Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A pitch for tolerating intolerance

Here’s a letter in the Star Tribune today:

Yoder's response to Katherine Kersten was very moving. Yoder wrote about her two gay children, the struggles they have faced, and the love within their family. I thank her for her perspective, and I do not doubt her sincerity.

However, she completely missed Kersten's point, which was (that) it is not easy to be an opponent of same-sex marriage. [chortle]

Almost daily, the media accuses us of bigotry and hate. All of us have been dragged into fights we did not want. Most of us have lost friends we valued. Some have been financially, professionally or personally attacked. And it is getting worse.

Kersten's article documents how, increasingly, those of us who oppose same-sex sex activity are under attack in every region of our lives. Gay activists are beginning to threaten our grades in the classroom, our paychecks in the workplace and, in extreme cases, even our freedoms of speech and of worship.

Perhaps we deserve this. I certainly don't expect homosexuals to sympathize. They have faced much worse discrimination for much longer.

History may view our movement as the last courageous defense against a culture of death. Or as the last vestige of a homophobic Jim Crow. That history is being written now.

But Kersten is right. The gay-rights movement is no longer about mere tolerance. It is about enforced universal acceptance. Those of us who can never accept homosexual activity are weathering a worsening storm. Brittle courage keeps us afloat.

Please tolerate us, too.


The “last courageous defense against a culture of death” or the “last vestige of a homophobic Jim Crow.” Stirring.

You know, come to think of it, you do read almost every day about how some gay person went out and murdered a straight person. Like that killer out in Wyoming, Matthew Shepard.

No — wait — Matthew was the one who got killed! That’s right. Like all of the gay men who where slain by the convicted killers in this documentary film.

Heaney’s got his culture of death backwards.

It borders on the absurd is absurd to claim that Kersten — I have a passing familiarity with her writing — was merely remarking about hard it was to be an opponent of gay marriage. No, the column in question was just another call to arms in the shabby little charade that Kersten, and the Strib, too, call opinion journalism.

Andy Birkey did a nice debunk job on the said column in question.

It is laughable when, well, bigots like Heaney try to paint themselves as oppressed and deserving of tolerance. Consider Heaney’s last two sentences:

Those of us who can never accept homosexual activity are weathering a worsening storm. Brittle courage keeps us afloat.

This is a guy with a HUGE persecution complex. But as an exercise, where Heaney writes “homosexual activity,” substitute: blacks, Jews, Italians, or Irish.

And when Heaney replies, “This different; it says so in the Bible,” remind him that the Bible sanctioned slavery and multiple wives. And remind him that some “Christians” have been quoted very recently as saying that the Jews killed Jesus, when taking some time out from hating gays, apparently.

Finally, gay marriage does not mean forced acceptance. No one is forcing Heaney to have a gay wedding, or attend one, or even send a place setting of flatware as a gift for one. He doesn’t have to go to a church where gay marriages are performed.

Heaney actually summed it up pretty well himself: the last vestige of a homophobic Jim Crow. I doubt I could have said it better myself.

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