Gay Hating and Practicality

Get on over to atheocracy and read this:

This is how Christians attempt to insulate themselves from attacks on this issue. They say, “We don’t hate the people who are gay; we just, ya know, hate their gayness.” Of course, whether or not I even used the word “hate” in my post is irrelevant (I didn’t, for the record) because that’s the only way they know how to justify their bigotry: “We don’t hate them. We love everybody! We’re just like Jesus! Of course, we don’t want to treat gays equally in the law books, but we still don’t hate them.”

It’s the same thing Americans often used to say about blacks: “We don’t hate blacks. But everyone knows they’re just an inferior race, and we can’t allow them to have the same rights as white people.” The bigotry is much the same today as it was 60, 80, 100 years ago; it has just shifted.

This is a sticky point, but one that deserves going over carefully.  There is a compelling argument for the logic behind both sides of the question here.  Namely, can Christians oppose homosexuality while avoiding hatred?  Its clear avoiding bigotry is impossible.  Believing homosexuals are somehow less than equal under the law is indefensible.  No, sorry, your religion is wrong about that point.

But is hatred involved?  And is the question itself even a practical one?

It’s a meaningless distinction when you’re fighting to deny them marriage rights and treat them as if they’re second-class citizens of some sort. When people who “love” you do that, I’d be scared to see what you guys would do if you, in fact, did hate them.

I think it remains a very practical question, in spite of the excellent point above.  Because it delves into a larger issue:  Non Christians.  jwhaws mentions that homosexuality is perceived as a sin, and hence, laws may be made to turn homosexuals into second class citizens.  On the more extreme side of things, homosexuals are killed.  This same perception of sin, and the resulting range of reactions, is at work on abortion clinics.  It is also floating beneath a very sheer polite surface where words like interfaith dialogue pop up every now and again.  The reason I want to know to what degree actual hatred is at play, is that it would be a sharp indicator of the extent to which the current range of acting out against gay people, might extend to any non Christians.  Especially if this country is turned at bible-point into a Christian nation.  There is a long and bloody history of religious conflict to give us hints.  But what could give us insight is to know:  Do Christians hate gay people?

My suspicion is that if it is not hate, then it is something psychologically similar to hate.  Viewing people as inferior, sinful, and responsible for God’s acts of retribution can’t help but lead to a strong dislike.  Hating the sin and not the sinner is a worthy goal, but one that is so very difficult to attain in practice.  I think when most people hate the sin, they hate the sinner.  And I think that we are dealing with a group of people who hate homosexuals, but do their best not to identify that strong emotion as a negative one.

Denying the reality of one’s negative emotions, rather than taking constructive steps to overcome it, can bring a deadly violence on the world.

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41 Responses

  1. Wow, what a topic. I for one cannot speak for any person but myself, and I do not hate gays. I don’t agree with the lifestyle, so balancing what I believe is a sin with what the country should legislate is not easy. Part of me says that I cannot support gay marriage or unions because I don’t agree with the gay lifestyle. Another part says that in a free society, I cannot expect others to live under my religious convictions. If fundamentalist Muslims controlled legislation, gays would be hung, and I don’t agree with that either.

    Last time I checked, Jesus didn’t legislate. He promoted His convictions and allowed people to chose.

  2. By using the word “lifestyle” you ARE showing your prejudice against same-gender loving people.
    Gays are BORN gay. Why don’t fundamentalists admit that? They know it’s true, but if they say so, their hatred becomes evident, and they can’t have that, can they…

  3. Well I for one don’t agree amy. I don’t hate but I don’t believe gays are born gay I believe they are taught gay. How do you come to assess that “they know it’s true”? I don’t know it’s true and haven’t seen any science to prove it so how is it that you know it’s true over any one that would disagree? And to put the requirement that if you don’t admit it then you are a hater, that’s just strong arm tactics and it makes you a bully.

  4. The ‘born gay’ argument is bogus. Being gay is a sexual preference, arguably a perversion.

    If peadophiles start to argue that they can’t help it and are ‘born that way’ would we all sit back and say ‘oh, well that’s alright then, it’s a lifestyle choice.’

    I think not!

  5. A question, if I may? Who is teaching homosexuality and how are they teaching it? I mean do you believe that if it where not “taught” they would be no homosexuals? Or that people choose a “lifestyle” that lead to an eternity of scorn and a status of second class citizens (at best) or the victim of violence and death (at worst) .

  6. Gee, Michael, I think that’s the first time anyone’s ever called me a bully.
    Freddy, I’m not gay, but I have friends who are. Do you really think they would choose to have all this hate piled on them? Do you think they like being thought of as perverse?
    ralfast has it right.

  7. freedy…

    Thats a low blow, to compare homosexuality to pedophilia. One is an act between consenting adults, the other is the rape and destruction of children and childhood. Big difference there.

  8. You can learn without being taught can’t you?

  9. But from where? Teaching means that somebody is sending a message to them and what is that message exactly that turns people into “teh gay”? Where there no homosexuals when this was not “taught”?

  10. I never said taught. I said learned. Whether it is learned from the inability to assimilate with the opposite sex or from observation of other relationships (gone bad?), be it heterosexual or homosexual, I can not say for certain what the cause may be but my basic premise is that you are not born gay, you learn it.

  11. That makes for a lot of failed lonely people. But then what would make them click with people of the same if the real problem is that they can not relate at a personal level. Seems a rather random lesson, doesn’t it?

    All the gay people I know including members of my own finally never described it as a “learning experience” rather as a discovery of self.

  12. The whole issue of whether gay marriage is perverse or whether you’re born gay or not isnt even the issue, although i think obviously it’s weird unless it’s two hot chicks, it’s not perverse. The issue is if two gay people are married, does it affect anybody else? No, so it should be legal. I dont understand why christians even care, if gay people are already free to live together, what the hell does it matter if they are married? Religion is so much about brainwashing, people cant think for themselves about anything. Like a robot, they told me homosexuality is evil, so it must be evil. I do what Im told.

    And I think to a certain extent people are born straight or gay, but environmental factors have to have an effect too. I’m sure your genes are a factor too.

    But If being gay is just a choice then anybody could just choose to be gay, or are you naturally attracted to people of the opposite sex ?

  13. “But then what would make them click with people of the same if the real problem is that they can not relate at a personal level.”

    My thought on that is that they feel they can’t relate to the opposite sex on particularly a relationship level and the attraction to the same sex is because of a more thorough connection to the same sex (which would make sense as they are the same gender). The gay people I know and have asked tend to agree with that perception to a point, as a possibility of why their discovery of self was to an extent a disconnect from one self to find the other.

    A couple believed that they may have been born gay but alluded, correctly, to the absence of sexual desire in children being an exclusion to the argument. In other words, until you reach the age of being sexually active your attraction to either sex is platonic and therefore renders the born gay suggestion moot.

  14. First, thanks for linking to me, Dan. Always appreciated. I enjoyed your commentary as well.

    Secondly, I liked what brian had to say here. He really seems to be starting to get it. All this talk of whether homosexuality is or isn’t a trait you’re born with is just noise, and it confuses the issue that really should be at hand. That issue is “What justifies denying gays the right to marry the person they love?”

    I’m not trying to be the Thought Police here. If Christians want to think homosexuals were born straight and simply decided one day to become gay because the coin landed on tails, I’m fine with that. Christians can believe whatever they want about gays. It matters not to me.

    The problem arises when they, first, trumpet those views and then, furthermore, attempt to parlay those views into laws and even Constitutional amendments to legislate away gay marriage. I’m holding Christians accountable for their words and actions, not their thoughts.

    Whether your views about homosexuality are correct or not is beside the point. I think most Christians are wrong about a hell of a lot, but I have no interest in convincing them of such, even if I could. The point is, once you start espousing those views and attempting to thrust them upon the lives of others, the basis of your views loses its relevance because, even if gays decided to be attracted to the same sex on a coin flip, that’s not necessarily legal justification for denying them marriage rights.

  15. Wow! Good thing for me I’m a Buddhist. jwhaws is pissed at the Christians.

  16. I personally gave up on the institute of marriage around the time I got divorced. It is a legal sham wrapped in religious overtones and has no place in law in my opinion. The fact that the law has control in your life regarding religion breaks the separation of church and state clause. That should be enough to convince anyone that straight or gay couples have the right to do whatever they feel in their relationship.

    When the courts intervene it becomes a matter of prejudice. Why the courts constantly legislate from the bench is a matter that the people need to address. Why the congress looks past the separation of church and state and legislates a religious ceremony is because they are not held responsible to their sworn oath, and again needs to be addressed by the people. Either way the interference of the law in marriage is unlawful.

  17. Hi ralfast, its not really a low blow when you consider that I’m not attacking the act of being gay, just the attitude that they cant help it because they’re born that way. I find it a contradiction that they have ‘gay pride’ but then hide behind the excuse, ‘we cant help it, its genetic’.
    Just be honest and admit its a kink the same as dressing in rubber, whipping your partner, playing spanky or covering your body in jelly and peanut butter then getting the dog to lick it off. (None of the above do it for me you understand).
    Personally I find the idea of kissing another guy then probing his anus very disturbing but if that’s what they wish to do in the privacy of their own homes or the nearest toilets then at least stop pretending its something other than what it is.

  18. simply put the same part of the brain that tells pedifiles it’s o.k.. to touch little kids, is the same part of the brain that tells gays what there doing is o.k.. This whole topic has nothing at all to do with christian belief, I like to think it is NORMAL human belief. Christians are a little more vocal because not only common sense tells them this is not right, the bible backs it up. I have a 3 year old son and a 2 year old daughter, I would like very much that I will not have to explain to them these un-natural things. I dont even think marriage should be a issue the real question is do these sick people need medication?

  19. illusivefreddy-

    Let’s say for a moment that you’re right. Let’s say that intercourse between two people of the same sex is a fetish just like any other. There’s no way you could know that, but let’s just assume you’re right for the sake of argument.

    It’s still clearly victimless. Both parties consent and want to be involved in the activity. No one is hurt by it. No one even sees it, except for them. Since you’re not claiming their actual love is a fetish, we’ll say that’s real. It’s certainly not unheard of for two people of the same sex to love each other and deeply care for one another.

    So why, exactly, would you (and the more crass Tyler Durdin here) want to deny them marriage, in light of this? Just because the actual sex they have is more fetish than it is what we call “normal”? Why do you care? If they love each other and want to have the legal rights of a married couple, what joy do you get from denying them that? Any sex that isn’t specifically for the purpose of reproduction could easily be deemed fetishist. Would you say that any couple that has sex for any purpose other than to have a child shouldn’t be able to get married?

  20. […] Teachers and Brains Posted on February 4, 2008 by Dan (Fitness) My post mulling over atheocracy’s thoughts on gay hating has generated some rather interesting […]

  21. Who said I was denying them anything? They can do what they like, its their lives. Just don’t be so judgemental when the farmer with a leaning toward beastiality decides to marry his cow because he loves it so much.

  22. illusivefreddy,
    I feel ridiculous even taking your argument seriously, but why not? Can cows consent?

    Btw, its great to see you supporting the right of all couples to marry and have the same rights and privileges as any other couple.

  23. illusivefreddy-

    Well, that’s sorta the point. They can’t do whatever they like because people like you push for laws to prevent them from doing so. You can’t just say you’re married to someone and have it be so. You must have the support of the laws of your state, and homosexual couples currently don’t in the vast majority of the country.

    And yes, as Dan points out, all we’re saying is that two consenting adults should have the right to marry each other if they wish. Most people would also say that close relatives shouldn’t marry due to health dangers for their future children, which is a legitimate state interest.

    What is the legitimate state interest in denying a homosexual couple the right to marriage?

  24. I dont push for any law that denies them any thing, there are plenty of wacko extremists that will do that for me. What I dont want is to have to look at these sick bastards every day. Everyone who supports this crap makes it sound like we wont see these guys kissing in the mall. I think we should designate the Bikini Islands gay paradise and send them there to live a happy fruitful gay life. I do think that these guys got it rough, but to me this is not an issue we should even have to deal with. If you are a rational thinking straight man and you can feel bad for these wacko’s rights, You may not be as straight as you think.

  25. Tyler-

    First, I hate that a bigoted cretin has hijacked the name of the one of my favorite characters in recent film history. But I digress …

    I’ll tell ya what, Tyler. I’m not exactly salivating over the idea of seeing you kissing anybody at the mall either. I’m sure you’re just as pretty a guy as your stunningly beautiful prose would indicate, but I’ve got no interest in seeing you sucking face with some scraggly haired chick you dragged out of the nearest Westboro Baptist Church protest. Maybe we should start the calls for you and your ill-begotten ilk to be banished to a distant island.

    And of course, the trend has not been for “straight” people who supported gay rights to turn out to be gay, but just the opposite, my dear friend. Repeatedly and damn near consistently, the most vocal opponents of gay rights have been carrying on their own little illicit gay affairs behind closed doors. To be so adamant in your dislike of a particular group of people is, psychologically speaking, a classic tip-off that you’re trying to conceal your own shame by appearing strong against the very act, lifestyle, et. al. in which you are participating.

    But hey, you can make your clever little remarks about my sexual preference if you wish. I’m comfortable enough in my own skin to not care and, unlike your public facade, I don’t think being gay is somehow the worst fate I could imagine. So your sly allusions make no impact on me on two different levels.

    Have a fine afternoon.

  26. jwhaws,
    Hot damn!

    Tyler,
    What kind of an argument is that? You don’t want to look at gay people? Why not apply that to any group of people, and just deport them?

    You are basically saying “I’m fine with gay marriage, just not gay people in my country”. You are worse than the “wacko extremists” who fight gay marriage for you.

  27. NO, what I am not o.k. with is that not all gay guys are just gay. come on you guys seem pretty smart to me, you mean to tell me that you get so lost shuffling around big words and political babble that you dont just take it for what it is, it’s just one more thing that morally bankrupt society is going to embrace to make even more people happy. To my buddy jwhas sorry if I hit home a little bit, but if you can seriously tell me you were not standing around with your high school buddies gay bashing ,I will tell you it’s because your one of them. In my defense, sorry that your so overly intelligent that you could not read between the lines on my last comment, plain and simple, If the gay guys that you lobby so hard for had a strictly bedroom relationship I would not even give a shit. But these same guys that you feel need more rights, are parading down the same streets as our [just so you dont get lost i’m from New York] Yankees, in their fucking underwear putting it in everyones face. I would understand you calling me a bigot if was talking about someones ethnic back round or shit like that, but we are not we are talking about a lifestyle that up until a decade ago wasnt even on the table for debate.not evryone is gonna see eye to eye with you or me, and I dont care if they leave the country or not as long as I dont have to see it every day. Come to New York stay for a year and I am sure you will get your fill of gay shit. Oh by the way read the warning sign in the beggining of Fight Club you will find that it says ” meet a member of the OPPOSITE sex.” And as for your little spin on how I may be surpressing my gay inner self, I am sure you would love that to be the truth but, I asure you that it’s not. I dont think that it takes any kind of education to see who this is a really touchy subject for. And as for the straggly haired chick I am kissing it has become apparent to me that if you had a chick at all you wouldnt have so many posts on this page. stop balling and dry your clammy hands woman.

  28. To Dan, I am sorry for smutting up your website, it is not intention to push my point of view on anyone it is my opinion and mine alone, I will respectfully avoid any further imposing.

  29. jwhaws – People like me? You don’t know anything about me so your comment is way off base. I don’t push for laws about anything. I don’t really give a shit.

    Dan – sorry friend, I’m just taking the piss really. I’ll go and have my fun where the posters have a sense of humor.

  30. Tyler-

    You sound like an insecure adolescent who hasn’t quite found a comfort zone with himself and, thus, lashes out at things he finds “icky” so that he can give his psyche a bump. If it’s “morally bankrupt” to call for embracing people’s differences instead of shouting them down, loving your neighbor whether you have anything in common or not, I suppose I’m “morally bankrupt” then.

    What your 14-year-old mind clearly doesn’t process is that it’s not necessary for a well-adjusted adult to make fun of gay people to prove he isn’t one of them. People like you do it to look strong, to show to your friends that you’re not “one of them.” It’s a product of insecurity, a psychological crutch to use in order to condition your mind not to “get The Gay.” If you were comfortable with your sexuality, not repressed and mature enough to recognize your own sexual preference, all this posturing would be unnecessary. Being uncomfortable with homosexuals would be unnecessary. You’re displaying all the hallmarks of someone who isn’t quite sure about himself and has to run down others to build up his own confidence. I wouldn’t “love” for you to be gay. I wouldn’t think one bit less of you if you are. Doesn’t matter to me. But you’d have a lot less anger if you’d just admit it rather than puffing out your chest like this all the time. You’ll still be the same guy.

    illusivefreddy-

    I didn’t say you push for anti-gay laws; I said people like you push for anti-gay laws. Ya know, the ones who think homosexuality is “an abomination” because they read it in a 2,000-year-old book written by a bunch of agenda-driven white guys. Those people. Like you.

  31. Again, you asume too much which makes you an ass. The oldest book I ever read is Beowulf.

  32. Actually, I’m not going to let it go at that because you’ve really pissed me off.

    You asume that just because I don’t necessarily agree with your view on the origin of life, the universe and everything that I must be some right wing bible bashing loony. I could be any number of things. Buddist, Muslim, Satanist, French or believe that we came here in a spaceship from another world or that Douglas Adams had it right and the Earth is a cleverly designed computer. Actually, I’m none of the above; except for a leaning toward the last one.

    The fact is that your mind works along two tracks. Either people agree with you or they are all lumped together into ‘one of those people. Well the world’s not like that, a fact that you’d realise if only you’d remove your head from up your own arse.

    The only reason I comment on blogs like this is to take the piss out of sactimonious, self opinionated people. Like you

  33. illusivefreddy-

    I didn’t call you a “right wing bible bashing loony,” nor do I think you are one. You could be anything, I suppose. All I said was that people who oppose gay rights because the Bible tells them so are like you. They are. I guess you could oppose it for some other reason. Tyler doesn’t like them because he thinks they’re icky. Maybe that’s you. I don’t know. All I know is you’ve got something against homosexuality, you don’t believe in evolution, and you’re a pretty conservative fellow.

    People agree with me or they are “one of those people”? Hmmmm … well, I’m not sure you know me nearly well enough to make that determination, but that’s fine. Your two-bit psychoanalysis doesn’t really matter. If you were to check out my blog, you’d see I even defend Christianity in my latest post, as I have many times. But you’re too caught up in your faux-wronged preening to continue a debate beyond your capacity to contend. This fetal-position lashing out appears to be your default reaction to criticism, rather than either defending your stance or legitimately questioning your opponent’s.

    So come on, freddy. Let’s engage rather than cry about who has been more persecuted by the other. What is the legitimate state interest in denying homosexual couples the right to marry?

  34. OK then, where to start.

    Firstly, thank you for your comments. You’ve backtracked a little I feel by changing the definition of what constitutes ‘people like me’ but no matter.

    To answer your question, there is no legitimate state interest, I never said there was. Clearly though, the church lobby in the States has a strong influence over politics, which cannot be right. Isn’t your president supposed to be appointed by god or something? Anyway, I’ve repeatedly said, it’s up to gay folks what they do but I just wonder why they feel the need to have validation or acceptance. Who cares?
    If it helps any, I manage a company where obviously I have the power to hire and fire people. I recently hired a gay man who was very open about his leaning. I knew this before I hired him. The only thing we disagreed on was the fact that he smoked and I am not keen on the smell of tobacco in the office but that’s another subject. The point is that there was no hatred on my part. Now I’m sure you’ll find some way to turn this back on me with a snide derogatory remark but no matter.

    I have read you blog in fact we share some of the same interests which is what drew me to venture a comment or two. I seem to remember being insulted there too which brings me to your very kind summation of my personality;
    Two bit, faux wronged preening, beyond my capacity, fetal position lashing out. The classic self congratulatory remarks of an individual sitting on their high horse and taking themselves far too seriously.

  35. freddy-

    I may call you “freddy,” yes? Muchas gracias.

    It’s not a matter of “validation” or “acceptance.” It’s a matter of homosexual couples deserving the same rights as heterosexual ones. Blacks weren’t seeking “validation” or “acceptance” either during emancipation or the civil rights era; they were simply seeking the rights that were rightly theirs as citizens of this country. The difference is only a semantical one. Both blacks and homosexuals have faced steady, unconstitutional discrimination, often supported by Christians’ interpretations of the Bible. I’m looking for some secular validation for the anti-gay policies in America. Is there one?

    You were only insulted on my blog because you misunderstood what I wrote, which I clarified. My point on evolution was that, as long as you guys spout the same creationist talking points that have already been countered by true scientists on the Internet, the debate is not worth having. If you truly wanted answers to the points you were posing (as you claimed to), you could easily find them, presented by people with far better credentials than I. And if you have sought them out and didn’t buy their explanations, I don’t have an alternate scientific reality in my back pocket. I’ll give you the same answers they did; if you didn’t accept answers from scientists with Masters degrees from Princeton, why would you listen to me?

    You think I take myself too seriously? You really haven’t read much of my writing, have you? I don’t take myself remotely seriously, but I do enjoy a debate. The words you quoted there were all describing your words, not a “summation of your personality.” You seem to resort to assuming a position of the wronged innocent instead of engaging in a debate. It’s a classic Christian method of debate, affixing a halo to your own head with the intention of damaging your target’s credibility.

    If this debate is not “beyond your capacity,” as it seems, then either choose to engage or back away. If you support gay marriage, then say so. If you think gay couples should not be able to get married, say why. Or don’t. But faking an injury isn’t making much of an impression.

  36. You win.

    I’ll back away, not because I’m not up to your staggering intellectual level or because your nasty words made me cry but because I’m actually not at all interested in the debate I’m just ‘taking the piss’.

    Besides, I’ve just discovered gay porn and its fantastic. I’m watching two asian girls going at each other like there’s no tomorrow. Absolutely fascinating. For research purposes only of course.

    Adios amigo, hasta luego
    No hard feelings (sorry, I don’t know the Spanish for that. As you already know my Spanish is not that good but thanks for visiting my blog to find out).

    Freddy

  37. Oooh. One of the Asian girls turned out to be an Asian lady boy! Does this still qualify as gay porn?

    I really liked his tits. Does that make me gay?

  38. Only you would know….would you like to play the part of the Asian girl or the “lady boy”?

  39. jwhaws- it seems to me that your only reply for anything I say is to turn it into your theory of my repressed homo-sexuality. It does not look very smart on your part to assume things. The facts are I have my own business, I have been married for seven years and have two beautiful kids. I thought that this was about gays having the right to marry?, and why people care if they do. The only thing I said about gay bashing is that in high school it was done, I have been out of high school for over ten years. Look I am not on the side of the road with picket signs, I do not go out with my friends gay bashing, and for the most part do not even acknowledge this crap on a daily basis. The truth is though that this lifestyle does affect other people. For me it affects the way I raise my children, now I have to teach them things that I was taught to be immoral, are now o.k., also whether I approve or not it will be taught to my children on some level in school. I agree with freddy a little in the respect that this is not an issue of the right to be married it is more just a way for them to look a little more normal, when the truth is this is not normal behavior for men. Look before I start ranting again, I dont care what they do as long as it does not affect my life in ANY way, I have enough decisions be made for me every day in this country. As for my bigot lifestyle, I will leave you with this, one of my best friends is a sargent in the army,he told me when they were going through the whole gays in the military thing, they had sort of a” verbal survey” and almost 95% percent of active enlistments said they would not feel comfortable knowing there were gays among them. I think that this says that it is a pretty normal feeling to not approve of that kind of life style. OH and by the way, dont even bother trying to assimilate this with blacks and civil rights, if calling gay guys names is a civil rights violation then alright, but there is no comparison in the two. By the time gay guys really started coming out, there were already so many laws protecting their rights as people it was crazy. And last, I hope for your sake that your profession is not in psychology because you are really off on how your read people, Spend more time trying to understand why people have their stance, and less time looking for ways to undermine people with your vocabulary.

  40. Aww your poor kids would be taught compassion instead of the normal holier than thou bullshit. Too bad.

  41. Normal doesn’t make it right.

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