Friday, February 12, 2010

You will know they are "Christians" by their hate

Recently there has been a spate of commentary from the loony wing of the Christian right, calling for the criminalization of homosexuality in this country.

Item Peter Sprigg of the Family Research Council said that gays should be imprisoned.
"I think that the Supreme Court decision in Lawrence v. Texas which overturned the sodomy laws in this country was wrongly decided," said Sprigg. "I think there would be a place for criminal sanctions against homosexual behavior."

"So we should outlaw gay behavior?" asked Matthews again.

Yes,” said Sprigg.
Item Bryan Fischer of the American Family Associationwrote
If you believe all Scripture is inspired, then you are compelled to accept that legal sanctions may appropriately be applied to those who engage in homosexual behavior.
Item Gary Glenn of the American Family Association of Michigan says:
"We believe that states should be free to regulate and prohibit behavior that’s a violation of community standards and a proven threat to public health and safety — including, as most of the United States did throughout its history, homosexual behavior.”
Item This goes along with the "Kill the gays" bill in Uganda, which is of course a direct result of American Evangelists' influence. They may be embarrassed that their contribution got out, but until then they had no problem with a death-to-homos bills.

But not all of them are embarrased. Cliff Kincaid, of the group Accuracy in Media writes to justify the death penalty
The Ugandan bill does provide for harsh measures against homosexual conduct, including the death penalty for such practices as pedophilia, facilitating homosexual activity, and deliberately spreading AIDS. As such, however, Ugandan Christian ministers see the legislation as a necessary and continuing part of Uganda’s successful anti-AIDS effort.
At the blog PamsHouseBlend, commenter Alvin McEwen is wondering whether this represents a new coordinated angle by the religious right.

Consistent with this, a winger group has filed a suit against the hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009, claiming that its itent is to
"criminalize the Bible and use the threat of federal prosecutions and long jail sentences to silence Christians from expressing their Biblically-based religious belief that homosexual conduct is a sin."
Of course, it does no such thing--unless their Biblically based views call for violence.

Meanwhile, I'm getting tired of them claiming the "Christian" card, okay? I'd like to see robust pushback from the mainline religions who support GLBT equality, on the misuse of the term "Christian". (One of themore surreal set of questions in the Prop8 testimony was the Forces of H8 listing all the churches that DO support marriage equality. Of course in total membership they are much smaller than the big kahunas of the Mormons and the Catholics, but to find that even the other side had to admit that religion did not speak with one voice gave me a little hope for reason. Their attorneys had a bad case, but I don't think they are stupid. But I digress.)

What could be gained by this fulminating, this hate-mongering? The right wing is nothing if not organized. It isn't by chance that multiple groups hit on the same argument.

One possibility is that they are concerned that they are losing momentum on the equality issue. Most fair minded people are "live and let live". They may not want to give us marriage equality, but most people don't obsess about us. So those opposed to equality know that they get the most response when they demonize us, thus they are fighting hard to fan the flames of hatred. This is one way to plant the seeds in people's minds that we are so dangerous, how could we possibly have any rights! We should consider ourselves lucky we aren't in prison where we belong! it's the "Ick factor" writ large.

I suspect in a time of economic stress and frustration, most people want to feel above someone else. "At least I'm better than X." In many parts of the US, I'm sure that poor whites felt superior to poor blacks. But that kind of overt racism is no longer acceptable, whereas antigay bias is. There is a bullying mob-tendency to attack the vulnerable, when one is weak oneself.

That's what they are doing here. And make no mistake, this language of hatred and anger is not inert. Bias crimes have already gone up. We need to be vigilant. And we need to push back against hatred. None of us should be threatened with jail, orworse, fore the rare gift of love.


PseudoPiskie said...

Why anyone would want to be identified as a "Christian" is beyond me. I try to be a follower of Jesus but that doesn't seem to have anything to do with what the Christians are about.

Anonymous said...

Wackjob Bryan Fischer of American Family Association has a LONG history in Idaho. check out the Fischer Files they have documented this jerk very well....

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