It’s time for a gut check for conservative Christians in America. If we are on the right side of one of the greatest social, moral, and spiritual issues of our time, then we need to dig deep, hold our ground, strengthen our commitment, and redouble our efforts, regardless of cost or consequence. But if we are on the wrong side of this issue, then we had best throw in the towel before we lose all credibility and further damage the reputation of the Lord.
The issue of which I speak is that of “gay rights” (or, more broadly, “gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender rights”), and on an almost daily basis, the mainstream media assures us of two things: 1) Just as many conservative Christians were on the wrong side of slavery, segregation, and women’s rights, we are on the wrong side of the gay rights issue today. 2) It is futile to oppose gay activism any longer, since the battle has already been won and Americans have embraced “equality and tolerance.”
Put another way, those who continue to argue that homosexual practice is sinful or that same-sex couples should not have the right to marry will soon be consigned to the dung heap of public opinion, there to join past generations of slave traders, misogynists, and members of the KKK. Is this true?
To be sure, we are living in times of stunning social transition:
For the third straight year, President Barack Obama has declared June to be Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, also commemorating the Stonewall Riots of June 1969.
In New York, both Governor Cuomo and Mayor Bloomberg are making an aggressive attempt to legalize same-sex marriage now.
One of the country’s most prestigious law firms, King & Spalding, dropped the United States Government as its client under pressure from gay activists after agreeing to defend the Defense of Marriage Act.
Media outlets have praised the students of a Florida high school for selecting a cross-dressing teenage boy as their prom queen.
Major league baseball teams have now joined the “It Gets Better” campaign, designed to encourage gay and lesbian youth and teenagers in their sexual orientation, and “It Gets Better” commercials, sponsored by Google and even featuring a word of encouragement from Pixar’s “Woody” of Toy Story fame, have been broadcast during NBA playoff games.
The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated some of America’s most respected family ministries as “hate groups” because of their alleged spreading of misinformation regarding homosexuality.
When a Chik-Fil-A store in Pennsylvania donated brownies and sandwiches to a pro-family organization that opposed same-sex marriage, college students began to call for boycotts of Chik-Fil-A on their campuses. At the same time, major corporations pour millions of dollars into gay activist organizations and are widely praised for their philanthropy.
And the list goes on… and on. Is it time for us to capitulate? Are we on the wrong side of history once again? Certainly not.
It is true that there are many kind, friendly, hard-working, conscientious LGBT people and they deserve to be treated with civility and respect, but when it comes to biblical truth, there is not a single argument that has been presented or a single discovery that has been made – historically or linguistically or archeologically or exegetically – that would cause us to alter our understanding that God’s Word opposes homosexual practice. And it is true that there are many devoted, loving, same-sex couples, but there is still not the slightest reason to redefine marriage – society’s most fundamental social institution – nor, for that matter, has any proponent of same-sex marriage provided an adequate answer to the most basic of questions, namely, What’s so special about the number “two” if marriage is not the union of a man and a woman?
When it comes to recent polls that indicate that a majority of Americans – especially among younger Americans – now believe same-sex marriage should be legal, we must remember that polls do not tell us what is right, they simply report public opinion. Why in the world should Christian leaders bow down to polls when it comes to determining morality?
We must also bear in mind that other recent polls indicate that most Americans, quite remarkably, believe that more than 25% of the population is gay (as opposed to the correct figure, which is closer to 3%), with Americans under 30 years of age putting the figure at close to 33%. This is an almost unbelievably inaccurate picture (thanks to TV and the media, no doubt), and one that certainly influences public perception towards LGBT people.
The fact is that followers of Jesus are called to swim against the tide of popular opinion and go against the grain of popular morality rather than do what is convenient or expedient. And so, the real question is not whether we are on the right side of history. The question is: Will we do what is right or will we cave in to culture?
Dr. Michael Brown is the author of A Queer Thing Happened to America and the host of the nationally syndicated talk radio show The Line of Fire on the Salem Radio Network.
There was a time when the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) was highly respected for its exposure of hate groups, such as those of the neo-Nazi and KKK brand. Today, however, it’s almost a badge of honor to get a place on the SPLC listing, be it as an official “hate” group or merely as an “anti-gay” group. After all, now that the American Family Association, Concerned Women for America, Coral Ridge Ministries, the Family Research Council, Liberty Council, the National Organization for Marriage, and the Traditional Values Coalition qualify, it’s actually a little disconcerting to be left off the “anti-gay” list.
According to a recently released SPLC Intelligence Report (Winter 2010, Issue Number: 140), organizations are listed as hate (or, anti-gay) groups “based on their propagation of known falsehoods – claims about LGBT people that have been thoroughly discredited by scientific authorities” and by their continuing “to pump out demonizing propaganda aimed at homosexuals and other sexual minorities.”
And what are these “known falsehoods . . . that have been thoroughly discredited by scientific authorities”? According to an SPLC report entitled “10 Anti-Gay Myths Debunked,” they include:
Same-sex parents harm children.
People become homosexual because they were sexually abused as children or there was a deficiency in sex-role modeling by their parents.
Hate crime laws will lead to the jailing of pastors who criticize homosexuality and the legalization of practices like bestiality and necrophilia.
Allowing homosexuals to serve openly would damage the armed forces.
(Some of the other “Anti-Gay Myths” are far more controversial, such as, “Homosexuals controlled the Nazi Party and helped to orchestrate the Holocaust.”)
So, if you state that kids do best when raised by their mom and dad, you are propagating a known falsehood and are worthy of a place on the SPLC anti-gay list. If you agree with the many therapists and psychologists who argue that a child’s upbringing and early-life experiences play a major role in the development of his or her sexual orientation, you are propagating a known falsehood and are worthy of a place on the SPLC list.
The same is true if you claim that hate crime laws could lead to the arresting of pastors who criticize homosexuality (this has already happened in Sweden, England, Canada, and the United States), or if you argue that it would be detrimental to the military to have gays serving openly. Based on this “logic,” the SPLC would have to claim that many of the leaders of our Armed Forces, not to mention some of our most senior congressmen, are guilty of the “propagation of known falsehoods,” since they strongly oppose the repeal of DADT. Maybe the SPLC will next place the entire American military on their anti-gay list. Why not?
Another alleged myth that has been “thoroughly discredited by scientific authorities” is that “Homosexuals are more prone to be mentally ill and to abuse drugs and alcohol.” Yet the SPLC report actually acknowledges that “LGBT people suffer higher rates of anxiety, depression, and depression-related illnesses and behaviors like alcohol and drug abuse than the general population,” but blames it on homophobia. Of course!
Also singled out for disdain is the “known falsehood” that, “No one is born a homosexual,” yet in refuting this “myth,” the SPLC can only quote the American Psychological Association (APA) that “no evidence has emerged that would allow scientists to pinpoint the precise causes of sexual orientation.” In other words, we really don’t know exactly why people are gay. So much for science thoroughly discrediting the idea that no one is born homosexual!
The best that the SPLC could do to provide “the truth behind the propaganda” was quote the APA’s conclusion that “most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation,” which is a far cry from saying that someone is born homosexual. Perhaps lesbian journalist Camille Paglia should be added to the “anti-gay” list, since she famously wrote that, “No one is born gay. The idea is ridiculous.”
The last alleged myth that is “debunked” in the SPLC article is that, “Gay people can choose to leave homosexuality,” yet there is substantial scientific evidence, not to mention abundant anecdotal evidence, that some people can and do leave homosexuality. It is positively chilling, however, to realize that those who make this claim are now guilty of “hate speech” and deemed to be spreading “demonizing propaganda.”
So then, rather than debunking anti-gay myths, the SPLC has debunked itself. Who can take them seriously anymore?
Dr. Michael Brown is the host of the nationally syndicated talk radio program, “The Line of Fire,” and author of the forthcoming book A Queer Thing Happened to America
We’ve been looking at the reality of an activist homosexual strategy to change society in the series Is There a Gay Agenda?, and in particular the 1989 homosexual publication After the Ball from Madsen and Kirk. What have been the results of this movement in our society? Consider the following letter to the editor sent to the Charlotte Observer on February 21st, 2007 protesting the use of the Booth Playhouse for the lecture series Homosexuality, the Church, and Society:
Why rent Blumenthal for gay-bashing talks?
The writer is associate professor, UNC Charlotte Department of Dance and Theatre.
In response to “Group plans lecture series to protest gay-lesbian fundraiser” (Feb. 16):
So the Performing Arts Center has decided to rent space in the Booth Playhouse to conservative Christians who want to counter the “homosexual agenda.” Can we soon expect Klan Kapers and Holocaust-deniers Hoedowns?
Would someone please ask the Arts & Science Council why these uptown theaters are empty and thus available for hate groups? Why has local theater never received ASC support on a par with dance, opera and the symphony? This bloated organization is more concerned with perpetuating itself with fund drives than with fostering arts groups that could fill these theaters.
Are the theaters empty also because the Observer continues to marginalize theater and arts coverage? The most theater coverage in recent years has been your misinformed pursuit of scandal at the late Charlotte Rep.
How can Dr. Brown, a full-blooded Jew who has written extensively against Anti-Semitism, be compared to KKK members and Holocaust-deniers simply for discussing these issues? Consider the following look at how these moral associations have become so ingrained in our corporate psyche, with a look at the letter in question:
Be aware that much of the wider culture considers anyone that believes homosexuality is sinful to be a bigot… and thus we have lost the debate before it has even begun! We need to redefine the discussion in our generation, armed with the facts and a humble Christ-like character, that we might be able to submit a different voice into the cultural landscape of ideas.