02 January 2011

RANT: Gay Marriage

I honestly don't understand why churches fight so hard against gay marriage. Especially my church- the LDS church. Why is it that they are fighting against the most chaste, worthy, admirable thing that this group of people want? I mean, these are two people that want to make a commitment to one another, to be true to each other, to support one another through good and bad times. It is the most worthy goal that these people wish to attain and yet it is struck down by people in the name of God.

These same churches insist that homosexuals are a bunch of sex maniacs who go around sleeping with anyone that happens to pass by. But if it was all about the sex, why would any gay person in their right mind want to marry? Sex comes easy if that's all you want and marriage is hard. But these churches (who say that they support the family unit and chastity), rather than help those gay individuals who do want committed relationships to be granted the ability to marry, fight against it, forcing this group of people to dwell in the gutters that they despise.

Sure, maybe homosexuals don't live the life that you think is ideal. Maybe living a gay life with a partner is just not what God would want according to your beliefs, but does that mean you have the right to take away the ability for these people to live the "right" life as best they can? Think about it. Lets take a conservative number and say that 5% of the population is gay. That means there are almost 700,000 gay members of the church. Why do we not support those members by encouraging them to stay chaste until marriage. To apply the law of chastity in their dating habits just as we do the habits of heterosexual members? Instead, we call this core characteristic wrong and evil and fight against the opportunity for them to enter into a committed relationship with the person they love. We give them no hope of an appropriate relationship that they can wait for to begin sexual expressions of love. We simply say that to live like a gay person is wrong and if that is what you are going to do, you might as well sleep around and be promiscuous because it isn't any more wrong than being gay in the first place.

And then these "Christians" point to how dirty the "homosexual lifestyle" is and use it to maintain their condemnation of them. It is a catch-22. Christians refuse to allow gay people legitimate relationships, but then attack the community for not having legitimate relationships. It makes me sick. I just don't understand the thinking behind it. I don't understand where Christ's teachings are being applied here. We are all sinners. And guess what.... even the LEAST sin will keep you from the kingdom of heaven, so why do Christians insist on rating sins? Maybe it makes some people feel better about their own sins if they can point and say that this or that sin is the worst one.

Maybe my family can't look exactly like yours... but why wouldn't you want me to have as close an equivalent as I can? Why would you wish anyone to be alone their whole life, unable to enter marriage and begin a family within a committed, loving relationship? Why is it so bad that I want a family within which my partner and I can grow and learn, raise and teach children, and build a Christ-centered home? How is making that unobtainable helping anyone?


Trev said...

I think I understand this line of thought, to some degree, actually. I've been out to myself for a while (like a decade), but the idea of celibacy and what it actually meant never really sunk into me until, well, subconsciously the last year and a half (after my mission) and, consciously, this past two weeks or so.

I had a breakthrough on 1 January: I admitted to myself that I favor gay marriage--not just that I don't not oppose it--I think it's the right choice for society to not just accept committed homosexual relationships but to, as you say, encourage what can be achieved through them that is good and noble.

Well, my views on gay marriage have been evolving since I came out to myself. First of all, I had great sympathy for homosexuals but still favored not permitting gay marriage. Then, for the longest time I was "undecided"--with the latter half of that being perfectly willing to be convinced that it was okay, but because it still didn't "feel right" somehow, I didn't really look into it a lot to be convinced, though I knew I probably would be.

The fact of the matter is, I have always believed the Gospel, and I still do. But, only recently have I realized (thanks in large measure to people like you who blog about your own journeys) that I can still believe the Gospel and accept the reality of homosexuality. I finally realize that once the reality of homosexuality is realized--there really is no other conclusion that can be reached other than that gay marriage is a good thing.

I think the problem with the Church is that the membership in general are just in an earlier stage of understanding the reality of homosexuality and don't know what to about it. I was out to myself for a long time and still opposed homosexual marriage, if only on principle, but I could never sensibly explain why.

I think it's tragic that things have to be how they are with the Church membership's attitude, but at the same time it's completely understandable to me. I honestly can't be angry (maybe I will be at a future point when I'm actually moving toward a relationship--I've got a long way to go). People are doing the best they can, and I think much of the Church is doing a pretty good job considering most of them don't have the reality of homosexuality in their own lives to force them to make conclusions like we do--but even I who have acknowledged it in my life for a long time am only now starting to have the courage to come to conclusions and act--even if it's only a mental level currently--for my own happiness.

Trev said...

ARGH! I just posted a long and thoughtful comment, and it couldn't be processed. Now I still want to share my feelings, but I don't want to expend all that effort again. So, the gist...

It is very sad that so much of the Church membership thinks this way, but I really can't be angry with them. Even though I came out to myself over ten years ago, my own thoughts on gay marriage have undergone a long evolution. Only as of 1 January this year could I say, definitively and confidently, that I support gay marriage! I do not oppose it, do not "not oppose" it, nor am I "undecided," all of which I have sequentially been.

If it takes me this long to come around, even with the intense personal pressure of my own homosexuality bearing down on me all the time, then I can't necessarily begrudge a longer turnaround time for my brothers and sisters. Of course, I can blame myself if I don't do what I can to appropriately increase awareness of the issue through frank conversations and appropriate self-revelation.

Gay Mormon said...

@Trev- I know exactly how you feel. Before I went through the process of accepting my sexuality I was still of the opinion that if I hated homosexuality and fought against it hard enough, it would disappear from within me. So when prop 8 came around, I voted yes. Now I wish I could take that back as I'm sure my parents wish they could. The yes vote was based on ignorance. I think that most people honestly voted yes because they were told to, not because they really understood what it meant.

Anyway, congratulations on your progress! I think that you are right... people in the church aren't intentionally trying to hurt people. It is just the lack of education and understanding on the matter. That's why I hope that by sharing my experiences and "coming out" people will begin to consider this issue more carefully- even if it is only the loved ones in my life.

El Genio said...

MoHoHawaii said it best:

"The Church's involvement in Prop 8 wasn't about sex. Before and after Prop 8 people were free to have as much sex as they want. Prop 8 was about keeping gay people in the gutter where the Church (among others) had thrown them. The Church has no problem with gay people who are promiscuous, drunken, low-achieving ne'er-do-wells. These people make great examples of what not to do. It objects when gay people settle down, get mortgages and join the Rotary Club! Objecting to the social integration of people who want to live responsibly is one of sure signs of prejudice. The trope about the Church not hating gay people is nauseating. Let's not use the word hate. Let's say animus instead. The basis of prejudice is animus. And the LDS Church has it in spades for gay people. "

Steven Lester said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steven Lester said...

I think that I explained the reason for the Church's hate for Gay Marriage and gayness in general in a long comment made several weeks ago. Did you even read it?

All of you young folks think that the Church as It exists today is the Church as It has always existed. This is not true. Only by following the evolution of this outright hate for gays, as it grew out of an actual hate philosophy for first gentiles and then blacks, which now no longer applies in the hearts of the Americans they want to convert, can you understand how we got to where we are today within the subculture. Once Americans begin to accept Gay Marriage as a right and even proper between same-sex couples, and the Church begins to see their own conversions begin to dip bigtime because people really would rather not belong to something unpopular in its belief structure, you will see a turn-around not unlike that which finally allowed the Blacks to get the Priesthood, a Priesthood that G.A. after G.A. stated without exemption could never be granted to those who wore the curse of Cain until the Second Coming. (This, of course, was way before your time.) Well, has the Second Coming arrived yet? I thought not. Can a Black Man get the Priesthood? Certainly, anytime day or night. How amazing this is!

You keep trying to come with explanations that preserve your core belief that the Church is still the Divinely-directed thing It was when It began. So, you see things with those proverbial rose-colored glasses. The truth is much darker than you want to see. You know that Great And Abominable Church (Whore) That covers the whole Earth? Look at its description and look at our Church objectively, and just try not to see a connection. Joe Smith was truly a Prophet! But after he and his brother were murdered, who was around to keep Satan out? Rigdon? Brigham Young? Riiight. This happens with every religion, from Judaism to Islam, that starts out small and pure. Within 200 years it goes to the boards and poof goes its purity. The Office of The (LDS) President Incorporated is no exception.

Gay Mormon said...

@Steven- I did read your earlier comment. I'm sorry that you think that I am not aware of everything you are saying simply because it was "before my time." I am aware of all that. My eyes aren't closed to our history... but my heart isn't closed either. Joseph Smith was far from perfect... it didn't make him less of a prophet. All prophets are men and they make mistakes. Their experience is limited, just like any person. I don't believe that any of them are malicious. I believe they are all good men doing the best they know how. God doesn't call perfect men. And yes, perhaps some of these imperfect men have made choices that have affected the church negatively... but that doesn't change the truthfulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Having faith that Christ's church will be made whole isn't a weakness in my mind. I'm sorry you see it as such.

You say my core belief is that the church is divinely directed. I ask you where you came up with that assumption. My core belief is in Christ. Everything else builds upon that. You think going to church is comfortable for me? You think I don't get hurt and angry at things that are done and said? No thickness of rose colored glasses can take away that hurt. I see it plain and clear. But my faith is in Christ, not in those people who say negative things. And I believe that if Christ really is guiding the church, corrections will be made. Just because Christ guides it doesn't mean the men who run it always follow. The scriptures are jammed pack of examples of this. Even Joseph Smith failed to follow Christ's counsel on a number of occasions.

Why does it bother you so much that I still have faith in the church? That I look forward to the day when it will be perfected?

FindingMyWay said...

I'm giving you some link love on my blog. I agree with your rant wholeheartedly. Thank you for sharing your thoughts so that I could take an easier route and simply link to you. :)

Anonymous said...

I posted a link on my blog this afternoon regarding what you have written here. Your points are well taken. If I found someone whom I loved, I would want to make that relationship as legal and binding as I could. I have heard so many in the gay community talk about the differences in their relationships with their "significant others" after they were allowed, by the state, to make their unions legal.

It drives me BONKERS when religion and state become wrapped around each other. The constitution calls for that separation. The Doctrine and Covenants tells us to obey the laws of the land- what better law of the land to abide by than our constitution?

Happy New Year!

LionHeart said...

My bishop is fairly liberal. He told me in private that he supports gay marriage because it helps gay people live more responsibly. It's nice that he is quite open-minded about the issue, but unfortunately, he can't change Church doctrine.

Gay Mormon said...

@FindingMyWay- Thanks! =)

@Zen Duck- I agree, whenever the conversation comes up about the church being the last entity holding up the constitution I force a painful laugh. Maybe one day, but that day is not today.

@LionHeart- I can only hope I have an open-minded, understanding bishop. That's awesome.

Anonymous said...

My pastor was just talking about how churchs catagoize sin. Homosexuality at the top, lying at the bottom and how it makes him sick because sin is still sin. there is no greater sin, its all the same in God's eyes

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