Notepad on Life

October 10, 2012

When disagreement becomes derision, Christians lose ground in gay marriage debate

Filed under: Church,Journalism — - @ 9:00 am
Tags: ,

Liberal though I used to be where homosexuality was concerned, I’m no longer sure the Bible gives me that option.

That doesn’t sit easily with my natural inclination to live and let live, so the gay marriage issue gives me cause more for reflection than spouting fire and brimstone.  I tend to save the polemic for when ‘tolerance’ turns out to be a one-way street and attempts are made with varying degrees of subtlety to shut down one side of the debate.

I am no less irked, however, when Christians reveal a petty side to their case that does their argument no favours. Consider, for example, this Christian Voice article on a Hong Kong millionaire who has offered a bounty of some £40m to the man who can win the heart of his lesbian daughter.

What caught my eye was the caption beneath an accompanying photo of his daughter and her gay partner, taken at their recent civil partnership ceremony:

“Gigi Chao Sze-tsung (right) and her civil partner Sean Eav (left) – we honestly thought at first that the one on the left was her father!”

Question – had the picture shown a man and woman on their wedding day and either he looked effeminate or she looked rather manly, do you suppose Christian Voice would have drawn attention to the fact? I suspect not, on the grounds that Voice staff  would have considered making a personal, gratuitous comment, uncalled for by the nature of the story, to have been at best unprofessional and at worst unkind and unChristian.

There is an unavoidable inference here that because the Voice doesn’t recognise the couple’s formal relationship, it doesn’t have to unduly concern itself with their feelings. This is an abysmal own goal. Sadly, it’s not the first from my team.

Last year, Michael L Brown published his book, A Queer Thing Happened to America: And What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been. While intended as rebuttal of the homosexual agenda, publisher and reviewers alike stressed the compassionate approach Brown had to his subject. Certainly, this came out in a discussion of his book between Brown and religious commentator, Dr Frank Turek, which prompted me to head to Amazon, where I beheld the book’s cover photo and heard the distant sound of breaking glass as all of Brown’s rhetoric imploded in my head.

I seem to recall him maintaining at the time that he knows several gay people who find this funny. Well, here’s one straight guy who doesn’t. I find it utterly self-defeating, projecting a message that we’re all serious and compassionate about homosexuality in the arena of public debate but away from camera, when the mics are off, it’s all just a bit of a giggle, these funny people with their limp wrists, fluffy slippers and butch dungarees. How could they possibly imagine they would get to Heaven looking like that?

This debate is difficult enough without ham-fistedness like this.

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