Why do so many still hate in the name of Religion?
Taking it to its ugliest extreme is this latest mass killing in a gay nightclub in Orlando where one man shot and killed 49 people, injuring over 50 because he saw two men kissing demonstrating their love.
Can we get to a point where violence stops being a response to people living differently than you?
The fact that some fundamental Christians on social media rejoiced at the death of LGBT Americans serves as a cruel and powerful reminder that hate is still out there.
Especially under the guise of religion.
This past Sunday, a Baptist preacher stood at his pulpit in Northern California and delivered a powerful sermon praising the brutal massacre at a gay nightclub in Florida telling his congregants that Christians “shouldn’t be mourning the death of 50 sodomites.”
Give Me That Old Time Religion
Despite the fact that most American have evolved and embrace gay marriage, a predictable backlash was swift. Opponents of gay rights legislation are ramping up, focusing a rival campaign around religious liberties claiming that a mandate to serve gays and lesbians might violate their faith. In just the past 6 months the Christian Right has introduced 200 anti-LGBT bills.
Angry protestors crying how “unlawful gay marriage is in the eyes of God” sound as though from a less enlightened time. Their fear based rhetoric hark back to the not so distant past when the very notion of gay marriage was inconceivable if not downright frightening.
In the early 1970s as gay rights became more vocal, pamphlets were produced by Christian conservatives filled with dire warnings of the dangers of homosexuality and the “coming revolution” invading the mainstream.
Literature circulated that was filled with homosexual warnings, as portrayed in a 1972 homophobic, religious comic booklet entitled “Gay Blade,” which ominously predicted a future filled with…gasp….gay marriage.
These small comics published by the Christian right-wing Chick Publications were filled with dire warnings of the dangers of homosexuality and the “coming revolution” invading the mainstream. The 3″x5″ comics sold cheaply in bulk making it handy for you to spread the hateful message everywhere you went- in phone booths, tables, Laundromats, school lockers, and windshields.
Called “chick tracts” these small comic booklets, approximately 20 pages in length, were short Evangelic themed stories created by Jack Chick an American Fundamentalist. Chick Publications, who boast on their current website–“publishing cartoon gospel tracts and equipping Christians for evangelism for fifty years.”
“The Gay Blade” ( originally written in 1972, revised in 1984 and now out of print) borrowed several of its frames from a 1971 Life Magazine photo essay on the Gay Liberation movement, but with the images altered to make gay men look more depraved and stereotypically feminized.
Chick tracts are unequivocal and explicit in their opposition to homosexuality and repeatedly employ themes such as 1.The belief that God hates homosexuality and considers it to be sinful and
2. The true nature of homosexuality is revealed in the Christian fundamental interpretation of the biblical Sodom and Gomorrah story.
Since 1961 Chick has cranked out tract after tract to” help sinners see the light, believing that Jesus can deliver anyone from Homosexuality and make them a new person.
The fear mongering continues over 40 years later.
The struggle for LGBT equality and freedom has been hard. Let us not pretend for a second it’s over
Take time to mourn those lost in Orlando.
Love is Love.
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© Sally Edelstein and Envisioning The American Dream, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Sally Edelstein and Envisioning The American Dream with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.