The latest news from the truly obnoxious Taliban regime in Afghanistan is this …
- Some Clerics are calling for gay people to be put to death
- A total rejection of vast swathes of science
- The overthrowing of democracy and its replacement with an unelected and religiously led Theocracy
- The banning of all abortions, even in cases of rape or incest
- The mandate that extreme religious beliefs are to be taught in schools
No wait, I’ve made a mistake, that’s not the policy of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. Instead it is literally the Republican agenda for the US.
You might perhaps quip, “That’s an exaggeration, no clerics are calling for gay people to be put to death”.
- Texas pastor under fire for saying gay people ‘should be sentenced with death’
- Christian hate-preacher calls for the execution of ‘every single homosexual’
- Christian hate-preacher Roger Jimenez says (very loudly) that his position on LGBTQ people is that “they should be made un-alive.”
- Christian hate-preacher Corbin Ressl wants the Republican leader in Arizona’s legislature to use the KJV Bible as a guide to write a law to execute gay people.
- Christian hate-preacher Tanner Furrh says it’s unfair that people say he wants LGBTQ people murdered. “We’re not saying that they should be murdered! We’re saying that they should be lawfully criminalized and punished with death.“
The Infamous “But”
A rather common bit of “Christian” rhetoric runs like this –
“We are deeply loving people and we love gay people” …. BUT …
Just ignore everything that comes before the word “BUT”. Instead pay strict attention to the words that come after “BUT”. Those are the words that tell you who they really are.
Let’s work an example.
Here is a tweet from Pastor Ken Peters on June 20 …
There it is … “But”.
Permit me to translate “compromise on righteousness” for you. It’s Christian speak for “I’m a raving homophobic bigot”.
There is absolutely nothing decent, honourable, loving, or “righteousness” in any way about the homophobic stance.
He finishes with “Fight Church Fight”.
What happens when one of his white christian nationalist church members listening to this, then picks up an AR15 and empties it into a Pride march, all in the name of “righteousness”.
The deceit in play here is that it is a stance that tricks people into thinking that they are taking the high moral ground, but in reality they are be obnoxious bigots doing serious harm to innocent people.
But it’s in the Bible
There is lots of stuff in the bible.
It’s a pro-slavery text that contains explicit instructions on how to correctly beat your slave. The deal is this, if you beat your slave and your slave is still alive a few days later, then that’s just fine.
Nobody today would support the concept of slavey. Instead they would correctly identify it as a truly repugnant concept.
Does Pastor Peters or the many others like him “teach” how to correctly beat your slaves?
Of course not, that would be a very immoral and unethical stance.
But it’s in the Bible.
That’s literally the justification used when challenged about his active and very vocal homophobic bigotry. Many others take the exact same stance. The point is obvious. People who claim to be biblically based will cherry pick the bits they agree with and go through multiple interpretive contortions to brush the bits they don’t agree with under the carpet. Excuses offered to explain the slavery bits will include …
- Ah but that was then and this is now
- Jesus did away with all of that … (except he did no such thing at all. That rather famous “abomination” OT book that has not apparently been “done away with” when it suits them also lists lots of other stuff that is also an “abomination” such as eating shellfish. Strangely the folks who quote that text also happily consume shellfish without any concern)
- Another excuse is to claim that they were actually kind and gentle to slaves in the bible, they really looked after them … (Cool, so may I test that by beating you with a rod as an act of kindness then?)
What did Jesus actually say about gay people?
Here is a reference to Jesus condemning the gay community …
A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another, but you must also hate the gays.Republican Jesus : John 13
Oh wait that’s not quite right. The truth is that he said exactly nothing about gay relationships.
Who is Pastor Peters?
His twitter bio contains the word “Trumpian”, so yes, he is on board with the idea of deception, treason, and overthrowing the democratically elected government. There is lots to “love” about this guy.
Let’s ignore him for the moment and play a mind game.
Let’s assume he is a democrat who spends his weekends looking after the homeless and runs a shelter. Let’s assume he also gives all he has away to the poor (as Jesus taught), and that the only thing we could fault him on was a vocal opposition to gay people.
Would that then make it OK?
Of course not.
Bigotry is bigotry.
Being assaulted is not in any way improved if the guy hitting you is telling you how much he loves you.
Does it have to be this way?
Not at all. There are plenty of gay Christians. Pastor Peters might deem them to be heretics and not true Christians. Hey guess what, many can and do consider Pastor Peters to be a heretic.
There are many who argue, very successfully, that how Pastor Peters and others like him interpret the bible to justify bigotry is an abuse of the text. Here are a few of the many examples …
- Using the Bible against LGBTQ+ people is an abuse of scripture
- Homosexuality: Not a Sin, Not a Sickness Part II “What The Bible Does and Does Not Say…”
- Seven Gay Texts: Biblical Passages Used to Condemn Homosexuality
How did others respond to the Pastor Peters tweet?
Some of the responses are truly heartbreaking …
My daughter died last year. I would give anything, ANYTHING if the “worst” thing that happened was she came out gay.
My door is open if her son needs a mom who will love him unconditionally.
I think I can solve this. Simply have her sign her custody rights over to me. She won’t have a gay son anymore and her son will have an actual mom instead of whatever the fuck this is.
I lost my son in 2020. If being gay was his truth, I would still love him with every fiber of my being. You don’t know what a problem is.
18yo Tyler Clemente & his family were devout Evangelicals. Tyler committed suicide in 2010. His parents founded the @TylerClementi Foundation to advocate for anti-bullying laws, & felt their church contributed to his pain. That’s what you’re doing.
My son is gay. I can’t change that. He is not a sinner. Satan did not cause it. My son did not choose it. It is the way God made him. My son will have a hard time because many people will judge him and say he is sinful and abnormal. I will love him and accept.
Here is a perfect example of why so many people want nothing to do with churches and organized religion. I hope that he can find a place where he is safe and loved. Why is it so hard for “Christians” to do that simple thing, yes it is simple, love!
Will Pastor Peters consider the feedback from any of the commenters?
Hell no, he probably considers such criticism to be satanic, and perhaps even embraces it all as “evidence” of his Godliness being “persecuted”.
A few last Thoughts
For those that are religious and wish to remain true to that, be assured that you can be both a good decent Christian and also not a raging right-wing homophobic bigot.
However, you can also be a none, not religious, or perhaps simply spiritual. Many have taken that leap away from the narrow minded gospel of the intolerant, bigoted, Republican Jesus. There exists a rising demographic of those who find their right-wing gospel to be abhorrent and toxic. Many are finding a far better way to live and love.
In other words, we really can live our lives in a manner that does not exclude millions of people who are “guilty” of being born with a specific sexual orientation.
Finally, watch out for that “BUT”. The words that come before it are a lie. It is the words that follow that tell you what is really within their heart.
In the end it is perhaps one of the easiest simplest moral tests going. Sadly many Christians have failed it.