Saturday, June 11, 2011

Religious Right Cries "Victim" Once Again

     This week, David Crary wrote an article about the bullying of the Religious Right by LGBT activists, an article that find deeply disturbing, mainly because it paints those opposed to marriage equality as some innocent victims that are being accosted by the evil gays. The full text of the article can be found here, but in one sentence the article asserts that anti-marriage equality groups are feeling as though they are the ones being subjected to intolerance from LGBT groups and activists. Crary states,
To them, the gay-rights lobby has morphed into a relentless bully — pressuring companies and law firms into policy reversals, making it taboo in some circumstances to express opposition to same-sex marriage.
“They’re advocating for a lot of changes in the name of tolerance,” said Jim Campbell, an attorney with the conservative Alliance Defense Fund. “Yet ironically the tolerance is not returned, for people of faith who don’t agree with their agenda.”
       First off, sorry Mr. Campbell, but that is called the free market of ideas. It is not bullying when corporations are called out on their particular business practices or support by those who oppose such practices, for the corporation is about to make a market decision about which community it wants to keep. Does the LGBT community cry "bullying" when the American Family Association decides to boycott Home Depot or Disney? Of course not; instead we patronize those businesses because they are firm backers of our equality. Conversely, we do not support organizations such as Target or Urban Outfitters because of their anti-gay rights stances.  Its called Capitalism Mr. Campbell, not bullying.

      At the end of the article Chuck Colson, of Manhattan Declaration fame, states that,
“The gay-rights groups have shown their fangs,” wrote Chuck Colson, the Watergate figure turned born-again Christian who helped launch the Manhattan Declaration. “They want to silence, yes, destroy those who don’t agree with their agenda.”
      Oh Chuck, if only you were correct. No, we in the LGBT movement have no problem with you spewing your hateful rhetoric against our community in the privacy of your churches and homes - that is your right, and I will be the first one to defend it.  But the LGBT community does have the authority and the imperative as Americans to orchestrate our movement in such a way as to gain sympathy for our cause, just like you do yours. You may not like it, but we have the freedom, just as you have the freedom, to attempt to convince business, the public, and political leaders that equality for LGBT people is the best option. As I said, that not silencing, that is true dialogue and debate over these important issues. You just think you are being silenced because you are losing; and mainstream society is fed up with your bullshit.

      The difference between our sides though, is that though there may be the oddball LGBT individual who makes threats like those aimed at Sen. Diaz, or tells blatant untruths about our opponents; but thats not the majority of our community. Can the same be said of those on your side? I think not. For from the very top echelons of your movement, for example The Family Research Council, American Family Association, and Focus On The Family, to the tiny state and local organizations that do their bidding, we see institutional support for blatant lies against the LGBT community,something that our community is sick and tired of. So don't for a minute compare our two movements; there is really no comparison.

       Could it not be though, that when lies and the fears that Religious Right leaders have embedded within their followers about LGBT people are found out to be fabrications, that those who have been so duped react against these organizations? Could it not be that the Religious Right has brought this loss upon themselves? For lies only go so far until they are brought to light and public reaction to those lies isn't pretty... something to think about.

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