(*This post was in response to a Facebook thread that continued to receive contributions for over a week. It began with a photo of Christians offering apologies for mean spirited abuse on the part of Christians toward the LGBTQ community during the 2015 Chicago Pride Parade.)
A colleague once asked me to explain the difference between communism and fascism. I explained that one personified the extreme right side of the political spectrum while the other represented the extreme left. His response was, “yeah, I get all that but what is the practical difference? They both seem to be equally tyrannical”. He was right. That concept is clearly illustrated in this thread. A week ago I shared what I feel is an inspirational photo of people with divergent opinions humbly and respectfully tossing aside their differences and focusing on mutual respect based on our shared value as human beings.
What happened? The hateful responses from all sides of the “debate” that erupted tainted if not fully annihilated the high-minded intent of that photograph. Opponents of the LGBTQ movement took this as yet another platform from which to scream the tired accusatory message that is not new and is well understood. No one is unsure of the position of conservative evangelicals regarding same sex marriage and with all that it is associated. Many LGBTQ activists, with equal vitriol sarcastically and with mean spirit mocked the God and the faith that many of us hold dear. Such a reaction places you in the same camp as the “gay bashers” you despise as you render divisive hatred offering nothing to contribute to the edification of society. You dismiss us as irrelevant and out of touch in the same manner that you assert Christians have dismissed the LGBTQ community.
As communists and fascists hold divergent political views while employing the same brutal and cruel tactics to attain their ends. Hate-filled and toxic diatribe from evangelicals and LGBTQ advocates alike offers nothing to improve the state of our community. Hatred and prejudice have existed since the beginning of time (whenever you may believe that it may have occurred) and, sadly it will continue to exist until the end of time. (However, you might believe that will occur). Society does not need more insolent, spiteful hate mongering – we have an overabundance of that. We need more people of good will who are dedicated to constructively working together in a spirit of mutual respect, willing to agree to disagree on significant and deeply held personal issues in order to strive together to make the best of this world on which we live.
To my fellow Bible believing Christians, we believe in the coming of a new heaven and a new earth and that this earth will one day pass away. Why are we so hell-bent on driving people away from the God Whom we believe embodies the fullness of perfect love in an effort to save this entropic planet and to defend a theological position?
Social activists, you want mutual acceptance, respect and tolerance but you are unwilling to afford that same courtesy to people of opposite beliefs. How, in God’s name does that separate you from the gay bashers you so maliciously slam? If you encounter clergy, caterers or florists who, with respect, elect not to provide services for your weddings, why not take the high road, wish them well and move ahead? There are countless professionals who will gladly provide those services to you. Or do you feel some inexplicable need to engage in a social war mirroring the activists who are committed to attacking you?
The lines have been drawn, the positions and messages are clear. Very few people are yet to be “won over” or converted to any side of this “debate”. We have come a long way but racism still exists. Acceptance of, in spite of disagreement with the LGBTQ community is rapidly increasing but there will almost certainly always be militant antagonists.
It has been both amusing and disturbing to view the “Scripture Wars” that have threaded throughout this post. Both positions accuse the other of hand picking Scriptures to defend their own position when in reality both positions have employed this vain and useless practice. We need for people who claim that they want a free and respectful society to…
- Recognize that we will always have antagonists and people with whom we disagree.
- Lower the priority of our differences and raise the priority of love and mutual respect in an effort to develop a more peaceful community.
Christians will continue to preach the Gospel, the appealing and unappealing aspects alike but my heartfelt prayer is that we can do so with love and respect without abandoning our deeply held religious beliefs. To be fair, there has been a small contingency of people from both positions who have contributed posts with the same encouraging spirit that inspired the initial photo that was posted; a spirit of reason and respect that seeks to encourage and edify rather than belittle and deride. To you I say thank you, carry on and well done.