Thursday, January 31, 2008


"'It takes real men to confess Jesus as Lord and Savior,' Owens said in the sermon, which was recorded by the church. 'I'm not talking about no faggot or no sissy...Wait a minute! Let all the real men come on down here and take a bow. All the real men-I'm talking about the straight men,' he preached. "You ain't funny and you ain't cranky, but you're straight. Come on down here and walk around and praise God that you are straight. Thank him that you're straight. All the straight men that's proud to be a Christian, that's proud to be a man of God.'"

[See the post, "Ugliness in DC black Baptist church - outing email campaign by homophobic choir member," on Pam's House Blend.]

If you think that this kind of ranting from the pulpit is an infrequent occurrence, think again! Not only can we discern that anyone spewing this kind of hateful filth has absolutely nothing to do with God, but also that this kind of rhetoric is what causes such shame, self-loathing, suicides, bashings, and murders of LGBT people.

If you want to ignite, or re-ignite, the necessary fire in the belly to fight against this kind of hate, think on the kind of venom that is directed against God's LGBT children by the likes of a "Bishop" Owens, and that is more than willingly received by congregations of those who consider themselves "Christians," but who actually align themselves with the devil, with demonic influences that fuel their hate!
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Tuesday, January 29, 2008


"Obama is too intelligent to be stuck on stupid on the gay issue. His 'homophobic mishaps' are calculated moves to win an important voting bloc: black churchgoing homophobic Christians." [See this essay by Rev. Irene Monroe.]

"Fox host highlights 'affectionate' embrace between Bush, openly gay congressman." [See here.]

On my post of January 23rd entitled, "People Are Being Played Like A Fiddle," I discussed how LGBT people have been used as scapegoats for material, psychological, and political gains. Here, I want to make the point that I made before: There's not a dime's worth of difference between "liberal" and "conservative" politicians.

Just as Barney Frank was more than willing to throw our Transgender sisters and brothers under the bus, allegedly so as to give ENDA some chance of passing, even though he and most of us knew that Bush would veto that bill, he is embracing George Bush for the simple reason that he and Bush have far more in common than either he or Bush have with the electorate. In my opinion, there's not a dime's worth of difference between Democrats and Republicans!

Politicians in this country are ideological only to the extent that they can appeal to their base and to those whom they perceive will give them the most votes to get elected, or re-elected, to office. Ideology has nothing to do with successful politicking in the U.S! Getting votes, and solely getting votes, is the the only ideology successful politicians know and, hence, seemingly disparate politicians like Frank and Bush have far more in common with each other than either of them have with any of us.

Obama demeans Gay people by embracing a Donny McClurkin, and many "liberal" people give him a pass because they say that he really didn't know what McClurkin was going to do or say. This nonsense of not realizing that everything politicians do is well-thought out and orchestrated to achieve their sole goal of getting elected to office, enables politicians on both sides of the aisle to snicker at us and laugh all the way to the bank!

We're being played for fools, and we're suckers to believe that Obama isn't catering to the homophobic voters; that Frank is unreservedly catering to "progressives" who are in favor of full and equal civil rights for ALL people; that Bush really gives a damn about having a Constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriage; that Romney really cares about limiting the rights of Gay people. Each do and say what they truly believe will get them the votes they need to catapult them into the White House; they don't necessarily believe what they say, nor do they have to believe it, in order to get the votes they need.

And this duplicity, this shell game, works time and time again on the American people! Both Democrats and Republicans are in favor of the status quo, and they seek to maintain the status quo, because they have handsomely profited from the status quo, as witnessed by their being in the position where they are even considered Presidential material. They are wealthy, they have backers, they have lobbyists courting them at every turn of the congressional corridor, and they get perks that neither you nor I can even imagine.

The only two contenders for President, Kucinich and Gravel, didn't have a chance to win, because they stood for something; they articulated the principle of fairness, and they, thereby, wanted to change the status quo by fighting for full and equal civil rights for Gay people. Therefore, their candidacies were doomed before their campaigns even got off the ground. The media, probably their competitors, and the voting public saw to that!

Well before the campaigns even got underway, it was reported that neither of these people of principle had a chance to win. How did anyone know that fact even well before the first Presidential debate? They knew it because that's what the media and other politicians wanted, and that's what they wanted us to think, so that we wouldn't take Kucinich and Gravel seriously as candidates from the very beginning, so that they weren't even out of the starting blocks when the conventional "wisdom" realized that people would be wasting their votes to vote for either of these two principled people.

It seems we don't want principled people to be President or members of Congress! Principled people are dissatisfied with some aspects of the status quo and are courageous enough to say so and do something about leveling the playing field. And most people (erroneously) feel that the status quo is paying off for them. And, to help enable people to think that the status quo is desirable for them, external "enemies" and "threats,"be they Iraqis and/or LGBT people, are constructed by politicians, with the all too willing complicity of most of the mainstream media.

I know the status quo is paying off for the politicians (How many politicians leave the White House or Congress without being multimillionaires?), but it is not paying off for many, if not most, people in this society. Yet most people still have that "false consciousness" that Marx talked about, where they really believe that unprincipled politicians will deliver "the goods" to them, watch their backs, and "make things better," when, in fact, it is in the interest of the politicians to keep things just as they are.

For example, President Harry Truman, in 1947, said that there should be universal health care in this country. We are farther away from realizing that goal than we were at the time he stated it! If Democrats really wanted change that would truly help people as they say they do (and they held the majority in Congress for many years), don't you think that we'd have universal health care by now?

The fact is that incumbent politicians and their families have access to health care that neither you nor I can even dream about. Yet, they don't want the rest of us to have it, largely because we are not really their constituents, but the lobbyists who crawl all over Washington are their real constituents. They listen to the lobbyists; they really don't listen to us, save to get our votes so that they can continue to remain in Washington, or get to Washington, so as to receive the perks that being a career politician affords.

So, when Frank and Bush hug each other; when Obama and Clinton say they are for equal rights (but not for LGBT people, as LGBT people make up only a fraction of the votes they need to win); when Edwards says that his "religion" prohibits him from being in favor of same-sex marriage, "liberals" still more than willingly drink the Kool Aid and think that by voting for a Democrat that this country will become more progressive than by voting for a Republican.

The fact is, in my opinion, it won't matter whether a Democrat or a Republican wins the Presidential election! It wasn't a Republican who got us into the war in Iraq. It was Bush himself! And he would have gotten us into this war even if he had run as a Democrat! His mean-spiritedness (Remember, when he was Governor of Texas, he made fun of Karla Faye Tucker shortly before she was about to be executed.), willfulness, relatively limited intelligence, and seemingly unresolved Oedipus Complex would have held sway regardless of which political party he was affiliated with.

It's true that Obama wouldn't have gotten us into that war! But that would be the case because he, personally, was against it, and not because he is running as a Democrat! He could well be running as a Republican and he would undoubtedly act no differently in this regard than by his being affiliated with the Democratic party. Indeed, should he win the Presidency, I'm not at all confident that we will leave Iraq any time soon, given the military, economic, and political forces at play in our country that has become the greatest debtor nation in the world; with the largest deficit any country has had in history.

For the 1952 Presidential election, Eisenhower, considered a war hero and easily electable, was courted by both the Democratic and Republican parties. He decided to run as a Republican, and handily won the Presidency in 1952. In the U.S. it can safely be said that our political parties are not based on ideology, despite what politicians want us to believe. Rather, political parties can best be seen as groups of people getting together for the sole purpose of getting elected to office. Period!

We have to vote, not for the political party, but for the person! And, looking over the slate of candidates in both parties that are being offered to us, I have no hope that we will leave Iraq in the foreseeable future; that we will have universal health care in the foreseeable future; that the economy will significantly improve in the foreseeable future; that full and equal civil rights will accrue to LGBT people in the foreseeable future.

So, I go into the voting booth, hold my nose, and vote, not being oblivious to the fact that it's not likely to make a dime's worth of difference whether or not a Democrat or a Republican wins the election because politicians in each party are in favor of, and profit from, the status quo, and have far more in common with each other than they do with those of us who elect them, and continue electing them, to office.

Even the office of President of the United States.
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Monday, January 28, 2008


The list on this brief video is just a drop in the ocean compared to the lives lost through murder and suicide due to homophobia, particularly religiously-fed and religiously-based homophobia. Don't lose sight of one very crucial fact! Whenever you hear homophobic statements from clergy (or anyone else for that matter), you are hearing the words of a potential murderer!
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Friday, January 25, 2008


I made a comment yesterday on Pam's House Blend in reference to her post entitled, "The Peter chides C-SPAN for airing openly gay bishop's speech."

Part of Pam's post quotes Peter LaBarbera, president of the homophobic site Americans For Truth, in which, I'm proud to say, my blog, as is Pam's, is listed as one of the "Pro-Homosexuality Blogs" that he disdains.

LaBarbera's "screed," as reproduced in the post on Pam's site, partially reads as follows:

"C-SPAN helped homosexual Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire Vicky Gene Robinson - he was named such because his parents wanted a girl - plead his heretical case to America by airing his speech twice on Christmas Eve night.

"In the speech, Robinson discussed his plan to enter into a "civil union" with his homosexual lover, saying he always wanted to be a 'June bride.' The bishop claimed (against all evidence in Scripture) that the Holy Spirit is involved in the crusade for more open homosexuals like him in the clergy.

"Write C-SPAN CEO Brian Lamb ( or call him (202-737-3220) to protest this holiday programming choice that was deeply offensive to Bible-believing Christians.

"Urge C-SPAN to balance Robinson's lecture by covering a presentation by evangelical Dr. Michael Brown in Charlotte, North Carolina next month titled, 'Can you be gay and Christian?'"

I thought you'd be interested in reading the comment I made on Pam's post on her blog:

I'm an "evangelical Christian" and I take the Bible very seriously. There is absolutely NOTHING in the Bible that condemns Gay people, or loving relationships between people of the same sex, or same-sex marriage!

There's a world of difference between an "evangelical Christian" and a bigot, but we wouldn't know that, given the takeover of that term by people, many of whom are very limited human beings who are haters who impose their prejudices upon the Bible, just as they seek to impose those prejudices on the rest of us.

As the erudite Peter J. Gomes, the gay minister and professor at Harvard, writes in his excellent book, "The Good Book: Reading the Bible with Mind and Heart," that I highly recommend you read if you are at all interested in this issue, we must understand what the Bible says, what it means, the text, the subtext, the context, what we bring to the text, and what we take out of the text.

Moreover, the Bible is not God! When one worships the Bible, he/she is committing the sin of idolatry! Christians worship God! Not the Bible!

The Bible might best be viewed as "a finger" that points to a couple of the many dimensions of God, and God's dealings with assorted people and nations throughout human history. The Bible contains historical fact, metaphor, and allegory to enable us to get a better glimpse into the mind of God than would likely exist without its library of books written over a period of about 1400 years by many people from a wide variety of walks of life.

For example, if I ask you where you live, and you point to your house, and I keep staring at your finger, I might come to know everything about your finger: the conformation of your fingerprint, the size and shape of your finger, etc., but I won't come one bit closer to knowing where you live. I have to look to the place where your finger is pointing to know where you live. The Bible might best be seen as such a finger!

Simple biblical literalists, frequently and erroneously called "evangelical Christians," may know assorted verses of the Bible, but totally ignore (or are ignorant of) the context of those verses (such as the "clobber passages that the homophobic professing Christians relish in using), and therein lies their distortion and perversion of the Bible; their preaching their false gospel of legalism, perfectionism, and exclusion, and their defaming the only Gospel to be found in Christianity!

Unfortunately, all too many self-styled Christians not only worship the Bible, but actually worship their own interpretations of selected Bible verses that seem to them to conform to their preconceived prejudices, and then have the audacity to claim that their perversions and distortions of selected Bible texts come from God.

So, actually, such professing Christians are not merely worshiping the Bible, but they are in actuality worshiping themselves and their own distorted views of certain biblical texts that they erroneously think conform to their prejudices, their distortions.

These prejudiced haters, be they ignorant or not, defame Christianity just as they defame God by their preaching the false gospel of exclusion that has absolutely nothing to do with God or the things of God, including the Bible itself.

The only Gospel (that is why the word "Gospel" means "good news") to be found in Christianity is the Gospel of grace (God's unmerited favor), faith (trusting God over and above seen circumstances), love, peace, reconciliation, and inclusiveness.

The false gospel of legalism, perfectionism, and exclusion has absolutely NOTHING to do with Christianity!

By giving "equal time" to those who distort and pervert the Bible and the Gospel is to place ignorance and/or hatefulness on the same plane as grace and love epitomized by Jesus' life, teachings, and ministry.

Lies and truth; legalism and grace; enmity and peace; demonization and reconciliation; exclusion and inclusiveness; hate and love don't deserve equal time!
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Thursday, January 24, 2008


Yesterday, I received the following email from the American Family Association. It reads as follows:

Dear Rev. Dr. Jerry S.,

"ESPN and its parent company, ABC, have refused to take any action against ESPN anchorwoman Dana Jacobson for her hateful, slurring remarks against Jesus, saying "F-- -- Jesus."

"On January 11, Jacobson was speaking at a celebrity roast in Atlantic City, N.J., when she unleashed a profane tirade, saying, "F--- Notre Dame," "F--- Touchdown Jesus" and finally "F--- Jesus."

"'Touchdown Jesus' is the popular moniker for a statue of Jesus raising his arms, located on the Notre Dame campus.

"Catholic League president Bill Donohue spoke with ESPN about the attack and received an e-mail from Jacobson which basically treated the incident as a non-event. The statement said, in part, 'I respect all religions and did not mean anything derogatory by my poorly chosen words.'

"Jacobson's comments were at a public event where she was representing ESPN.

"The fact that neither ESPN nor ABC has taken any action against Jacobson indicates they have a bias against Christians. Donohue said that Jacobson should be fired.

"This anti-Christian bias of the networks is becoming commonplace. Actress Kathy Griffin used her appearance on the Emmy Awards program to tell Jesus to 'suck it,' responding to athletes who thank Jesus when they achieve certain levels. No action was taken against Griffin."

Although I find the "popular moniker" for the statue of Jesus at Notre Dame to be defamatory, as it trivializes Jesus, I also find the defamatory statements made by Dana Jacobson and Kathy Griffin, as reported by the AFA, to be defamatory, showing the contempt that they may well have for Christianity; their having no apparent qualms that their defamatory statements would offend their listeners.

And, the unfortunate fact is that it is very likely that increasing numbers of people would not be offended by their statements as reported. And that likelihood is due to the fact that we have allowed as spokespeople for Christianity to be what used to be until recently "the fringe" within the Christian community.

What was the fringe a mere thirty years ago has largely overtaken much, if not most, of the institutional Church and most all clergy, and other professing Christians, have not condemned the hate-mongering and hateful rhetoric that has been spewed from all too many pulpits against LGBT people. Indeed, the history of the institutional Church is replete with its being enmeshed with the most reactionary forces within secular society, being their spokespeople, affirming their hatred and exclusion of assorted minority groups, and being in the vanguard in the oppression visited upon LGBT people.

This reality has caused untold numbers of intelligent, sensitive, and decent people to distance themselves not only from the institutional Church but from Christianity itself, as these people falsely believe that the fringe, the haters, the homophobic clergy speak for Christianity and speak for God. Indeed, many Christians have distanced themselves from the institutional Church and, as in my case, do not even go to church any longer, unless it is a church that embraces all of God's children.

Christianity is largely held in contempt by many people because clergy and other professing Christians have not confronted the homophobic clergy for not only preaching the false gospel of legalism, perfectionism, and exclusion, but for perverting Christianity to be in accordance with their own prejudices and, frequently, hate-filled hearts.

Moreover, those who profess to be Christians, by their mere attendance in churches that have homophobic clergy as their pastors, have lent credibility to those clergy, and have affirmed and encouraged the homophobic hatefulness that has been spewed for all too many years. And such clergy have also emboldened assorted politicians and others to either to engage in homophobic rhetoric themselves or, just as hatefully and cowardly, helped prevent almost all politicians to be against full and equal civil rights for Gay people.

The image of Christianity has come to such a sorry, distorted, state that it is very likely that if you even mention the word "Christian," the first word that would likely come into another person's mind would be the word "sin." The crying shame is that the word "love" would not likely be the first word that would come into people's minds when the word "Christian" is used.

I don't merely blame the homophobic clergy for this state of affairs, but I also blame cowardly professing Christians for allowing these clergy to speak for Christianity, for the Church, and for God, and to do so with impunity!

The very fact that homophobic clergy and others know that most people will not confront them for the anti-Christian sentiments they express partakes of the same dynamic as the defamation of Jesus by some people in the media. Both groups of people fail to know what Christianity truly is, and that is because the living out of the Christian life is so infrequent; the exposition of the Gospel of Christ is similarly infrequent; they know that their target audiences are likely to view their hateful sentiments favorably.

The only Gospel to be found in Christianity is the Gospel of grace (God's unmerited favor), faith (trusting God over and above seen circumstances), love, peace, reconciliation, and inclusiveness. Anything else is not of God and is, indeed, a distortion and perversion of Christianity!

That's why the word "Gospel" means "good news!" The Christian is liberated from legalism and from the yokes of bondage imposed by mere fallible human beings.

Jesus tells us that we are free! Hear Him: "If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." (John 8:36)

The homophobic clergy and their blind followers, uttering words and frequently acting in discriminatory ways diametrically opposed to the Gospel, show by their rhetoric and actions the facts that they, themselves, are not free, and that they don't seem to have a clue concerning the Gospel of Christ.

Moreover, they also seek to impose yokes of bondage onto others so that other people can be as warped in their theology and in their lives as they are; by so doing see to it that intelligent, sensitive, decent people aren't likely to even consider Christianity as "a reasonable faith" and as a viable way by which to navigate their lives in this world.

Indeed, homophobic clergy and other homophobic professing Christians are doing the devil's work!

And if professing Christians remain silent in this matter, and don't speak out against the perversion of the Gospel and the demonizing of LGBT people, they are not only aligning themselves with these homophobes, but they are showing themselves to be every bit as culpable in doing the devil's work!
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Wednesday, January 23, 2008


"A study by two nonprofit journalism organizations found that President Bush and top administration officials issued hundreds of false statements about the national security threat from Iraq in the two years following the 2001 terrorist attacks.

"The study concluded that the statements 'were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses.'"

[For the full article, see here.]

As I remember, when the U.S. invaded Iraq, 70% of the American people were in favor of that invasion, presumably because they blindly believed what they were told by President Bush and those in his administration. Now, of course, given the tremendous costs in lives, destroyed hopes, and money associated with that war, most Americans seem to be against that war that we initiated.

One day we will see how people have been similarly manipulated by the exclusionary rhetoric of assorted clergy, politicians, and media personalities regarding LGBT people!

There's money, fame, and votes to be gotten by such exclusionary rhetoric, because it appeals to the basic, dark parts of the human heart. That rhetoric emanates from the evil in one's heart, and it is directed to the evil in other people's hearts so that it resonates with both that evil and with the need of others to construct an "enemy" whom they can blame for all sorts of disasters that occur in their lives and in the world.

Therefore, Gay people can be blamed for everything from "the destruction of the family" to Hurricane Katrina! And that evil nonsense works!

The fact that exclusionary nonsense that comes from evil can pay off for all sorts of people, from clergy, politicians, and radio and TV "personalities," not only doesn't speak well for the character of many of the American people (and those in other countries who are similarly infected with the appeal to evil), but must be seen as the major vehicle that provides the needed scapegoat for those who need someone or something to blame for their misfortune, or for their unhappiness in life.

As the economy continues to sink, when the Dollar increasingly loses its value, when unemployment and underemployment continue to rise, people are going to want someone to blame and, unfortunately, rather than put the blame where it truly belongs, they search out targets that they view as safe to blame for their lot in life, and then they persecute them.

And mendacious clergy, politicians, and media personalities know full well the dynamics of scapegoating. They realize how their scapegoating materially pays off for them.

And it materially pays off for them because their scapegoating is very much welcomed by those who feel the need for someone or some group or some country to blame for (and/or because of) their profound unhappiness in life and who are, therefore, foolish and manipulable enough to believe the lies of those who scapegoat others and encourage them to do the same.

Just as people have been lied to regarding the war in Iraq, they have been lied to regarding LGBT people!

And they've been lied to for the very same reasons they've been lied to about the war. And that is because scapegoating pays off, and those who scapegoat know that fact, and they count on the ignorant, the unfulfilled, the unhappy, and the hateful among us to more than willingly subscribe to their agenda.

It must be recognized that it's those who preach the false gospel of exclusion; it's those who smear and stereotype Gay people who have the "agenda!"

That "agenda" can be the desire to acquire wealth or votes; the need for fiery sermons to fill the collection plates or to acquire fame in the media; the need to divert people's attention from crucial domestic problems; the need to fulfill an unresolved Oedipus Complex; the desire to "Christianize" (under the name "democratize") the Middle East; the externalization of mean-spiritedness or downright evil!

Regardless of what form the "agenda" takes, it comes from evil and it appeals to evil, and is diametrically opposed to anything that has to do with God!
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Monday, January 21, 2008


This article highlights one more reason why religious organizations should be made to pay their fair share of taxes as do secular organizations. I see no legitimate reason why churches and church bodies should get a pass on taxes! Indeed, such a pass may be seen to help promote most churches within the institutional Church tenaciously adhering to, being apologists for, the status quo, as well as their being enmeshed with some of the most reactionary forces within society.

In this case, two girls were kicked out of a "Christian" school for allegedly being lesbians! "The school is owned by the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, the nation's third-largest Lutheran church body. The California Lutheran High School Association, comprising three dozen churches and religious schools, operates the campus."

John McKay, the school's attorney said, "You can't infringe upon the basic rights of a religious group and their right of association by forcing them to accept people who don't believe in their values."

That statement supports my argument! If a religious organization is akin to any private club or organization that can select those they want as members, then they should be treated no differently than those other private clubs or organizations that do pay taxes.

Even if churches and church-run organizations weren't discriminatory, I'd still advocate for their taxation!

The Church's mandate in this world is to be an agent of God's love, and preach and seek to live out the Gospel of grace! As practiced in fact, it is usually little more than an arm of the State, largely condoning, fostering, and ignoring the discrimination against, and the oppression of, others; practicing the politics of exclusion in the name of God; rarely dealing with corporate and State initiated and approved sins but, rather, dealing with personal sins that serve to inculcate insufferable guilt upon others as well as help bring more money into their coffers.

Moreover, if they can't make money judging other people's sins (something Jesus forbids us to do), such as divorce and re-marriage that Jesus condemned (save for reasons of fornication--Matthew 5:32), as probably about half their congregations are made up of such people, they choose issues that are not sins and label them as sins to continue their false religion of exclusion and even hate and receive tax exemption for so doing.

It is inconceivable how any Christian can exclude others from fellowship, and engage in discriminatory and judgmental rhetoric and behaviors that Jesus precisely told us not to do! (Matthew 7:3)

And we're going to continue to allow such organizations to be exempt from paying taxes?
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Saturday, January 19, 2008


The post today, entitled, "SC: Black minister serves up civil equality challenge to Sen. Obama," on Pam's House Blend is refreshing, as it shows an Afro-American minister advocating for full and equal civil rights for Gay people. Rev. Bennie Colclough, pastor of Greater Bethel A.M.E. Church in Kingstree, South Carolina, said the following:

"The African-American faith community must defend the human dignity of all people as distinguished leaders in our community are calling us to this task.

"Consider Coretta Scott King's remarks in a 1998 address in which she said that "Homophobia is like racism and anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry in that it seeks to dehumanize a large group of people, to deny their humanity, their dignity and personhood."

"...The African-American faith community must recognize the perpetrators and injustice, and bring about an end to the hurt that has been caused to so many.

"Discrimination is morally wrong and un-Christian. Let me repeat this: Discrimination is morally wrong and un-Christian."

[To read the full post, see here.]

It's high time that clergy behave like Christians and, as does Rev. Colclough, forcefully speak out against the discrimination and oppression of God's LGBT children.

To remain silent in the face of discrimination against others is equivalent to supporting that discrimination! No one who remains silent has their hands clean! If you attend a homophobic church; if you in any way support homophobic clergy; if you do not speak out in favor of full and equal civil and sacramental rights for LGBT people; if you remain silent in the face of the deprivation of full and equal civil and sacramental rights for LGBT people, you are culpable in that homophobia, that discrimination, that oppression, that deprivation!

God bless Rev. Colclough for his articulate sentiments regarding LGBT rights, and for challenging Sen. Obama to confront homophobia by saying he hopes: "Senator Barack Obama will be true to his platform for change, and speak out against religious bigotry coming from a select group of African-American evangelical leaders."

It's unfortunate that the only candidates for President, Dennis Kucinich and Mike Gravel, who were the only candidates supporting full equality for Gay people, did not get meaningful and active support from LGBT people and from all people of good will in the U.S., and that we are left with a group of people who are not likely to have the decency to live up to the sentiments of a man like Rev. Colclough.
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Wednesday, January 16, 2008


The following is an excerpt from a revealing interview with a former "ex-gay" minister, Scott Harrison, and I strongly urge you to read the whole interview, as it highlights the vulnerability of those who are desperate enough to go to "ex-gay" ministries which are staffed by people with mind-sets that largely caused, and continues to fuel, that desperation in the first place:

"A minister in your church performed an exorcism on you to root out your homosexuality. How did that happen?

"There was a particular associate minister who was pretty out there. But the problem was he was also extremely intuitive. He would know stuff about you without you ever having told him.

"When you're coming from a perspective that you believe God can give messages to people, words of prophecy, then it's very easy to become prey. This guy got a team of people together. One of the aspects that is pretty strong in Vineyard, still, is that they believe that people can be "demonized." Not meaning that a person is fully possessed by Satan, but that a person has given him or herself over to Satanic strongholds in his or her life, so that it may take an exorcism to release the various demons that this person has given over their lives to.

"What happened as you went through it?

"It was very intense, dramatic, group prayer. It lasted at least three hours. At the end, I was drenched in sweat. There were some real areas of psychological wounding. All I can really describe it as — because of how it happened and the incorrectness of the theology — is that it felt like a spiritual rape to me.

"I'm not saying he [the minister] didn't have good intentions, but it amounted to a spiritual rape. The exorcism occurred that afternoon, and then we ran into the evening church service. I've got hearing issues. I'm fairly hard of hearing; I had hearing aids at the time. This person was convinced that God had given word that I was supposed to give up my hearing aids, that God would heal my hearing. He did this in front of 300 people. I was psychologically vulnerable. I didn't follow my better hunches. Even though it happened over 20 years ago, it's hard to still not blame myself. … I knew there wasn't a demon of homosexuality.

"The [minister] said that if I let him crush my hearing aids, then God would give me back my hearing. He said he would pay for them if God didn't give me back my hearing. Then, he later reneged on that. For the next several weeks, I was faking that my hearing had been healed."

I disagree with Harrison when he says, "Legally, I believe they should be allowed to exist." Why should sadistic "therapies" be legally allowed to exist when they cause untold damage to people, especially emotionally vulnerable people who are looking to "cure" or "change" what cannot be changed; who rely on people, with degrees or not, who profit from the gullibility and ignorance of people who blindly accept the lies spewed by many clergy and others that being Gay is a "sin," is "not in the will of God," "that one's sexual orientation can be changed," and that "one can't be a whole and healthy person and be Gay at the same time?"

The Bible NEVER addresses the issue of sexual orientation; same-sex love is neither more nor less valid or Godly than is heterosexual love! Please read some of the many links in my Links section that amply show that there is absolutely no inconsistency between being Gay and being Christian!

Indeed, those who seek to change what God has made; who seek to deprive others of God's gift of sexuality and emotional fulfillment; who seek to entangle others in psychological and spiritual yokes of bondage; who drive desperate people to further heights of desperation due to the imposition of their ignorance and/or prejudices on these vulnerable and desperate people, and who can make quite a handsome living by so doing, who are out of God's will!

It is no accident that the first words Jesus quoted when He began His public ministry are the following taken from the book of Isaiah (61:1): "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised. To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. (Luke 4:18-19)

To truly understand this crucial message is the first step in understanding Jesus' ministry, and His mandate to all who are His disciples! And, clearly, those who condemn the gifts of God and what God has made are none of His!

And anyone who chooses to listen to wolves in sheep's clothing, be they seemingly well-intentioned or not, are putting themselves in a prison whose doors Jesus came to open!
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This article highlights the visceral fear, if not revulsion, against symbolic references to genitals. Here is a brief quote from that article:

"State Del. Lionel Spruill introduced a bill Tuesday to ban displaying replicas of human genitalia on vehicles, calling it a safety issue because it could distract other drivers.

"Under his measure, displaying the ornamentation on a motor vehicle would be a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum fine of $250."

Even though Spruill knows that what he is doing is ludicrous in the eyes of many people, he's exhibiting what's in the hearts and minds of so many people who are seemingly afraid of things sexual; they immediately associate symbols of sexuality, be it in paintings, photographs, or with images of genitalia hanging from rear view mirrors, with "danger," "negativity" or even "immorality."

This fear of sexuality and its perceived representations, such as in the form of images, can historically be seen to have been coupled with misogyny and, of course, with variant forms of sexual expression, both heterosexually and homosexually.

The stereotypes of the dangerously seductive woman and the over-sexed Black man, and the violence that has been historically visited upon both women (such as those defined as "witches," and the very existence of sexism and other forms of discrimination against women) and Afro-Americans (such as the imposition of segregation, physical violence, and lynchings by White Supremacists), cannot be separated from each other.

One of the cruel ironies of what may be seen as the paradox of enticement/revulsion regarding things sexual or even perceived to be sexual, is that most of the institutional Church has spent an inordinate amount of time condemning the gift of our bodies and of our sexuality, the very gifts that God has given us.

The tremendous discomfort associated with sexuality likely reflects the condemners' own sexual repression and/or distortions, which manifest themselves in the condemners' paradoxically viewing things sexual, or perceived to be sexual, as both enticing and revolting at the same time.

This phenomenon can be seen in those who are sexually immature and/or sexually conflicted and/or repressed; this enticement/revulsion paradox may exist to such a degree that those so afflicted unconsciously and/or consciously feel the need to override this psychic conflict by seeking to impose their own "rules" regarding the gift of sexuality upon others.

When it comes to their view of LGBT people, they are viewed as "the other," as "sexual outlaws," those whose sexual expressions should not be protected by law, even when they are, in fact, protected by law, such as seen in Lawrence v Texas.

Given the (pardon the expression) push-pull of their attitudes toward things sexual, or perceived by them as sexual, even when certain forms of sexual expression are designated as "legal," deep down these people really believe that these forms of sexual expression should really be deemed illegal, immoral, and even disgusting.

This paradoxical enticement/revulsion on the part of homophobes, and all those who negate, through condemnation of sexual symbols and visualization of sexual behaviors (whether those behaviors are depicted or merely exist as images in that person's mind), the gift of sexuality, serves to create their deep need to condemn others who seem to them to be freer (and therefore very threatening), than the condemners are in their sexuality.

Therefore, the very existence of Gay people provokes such condemnation, as the enticement/revulsion paradox is brought into sharp relief by LGBT people's very existence, as when many, if not most, people hear the word, "Gay," they immediately think of "sex."

Last year, I asked my class to tell me the first word that came into their minds when I said the following word: I said, "Gay," and virtually everyone came back with the word, "Sex." Most people don't see LGBT people as being "fully human," or being comprised of many facets that go to make up a fully functional human beings but, rather, they have been conditioned by the paradoxical mind-set regarding things sexual, as honed to a fine art in most religious circles (and imposed on both religious and secular society), to think of LGBT people in terms of their sexuality, and nothing else.

Hence, the exhibition of images of genitalia is threatening to many people because it triggers their paradoxical enticement/revulsion concerning their own and others' sexuality, undoubtedly borne of their own distorted mind-sets regarding sexual expression and its often commensurate emotional fulfillment.

Therefore, when it comes to their view of Gay people, they can separate "sexuality," by which they solely characterize Gay people, from "emotional fulfillment," thus enabling an Alan Keyes to characterize Gay people as "selfish hedonists." He sees the pleasure of sex (Hence, his use of the word, "hedonist."), but seemingly fails to see the emotional component in same-sex relationships. Indeed, he might well be deficient himself in his emotional life, as he disowned his own daughter when she came out to him.

Moreover, even the image of secondary sexual characteristics can be too much for some people to bear, as seen when then Attorney General John Ashcroft covered over a statue of a semi-nude woman that's in the Great Hall of the Department of Justice. The image of breasts, not even of actual breasts themselves, prompted his undoubted enticement/revulsion paradox concerning things he sexualized that he sought to neutralize by putting a drape in front of that statue.

When the image of genitalia is enough to stimulate a person to present a bill against its expression, that act is merely a drop in the ocean regarding the enticement/revulsion paradox that exists in the sexually immature and/or repressed, and that characterizes the minds of so many people, and that makes homophobia such a difficult malady to overcome or to heal.
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Sunday, January 13, 2008


There is an interesting article in the "Salt Lake Tribune" regarding Salt Lake City's newly elected mayor Ralph Becker's first official action as mayor to have a citywide registry of domestic partners, which would include same-sex couples.

Beyond the courageous action of Ralph Becker, and the indications that, relatively speaking, Salt Lake City is far more progressive, loving, and civilized regarding Gay people than is most, if not all, the rest of Utah, the following comment was made on the article that I think sums up a great deal of the reasons for the homophobia of many in churches of various religions, and of the many professing Christian people, churches, and denominations within the institutional Church.

I'm reprinting the comment as it was written:

"Growing up in the South in the '50s taught allot 'bout Christianity. Seems that Christian tribes have to have devils to keep the members focused and together. Nothin like hav'in an evil outside enemies tryin to destroy tribe to spur unity and loyalty. Back then is was blacks, they didn't call 'em blacks but somethin much nastier, and the Jews and of course Catholics or anyone that wasn't white and protestant. I can't recollect ever hearin of Mormons back then. Yea, you could see the church members on Sunday and know they wore triple "K" on certain nights. Today is no different, religious tribes still need devils and evil to stir the troops, today its Mexicans, still blacks but not so much, and gays. Looks like things haven't changed much in the last 50 years. Nice to see there are still those brave folks still trying."

I disagree with this commentator on only one issue: Black people are still discriminated against in many subtle and not so subtle ways, as can be seen in this brief video clip concerning Fox News. [Thanks to : Pam's House Blend.] And, of course, castigating minority groups, even by members of that minority group, isn't restricted to any one media outlet or other venue.

The famous 19th Century Sociologist, Emile Durkheim, asserted that when there is a threatening out-group, the in-group untites to protect itself against it. Therefore, in order to cement in-group solidarity or cohesion, meeting the needs of people to have a sense of belonging, the in-group constructs "enemies" against which to identify, so that the out-group is not only fodder for the in-group's hate; serves as the target of that hate; enables the in-group leaders and their followers to materially and/or psychologically and/or socially and/or politically gain from demonizing their constructed enemies designated as the out-group.

They construct out-groups as "enemies" because to do so also serves to help make members of that in-group feel self-righteous, and appear to be more "moral," more "religious," more "superior" to the out-group they have constructed that is frequently depicted as being "diseased," "disordered," "evil," "destructive of the family, tradition, and all other institutions and values that all 'religious' and other 'good people' hold dear."

So, even when there is no enemy at the moment, the in-group must construct an enemy, an out-group, so as to meet these needs that they have in order to make and justify their claim to having moral hegemony, and depicting themselves as being on the "moral" high ground, even when, as in the RC Church, that group is rocked with sexual scandals involving children and subsequent coverups that amount to criminal facilitation that cry out to God for vengeance.

Therefore, regarding professing Christians creating "needed enemies," Gay people have served the same function in most of the institutional Church as have the Jews, the Afro-Americans (many of whom have now helped take the lead in the oppression of Gay people), the Catholics (who have now been among those in the forefront in the oppression of Gay people), women, and all other designated out-groups, so as to not only keep the money rolling in, but to keep people coming back to listen to fiery sermons that jack up their emotions to fever pitch, and affirming their "righteousness" and the "rightness of their cause," and giving the hate-filled clergy forums to express their hate in the context of usually overwhelming congregational approval.

Since appealing to the dark side of people's emotions is a sure winner, as it pays off in so many ways, and for so many people, professing Christians or not, there is no end to the "rewards" gained by homophobic clergy, Black or White, in continuing their rhetorical and discriminatory targeting of Gay people, viewed by them as being "safe" targets to persecute, in order to meet their own conscious and/or unconscious needs and agendas.

This need for out-groups by self-identified members of the in-group will never end, as it seems to be one of the many tragic parts of the human condition. However, targeting a given group will definitely end when there is no longer seen to be a payoff in so doing by the in-group, and that state of affairs will only occur when there is sufficient and continuous grassroots and organizational activism that presents the in-group with the realization that the costs of their creation of the "enemy" far exceeds what rewards they have been receiving from their creation.

That is one of the reasons I have been suggesting such activism as coordinated picketing of homophobic churches; boycotting homophobic churches; refusing to support any politician who is not unequivocally in favor of full and equal civil rights; taking to civil and, if appropriate, criminal court clergy (and others) who spew hateful rhetoric that slanders Gay people and/or may reasonably be expected to cause others to assault and murder Gay people. [For my most recent salvo in this area, please see my December 29th post.]

As I wrote in response to a comment made by Don Charles regarding my January 11th post:

"Homophobic pastors who spew hateful rhetoric must be held accountable for the ravages they cause, and the lies they tell about Gay people, and taking them to court is one of the best ways of holding them accountable.

"Rather than indulge in political expediency, and being anemic regarding meaningful activism, the Human Rights Campaign should be the one to file such suits (and they should be pressured to do so), as they undoubtedly have the funds and staff necessary to see these suits to completion."

It is important to recognize that religious homophobia has absolutely nothing to do with the things of God or of the Spirit! It has to do with the functions and perceived rewards to the in-group that hate produces! And never, never buy into the lie that they "hate the sin but love the sinner."

Beyond the fact that being Gay is not a sin, these wolves in sheep's clothing hate Gay people too, and to ignore that fact diminishes the realization of the tremendous harm that homophobic clergy and their followers have done to Gay people, their families, and to society at large as partly seen in our ever-increasing coarsening of the culture.

And when LGBT people and allies finally marshal enough strength of will to put pressure on such organizations as the Human Rights Campaign to become more aggressive, coordinate meaningful grassroots activism against homophobia whenever and wherever it occurs, Gay people will no longer be considered the "safe" targets the in-group can persecute. Then, the in-group will hunt around and find another "enemy" to construct, another out-group, to continue to meet their perceived needs that discriminating against LGBT people have hitherto afforded them.

But, at least, when that day occurs, we can expect there to be far fewer Gay lives lived in desperation; far fewer Gay suicides; far fewer assaults against Gay people; far fewer murders of Gay people. And, Gay people will be afforded the same dignity and civil and sacramental rights afforded to all other citizens.

And if these goals are not worth meaningfully and aggressively fighting for, I don't know what is!
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Friday, January 11, 2008


I want you to watch this brief video of a religious bigot who, like so many other clergy, uses the pulpit as a weapon to attack Gay people. All too many clergy and their blind followers spew this sort of venom that has infected countless people, Gay and Straight alike, so that the often repeated lies that he and other clergy spew become the "truth" in the hearts, minds, and spirits of people.

Is it any wonder why so many Gay people are homophobic themselves? Is it any wonder there are so many Gay suicides, and assaults and murders of Gay people or those perceived to be Gay? Is it any wonder that so many people believe that being Gay is abnormal, is a "disorder," is "evil," and is a sin, and that being Gay will have you wind up in hell? Is it any wonder that so many Gay people live their lives bereft of joy? Is it any wonder that so many Gay people and Straight people, for that matter, want to have nothing to do with Christianity?

I tell you the truth: his homophobic ranting, and the similar rantings of other clergy regarding Gay people, has absolutely NOTHING to do with Christianity, and is as far removed from the Gospel as the east is from the west! Moreover, homophobia is completely antithetical to the things of God!

Here you have an Afro-American, part of a historically despised minority group, the descendant of those who suffered tremendous indignities and denial of civil rights, seeking to enslave Gay people in the very chains Jesus came to abolish.

Moreover, why would anyone in his/her right mind take seriously the idiocy that is spewed from the mouths of clergy like this one, many of whom parade their ignorance as Godliness; who take their hateful attitudes toward others and bring it to the other side of the street where they are then given hearty approval by their congregations to express that hate in the name of God. They preach lies about Gay people, bearing false witness which contravenes one of the Ten Commandments, and by so doing reveal their hard hearts, their Godlessness, and the fact that they have no clue about the Gospel of grace and love.

Yet, countless people not only listen to them, but take them seriously, not recognizing that these homophobic clergy are likely the recipients of material, psychological, and social gains that greatly trump the Gospel in their lives, if they even have an interest or even a grasp of the Gospel themselves. They pervert the Gospel and the things of God, and portray Christians as nothing more than a bunch of hard-hearted delusional freaks!

Please watch this brief video and ask yourself why people like him are allowed to spew their lies and externalize their hatred with impunity. Unless and until LGBT people and allies directly confront the hatred and lies perpetrated by these wolves in sheep's clothing; unless and until Christians who are Christians indeed cease to remain silent, and widely advertise that these haters don't speak for them, for the Church, for Christianity, or for God, the lying filth that he and those of his ilk spew (and there are a great number of them) will continue to be considered "the truth" on the part of others, including many Gay people and their families, largely because they don't hear any credible Christian voices contradicting them.

As I've written many times before, those who remain silent amidst such egregious, hateful filth are just as culpable in that hatred and Godlessness as are the ones who, de facto, are their spokespeople.
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Tuesday, January 8, 2008


On my friend, Bishop Leland Somers' Blog, he wrote an excellent post that I strongly urge you to read entitled, "Reflections on the Church and Discipleship in the Twenty-first Century." I made the following comment on his post:

"How anyone can consider him/herself a “Christian,” a disciple of Christ, and align him/herself with the most reactionary secular and religious forces in society is a mystery to anyone with even a scintilla of spiritual sense. Merely reading Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes, and Matthew 25:31-46 puts the lie to the “cheap grace” against which Bonhoeffer railed, and puts the lie to the claim that one is a “Christian.”

"It’s high time that we realize and acknowledge that demonic forces have both infiltrated and taken over most of the institutional Church, and all of us have a cold turkey choice to make: have as idols power, prestige, and wealth of these deomonic forces or follow Jesus’ Gospel of grace, faith, love, peace, reconciliation, and inclusiveness. Jesus tells us that we will know who are His by their fruits, by the love they show others, particularly the most unfortunate and deprived among us.

"So, when any self-styled “Christian” enacts or condones through rhetoric or silence the victimization of others, that person has shown him/herself to be none of Christ’s! It is high time that all Christians, disciples of Christ, speak out and confront the thugs among us who sully Jesus’ name, spit in the face of God, misuse the Bible to oppress others, and who in any way seek to harm any of God’s children.

"For, to the degree we don’t confront them, their lies, and their wicked deeds, we are being complicit in their perversions of the teachings of Jesus and we are being complicit in their demonic acts!"

A while back, Bishop Somers coined the term, "thug Christianity," and we can see thug Christianity, once comprising a fringe group within the institutional Church, now comprising a major part of the institutional Church. Nowhere is the hegemony of thug Christianity better seen than in most of the institutional Church's attitudes toward full and equal civil and sacramental rights for LGBT people.

Frankly, I have no less revulsion against the outright homophobes, with their hateful rhetoric and/or discriminatory action, than I do against those who keep silent in the face of the grinding oppression of LGBT people. By their silence, they falsely think that they are not getting their hands dirty in hate-mongering and other discriminatory activities, but they are fooling themselves.

Those who keep silent are as complicit in this oppression as are the most rabid homophobes, only they are more cowardly about it. By allowing clergy to demonize from the pulpit, or in any other venue for that matter, our Gay sisters and brothers, these cowards are giving credibility to these clergy; tacitly agreeing with their hateful rhetoric and perverted values; not facing up to the mandate of all who would follow Jesus to help remove yokes of bondage and oppression from others.

Moreover, the thugs and their silent accomplices have given, and are giving, Christianity and Jesus a bad name in the eyes of so many non-Christians who falsely view Christianity as a harsh, judgmental, censorious "religion," made up of a bunch of legalists who love to cast stones at others' perceived "sins," but refuse to take the log out of their own eyes.

Anyone who seeks to oppress another, or deny another person dignity and full and equal civil and sacramental rights, is not a Christian, but is a mere thug, and that fact both has to be acknowledged and advertised as forcefully and as widely as possible, so that Christianity and the name of Jesus aren't further sullied by the thugs who have enjoyed hegemony in most of the institutional Church for far too long.

And it must also be acknowledged and advertised that the institutional Church and the Christian Church (made up of the ecclesia, God's called out ones) are by no means necessarily coterminous!

That's one of the reasons why, if you are involved in a homophobic church, or are involved in any church that preaches the false gospel of legalism and exclusion, you should leave that church, as by your mere attendance, let alone your membership, you are aligning yourself with the thugs who preach a false gospel; you are giving them a credibility that they don't deserve; you are giving your time and money which encourages and allows them to continue to proclaim that false gospel, and you are therefore fully culpable in their perversion of the gospel and in their oppression of others.

To the thugs who profess to be Christians, on the day of judgment, Jesus tells us that He will say to them, "...I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." (Matthew 7:23)
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Monday, January 7, 2008


This video has been out for several months, but I wanted to post it here as it reinforces the need for all LGBT people who feel that God doesn't love them for who they are; who feel that they are not "normal"; who feel that they have to change their sexual orientation in order to be a Christian; who feel that they are in any way "disordered" or "evil," that those feelings are based on lies! God doesn't make junk! God is sovereign, and knows the beginning from the end, and knows each of us better than we can possibly know ourselves. This video contains apologies from some "ex-gay" leaders who now realize that they were perpetrating lies upon others, heaping needless guilt upon others, and who thereby caused untold, unnecessary, and unChristian harm to others by their rhetoric that being Gay was not only a sin, but that one couldn't be Gay and be a Christian. They now realize that all that "ex-gay" rhetoric was based on lies, and they are truly sorry for the harm that their lies have inflicted on countless numbers of Gay people.
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Saturday, January 5, 2008


"Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints? ...But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before unbelievers. Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because ye go to law one with another. Why do ye not rather take wrong? why do ye not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded? Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your bretheren." (1Corinthians 6:1, 6-8)

This article again shows how self-styled "conservative, "traditionalists," who fancy themselves "Bible-believing Christians," can conveniently ignore certain crucial verses from Scripture, such as the the verses quoted above, when it's their own ox that's being gored. We've seen the same thing happening in the Episcopal Church (See my December 9th post.), as we have seen it happening in many other denominations within the institutional Church.

The Apostle Paul makes it clear that it is to our shame when we take a brother/sister in Christ to a secular court, and not seek to work out our differences with other Christians; it's better to be defrauded than to go to the secular courts to resolve our differences. Here, of course, although couched in sanctimonious terms such as the desire to do more missionary work ("'What we wanted was to be a blessing to the presbytery and not something to hurt them,' [Memorial Park's senior pastor, Rev. Dean] Weaver said. 'If we went above that number ... we'd have to get rid of staff, we'd have to get rid of missionaries ... or we'd have to borrow some money'."), the bottom line is that a schismatic church wants the proceeds from the church's property when it splits from its denomination, usually because the denomination has become "too liberal," is in favor of women's ordination, is in favor of affirming same-sex relationships, or is in favor of ordaining to the ministry partnered gay clergy .

Just as in the secular world, these homophobes take their schtick, their prejudices, and fixed mind-sets, and bring them to the other side of the street, and act no differently than does anyone who doesn't profess to be a Christian, and they do it under the auspices of being "...a so-called Confessing Church, declaring faith in the Bible's authority, the lordship of Jesus Christ and traditional Christian sexual ethics."

In fact, those who see the Gospel as one of inclusiveness and love, explaining God's grace to all who trust in Him, are the true "Bible-believing" Christians, the true "Conservatives," who see Jesus words such as expressed in the Beatitudes, and the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7), and who see the Apostle Paul's insistence on the Gospel of grace, God's unmerited favor to all those who trust in Him, as being the only Gospel to be found in Christianity. It is the exposition and living out of the Gospel of grace that is true orthodox Christianity!

The judgmental legalists and self-righteous perfectionists, those who preach and live out the false gospel of exclusion, and who seek to place yokes of bondage and heap guilt on others, have not only missed the message of Jesus, but are seemingly oblivious to the reason God was incarnated in Jesus in the first place, and they are those of whom Jesus speaks when He says, "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves." (Matthew 23:15)

No Christian worthy of the name wants hypocritical wolves in sheep's clothing discipling others into their own perverted brand of what they call "Christianity" which is nothing more than their preconceived prejudices that have absolutely nothing to do with Jesus and the Gospel of grace; their perversions of the Gospel being foisted on their disciples in the name of Jesus who, in the last day, will say to them: "...I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." (Matthew 7:23)

Perceived safe targets to persecute encourage these self-styled "Bible-believers" to impose their own prejudices and mind-sets regarding same-sex relationships on a few passages of Scripture, most of which are not at all relevant to Christians, or to anyone else living in the twenty first Century, claiming the mantle of their being true to Biblical teachings. However, when money is involved, all bets are off, and these legalists have seemingly no compunction to take other Christians to secular courts in diametrical opposition to Paul's injunction for us not to do that very thing, just as they contravene Jesus' teachings that we are not to judge others; contravene Paul's injunction that Christians are not to let another's conscience determine our liberty in Christ. As Paul wrote, "...for why is my liberty judged of another man's conscience?" (1Corinthians 10:29)

This question gets at the essence of God's grace, the freedom of a Christian, and our obligation to confront and put the lie to the false gospel of legalism, perfectionism, and exclusion that has taken over most of the institutional Church, and show the hypocrisy of self-styled "Bible-believing Christians" who use the Bible as a hammer on others and yet conveniently ignore that very same Bible when they perceive that their financial (or other) ox is being gored, as we see in this article.
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Wednesday, January 2, 2008


"Conservative Anglican leaders have revealed plans for a breakaway summit for the hundreds of bishops who are expected to defy the Archbishop of Canterbury by boycotting the Lambeth Conference.

"Up to a third of the Anglican church's 900 bishops could boycott the conference in protest at the perceived fudging by the archbishop, Rowan Williams, over the US Episcopal church's attitude to gay clergy."

[For the full article, see here.]

In a sermon I delivered, and that is an article entitled, "Why Every Church Must Be Open And Affirming", that appears in the current issue of Whosoever, an online magazine directed to LGBT people and allies, and that should be read by every Christian, Gay or not, I said the following:

"Make no mistake, every drop of blood shed by GLBT people either through suicide, bashing, or murder, are on the hands of all those religious leaders, their followers, and their allies who spew forth their ignorance, prejudice, and hate against GLBT people and their relationships! These wolves in sheep’s clothing take the Bible, God’s love letter to His children, and selectively and perversely use it as a club to condemn others, and deny GLBT people full inclusion in the Church and in society.

"The tradition-bound parts of the Church have so indoctrinated people, many of whom have never even set foot in a house of worship, that many people even disown their own children when they 'come out' and divulge their sexual orientation to those whom they thought unconditionally loved and cherished them. There are many children living on the streets because their own parents trusted ignorant clergy and their followers over their God-given duty and privilege to nurture and embrace their own children!

"The Church should concentrate on the real sins that deserve our attention and that cry out to God for redress, such as invading another country on false pretenses; the working poor who can't afford medical insurance; the Supreme Court ruling that people can't sue their insurance company in state court for denying needed medical services; many elderly people having to decide whether to buy food or medicine; the gigantic rip off perpetrated by drug companies, hospitals, and the medical establishment on sick and vulnerable people. Why not focus on and address issues such as these, instead of obsessing on who loves who and who sleeps with whom? Such obsession tells us much more about the pathetic and moribund state of much of the Church than it does about the reality of the lives of GLBT people.

"Indeed, those who seek to exclude others from full fellowship in church, and in secular society, commit the greatest sin of all: the sin of pride. Jesus '…spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week. I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.' (Luke 18:9-14)"

Make no mistake: It isn't the "conservatives" who are leaving, or threatening to leave, the Anglican communion, and it is the "liberals" who are supporting the equality of Gay people and affirming Gay clergy ordination and same-sex marriage! "Conservatives" adhere to the Gospel of grace, faith, love, peace, reconciliation, and inclusiveness. They are the ones who take the Bible seriously, and don't reduce the Bible to a book of rules and regulations that Jesus fulfilled in Himself and in those who trust Him.

It's the "radicals" who seek to reduce one's understanding of the Bible to that of a school child's understanding, taking every word literally, save for those words which condemn them and their exclusion of others. As I mentioned in my article, Jesus condemned divorce and remarriage, save for the reason of fornication, yet most all of these self-styled "conservative" clergy wouldn't dare preach on that text, as they would likely lose at least half their congregations, and they don't want to bite the hands that feed them.

However, they feel no compunction to defy Jesus' commandment for us to love and not judge others, and they select what they perceive as a "safe" minority group to persecute for their own distorted reasons, not the least of which is their false gospel of legalism, perfectionism, and exclusion that is antithetical to the Gospel and that makes a mockery of Christianity itself!

Also, the very fact that one's sexuality is the reason for the chaos in the Anglican communion, and in most other denominations within the institutional Church, shows the deplorable state of that "Church" much, if not most, of which has shown itself to be not of Christ. Not a word is heard about poverty, wars, disease, corporate corruption, and the like. Yet, when it comes to matters of love and sex, the self-righteous, smug, and arrogant clergy and their blind followers start to froth at the mouth, spew hateful rhetoric, albeit frequently couched in sanctimonious terms, and help contribute to the depression, self-loathing, suicides, assaults, and murders of untold numbers of LGBT people.

These purveyors of hate preach and live out by their rhetoric and discriminatory actions, as well as by their silence and inaction in the face of the oppression of others, a false gospel, and the Apostle Paul put it quite plainly about his view of these wolves in sheep's clothing. About anyone who preaches a false gospel, Paul said, "...let him be accursed." (Galatians 1:8-9)

To be "accursed" is to be damned by God! In other words, as I mentioned in my sermon and article, Paul said concerning those who preach anything other than the Gospel of grace, or God's unmerited favor to us: "God damn him!"

The single minded condemnation of loving adults' sexual orientation, and their right to be accorded the dignity and sacramental and civil rights befitting every child of God, shows those "radicals" who have transgressed the "conservative" principles of the Gospel to have left fellowship not only with the Church of Jesus Christ, but also have shown themselves to have left fellowship with every decent human being, Christian or not, who yearns for equality for all of God's children.
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Tuesday, January 1, 2008


In his excellent post on his blog, "Christ, The Gay Martyr," Stuffed Animal wrote a very trenchant, provocative two part essay that I strongly urge you to read entitled, "Shaming The Brotherhood." He also posted it on a Diary on the website, Pam's House Blend, and it was unfortunately not chosen to be posted as of yet on her actual blog.

However, his post generated some comments, most of which were either "off the wall" or which completely missed the point of his thesis. However, one commentator, Nancy P., did write a good comment and I responded to it.

I want to post my response to her here, as I think that the issue Stuffed Animal raises, and its relationship to the activism needed to acquire full and equal civil rights, is crucial in seeking to understand the seeming lack of desire for meaningful activism for the acquisition of those rights, and how that seeming contentment with the status quo, that lack of fire in the belly to acquire those rights, can be juxtaposed with the tenacious, willful, adherence to the use of pejorative self-identifiers on the part of many in the LGBT communities.

The following is my response to Nancy P.:

You write, "A lot of straight white folk don't participate [in the political process] either, and the reason is often that the consumer culture takes up their time and deadens their brains. If you look at the stats, self-identified LGBT have a higher voting rate than most other non-income-determined demographics. Voting is relatively easy. The activism, canvassing, letter writing, meeting with your representative, and so on, takes more time."

The difference is that "a lot of straight white folks" aren't part of a despised minority group that is denied full and equal civil rights. Also, close to about 25% of Gay people voted Republican in the last Presidential election, when part of the Republican platform was to have a Constitutional amendment to prohibit same-sex marriage.

Straight white people and LGBT people are not on a level playing field, and the "out-group" is the one that must be politically active to change the status quo, as the straight white people are frequently perceived beneficiaries of that status quo.

It does take time and energy to be politically active, but the motivation for grassroots activism should be there among those who are being denied basic civil rights, and there is very little such activism such as was seen in the 1950's, 60's, 70's, and early 80's. I'm not sure that the AIDS issue mainly accounts for that apolitical turn, as much as the likely internalization of the hateful messages from assorted clergy, their followers, and politicians by many Gay people who, deep down, may not feel that they are worthy of having full and equal civil rights because of basic self-loathing, recognized or not. I think this is the essence of Stuffed Animal's post regarding use of negative, pejorative, hateful self-identifiers by many LGBT people.

Blogs are excellent potential venues for discussion of tactics and strategies for coordinated activism to achieve those rights, but I see little desire to pursue such discussions, let alone engage in coordinated activism, such as continuous picketing of homophobic churches, picketing the offices of homophobic politicians, pursuing litigation against homophobes for slander and/or libel, advocating that criminal charges be brought against hate speech that results in assaults and murders of Gay people, etc. (Please see the latest post on my blog regarding these matters.)

Most of the time on assorted blogs there is mere venting which, in and of itself, may make the person feel good in the short run, but is no substitute for discussion of tactics and strategies concerning grassroots activism which, in my opinion, is the only way full and equal civil rights will be won. LGBT people and allies have no choice but to engage in coordinated grassroots activism, as civil rights are not willingly given by those in the power structure and who perceive that they are profiting from the status quo.

Civil rights must be fought for, and I don't see much desire for meaningful contention at the grassroots level in acquiring those rights, and it may well be that the frequent use of negative self-identifiers by many LGBT people to which Stuffed Animal is referring may be indicative of a degree of self-loathing that mitigates against such contention for the acquisition of those rights.
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