A personal plea from a 'Chrstian' gamer

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Before I begin this rant right before bed I would like to tell you a little bit about myself. I'm a young romance action fantasy writer. I enjoy exploring the darker side of human nature such as human sacrifice and cannibalism in my stories. I'm completely open to people's beliefs, usually adapting them into my own and learning a little bit in the process, sometimes even bettering myself as a human being. Most of my stories contain one or more homosexual relationships, some between people in completely different age groups, some invovling christians and some even going so far as (Fantasy)interacial (human x demon relationships.) I personally find nothing more charming then two people in love with other under the most terrible of circumstances, like ones being abused by their parents and the other one is being hated for their relationship. I'm completely fine with homosexuals and quite honestly, I find myself trusting 'minorities and the LGBT' groups of people (I hate saying it like that because it makes it sound like I'm separating them from humans somehow)more then heterosexual/caucasians.

And I'm a 'Christian'.
I believe in all paths to god, I believe that salvation is free to all. I believe that there will be MANY people in heaven that you and I don't expect to be there since we're constantly told 'this is wrong' and 'that is wrong' even though theres nothing in the bible detailing it as wrong. I believe in god, jesus and the Bible. I believe that each and every word of the Bible is true.

During this time in gaming history where homosexuality is becoming more and more provident...I would like to politely ask you not to bunch me, or 'all christians' in with these 'Family Groups' (http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/7.353496-Family-Values-Groups-Launch-Email-Campaign-Against-BioWare?page=1)and anti gay groups. I DON'T believe being gay/homosexual is a sin, in fact being gay is only a 'sin' in the old testament which most christians don't or shouldn't follow since the rules didn't apply the entire 'jesus died on the cross so all your sins are forgiven if you believe in him' part of the bible.

I'm not saying that 'oh all non christians think bad of us' or 'omgsh generalization!' It's just that I've seen alot of 'Lololol look at this stupid group of morons. Dumb arse CHRISTIAN' comments on ALOT of these different videos and posts, all throughout the internet. (page 2 -_-)

What these people(who use the bible against homosexuals) are doing is trying to find a stable ground to base their baseless arguement on, and what's really depressing about this is that the part of the bible their using technically no longer applies. If it did then we'd all have to kill animals to cleanse our sins and stone everyone for EVERYTHING.

I'm just saying, not everyone is part of these people and not all christians share their....less then polite or reasonable beliefs. I suppose a few bad apples ruin the batch though...

A link to one of the escapist videos that I got up an applauded for.
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/jimquisition/5433-Mass-Effect-3-And-The-Case-For-A-Gay-Shepard

ALSO I JUST NOTICED. I SPELLED 'CHRISTIAN' WRONG.
Yay for one moment of immense stupidity
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You sound like a cool person. Some people are not cool people. The Christianity label is irrelevant.

Is that a decent summary?

As a fellow Christian I totally agree.

Also, I find it kinda sad that we have to say things like this, we just happen to have that little label, and that's all. I think there are those bad apples in every group on this planet, why we have to be singled out is beyond me.

I appreciate that you're taking time to stand up to these people. One reason they get as far as they do is because there aren't enough Christians willing to stand up and say, "No, this is not what Jesus would want. You do not speak for him and you do not speak for me."

But wouldn't you want to push for less sexual relationships established in games to leave open the greatest possible variety of shipping for you? [/troll]

Yeah, I don't think this thread is necessary. The people who see all christians as giant bigots aren't doing so because they've never heard of a kind, accepting Christian. They make the decision themselves to generalize. Rather than constantly remind them in words that not all Christians are douchebags, it's far better to prove them wrong in action.

Angelblaze:
During this time in gaming history where homosexuality is becoming more and more provident...I would like to politely ask you not to bunch me, or 'all christians' in with these 'Family Groups' (http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/7.353496-Family-Values-Groups-Launch-Email-Campaign-Against-BioWare?page=1)and anti gay groups. I DON'T believe being gay/homosexual is a sin, in fact being gay is only a 'sin' in the old testament which most christians don't or shouldn't follow since the rules didn't apply the entire 'jesus died on the cross so all your sins are forgiven if you believe in him' part of the bible.

Congratulations. You have absolved yourself from any guilt coming from associating with these people. You have, at least. Why? Because you have publicly spoken out against them, and made it clear that they do not represent you. Unfortunately, that's just you. See, there's this nasty thing about such groups: they claim to speak for all Christians in a believable manner, and back their beliefs (entirely reasonably) upon an interpretation of the christian dogma. When they become this influential, it is entirely reasonable to say that Christians who don't speak out against them are passively supporting their agenda. It's like when "moderate" muslims in Denmark flip their shit over drawings of Mohammed but don't bat an eye when people get extradited and sent back to their home country to be executed for leaving the faith: even if they're not terrorists, they're damn well supporting terrorist ideals.

I'm not saying that 'oh all non christians think bad of us' or 'omgsh generalization!' It's just that I've seen alot of 'Lololol look at this stupid group of morons. Dumb arse CHRISTIAN' comments on ALOT of these different videos and posts, all throughout the internet. (page 2 -_-)

Well, what do you expect? When you people hold an irrational, unfounded religious belief, and that belief is being used by others as justification to do extremely negative things, do you think we're going to be more respectful of you because you're a Christian or less? In the words of Dan Savage: "I'm sorry your feelings were hurt by my comments. No, wait. I'm not. Gay kids are dying. So let's try to keep things in perspective: Fuck your feelings." Like I said above, you are absolved from responsibility over this by openly speaking out against it. The rest? Not so much. Also, just for the record, you might wanna read that Savage Love I linked above, it's quite an eye-opener.

What these people(who use the bible against homosexuals) are doing is trying to find a stable ground to base their baseless arguement on, and what's really depressing about this is that the part of the bible their using technically no longer applies. If it did then we'd all have to kill animals to cleanse our sins and stone everyone for EVERYTHING.

Oh come on, that's bullshit and you know it. The new testament isn't exactly free of gay-bashing either. The idea that homosexuality is wrong or sinful is not without reason held by most of the churches in the world. The fact is that homophobia can be based entirely rationally on the christian faith, and more often than not is.

I'm just saying, not everyone is part of these people and not all christians share their....less then polite or reasonable beliefs. I suppose a few bad apples ruin the batch though...

No, just an unreasonably large number of them. These people didn't just come from nowhere. There's an unreasonably large number of them for this idea that "it's just a few bad apples" to make even a sliver of sense. I accept that you don't belong to them. I completely reject the idea that your stance applies to most Christians. You're like the neo-nazi who's not a complete asshole: even if you're great, the groups you associate with are not.

*reads thread title* Oh, are we due for another round of "we're not aaaaaallll like that! Please, think of the Christians!"?

*reads thread* Wow, TMI, and I'm side-eyeing the use of "homosexual". That's the term people who hate us like to use, that's not a word we use to describe ourselves. If OP is serious about writing about LGBT people, that would help.

Oh, there it is. We're not all like that. *yawn*

Look, OP, I'm sure you, like the approximately 584 people posting a very similar thread before you, are well-intentioned. This one has way more than I ever needed to know about your narrative kinks, but substantively it's exactly the same as all the rest, so I'll tell you the same thing I tell the rest. Namely, tell *them* this, not us. Go post on a few Christian boards (and I hope you're gay-positive IRL, too, I imagine you are) and tell *them* this. We already know that not all Christians are the same. It's just that there are entirely too many, being too loud, being too influential, who want to kill and silence people like me.

Read the the active thread list right now: thread after thread about Christians doing and saying awful things. This is the company you've chosen to identify yourself with. They are YOUR problem. The same way racist-ass Norse Pagans are my problem. You've chosen to be in the same religion with a lot of people doing a lot of terrible things. I'm not going to tell you that's a bad choice, but I *am* going to tell you that it's one you have to live with. Spend your time working from within to change the system, don't spend it telling people who are the ones being screwed over that we're overgeneralizing too much. BTW, there are conservative Christians in some of these threads being anti-LGBT rights. Why not go argue with them? That'd be a lot more useful than this, and it would actually *show* what you are instead of *telling* us what you are-- as a writer, I expect you to understand that. I know there are some good Christians, but I know them by their actions, not by their metaphorically bending down and telling me to please not judge them by the guy with his boot on my neck.

Stagnant:

Angelblaze:
During this time in gaming history where homosexuality is becoming more and more provident...I would like to politely ask you not to bunch me, or 'all christians' in with these 'Family Groups' (http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/7.353496-Family-Values-Groups-Launch-Email-Campaign-Against-BioWare?page=1)and anti gay groups. I DON'T believe being gay/homosexual is a sin, in fact being gay is only a 'sin' in the old testament which most christians don't or shouldn't follow since the rules didn't apply the entire 'jesus died on the cross so all your sins are forgiven if you believe in him' part of the bible.

Congratulations. You have absolved yourself from any guilt coming from associating with these people. You have, at least. Why? Because you have publicly spoken out against them, and made it clear that they do not represent you. Unfortunately, that's just you. See, there's this nasty thing about such groups: they claim to speak for all Christians in a believable manner, and back their beliefs (entirely reasonably) upon an interpretation of the christian dogma. When they become this influential, it is entirely reasonable to say that Christians who don't speak out against them are passively supporting their agenda. It's like when "moderate" muslims in Denmark flip their shit over drawings of Mohammed but don't bat an eye when people get extradited and sent back to their home country to be executed for leaving the faith: even if they're not terrorists, they're damn well supporting terrorist ideals.

I'm not saying that 'oh all non christians think bad of us' or 'omgsh generalization!' It's just that I've seen alot of 'Lololol look at this stupid group of morons. Dumb arse CHRISTIAN' comments on ALOT of these different videos and posts, all throughout the internet. (page 2 -_-)

Well, what do you expect? When you people hold an irrational, unfounded religious belief, and that belief is being used by others as justification to do extremely negative things, do you think we're going to be more respectful of you because you're a Christian or less? In the words of Dan Savage: "I'm sorry your feelings were hurt by my comments. No, wait. I'm not. Gay kids are dying. So let's try to keep things in perspective: Fuck your feelings." Like I said above, you are absolved from responsibility over this by openly speaking out against it. The rest? Not so much. Also, just for the record, you might wanna read that Savage Love I linked above, it's quite an eye-opener.

What these people(who use the bible against homosexuals) are doing is trying to find a stable ground to base their baseless arguement on, and what's really depressing about this is that the part of the bible their using technically no longer applies. If it did then we'd all have to kill animals to cleanse our sins and stone everyone for EVERYTHING.

Oh come on, that's bullshit and you know it. The new testament isn't exactly free of gay-bashing either. The idea that homosexuality is wrong or sinful is not without reason held by most of the churches in the world. The fact is that homophobia can be based entirely rationally on the christian faith, and more often than not is.

I'm just saying, not everyone is part of these people and not all christians share their....less then polite or reasonable beliefs. I suppose a few bad apples ruin the batch though...

No, just an unreasonably large number of them. These people didn't just come from nowhere. There's an unreasonably large number of them for this idea that "it's just a few bad apples" to make even a sliver of sense. I accept that you don't belong to them. I completely reject the idea that your stance applies to most Christians. You're like the neo-nazi who's not a complete asshole: even if you're great, the groups you associate with are not.

Good post. I was pretty nice in comparison. :)

I don't buy that she's completely absolved, though. She posted this to a majority-non-Christian board, it's not like she's preaching love and tolerance to her own crowd. We have a name for this kind of thing on some of the other sites I visit: "ally cookie-hunting". Basically, someone from a privileged group talking to people who lack his privilege and expecting to get virtual cookies and kudos and back-pats for not being an asshole; when not being an asshole, treating LGBT people *like people* and advocating for the rights of all people is the bare fucking minimum a decent person should be doing. If she's as vocal IRL as she's being here in support of LGBT people here, that's being a decent person and I'm glad, but it doesn't deserve cookies. Being a decent person should be its own damn reward. Does it matter if everyone sees you? You see you. (And if you're religious, your gods and your ancestors see you.)

It's also a never-ending task. You can go round and round debating whether it's possible to be a good person in a harm-doing group. (In some way or another, almost all of us are.) But the only way to do that is to take responsibility for the harm, and then work to mitigate it. Not "it's those people over there, those isolated people, blame them, not me!" You don't ever get completely absolved, you just do your best to push back against the damage when you see it, and let those who see you in action know you by what you do. (But then, that's in part my religion speaking. We believe that "you are your deeds". Talk is cheap.)

I think most people realize that the extremist Christian groups that catch the news don't represent all Christians, but sadly there are some people who like to generalize. If you see a comment where a person is generalizing all Christians, help them out by letting them know that not all Christians are like that.

Polarity27:

*reads thread* Wow, TMI, and I'm side-eyeing the use of "homosexual". That's the term people who hate us like to use, that's not a word we use to describe ourselves. If OP is serious about writing about LGBT people, that would help.

To be perfectly fair, I doubt there was malice there and I'd be hesitant to ascribe anything to the use of the term if only because of convenience. If I say "gay" one can almost always assume there are men involved, whether or not I'm also talking about women is anyone's guess. Conversely if I say 'lesbian', then one can assume I'm only talking about women. Homosexual presents itself as a descriptive gender-neutral term and thus convenient for discussion. Personally, I like using that term for the same reason I prefer to use the term 'heterosexual' rather than 'straight' in discussions like this: it simply sounds more professional to me and neither term strikes me as offensive.

This thread was a bad idea, Angelblaze. At best, you'll get a bunch of people saying "K", "cool story, bro", and "Thank you for stating the obvious". At worst, you'll get people who will continue to foist responsibility onto you for things you really have no responsibility for and make barely veiled attacks at your faith while unloading their emotional baggage against Christianity onto you for no other reason than you're a Christian. There is no up-side here.

Besides, why do you care what some pig-headed asswipe on the internet thinks of Christians? Mr. "Dumb arse CHRISTIAN" is not someone who you should be allowing to get to you or feel defensive about. Fuck him, yes?

Polarity27:

Good post. I was pretty nice in comparison. :)

I don't buy that he's completely absolved, though. He posted this to a majority-non-Christian board, it's not like he's preaching love and tolerance to his own crowd. We have a name for this kind of thing on some of the other sites I visit: "ally cookie-hunting". Basically, someone from a privileged group talking to people who lack his privilege and expecting to get virtual cookies and kudos and back-pats for not being an asshole; when not being an asshole, treating LGBT people *like people* and advocating for the rights of all people is the bare fucking minimum a decent person should be doing. If he's as vocal IRL as he's being here in support of LGBT people here, that's being a decent person and I'm glad, but it doesn't deserve cookies. Being a decent person should be its own damn reward. Does it matter if everyone sees you? You see you. (And if you're religious, your gods and your ancestors see you.)

It's also a never-ending task. You can go round and round debating whether it's possible to be a good person in a harm-doing group. (In some way or another, almost all of us are.) But the only way to do that is to take responsibility for the harm, and then work to mitigate it. Not "it's those people over there, those isolated people, blame them, not me!" You don't ever get completely absolved, you just do your best to push back against the damage when you see it, and let those who see you in action know you by what you do. (But then, that's in part my religion speaking. We believe that "you are your deeds". Talk is cheap.)

...your kidding right, a "ally cookie-hunting"? Are you trying to push away everybody that supports LGBT?

Let me first say that I do agree with Stagnant in general; it's very good that you tell us that you oppose anti-gay Christianity. Great! But... I have to make barely veiled attacks at your faith while unloading my emotional baggage against Christianity. Not because you're Christian, but because you say...

Angelblaze:
I believe in god, jesus and the Bible. I believe that each and every word of the Bible is true.

And then you claim...

Angelblaze:
even though theres nothing in the bible detailing it as wrong.

I DON'T believe being gay/homosexual is a sin, in fact being gay is only a 'sin' in the old testament

1 Corinthians 6:9
New International Version (NIV)
9 Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men[a]
Footnotes:
1 Corinthians 6:9 The words men who have sex with men translate two Greek words that refer to the passive and active participants in homosexual acts.

Corinthians is New Testament, right?

And you believe every word of the Bible is true?

Ephesians 6:5
New International Version (NIV)
5 Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ.

1 Timothy 6:1
New International Version (NIV)
1 All who are under the yoke of slavery should consider their masters worthy of full respect, so that God's name and our teaching may not be slandered.

Titus 2:9-10
New International Version (NIV)
9 Teach slaves to be subject to their masters in everything, to try to please them, not to talk back to them, 10 and not to steal from them, but to show that they can be fully trusted, so that in every way they will make the teaching about God our Savior attractive.

1 Peter 2:18
New International Version (NIV)
18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.

1 Timothy 2:12
New International Version (NIV)
12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet.

Ephesians 5:22-23
New International Version (NIV)
22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.

Romans 13:1-7
New International Version (NIV)
Romans 13

1 Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.
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2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.

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3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended.

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4 For the one in authority is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God's servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.

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6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.

You believe in the Bible? You think each and every word of the Bible is true?

I'd retort that you're just not very good at being a Christian.

The fact of the matter is, "Christianity" has an objective definition, and part of that definition is the belief that homosexuality is wrong. The Magisterium exists to decide things like that. If you don't agree with the charter, leave the club.

Angelblaze:
I believe that each and every word of the Bible is true.

Okay, now be very careful here. Honestly: have you read each and every word of the Bible? And for that matter, you're aware that it is full of contradictions from one book to the next? Even dismissing the Old Testament entirely (which Christians generally aren't supposed to do), the New Testament can be quite morally reprehensible.

Asita:

Polarity27:

*reads thread* Wow, TMI, and I'm side-eyeing the use of "homosexual". That's the term people who hate us like to use, that's not a word we use to describe ourselves. If OP is serious about writing about LGBT people, that would help.

To be perfectly fair, I doubt there was malice there and I'd be hesitant to ascribe anything to the use of the term if only because of convenience. If I say "gay" one can almost always assume there are men involved, whether or not I'm also talking about women is anyone's guess. Conversely if I say 'lesbian', then one can assume I'm only talking about women. Homosexual presents itself as a descriptive gender-neutral term and thus convenient for discussion. Personally, I like using that term for the same reason I prefer to use the term 'heterosexual' rather than 'straight' in discussions like this: it simply sounds more professional to me and neither term strikes me as offensive.

Oh, no, I don't think there's malice in the OP at all, I think she's well-intentioned. It's just that "homosexual" is a loaded term to a lot of LGBTQ folks because it's either clinical (with all of the history of homosexuality being in the DSM) or used derisively by Evangelicals (who generally use that word as a deliberate thing, in a refusal to endorse LGBTQ people's own ways of identifying themselves). For someone who loves writing fiction about gay people, using that word is a bit of a head-tilt. Something she might want to think about if she wants to understand the people she's writing about, that's all.

(I understand where you're coming from. If you're scrupulous about using both "heterosexual" and "homosexual", that's fine. I personally don't find "gay" as a broad term objectionable, but I know other people do and that's understandable.)

mechanixis:
I'd retort that you're just not very good at being a Christian.

The fact of the matter is, "Christianity" has an objective definition, and part of that definition is the belief that homosexuality is wrong. The Magisterium exists to decide things like that. If you don't agree with the charter, leave the club.

Not so. At least for Catholics, not so. It's the act that they have a problem with, in proper doctrinal terms, not the orientation. If you're gay and celibate, you can still be in communion.

(I know, I know, tell the Catholics that, but that's the correct theology. Had a roomful of Catholic theologians tell me so, including one who actually *is* gay and celibate, and could argue rings around everyone around him.)

Volf:

Polarity27:

Good post. I was pretty nice in comparison. :)

I don't buy that he's completely absolved, though. He posted this to a majority-non-Christian board, it's not like he's preaching love and tolerance to his own crowd. We have a name for this kind of thing on some of the other sites I visit: "ally cookie-hunting". Basically, someone from a privileged group talking to people who lack his privilege and expecting to get virtual cookies and kudos and back-pats for not being an asshole; when not being an asshole, treating LGBT people *like people* and advocating for the rights of all people is the bare fucking minimum a decent person should be doing. If he's as vocal IRL as he's being here in support of LGBT people here, that's being a decent person and I'm glad, but it doesn't deserve cookies. Being a decent person should be its own damn reward. Does it matter if everyone sees you? You see you. (And if you're religious, your gods and your ancestors see you.)

It's also a never-ending task. You can go round and round debating whether it's possible to be a good person in a harm-doing group. (In some way or another, almost all of us are.) But the only way to do that is to take responsibility for the harm, and then work to mitigate it. Not "it's those people over there, those isolated people, blame them, not me!" You don't ever get completely absolved, you just do your best to push back against the damage when you see it, and let those who see you in action know you by what you do. (But then, that's in part my religion speaking. We believe that "you are your deeds". Talk is cheap.)

...your kidding right, a "ally cookie-hunting"? Are you trying to push away everybody that supports LGBT?

So... you've suddenly decided you're supportive? Could have fooled me.

Yes, I'm serious. No, it's not limited to LGBT issues-- it would be every bit as obnoxious if I wandered into a thread about racism and told a bunch of Black posters "please don't be mad at us all, not all white people are like that! Some of us try really hard to shout down racists!" They'd be completely justified to think I'm cookie-hunting, and to think I'm a pain in the ass.

Polarity27:

mechanixis:
I'd retort that you're just not very good at being a Christian.

The fact of the matter is, "Christianity" has an objective definition, and part of that definition is the belief that homosexuality is wrong. The Magisterium exists to decide things like that. If you don't agree with the charter, leave the club.

Not so. At least for Catholics, not so. It's the act that they have a problem with, in proper doctrinal terms, not the orientation. If you're gay and celibate, you can still be in communion.

Right, true, but the point is, Christianity is opposed to homosexual acts. That is part of what the label entails, and that is why the label comes under attack. If you say "I'm a Christian, but I don't subscribe to the beliefs associated with Christianity," it's your own fault for misusing the term.

Now, I strongly suspect that the OP was raised Christian (just based on how predominantly that determines a person's religion.) He probably feels that being a Christian is an intrinsic quality of himself that he can't change, and therefore even as his personal beliefs and morals branch away from the group he considers himself a part of, he still feels obliged to think of himself as a Christian. People inferring that he believes standard Christian beliefs when they learn he thinks of himself as a Christian becomes a "generalization." I contest this. The definition of the label is static. The OP's religious identity is not.

Polarity27:

So... you've suddenly decided you're supportive? Could have fooled me.

I was always supportive.

Polarity27:

Yes, I'm serious. No, it's not limited to LGBT issues-- it would be every bit as obnoxious if I wandered into a thread about racism and told a bunch of Black posters "please don't be mad at us all, not all white people are like that! Some of us try really hard to shout down racists!" They'd be completely justified to think I'm cookie-hunting, and to think I'm a pain in the ass.

But why push away somebody who has good intentions, and who may possibly want to help/join/support you?

mechanixis:
I'd retort that you're just not very good at being a Christian.

The fact of the matter is, "Christianity" has an objective definition, and part of that definition is the belief that homosexuality is wrong. The Magisterium exists to decide things like that. If you don't agree with the charter, leave the club.

I am curious: what would you call someone who devotes their life to living like Jesus Christ and following his teachings? Because your definition of Christianity seems to be very different than mine.

Well, if you're living as a modern western human, based on the teachings of a text written by old men in the ancient Middle East, then I'd say your interpretative skills are rather lacking.

Still significantly better than being an actual Christian with a logically stringent and absolute adherence to the theologically authoritative dogma though.

If you actually believe the bible, as in each and every word of it is true, you're a complete idiot. No other way to put it. The bible is so contradictory within it's first 20 pages or so that you can't believe it's true, even if you claim to. So that's out of the way.

Ok yes, we know not all Christians are alike. But until those who aren't hateful, bigoted assholes stand up and start shouting down those who are, you are going to get lumped with them. If you don't all stand up, if you just sit there and do nothing while they continue their hate filled spewing which results in people killing themselves from the bullying, you are approving by inaction what they do. You might not like it, but guess what, we don't like the actions of your groups very much either. Last time I checked though, we aren't pressuring teenage kids into killing themselves over sexuality. So you don't have the moral high ground as a group.

If you really want to get across the "We're not all the same":
1) Stop hiding your bigotry and hatred behind your "sacred texts". They aren't sacred, we don't have to respect them, and they are not a license to preach hatred.
2) When those in your group start preaching all the hatred, stand up and oppose them. If they are truly the minority, crush them with the sound of your outrage, with the protests of "NO, THIS IS NOT WHAT WE BELIEVE".
3) Stop trying to get your idiotic beliefs brought in as "facts" in schools, and hate laws mandated by religion, and interfering with sexual education, and health. Keep your worship in your home and church, and the hell out of schools, hospitals and courtrooms.

Until all those are done though, as a group I will judge you as archaic, hateful, bigoted, ignorant fools. On an individual basis though, of course I will treat you with respect, as I would ask to be treated in return, unless you do something to show that you are not worthy of it.

Volf:
...your kidding right, a "ally cookie-hunting"? Are you trying to push away everybody that supports LGBT?

I don't think anyone that supports LGBT people would be offended by this post. Certainly I'd understand if the OP was offended by it, if Polarity misunderstood him, but nothing Polarity said wasn't true if taken as a general statement, without touching on whether or not it applies to the OP. Supporting equal rights for everyone should be the prerequisite for anyone who lives in and supports a free, democratic society.

OP: It's wrong to generalise, we all know that, and we all know why. There are a lot of people in the world who are good people who believe in equal rights for all who also happen to be Christian. Whatever the ratio of "good" Christian to "bad" Christian is, there isn't nearly enough "good" ones.

Being a Christian in America is a position of immense privilege, whether or not as an individual Christian you feel like it's privileged you directly. America, as a whole, has a lot of suspicion for non-Christians and outright hatred for people who are altogether irreligious. This is from a study done by the University of Minnesota:

This group does not at all agree with my vision of American society...

Atheist: 39.6%
Muslims: 26.3%
Homosexuals: 22.6%
Hispanics: 20%
Conservative Christians: 13.5%
Recent Immigrants: 12.5%
Jews: 7.6%

Almost half the country thinks that being an atheist goes against their vision of American society, while only just under 15% thinks that gay-hating, woman-subjugating, authoritarian "Conservative Christians" go against their vision of American society. In America, if you don't at least pretend to be Christian you have just about a 0% chance of being elected to public office, you could be denied employment opportunities, entirely excluded from your local community since almost every community organisation, especially in smaller cities and towns, revolves around Christianity, and be constantly belittled and disrespected for your beliefs. A lot of people in the gaming community are also fairly young and struggle immensely at home and face rejection from their families for their lack of belief. For gays also, no group fights harder to deny them full citizenship than Christian churches and Christian lobby groups. Is it any wonder why a lot of non-Christians have a vocal disdain for the privileged group that they see as rejecting them from society?

For people like yourself, OP, do the Christlike thing, understand why non-Christians and gays may have a hatred for Christianity, understand that it may be misplaced, or not apply to you personally, perhaps reassure them that you, as a Christian, don't think that their lack of belief or sexual orientation or anything else makes them a bad person, be polite, kind, and turn the other cheek.

And yes, to back up what Polarity was saying, we prefer the term "gay" rather than "homosexual", "homosexual" is kind of like the gay equivalent of what "negro" is to African-Americans. It's an outdated term that is often intended to have negative connotations attached to it. OP, I seriously doubt that you at all intended to say that in a disparaging way, and usually I wouldn't feel like it's really necessary to point it out, but in the future, if it's all the same, consider using "gay" instead of "homosexual". :)

BreakfastMan:
...
I am curious: what would you call someone who devotes their life to living like Jesus Christ and following his teachings? Because your definition of Christianity seems to be very different than mine.

A Jeffersonian.

Somebody with a complete disregard for the authoritativeness of the official theological dogma, who still want to associate with certain choice parts of it.

BreakfastMan:

mechanixis:
I'd retort that you're just not very good at being a Christian.

The fact of the matter is, "Christianity" has an objective definition, and part of that definition is the belief that homosexuality is wrong. The Magisterium exists to decide things like that. If you don't agree with the charter, leave the club.

I am curious: what would you call someone who devotes their life to living like Jesus Christ and following his teachings? Because your definition of Christianity seems to be very different than mine.

Well, if we're taking the modern interpretation of Jesus, which preaches nonviolence and universal compassion, maybe I'd call that humanism? I don't think many progressive Christians would object to be being labelled humanists. It's certainly an admirable and worldly thing to be, and explains objections to doctrine over things like homosexuality and birth control.

Unless you literally mean "like Jesus Christ," which is a bit more complicated. Jesus was definitely an excellent moralist and centuries ahead of his time, but in their original cultural context, early Christian teachings were very ingroup vs. outgroup. For instance "Love Thy Neighbor" definitely did not mean "Love All Mankind"; it meant something more like "Love Members of Your Own Religion (i.e. Judaism.)" "Thou Shalt Not Kill" meant something more like "Thou Shalt Not Kill Other Jews." Over the centuries this has evolved into something more absolute and universal, as our moral thinking became more inclusive, but my point is that "Jesus the Legend" with his white skin and handsome beard is a very different person from "Jesus the Actual Person", if the latter even existed at all.

Imperator_DK:
snip...

mechanixis:
snip...

Well there's your problem, right there. We all seem to have a different definition of what it means to be a Christian (language is a funny thing, isn't it?). Many Christians call themselves Christians because they follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and try to live like him while having vague theistic beliefs. When those people are grouped together with the Westboro Baptist church, or are told that they are "just not very good at being a Christian", they get angry, and things like this thread is the result.

Volf:

Polarity27:

Yes, I'm serious. No, it's not limited to LGBT issues-- it would be every bit as obnoxious if I wandered into a thread about racism and told a bunch of Black posters "please don't be mad at us all, not all white people are like that! Some of us try really hard to shout down racists!" They'd be completely justified to think I'm cookie-hunting, and to think I'm a pain in the ass.

But why push away somebody who has good intentions, and who may possibly want to help/join/support you?

Because intention isn't magic. Let me put it this way-- it's a bit like asking your parents for praise and an extra allowance because you did your chores. Doing your chores is the bare minimum that's expected of you. What the OP, and other moderate-to-liberal Christians are saying is that they are Christians and they support LGBTQ people, they think we deserve all of the rights that everyone else enjoys, and that we're actually people. If that's especially praise-worthy, that says a lot of things about Christians, and none of it good. That's how people *should* treat other people, it shouldn't be marked out as special.

She's basically saying "hi, I'm a Christian, and I'm not an asshole!" You pretty much have to be surrounded by a lot of assholes for that sentence construction to even make sense. Let me try it this way-- tell me if you think this sentence is weird or not. "Hi, I'm a cabinet-maker, and I'm not an asshole!" I think that would get a lot of confusion. "Umm... yay? Why would anyone think you're an asshole?" Because there aren't a lot of loud cabinet-makers being assholes, you wouldn't have any particular assumption about a cabinet-maker one way or the other. I'd say that if there are so many assholes in whatever group you're in that you need to make a point of distinguishing yourself as not one, the group has a problem. By extension, *you* have a problem. My point is to simply say that if your group is that full of problem people, and you truly care about supporting the people that the problem people are aiming their vitriol at, you'd worry less about how those people feel about you (your feelings and reputation) and more about the actual harm that the problem people are doing in your name. In other words, it should be about the people being harmed, not your (general you, not specifically you) feelings being hurt.

And I say that as a member and former member of several groups full of assholes. :)

ten.to.ten:

Volf:
...your kidding right, a "ally cookie-hunting"? Are you trying to push away everybody that supports LGBT?

I don't think anyone that supports LGBT people would be offended by this post. Certainly I'd understand if the OP was offended by it, if Polarity misunderstood him, but nothing Polarity said wasn't true if taken as a general statement, without touching on whether or not it applies to the OP. Supporting equal rights for everyone should be the prerequisite for anyone who lives in and supports a free, democratic society.

Right. I'm not offended by it at all, just somewhat frustrated because there are so many posts just like this. There are several threads where conservatives are arguing an anti-gay position. I'd love to see the OP arm herself with some theology and wade in to those discussions. There are so many things Christians like this can actually *do* that would be incredibly helpful that it's frustrating how much time they spend worrying about whether or not we like them. It hurts when you feel people are angry with you because of something someone else did. I get that. I've felt that, with people of color saying they distrust and dislike white people. But you've got to get past those feelings if you want to actually do something useful. People that are angry have a reason to be angry, it's not about you personally. As you said, being a Christian in America is an immensely privileged position. That's a bad state of affairs, but people who have privilege can be incredibly helpful if they wield that privilege to do good.

America, as a whole, has a lot of suspicion for non-Christians and outright hatred for people who are altogether irreligious.

They outright hate a lot of non-Christian religious people too. They hate Pagans, try to take our children, kick our businesses out of their spaces, desecrate our public sacred space, refuse our soldiers the right to a proper symbol on their gravestones, and show up with signs and spouting hatred at some of our events. They treat practitioners of African Traditional Religions even worse. Dead animal? It's a voodoo thing, string up the local Haitian!

And yes, to back up what Polarity was saying, we prefer the term "gay" rather than "homosexual", "homosexual" is kind of like the gay equivalent of what "negro" is to African-Americans. It's an outdated term that is often intended to have negative connotations attached to it. OP, I seriously doubt that you at all intended to say that in a disparaging way, and usually I wouldn't feel like it's really necessary to point it out, but in the future, if it's all the same, consider using "gay" instead of "homosexual". :)

Yup, exactly. I seriously wouldn't have mentioned it at all if OP hadn't been a writer of gay fiction. I write, and I tend to hold writers to a somewhat higher standard because you have to understand the group you're writing about enough to write them well, and the right words are part of that. I hope OP doesn't take it as a broadside, and will hopefully see it as constructive criticism from one writer to another.

BreakfastMan:

Imperator_DK:
snip...

mechanixis:
snip...

Well there's your problem, right there. We all seem to have a different definition of what it means to be a Christian (language is a funny thing, isn't it?). Many Christians call themselves Christians because they follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and try to live like him while having vague theistic beliefs. When those people are grouped together with the Westboro Baptist church, or are told that they are "just not very good at being a Christian", they get angry, and things like this thread is the result.

I didn't group you in with the Westboro Baptist Church: you did that yourself. The word "Christian" comes with baggage; if you don't want that baggage, don't use the term. I wouldn't associate a "theistic humanist" with homophobia. But for some reason you insist on going by the label "Christian."

There's a strange assumption that "Christian" means whatever the individual Christian in question thinks it means. I don't think that's true. There are objective definitions and accepted doctrines for pretty much any sect of Christianity you could care to name, as well as a number of central characteristics that apply to the majority of those sects. I disagree with the idea that the definition should be warped to accommodate your evolving morals just because you aren't comfortable renouncing the religion you happened to be born into.

mechanixis:

BreakfastMan:

Imperator_DK:
snip...

mechanixis:
snip...

Well there's your problem, right there. We all seem to have a different definition of what it means to be a Christian (language is a funny thing, isn't it?). Many Christians call themselves Christians because they follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and try to live like him while having vague theistic beliefs. When those people are grouped together with the Westboro Baptist church, or are told that they are "just not very good at being a Christian", they get angry, and things like this thread is the result.

I didn't group you in with the Westboro Baptist Church: you did that yourself. The word "Christian" comes with baggage; if you don't want that baggage, don't use the term. I wouldn't associate a "theistic humanist" with homophobia. But for some reason you insist on going by the label "Christian."

There's a strange assumption that "Christian" means whatever the individual Christian in question thinks it means. I don't think that's true. There are objective definitions and accepted doctrines for pretty much any sect of Christianity you could care to name, as well as a number of central characteristics that apply to the majority of those sects. I disagree with the idea that the definition should be warped to accommodate your evolving morals just because you aren't comfortable renouncing the religion you happened to be born into.

That is not the point. The "baggage" that comes with the term is largely in the mind of the individual. If someone has a majority of good experiences with people who call themselves Christians, there is little to no negative preconceptions attached to the term. For those who have had a lot of negative experiences with those who call themselves Christians, there are most likely a lot of negative preconceptions. That is where all the negative "baggage" comes from. The word "Christian" itself, going by the dictionary definition found here, carries with it nothing inherently negative. Those negative preconceptions are created in the mind of the individual. I am not saying that the definition should be "warped", as you say, I am just asking the people be aware that the word carries with it different connotations to different people.

Geez this thread actually got somewhere.

I would like to apologize though, I used homosexual as a blanket term because I wanted to ref both 'lesbians' and 'gays', without it sounding offending but it seems I actually did the opposite >_<. Also Danyal, thats quite the post you have there using Hitler and the 'Nazis' as a counter against me. Shall I counter with the king james interpretation?

1 Corinthians 6:9 (King James 2000 Bible)
'Know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind.'
The American King James translation says the same thing. I suppose its something thats up for debate.

Furthermore, it is said in the bible that we are made RIGHT by god, meaning that that does not apply to those who believe in or trust in christ (saved, if you want me get more 'religious')

the NIV Version
Romans 3:22
This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference.

New Living Translation (same scripture)
We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.

And yes, this thread was a 'bad idea' but I needed to get it off my chest. It's very annoying when people make these generalizations and call all 'Christians' dumb or stupid or something of the like. It's just as offensive to say that 'All gays are retarded'

I'd also like to note before it's taken wrong that I'm not just supporting 'Christian' homosexuals/gays. I'm also supporting those who choose to have a different belief, in fact I'm sure 'non christians' are going to be saved as well (A longly written out personal belief far to long to go into depth in here). The real question that I believe you have to ask when the whole 'Are you a christian or not' debate thing comes up is 'Do you have a relationship with god, do you believe he exists, do you believe jesus and in his forgiveness and in his sacrifice?' Since...I'm pretty sure the bible doesn't say you MUST be a christian in order to go to heaven....

Angelblaze:
Geez this thread actually got somewhere.

I would like to apologize though, I used homosexual as a blanket term because I wanted to ref both 'lesbians' and 'gays', without it sounding offending but it seems I actually did the opposite >_<.

It's cool, I figured it was something like that. Just wanted to give you a heads-up.

I was somewhat hard on you in this post, but I do think your heart is in the right place. And instead of wasting your scripture on Danyal's Godwinning, I'd love to see a scripture battle with someone like Seekster (when he comes back from his... errr... enforced vacation) or one of the other anti-gay Christians. They're used to atheists arguing with them, they don't get many Christians arguing with them.

BreakfastMan:

Imperator_DK:
snip...

mechanixis:
snip...

Well there's your problem, right there. We all seem to have a different definition of what it means to be a Christian (language is a funny thing, isn't it?).

It's not language which is funny, it's human inability to grasp its objective linguistic meaning which is pathetic.

Many Christians call themselves Christians because they follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and try to live like him while having vague theistic beliefs.

But as adherence to the Christian religion - i.e. the official and authoritative shared set of beliefs is needed in order to actually be a Christian - i.e. an adherent to the religion of Christianity - those have simply mislabeled themselves.

If they can find a Christian denomination, "X", which as its official theology state that homosexuality, sex before marriage, idolatry, atheism etc. are not sins, then they can actually call themselves "X Christian" without simultaneously voicing condemnation of them (and hence be condemned for doing so in turn).

When those people are grouped together with the Westboro Baptist church, or are told that they are "just not very good at being a Christian", they get angry, and things like this thread is the result.

If they get angry over their own linguistic/theological shortcomings, that's hardly of any concern to the people who're in the right. Their personal delusions of the meaning matters nothing, as little as if I had personally deemed the word chair to refer to what the dictionary calls a bed.

If they don't want to be associated with a book full of heinous norms from the ancient Middle East, they shouldn't associate themselves with book full of heinous norms from the ancient Middle East. That's hardly rocket science.

If you're not like that, fine. I don't particularly feel that any one Christian or member of a group has to stand up and say they're not a shitbag, because I think it just encourages people to judge a group by the worst of its members.

That said, while you've identified yourself as one of the decent individuals in that particular faith, I can't exactly think better of it. The problem with it is it's all things to all people, to borrow one of it's cliches - a belief system that allows both beliefs like yours and beliefs like the dominionists trolling people who want to play TOR because oh noes teh gay to coexist under the same banner and derive support from the same book (while frantically denying that the others doing so are "True Christians") is pretty questionable, in my opinion. You're still a supporter of the same system they use, and it's through no less an amount of cherry-picking than they resort to.

ten.to.ten:

And yes, to back up what Polarity was saying, we prefer the term "gay" rather than "homosexual", "homosexual" is kind of like the gay equivalent of what "negro" is to African-Americans. It's an outdated term that is often intended to have negative connotations attached to it. OP, I seriously doubt that you at all intended to say that in a disparaging way, and usually I wouldn't feel like it's really necessary to point it out, but in the future, if it's all the same, consider using "gay" instead of "homosexual". :)

Well, this is news to me.

I was always under the impression that "gay" was the derogatory term and that "homosexual" was fine.

Unless it's different in different countries?

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