody
There is no difference
Live on! And be yourself!
When I was in church
They taught me something else
If you preach hate at the service
Those words aren’t anointed
And that Holy Water
That you soak in
Is then poisoned
When everyone else
Is more comfortable
Rather than fighting for humans
That have had their rights stolen
I might not be the same
But that’s not important
No freedom ’til we’re equal
Damn right I support it
I don’t know”
Yes, there is no freedom until we are equal, as the song says. I also think the video is well made as it portrays a holistic perspective of how we are all human beings, regardless of our sexual orientation, ethnicity, belief system and so on. The video started with a baby being born into this world, and the boy later grew up and learnt about how his sexual orientation was being frowned upon by some people, and courageously chose to stay true to himself, and got married to his male lover, with celebration and support from his family and friends. It is a fitting video with a bold statement for marriage equality and gay rights, and indeed for human rights as a whole.
It is sad that much of the evangelical christian world has misapplied Bible verses to propagate hatred and discrimination towards gays and lesbians. To me, the verse Revelation 21:8 “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake of fire which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” simply means in a metaphorical sense the death of the old Adamic identity, which represents the societal mindset of judging people based on what they do. The “second death” symbolises the end of condemnation. The gospel of grace and peace is all about embracing and acknowledging our true identity in Christ, and knowing we are all one and interconnected, blameless and complete, innocent and perfect, regardless of our performance, sexual orientation, skin colour and so on.
Meanwhile, I came across this article yesterday in which the Human Rights Watch expressed disappointment with the recent case of a judge in Singapore who refused to repeal the law that criminalises homosexuality because they felt that the law was clearly discriminatory. That is another reason for me to want to blog about the homosexuality issue to speak up for gay rights.
‘He was dodging the issue,’ said Robertson. ‘He decided that this was a political matter and the judiciary was going to throw this back to the politicians and make them decide.
‘My view is that the judge should have focused his attention on a very simple and straight-forward question. Is it discriminatory or not? The answer is clearly yes.’
- My View on Homosexuality (scumbagscarlett.wordpress.com)
- Conservative Video Teaches Children Homosexuality Is Three Times As Dangerous As Smoking (VIDEO) (youngprogressivevoices.com)
- My uncle Justin Fashanu and the gay prejudice that lives stubbornly on in football | Amal Fashanu (guardian.co.uk)
- Thoughts on Why Rob Bell Supports Gay Marriage and Marriage Equality
- A Distracting Debate in Singapore
- Thoughts on the Lawrence Khong saga
- I’M CHRISTIAN, I SUPPORT THE DECRIMINALIZATION OF HOMOSEXUALITY
- What the numbers didn’t tell – Shakuntala Devi (kractivist.wordpress.com)
- Vietnam’s “My Best Gay Friends” Is A Huge Internet Sensation (lezgetreal.com)