Apr 08, 2007
Editorial: The Limits of Reasonableness
From the GRD Editorial desk: Detroit News columnist Roland S. Martin means well. There's no doubting that. He meant well when he penned a recent commentary urging Christians to 'take back the faith,' writing, "[w]hen did it come to the point that being a Christian meant only caring about two issues -- abortion and homosexuality?" Of course, the literal answer is an easy one: just as soon Christians in the US organized politically as Christians. But, if that be so, why is it so?
The flippant answer to that one would be because it's easy to organize people around a pre-exisiting hatred that you, as a crass Christian politico, know is already shared by nearly every one of your potential followers. Why take the time to build a coalition around a cohesive set of political ideals, then take more time to sell it to the skeptical, when you can strip the thing to its raw, base impulses and run with it?
Fair enough. It works spectacularly well for the political Christians and who can argue with success?
So no arguments here. But as far as I know, no one has ever asked why GLBT people don't do the same thing. Certainly one would be wrong to think that there are no easily accessed, visceral feelings of resentment among gay people. Heck, get a couple of cocktails into any gay man over 30, and that viscera slithers out to form perfect, little, angry rosettes all over the bar, the floor and assorted passers-by, doesn't it? It seems a shame to waste it-- and we do waste it.
There have been a few refinements in the anti-gay Christian message over the years-- like, say, since the days when Jerry Falwell was comfortable wearing a 38-inch waist. (Okay, yeah, that's a cheap shot, but I'm setting up a timeline here, people. I needed a visual.) Since those wasp-waisted days, the political Christians have cobbled together the so-called War on Christianity. That was easy, too. Play up a few AP stories about banned Nativity scenes and you're off to the races.
In short, despite all sorts of friction with the real world, that initial political Christian furor has never worn off. Those leaders have made sure that it doesn't, no matter how silly they have to be (re: the Tinky Winky and Spongebob conspiracies).
Maybe we gay folks ought to give it a try. We've been so patient and so reasonable and so understanding and so 'tolerant of difference.' Let's see what unreasonable gay demands will do. What have we got to lose?