Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Just for Giggles...

My stars! It does, indeed, seem that gay and lesbian Christians upset the applecart in all sorts of interesting ways.

Over at Cathy Young's blog, The Y Files, I have another rabid ankle-biter on my hands. (See Cathy has a very intelligent post on an opinion by Justice Scalia, who seems to think that the death penalty is soooooo important that a man on death row should get the needle even though new evidence has surfaced that might exonerate him. She thinks this is scary, and so do I. I commented on the peculiar, irrationally hateful nature of Right-Wing Christian ideologues like Scalia, and in the course of my scattered comments, I "came out" as a lesbian Christian.

I knew what did happen would happen. I knew that one of the folks who regularly read and comment on The Y Files would take the bait -- and straightaway, somebody did. I was informed, by somebody calling himself "Revenant," that I can't be a Christian because I'm gay. Is this individual a flame-throwing, redneck fundamentalist? No, he's a hardcore, militant, Christian-baiting atheist. Artie Johnson used to say on Laugh In, "veeeeeeddddddy innnntellesting!" Somebody who goes out of his way to ridicule religious belief -- to whom the Bible seems to have little more value than a roll of Charmin -- has taken it upon himself to lecture me about my "tortured" interpretation of Scripture. This eminent personage considers himself more of an expert on Holy Writ than Canon Gene Robinson, the Rev. Ralph Blair, recently-deceased Archbishop Edward Ryle, my own pastor, Renee Geiger or my close friend, theologian and world-renowned scholar on the Gospel of Matthew, Dr. Arlo Nau. I'd like to shake his hand...or perhaps I should drop into a swooning curtsy?

I wish I could say this was a rare occurrence and a huge surprise, but the fact of the matter is that this has happened to me several times before. It seems the only people who get madder than the fundamentalists at the existence of Christian gays are the dogmatic atheists. For whatever reason, we really seem to rock their little world.

Evidently they need their Christians as extreme and closed-minded as possible. I know from personal experience with these folks that an awful lot of them come from strict fundamentalist homes, and that even after all these years, their anger at Mommy, Daddy and the razor-strop has not abated. The fundies and the fire-breathing atheists, together in the same corner -- what a concept! It is, in fact, a concept more common than dirt.

I have been kicking around a rather vague idea for my next Whosoever essay for some weeks, now. Funny how so much of the time, while I'm nesting atop such an egg, something will happen to solidify my vague ideas and point me in a clear direction. Mr. Revenant would, no doubt, call it sheerest coincidence. I call it God.

My little baby chick is not yet ready to be hatched, but a clear idea is beginning to form. There is something to this -- the hostility of the unbelievers toward acceptance of gays, and other previously-marginalized people, in the Church. There is something very real behind the unholy alliance of scoffers and fundies. In its mad crusade to stigmatize gays and lesbians, the Vatican is now desperately scrambling behind the works of that arch-scoffer, Sigmund Freud. It's a sad, sad, sad, sad world.

Still not totally sure just where to take this, but it's immensely enjoyable. I intend to kick it around with some gay Christian friends, and maybe some straight ones, as well. Thinking is such great, great fun that I pity those afraid to try it.

I have nothing against atheists. One of my closest-ever friends is about the biggest scoffer you could ever meet. He would make a wonderful Christian, as he's one of the kindest and most humane people I have ever known. Religious people disgust him (I seem to be a rare and very fortunate exception), and it's a scandal that he -- like so many other decent and noble souls -- has turned away from the Christian faith in disgust. He cites the Church's treatment of people like me as one of the reasons he refuses to consider it, and he is hardly alone.

One thing I will say for my friend, he doesn't begrudge me a place in the Church. He'd never tell me my interpretation of Scripture is "tortured." He knows the Bible better than a fair number of believers do, and he knows whose interpretation is truly the "tortured" one.

Watch this space, in the days and weeks to come, for some possible further ruminations on my developing story. This may turn out, on the other hand, to be one of those pieces that requires little rumination and practically writes itself. I'll link to Whosoever for the final product.

Depending upon how you look at things, this is, again, either a coincidence or a God thing. You know what my opinion is. And I look forward to seeing it borne out.


At 12:22 PM, Blogger halfkoreanstudmuffin said...

you most certainly can be a lesbian AND a Christian simutaneously. Don't let nearsighted Christians, super-Christians, and Christian wannabe's tell you otherwise. While I'm hetero, I don't see how the alledged wrong sexual orientation is any more grievious an offensive sin than say lying, cheating, stealing, or thinking blasphemous thoughts. I think most Christians nowadays as being more overly PC and interested in playing it safe than actually having anything to do with love or what love actually entails. But I'm super shallow so what the hell do I know! :P


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