So, there's this chicken place...

SixteenBlue wrote:

It actually comes out of love for all of humanity

QFuniversalT.

Wow, not sure why I'm stepping into the lion's den but I'd like to give the perspective of the conservative Christians I know who oppose gay marriage. Before I start, let me say that I don't share their views. I'm a big supporter of small and limited government -which should start with not getting involved in people's personal lives.

Now, most of the Christians I know do not hate LGBT people. They don't go out of their way to make fun or denigrate them. On the flip side, they see marriage as a sacred religious ritual, and gay marriage as an invasion of secular beliefs on one of their most important ceremonies/sacraments. In other words, a lot of the backlash is because they feel threatened. Once again, I'm not going to defend these beliefs because I think they are illogical. But I do at least try to empathize with both sides, which includes both what my Dad believes and Phoenix Rev's experiences.

I also think a lot of it involves education. For example, when I went to my 20th high school reunion in Kentucky this summer, I had a good talk with one of my high school buddies. He talked about how his ultra-conservative dad had an about face on gay marriage when he learned that one of the neigbhorhood heroes - a guy who had won multiple medals in Iraq and Afghanistan - came out last summer. In other words, a big part of the problem is the older generation were taught from a young age that homosexuality was wrong, and they've never met any openly gays or lesbians who are living exemplary lives.

Is it possible for someone to believe that homosexuality is morally wrong without being characterized as a "hate-filled asshole"? Is it completely wrong to show support for a company that is under fire for expressing support for a moral construct that you believe in? I'd agree that the CFA day probably didn't do much for the goal of reaching out in compassion to those who dont share the same views, but it not like these people were parading around with Fred Phelpsian signage.

Yes. Don't give money to groups that try to change the law to exclude citizens because they have a different sexual orientation (DOMA). Or skin color. Or language. Or cultural values. Nomad, would you patronize Chik-Fil-A if they were run by atheists who gave $2M to groups that had succeeded in defining Christians as separate but equal, just not able to take advantage of government marriage benefits if they'd been religiously married? Think about it. I bet you'd be on the front lines of that issue. And yet you have no sympathy here for the downtrodden.

As for traditional marriage, it also involved things like marrying one's brother's widow; maintaining concubines; rapists marrying victims; male possession of the wife, and her slaves; multiple husbands and wives; women forcibly married as spoils of war; and male and female slaves being assigned to each other (yeah, so much for the supposed special status of Biblical slavery...). Given that all of these things have changed, maybe the idea that same sex marriages would automatically be condemned by God is not entirely certain. (Unless, of course, you believe He's condemning us for not maintaining slavery or mixing fabrics in our clothes and the other rules that come out of Leviticus.)

Seriously, this seems like a heck of thing to object to based on Biblical law, because that opens the door to a ton of other prohibitions and enjoinments that we just don't accept today.

Nomad wrote:

Are "hate groups" any group that supports the traditional definition of marriage?

Nope. But this is another excellent strawman I see often about this topic.

Tired of conservatives acting like victims. It's so old at this point.

DSGamer wrote:

Tired of conservatives acting like victims. It's so old at this point.

I so very much agree. When did they become so whiny?

SpacePPoliceman wrote:
DSGamer wrote:

Tired of conservatives acting like victims. It's so old at this point.

I so very much agree. When did they become so whiny?

Kind of hard to try and steer the conversation away from the invented persecution when you guys do this.

Consolidating

Nomad wrote:

Is it possible for someone to believe that homosexuality is morally wrong without being characterized as a "hate-filled asshole"?

In this day and age? No, it's not possible.

Bloo Driver wrote:
SpacePPoliceman wrote:
DSGamer wrote:

Tired of conservatives acting like victims. It's so old at this point.

I so very much agree. When did they become so whiny?

Kind of hard to try and steer the conversation away from the invented persecution when you guys do this.

I would normally agree with you, but they staged a protest in favor of an anti-gay business owner. Then when people called that into question we got a response like this.

mcdonis wrote:

Nice to know that we can all live in harmony.....

Call me when folks want to actually accept and respect others who disagree with their opinionseliefs.

And, once again, for the record I say this as someone who is libertarian and super respectful of rights to free speech, etc. i just don't get the outrage over people disagreeing with your religious point of view. The sense of persecution because your ideas were batted down in the public sphere is just odd to me.

DSGamer wrote:

And, once again, for the record I say this as someone who is libertarian and super respectful of rights to free speech, etc. i just don't get the outrage over people disagreeig with your religious point if view. The sense of persecution because your ideas were batted down in the public sphere is just odd to me.

It's a tried and true method.

If you go back to the days after Prop. 8 was passed, the amount of nonsense from the LDS Church that they were being victimized for speaking out against gay marriage was over the top.

Having your beliefs criticized = victimization
Enshrining discrimination into the California Constitution = not victimization

It's completely bizarre.

jdzappa wrote:

Now, most of the Christians I know do not hate LGBT people. They don't go out of their way to make fun or denigrate them. On the flip side, they see marriage as a sacred religious ritual, and gay marriage as an invasion of secular beliefs on one of their most important ceremonies/sacraments. In other words, a lot of the backlash is because they feel threatened. Once again, I'm not going to defend these beliefs because I think they are illogical. But I do at least try to empathize with both sides, which includes both what my Dad believes and Phoenix Rev's experiences.

Thanks for bringing this up, I have been wanting to write this for a bit.

The problem with people espousing the POV that marriage is their own religion's sacred ritual is that it frankly is not. Marriage is not a Christian institution, any more than it is Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, or Voodoo institution. Our government and society, by design, respects any and all forms of marriage that conform to minimum standards as defined by law. If marriage is only a religious institution, then religious people have to automatically consider the marriages of other religious people invalid. Furthermore, the US government has applied a number of purely secular benefits to married couples(tax benefits, property rights, hospital visitation rights, etc.) that have absolutely nothing to do with religious practices. Those secular benefits are are also granted to people that get married in purely secular ceremonies. Those are the rights and benefits that homosexual couples are demanding and deserve. No (mainstream) group is demanding that clergymen start performing full religious ceremonies for couples against their will. The backlash that we see for the reasons jdzappa outlined(as opposed to the people who have a personal issue with gay people existing) is, as such, irrational.

I wonder if the Quakers would have been eating at the Chicken place.

"One of the consequences of our testimony to equality is that we welcome lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered men and women, and have a fundamental commitment to equality and inclusion. We affirm the love of God for all people, whatever their sexuality."

Kraint wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

Now, most of the Christians I know do not hate LGBT people. They don't go out of their way to make fun or denigrate them. On the flip side, they see marriage as a sacred religious ritual, and gay marriage as an invasion of secular beliefs on one of their most important ceremonies/sacraments. In other words, a lot of the backlash is because they feel threatened. Once again, I'm not going to defend these beliefs because I think they are illogical. But I do at least try to empathize with both sides, which includes both what my Dad believes and Phoenix Rev's experiences.

Thanks for bringing this up, I have been wanting to write this for a bit.

The problem with people espousing the POV that marriage is their own religion's sacred ritual is that it frankly is not. Marriage is not a Christian institution, any more than it is Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, or Voodoo institution. Our government and society, by design, respects any and all forms of marriage that conform to minimum standards as defined by law. If marriage is only a religious institution, then religious people have to automatically consider the marriages of other religious people invalid. Furthermore, the US government has applied a number of purely secular benefits to married couples(tax benefits, property rights, hospital visitation rights, etc.) that have absolutely nothing to do with religious practices. Those secular benefits are are also granted to people that get married in purely secular ceremonies. Those are the rights and benefits that homosexual couples are demanding and deserve. No (mainstream) group is demanding that clergymen start performing full religious ceremonies for couples against their will. The backlash that we see for the reasons jdzappa outlined(as opposed to the people who have a personal issue with gay people existing) is, as such, irrational.

Marriage existed long before the church was involved at all. In Western Europe, the church had little involvement at all until the 12th and 13th century AD, and even then it was a gradual build-up of their involvement before they began taking over the whole thing. If one wants to list what counts as 'traditional' by the amount of time something occurred, it would be far more 'traditional' for marriages to be civil and private only, with no church involvement.

Nevermind that Hindus in India have marriages. I think... Are those "traditional marriages"? Nevermind plural marriages in the Middle East and Africa.

1Dgaf wrote:

I wonder if the Quakers would have been eating at the Chicken place.

Those oats-eating motherf*ckers don't even support war. I doubt they would've showed up to support a god-fearing American company like Chik-fil-A.

PAR, this might be what you're looking for:
https://sites.google.com/site/chicke...

Jayhawker wrote:
Nomad wrote:

Is it possible for someone to believe that homosexuality is morally wrong without being characterized as a "hate-filled asshole"?

In this day and age? No, it's not possible.

Which is a problem, given the enormous numbers of people raised with the belief that homosexuality is a sin, as espoused by the Bible, for their entire lives. When people hold traditional beliefs for decades and then are suddenly told by outsiders (i.e., people with different belief systems - because as studies have shown, our society tends to live in insulated layers where like-minded people stick together) that they are intolerant, hate-filled assholes if they hold these beliefs...I can kinda see why this wouldn't go over well, especially when they feel they haven't done anything wrong because they have the Bible on their side.

People on the left see it as an attack on human rights when people try to do anything more than voice these beliefs. People on the right see it as an attack on their faith when the left tells them that discrimination against homosexuals because of these beliefs is evil. I really don't see how this situation ever resolves itself, aside from more passage of time, because it seems that most people from these two groups are currently entirely incapable of understanding where the other side is coming from. There's too much emotion involved on both sides.

I haven't felt quite so disheartened as I did when I saw all the reports of Chik-Fil-As filled up. Perhaps folks don't realize what it feels like to see large groups of people come out and say, "We don't accept you. We don't want you. You are less than us."

I can't say that my feelings are quite the same as those experienced by victims of racism based on their physical features, as it's not outwardly obvious in any way that I'm gay. I wear a rainbow bracelet, but as far as I know, it usually goes unnoticed. I can still go to the grocery store, walk down the street, etc. without feeling particularly oppressed. Without worrying if someone's going to do something horrible to me, for the most part. At least, when I'm alone.

My last visit to Fedora's place in New York was the first time we were together in public. While I had a wonderful time, I felt an overlay of tension whenever we were in public. Fedora was a bit braver than I was about breaking those conventions, and I started to be more at ease as the week went on. But I would be foolish to let my guard down and expect my comfort with it to do anything for anyone else. If anything, my comfort with it was a high act of defiance against those who disagree with it.

Hatred? Fear? Moral disagreement? They all feel remarkably indistinguishable when you're supposed to be in a safe, free country.

I'm entirely disinterested which reason is used to justify opposition. It all has the same effect on my life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.

Crispus wrote:

People on the left see it as an attack on human rights when people try to do anything more than voice these beliefs. People on the right see it as an attack on their faith when the left tells them that discrimination against homosexuals because of these beliefs is evil.

I bolded what I think is the most significant part of that statement. Gay rights activists are trying to stop others from taking actions against them, actively denying or removing their rights. Those on the other side of that issue may feel persecuted by being told they're hate-mongering bigots but no one is trying to remove their right to worship or anything else.

It's stuff like this that makes me a states' rights advocate. Just break up the US. We can't get along if we can't allow people to live their private lives how they choose. Break up the US and let states decide whether they want to be socially liberal or not.

Basically what Jayhawker said.

The reason I said, "In this day and age," is that homosexuality has reached a level of openess that the issue is no longer that it is a scary thing people don't understand.

In 80's, just the idea that there might be a homosexual in our high school led to all manner of violence and random oppression of anyone different. Today, two of my daughter's best friends came out in junior high school. And while that is a huge step forward, it is not like they did not suffer repercussions, including the young man that was openly taunted by his English teacher in class.

My wife and I have several gay friends, my doctor is gay, and my wife works with at least two openly gay lawyers in her firm. The only way in which I could reasonably expect these people in our lives to have less rights than me, which leads to the exact alienation that NSMike feels, is if I was a hate-filled asshole. Full-stop.

I had a gay cousin that I barely knew of growing up, despite my family being close to the rest of his family. My uncle was a hate-filled asshole whose bigotry was far too tolerated. My cousin left Missouri and lived his life on the east coast. I never met him until a family vacation. He was completely ostracized by his father. All I had known was stories my mom had told me.

I met a wonderful man, who at the time of our visit, I was still not aware that he was gay. It meant a lot to me that as I got older, and realized what the situation really was, that I had parents who valued him as just an important part of our family as everyone else.

When his father died, he came home for the funeral. While I was happy to see him, there was a dark feeling about the funeral. In particular, much of the funeral dealt with my uncle's love and pride in his grandson, who was straight and was an officer in the navy. There was nothing about his own son. It was pretty disturbing, even though he was welcomed home by so many in his family that never felt the freedom to do so before.

It was a hard day for him, burying this man who created such a feeling of despair in his life. I wish this could have been a day of liberation for him. He committed suicide weeks later. I don't know that it was related, but it was absolutely heart-breaking.

I cannot think of a single positive effect the anti-gay movement has had on our society. They have left a wake of suicide and mental anguish that should be called out on a regular basis. The difference is that today, they know it. It's no longer a secret.

So yes, in this day and age, if you cling to such damaging beliefs, justifying it with your religion does not excuse you from being a hate-filled asshole.

So yes, if you think homosexuality is morally wrong in this day and age, it is because you are one of the remaining hate-filled assholes that can look at all of the damage those beliefs have caused and not care.

And just like there came a time when there was a critical mass of whites that realized there were more supporters of equal rights than bigots, we have reached that moment in regards to gay rights in our country now. Calling homosexuality morally wrong is bigotry. And it should be called as such.

I think you make a great point, and one I should try to remember more often.

I agree with JayHawker, with the addendum of let's have the "thing you did" convo as opposed to the "thing you are" convo. I think "anti-gay views to which you subscribe have caused nothing but misery" may be damning enough, especially since every homophobe I know switches their brain off once they are called a homophobe.

Part of the issue is calling it 'hate'. Hate is a searing thing that spits and screams. People don't think they're hateful; they think they're solid and just. Perhaps cruelty is a better term. Cruel doesn't have to be violent, it can be quiet and seething; turning its back and refusing to hold out its hand.

Everyone has felt ostracised and left out. Unwelcome, not cared for. Talked about behind their back. I think people could more easily connect with that feeling than one of being actively hateful.

1Dgaf wrote:

Part of the issue is calling it 'hate'. Hate is a searing thing that spits and screams. People don't think they're hateful; they think they're solid and just. Perhaps cruelty is a better term. Cruel doesn't have to be violent, it can be quiet and seething; turning its back and refusing to hold out its hand.

Everyone has felt ostracised and left out. Unwelcome, not cared for. Talked about behind their back. I think people could more easily connect with that feeling than one of being actively hateful.

Fair enough, but it is hard to have sympathy for the oppressor.

IMAGE(http://www.smbc-comics.com/comics/20120805.gif)

1Dgaf wrote:

Part of the issue is calling it 'hate'. Hate is a searing thing that spits and screams. People don't think they're hateful; they think they're solid and just. Perhaps cruelty is a better term. Cruel doesn't have to be violent, it can be quiet and seething; turning its back and refusing to hold out its hand.

Everyone has felt ostracised and left out. Unwelcome, not cared for. Talked about behind their back. I think people could more easily connect with that feeling than one of being actively hateful.

I can say that the feeling I felt when those Chik-Fil-As were filled up was far, far worse than the feeling I've gotten when I found out someone was talking about me behind my back, or someone didn't care about me. If you've ever had feelings of hope just sucked right out of you against your will, that's more akin to it. You can willingly give up hope on something, but this was different.

Of course, I'm rational enough to have overcome those momentary feelings, but it was impossible for me to suppress my gut reaction.

Hatred is as complicated as any emotion, and can be just as loud or as quiet as it wants to be.

I'm not saying you should have sympathy for them. I'm wondering if the language should be altered to get them closer to understanding how the other person feels; if only to glimpse it. Hate is a verb, cruel is a noun.