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November 11th, 2010
09:12 AM ET

New Christian sponsor takes over event challenging homosexuality

CNN's Dan Gilgoff filed this report:

A major Christian group will take over an annual event that challenges homosexuality, weeks after the event's main Christian sponsor pulled support for the student-focused program, saying it had become too divisive and confrontational.

Focus on the Family, an influential evangelical organization, will begin sponsoring the event known as the Day of Truth but will change the name of the happening to the Day of Dialogue, the group is set to announce Thursday.

The Day of Truth has been pushed by conservative Christian groups as a way for school students to counter the Day of Silence, an annual April event promoted by gay rights advocates to highlight threats against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.

Exodus International, which had been the Day of Truth's primary sponsor this year, announced last month that it was pulling support for the event.

Focus on the Family said that the Day of Dialogue "will boast a new name while maintaining the same goal it's had since its 2005 inception: encouraging honest and respectful conversation among students about God's design for sexuality," in a press release that is scheduled to go out Thursday.

Focus on the Family, based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, provided CNN an advance copy of the press release and offered CNN an early look at the event's web site, which is scheduled to go live on Thursday.

"We're trying to raise awareness that more than one side needs to be heard on the issue of homosexuality, and we're helping to ensure Christian students have the chance to express their viewpoint," said Candi Cushman, a Focus on the Family education analyst, in the release. "What is freedom of speech, after all, but a guarantee of the right to have dialogue?"

Cushman criticized the Day of Silence, which is sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network.

"Silence is a media op, but dialogue is a learning op," she said in the release. "That's why we're so proud of the more than 14,000 students who have taken advantage of this opportunity to learn and share."

The Day of Truth had traditionally been held on the same day as the Day of Silence, but Focus on the Family said that the 2011 Day of Dialogue is scheduled for April 18, three days after the Day of Silence.

On the Day of Silence, students take a "vow of silence to bring attention to anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment in their schools," according to a web site run by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network.

The Day of Silence began in 1996. The Day of Truth started in 2005 and attracted the participation of 6,000 students nationwide this year, said Alan Chambers, President of Exodus International.

"All the recent attention to bullying helped us realize that we need to equip kids to live out biblical tolerance and grace while treating their neighbors as they'd like to be treated, whether they agree with them or not," said Chambers said last month in announcing that his group would no longer support the event.

The Day of Truth was started by the conservative group Alliance Defense Fund, Chambers said, but the group transferred primary responsibility for the event to Exodus this year.

Focus on the Family's web site for the Day of Dialogue discourages participants from bullying other students.

"Any form of bullying and harassment of others is always wrong, including making fun of others, speaking down to them and saying things that hurt people," the site says. "Christian students in particular should be bold in speaking up to oppose that kind of behavior because it goes completely against the model Christ gave us."

"Any verbal and written expressions used by students participating in this event should be loving and compassionate - and never be expressed in a condemning or antagonistic way to others," the site continues. "Even when we disagree with others, we should always demonstrate the utmost compassion and respect for them."

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Homosexuality

soundoff (364 Responses)
  1. Andrew

    Having a gay lifestyle is a choice, why doesn't America let them choose? if they want to marry through the power of the state, then so be it. If Christians oppose gay marriage, that's fine by me. I don't care if they preach the bible at the top of their lungs at private events of their own, but when they start going round to soldiers and gay people's homes and even funerals, invoking emotional distress, then they have crossed the line. Wake up America, tolerate people who have a different lifestyle but feel free to disagree.

    November 11, 2010 at 5:19 pm |
    • NL

      Andrew-
      Actually, people are born ga y. It's how they live with it that's a choice. Like straight people, they can choose to be promiscuous, monogamous, or celibate. Also like straight people they can choose to be attracted to abusive personalities, be abusive themselves, or treat partners as equals. They can also choose to suppress their se.xu.ality, or become what society considers flamboyant, but that may just be a personality characteristic, like being 'witty'. However, like the rest of us, they can't choose what gender they are attracted to. Anyone who argues differently is admitting that they can find others of their gender attractive enough to have s.ex with, but are choosing to suppress that urge, right?

      November 11, 2010 at 5:53 pm |
  2. fuyuko

    I just hope they don't keep using the line 'love the sinner, hate the sin' which is just another way of saying we disagree/don't like who you are.

    November 11, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  3. mysteryrighter64

    Being a Christian in today's America has very little to do with love and goodness and everything to do with hate and sin. Why? I don't have a complete answer but the political power that has attached to it could be a clue. Which makes it all extra vile.

    November 11, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  4. RiBott

    There are faithful followers of Jesus of Nazareth who understand that our s-ex-ual being –g-ay, les-bian, straight, bi, tran-sgen-der – is a part of our wholeness, as we were created.

    It is not a s-in to love. As a Christ-ian, as a pastor, and as a human being, I will stand in the face of fear, hatred and het-ero-se-xis-m and say, “This MUST stop. Now.”

    I apologize to those for whom my faith-based language doesn’t make sense – it’s the only language I’ve got to challenge my siblings in Christ. G-ay, le-sbia-n, straight, bi, tr-ansg-ender or questioning? You ARE loved by God. There are communities of Christ’s people who will welcome you, as you are, no strings attached.

    I will take part in both the Day of Silence and the Day of Dialogue. The first to recognize a terribly sad reality, the second to offer faithful, loving challenge to my siblings in Christ.

    November 11, 2010 at 4:32 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      With all due respect, RiBott

      The problem we have is not with you human followers, necessarily. You can do nothing about the nature of your god, your bible will never change in that respect. The simple fact is, your god does not care if our intimate relationships are done out of spiritual love or lust...both are a sin to him, and that very god in the OT said we are to be put to death for it. However, the intimate relations of Straight christians done out of spiritual love are not sinful, and carry no death penalty with your god. Our relationships will never be equal with Straight ones amongst you christians. There are some traitors amongst us that can accept that status, but an abused child mollifies the abuser. We have no place with you, nor you with us except to evangelize can be a constant reminder of your god's feelings towards us. If some of you backsliders want to do something about it...fine. You are just cleaning up the mess of your own god's making, but the stain has set deep and will remain for a long time, and the vast majority of us will never forget it, and pass that down to the new members of our community.

      November 11, 2010 at 6:04 pm |
  5. Doc Vestibule

    You are the most infuriating bit of digital flotsam I've encountered.
    Your inability to recognize that blind adherence to fundamentalist dogma is the anti.thesis of morality and an insult to the God you believe imbued you with independence will be your downfall.
    Arrogance and ignorance walk hand in hand with you.
    I bet you would have drank the Jonestown Kool-Aid.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again:
    Sin lies only in harming others unnecessarily.
    All other sin is invented nonsense.

    Normally I don't let people like you get under my skin, but your intractable bigotry is intolerable.

    I met my wife while I was living in my city's Gay Village.
    I am priviliged to have met the friends I did during my time there and I am sorry that your programming prevents you from expanding your circle beyond other zealots.

    November 11, 2010 at 4:25 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Whoopsy! That moderation filter makes life difficult!
      The above missive is directed at CW

      November 11, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
    • mysteryrighter64

      you go, Doc. Decent, thinking, caring people need to stand up the the movement of hate and supremacy stirring.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:44 pm |
    • DanW

      Funny how hateful you sound. Maybe it's your passion coming across as hate. Hmm...maybe that's what you are doing to passionate Christians.

      November 11, 2010 at 10:15 pm |
    • CW

      @ Doc,

      That's okay Doc...I know how God views things....that is how I view them.

      Like I said....the G-a-y lifestyle is wrong....PERIOD!!!!

      Your view on Sin....WRONG!!! As it says in THE BIBLE...knowing what is right and doing wrong is SIN!!!! Whether that's harming someone or not....because telling a lie....sometimes doesn't harm anyone but its wrong!!!! Thanks for proving my poing.

      The G-a-y Lifestyle is wrong....Period!!!!

      I hope you and your Dad enjoy all your little g-a-y pals....I guess when we all start to view someone m-urdering someone as okay...I guess you and "your Dad" will be among the first to invite them into your house to party and champion...their cause....like....them being able to marry their dead victims.

      May God have mercy on you...Hope you change.....if not H-E-L-L will make you want to change quickly.

      November 12, 2010 at 8:50 am |
  6. RiBott

    Ok. After three attempts to post, and being dumped in the queue each time, I now believe that CNN doesn't want commentary. I've hyphenated, and rehyphenated. What the [self-censored]?

    November 11, 2010 at 4:23 pm |
  7. mysteryrighter64

    Not all of us define God so narrowly that all knowledge and wisdom is available in a one volume set. Some of us believe in a God bigger than that.

    November 11, 2010 at 4:14 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      Very good, myteryrighter64

      My belief, exactly. There are many faces of god(s)/goddess(es), not just one. The Hebrew God(s) are the face(s) for the Jews, The Hindu gods present their faces to those that are for them, the Native American god(s) are the face(s) shown to them...and there is the faced shown to each for their own. Many paths to the same destination. non-chjristians are not godless, as their bible says, we just have different ones.

      November 11, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  8. Zebula

    How can there be "honest" dialogue if "God" is mentioned? There is no God, hence the whole event is moot.

    November 11, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
  9. CW

    @ Teailrun,

    I agree with your view points. I've always said that g-a-y people have a choice....now where your coming from is that g-a-y people are born g-a-y at which I say its still a choice like we all have. Living a G-a-y lifestyle is wrong and you agree with me on that. If you look at all the post though...you will see people ripping THE BIBLE up like its nothing. That is what angers me.....b/c it is totally wrong.

    @ Doc,

    Like I said....much respect for your Dad.....your views on The Bible are wrong....I hate that you feel the way you do. Yeah we are to show everyone love....but when someone is sinning you don't invite that sin to come and live right in front of you....and fight for it. You work to change the person....that means setting boundaries....not fighting for their cause...praying for them...talking with them....to try to change them.....etc.

    November 11, 2010 at 3:36 pm |
    • mysteryrighter64

      you have set yourself up in judgement. you can use the bible as guidelines for the self but you are warned repeatedly that you cannot use it, or anything, to second guess someone elses path to God. thou shalt not.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:04 pm |
    • becazican

      @cw, i dont understand you christians, i dont care what you do in your church , why would you care what i do in my bedroom with another consenting adult, you quote bible scripture but lots of people do not believe in the bible as the word of God. It was written to control the masses in a very primitive time, even choosing what books went into the bible was very political, there were hundreds of books to choose from. you say it is a choice and science says its not. i dont see where it hurts you are your dumb beliefs. If you read your bible you will see its contradictions . I hope your God has mercy on your soul for thinking that denying people their rights will make you happy.

      November 11, 2010 at 8:31 pm |
    • Sum Dude

      @CW

      You are obviously filled with hate, blinded by your ignorance, unwilling to love "sinners", and are nothing but a puppet for the extremists and terrorists who love to oppress the American people.
      You probably swallow everything you hear coming out of Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck and Fox News.
      Why don't you go play with them?
      Tell 'em Sum Dude sent ya. They won't know what to make of it either. You can all sit around and spit into the fire of your twisted ignorance, chew the fat of hate, and wait fer yer vittles of lies and twisted words.
      Eat 'em up!

      November 12, 2010 at 4:32 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Sum Dude

      When the wife is away, I never fail to help as many sinful women as I possibly can.

      Is this the kind of "loving the sinner" that will get me to Heaven?

      Just Curious

      November 13, 2010 at 11:03 am |
    • Sum Dude

      @David Johnson

      I have no idea. Cheers!

      November 13, 2010 at 7:07 pm |
  10. JoeT

    From the spokesman: Day of Dialogue "will boast a new name while maintaining the same goal"
    Another example of Orwellian semantics run awry.

    November 11, 2010 at 3:07 pm |
  11. Doc Vestibule

    In the si.xties, he questioned the inst.itutionalized racism that was a part of the "one true church" and was met with the same type of hateful reaction that you're spouting.
    Back then, people with dark skin were obviously inferior and whites were God's people. If that weren't the case, then why did it take the other races so long to see Jesus?
    Your bible promotes slavery, mis.og.yny and violence. It is an archaic tome docu.menting an apocryphal history of the Jewish people for the first book and the plagiarized biography of a rabble rousing carpenter in the second.
    And for the record – plenty of people have murdered all day long and called themselves Christians since the very beginning of your religion.
    Crusades anyone? Inquisitions? Witch burnings? Nazis? Jonestown? Branch Davidians? Those are just the ones that come to mind immediately.
    And my father was a MEDIC. Search and rescue, commander of field hospitals in Bosnia and Iraq, Commandant of the Forces Medical School. He did not fight and kill – he did the Christian thing and healed everyone he could to the best of his ability regardless of their religious affiliation, colour, se-xual orientation or even if they were the enemy.

    November 11, 2010 at 3:03 pm |
  12. mclootz

    FTF is not a "christian" group. They are a hate-group, equivalent to the Ku Klux Klan. They in fact share many beliefs with the Ku Klux Klan of 100 years ago, and it's fair to say that the FTF is a descendant of the KKK–both in terms of ideology and in terms of the regional and political makeup of its membership.

    November 11, 2010 at 2:40 pm |
    • NL

      mclootz-
      Where do you draw the line these days between what is a 'christian' group and what is a 'hate' group? Care to name the most extreme 'christian' group that doesn't actually cross the line in your opinion?

      November 11, 2010 at 5:02 pm |
    • James Swanson

      Let me get this right and correct me if I am wrong.....

      You are equating bu-rning crosses, mu-rde-ring people, and running around under a veil of secrecy to organizing an anti-ho-mo-se-xual speak-out (essentially). I think that's getting pretty close to the same level of ha-te seen in some of the anti-Obama postings.

      Just to let you know that the same Amendment to the Const-itution protects this event as it does for the Day of Silence.

      November 12, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  13. G-A-Y and G-L-A-D not S-A-D

    I was going to say something substantive, but then I thought "you're preaching to the choir (pun intended) for the commentators with half a brain, and banging your head against a brick wall with the jesus freaks."

    It is ironic, though, that christians for the most part (including my parents) are the most hateful group out there, especially when you consider that they are commanded to 'love thy neighbor'. Maybe they're just p1ssed off that everybody is having more fun than they are.

    I ,for one, will gladly spend eterniity in hell if I don't have to put up with christians and their bull-sh1t – oh wait, most christians will be there. Just goes to show, they'll go to any length to make sure no one has any fun.

    (had to tweak my post to get out of the regressive queue)

    November 11, 2010 at 2:21 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      How do you believe in Hell but not Christianity?

      November 11, 2010 at 2:25 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me

      Christian hell is not a place of physical, or even metaphysical, fire and brimstone. Your bible describes it as a place where you will be separated from your god, and you will never again experience his "love." The fire and brimstone hell in the bible is an intentional metaphor..."As if, fire and brimstone." In that case, we look forward to christian hell...your god will not be there. Heaven and hell are relative. Christian hell, is non-christian heaven.

      November 11, 2010 at 2:52 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Thank you for explaining that to me can you now explain

      Matthew 10:28
      Rev. 20:14-15
      2 Peter 2:6-12

      for us

      November 11, 2010 at 3:06 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Gay and Glad: Awesome! Mad Panda's throwing a party in Hell! Apparently there's gonna be a luau and Harry Potter cosplayers! LOL! Feel free to bring friends... esp the cute ones. 😉

      November 11, 2010 at 3:21 pm |
    • MadPanda

      Hope this doesnt turn into a christian fest. Afterall, it was the Mormans who had it right all along.

      November 11, 2010 at 3:32 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, no me

      Read your own scriptures. I have read that tome of hate many times, from cover to cover. I prefer the "Gospels of Yeshua ben Yosef, as Told by Thomas" and be inspired by a true humanitarian. Your christ monster is of no interest to me, he died in me when very young. I could not resolve the acts of hate with the hollow words of false love in the bible. Yeshua, however, lives on in me...he kicked out that monster for me, and showed me freedom and gave me hope for humanity.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
    • mysteryrighter64

      the fundamentalist movement in American Christianity is no longer about Jesus. Its about hate, self rightiousness and political power.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:10 pm |
    • James Swanson

      Just read through the Gospel of Thomas and you do realize that it is just a collection (as far as I can tell) of the direct sayings of Jesus from the New Testament in the Bible right? The only thing I noticed (which I only skimmed it briefly, so take that for what its worth) different was the last verse which it said was added at a later date than the original text. Including the original text in the Bible would be like putting a greatest hits album together for the Stones, awesome but not necessary for completeness sake.

      November 12, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @mysteryrighter64

      You said, "the fundamentalist movement in American Christianity is no longer about Jesus. Its about hate, self rightiousness and political power."

      Yes, and the Religious Right will soon begin creating their theocracy. Jesus will be head of state. But, only the Religious right will be able to hear Him. They will tell the rest of us His will. And woe be unto the man who does not think they speak for Jesus.

      Do you have room in your attic for a gay friend?

      November 13, 2010 at 10:55 am |
  14. Doc Vestibule

    These types of organization do nothing but rail against the setting of the sun (or The Son, if you'll forgive the pun).
    The ze-itge-ist regarding ho-mose-xuality is changing, but as usual, the fundamentalist christians are at the back of the line.
    How long was it before the Vatican admitted that maybe Galileo had a point?
    My father was in both the sem-inary in his youth and the military for his entire adult life. You'd think that someone like him would be the least likely to accept ga-ys, and yet he has a tra-nsse-xual couple over for dinner all the time and is fighting by their side in a Human Rights Tribunal. One of the women was a soldier for decades and the other an inner city police officer. It was only much later in life that they were able to come to terms with who they are and live in the way that makes them happy. Unfortunately, for them that has meant facing vitriolic idiots at every turn.
    To be perfectly frank, my father is the only true Christian I have ever met. He has dedicated his life to helping others as an infantry medic (pararescue), passes no judgement, is humble to a fault, yet will not stand idly by in the face of prejudice or other injustice.
    He does not seek to convert anyone to his views and instead of condemning this and that from a fiery pulpit, he leads by example.
    Ironically, it was because of his example that I became disgusted with the vast majority of Christians as they seldom practice what they preach – love, acceptance, and peace.
    Rallies like this "Day of Truth" are organized bigotry donning a facade of Christianity.

    November 11, 2010 at 1:57 pm |
    • CW

      @ Doc,

      What a joke....christian = hanging out with g-a-y couples and saying its okay to live in a sinful lifestyle(g-a-y) or any other sin.

      Guess its okay to call yourself a christian and m-urder people continuously...right? What a joke....

      Much respect for your dad that he fought in the military but he is wrong on fighting for the G-A-Y movement...or transgender....b/c God doesn't make mistakes...he makes people man and woman for a reason.

      Let me give you an example of your little point...."I'm christian and I like to gamble...and cheat on my wife...lets all hang out in church and gamble and party"...what a joke...or.."I'm a Democrat but I always vote Republican"...what a joke.

      November 11, 2010 at 2:24 pm |
    • Frogist

      Hi Doc! I've seen your posts around about the blog and you always have intelligent and interesting insight into a topic. I can understand how beng given such a fantastic example of a good human being could sour your view on those who make a farce out of the word "christian". Just wanted to say thanks for sharing your story. And my best to you and your dad.

      November 11, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      Doc, thanks for posting.

      I don't mean to be forward, but it appears your father, and hopefully you, found what little of the Jewish Prophet Yeshua ben Yosef is left in the bible. He disapeared for a while, when the Roman Constintine invented the "christ" to promote Roman hegemony. The little of Yeshua left in that Roman monstrosity can still be found in "The Gospels of Yeshua ben Yosef, as told by Thomas", or the GTh. That is not christian, the Roman threw out Yeshua and his henothiest ways. Don't give up on the Yeshua your father found, the christ is disposable.

      November 11, 2010 at 3:45 pm |
  15. RiBott

    Sooo... how long does it take to get out of the moderation queue?

    November 11, 2010 at 1:01 pm |
    • MadPanda

      It never will. Scroll up a bit and read Reality's post with all the bad words. It will explain why that is happening.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:27 pm |
    • Frogist

      @RiBott: We at the Belief blog prefer to think about it as Mod Purgatory. You'll probably be stuck there till Jesus comes back as a code monkey to fix it. Just try to edit your posts with an eye for the danger words that Reality posted further up.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:31 pm |
    • RiBott

      Thanks,all. I finally found the hyphen combo that would let me in.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:37 pm |
    • David Johnson

      Are you familiar with the old Catholic concept of purgatory? Consider your post is in this purgatory. Floating for all eternity. Devoid of light.

      You will see your moderated comment on judgement day. It will be a footnote in your page of the "Book of Life".

      I would not want to be you on that day.

      Have a nice day! Jesus likes you!

      November 11, 2010 at 9:27 pm |
  16. Frogist

    Well that's just peachy. The harrassing christian group changes its name, puts out a press release and reaches out to CNN... and they have the gall to call a day of peaceful SILENT protest against violence "a media op". What hypocritical b@stards. Interesting that they at least moved it to 3 days after the Day of Silence. At least the tolerant kids can speak out too. Can you picture the past few years where the LGBT kids and supporters of non-violence had to stay silent while they were bombarded by loud-mouthed, arrogant, ignorant "christians"?
    And then they have the nerve to speak of love. How cheaply they must view love! How exactly does the dialogue go when they state it should "never be expressed in a condemning or antagonistic way to others," except that you are condemning these kids and antagonising them for being true about who they are. It's just sickening. If that's the christian idea of love, I'm glad I don't have it in my life.
    More power to Exodus International for pulling out of this farce. And most power to the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network for fighting the good fight in a way that puts these hypocrite christians to shame.
    Sorry about the tone, but it's people like Focus on the Family that truly get my goat.

    November 11, 2010 at 12:36 pm |
  17. Reality

    o All "Abrahamics" believe that their god created all of us and of course that includes the g-ay members of the human race. Also, those who have studied ho-mo-se-xuality have determined that there is no choice involved therefore ga-ys are ga-y because god made them that way.

    To wit:

    o The Royal College of Psy-chiatrists stated in 2007:

    “ Despite almost a century of psy-choanalytic and psy-chological speculation, there is no substantive evidence to support the suggestion that the nature of parenting or early childhood experiences play any role in the formation of a person’s fundamental heteros-exual or hom-ose-xual orientation. It would appear that s-exual orientation is biological in nature, determined by a complex interplay of ge-netic factors and the early ut-erine environment. Se-xual orientation is therefore not a choice.[60] "

    "Garcia-Falgueras and Swaab state in the abstract of their 2010 study, "The fe-tal brain develops during the intraut-erine period in the male direction through a direct action of tes-tosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hor-mone surge. In this way, our gender identi-ty (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) and s-exual orientation are programmed or organized into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. There is no indication that social environment after birth has an effect on gender ident–ity or s-exual orientation."[8

    Of course, those gays who belong to Abrahamic religions abide by the rules of no adu-ltery or for-nication allowed.

    November 11, 2010 at 10:35 am |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Reality,

      Well said. I would offer one little change to this dialogue, at least between non-christians in society. The term "se-xu-al orientation" is a red herring the christians use to keep "s_e_x" in the forefront. Is it not actually "relationship orientation?" In the end, it is not who we commit an act with, it is who we form relationships with, with the act being just a "side effect" of the search for a life partner. Gay is not a synonym for ho_mos_e_xual, and Straight is not a synonym for he_teros_exual. One set of terms refers to one's relationship orientation, the other set refers to individual acts. A Straight man can commit an act with the same gender, but that does not make them Gay. Similarly, a Gay can commit an act with a person of the opposite gender, but that does not make them Straight. Nature is full of diversity, in attraction, appearance, etc. We are simply within the range of natural diversity, not a defect. Every life in a social species benefits the entire society. Evolution is not about the continuation of a single familial line, it is about the survival of an entire species through the contributions of all withing that species.

      November 11, 2010 at 11:38 am |
    • Mike, not me

      "relationship orientation?" I have a relationship with my father, brother, and co-workers does that make me gay? I wonder what defines a friendship between two men or woman as gay?

      November 11, 2010 at 12:16 pm |
    • MadPanda

      You are arguing pointless semantics mike. Would it make you happier if it was something like "non-friend-or-family-or-coworker relationship orientation"?

      November 11, 2010 at 12:19 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Kelly: I've actually never heard it put that way before. I am liking that distinction in so far as it takes the word "se-x" out of the terminology. I had been trying to figure out how to explain that a gay person who sleeps with a someone of the opposite se-x doesn't make them straight... this is a great way to do it. The only downside is I now have to actually pay attention to which words I use... more work for this little brain. 😉 Thanks for the insight!

      November 11, 2010 at 1:07 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      so answer the question

      " what defines a friendship between two men or woman as gay?"

      November 11, 2010 at 1:08 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me

      The answer to that question lies in one's understanding of a "life partner" or "soul friend." The one that you care for, and love above all others...the one you would give your life for. That definition is not for you, your mind is closed and your heart is of christian stone. It is good that you are a christian, it is people like you that christianity is for...the one's that do not have that concept. It is good that your people have a god that controls your actions, only he knows what people like you would be doing if it were not for his rules. For the rest of us, though, this definition should suffice.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:47 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Kelly,
      Thank you for passing judgement so quickly. The one I care for the one I would give my life for. Oh you mean my children? No, ok, let's try again.

      " It is good that you are a christian, it is people like you that christianity is for...the one's that do not have that concept"

      Actually Christianity. if you take the time to look into it, does have the principle John 15:13

      November 11, 2010 at 2:22 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Frogist

      I spread the concept of Relationship Orientation wherever I go. It catches on quickly, because it divorces the focus on acts, to the continuum of human love and relationships...something that is against the christian agenda. The "Prime Directive" of nature is diversity. There is no "one" of anything in the universe. Look at the way nature works...she does not pare down a line to only one, perfect example. She always insures there is diversity in every group. Even each human's ideal of a mating partner is different between individuals. There are those that like redheads, there are "leg men" and such. That is nature insuring that the human species does not "bottleneck" to only one type. Diversity is insurance that, if something happens, there may be enough diversity for some to survive it and the species carries on. Same-gender relationship orientation is merely a result of the "scrambling" of mate attraction that nature uses. As a social species it could be said that the Gay individuals serve as a survival buffer. Since human have offspring that require an extended period of support, we have to be able to produce/gather more than we need, or we could not raise such dependent children. The non-reproductive individuals (sterile individuals, those beyond child bearing, gays, etc.) can add their excess capacity to the community in times of hardship, sickness, etc. The addition of our excess capacity to the community also reduces the time the community spends on "survival" and allows time for leisure. Leisure is when we develop culture...songs, stories, etc. You don't experiment with carving holes in a hollow stick (making a flute) while hunting and gathering...that is done around the campfire, after the hunting and gathering is over. The more leisure time a community has, the more advanced is their culture. Gays were an integral part of the society in pagan Europe, no different than being left-handed and right-handed.

      Being gay or straight is a continuum, not an act. If one cannot form that "life partner" bond with a certain gender, then their acts with that gender are along the lines of "scratching an itch," not an exploration of the possibility for a life-long relationship, like the "husband and wife" model.

      Also, it is a myth that we do not have children...I have 14. There are many ways we can have children, and in the past that required that Gay people committed het. acts. Contrary to the christian lie that mankind would become extinct if everyone was gay, we are capable of sustaining the human race...but, nature provides enough Straight individuals to take care of that problem.

      November 11, 2010 at 2:31 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me...

      Again, that definition was not for you, you are incapable of understanding the concept. I, too, would give my life for my children, but I have no intention of having an intimate, "life partner" relationship with them...now, that is sick. No wonder your god has those rules for you people...you have no comprehension, and no bounds, on your relationship with your children, from what you have said. Most people have that special relationship with their children, but know that they are the ones we love and have to let go, so they can have their own lives. My "life partner" and I intend on sharing our relationship together until the day we die.

      November 11, 2010 at 2:39 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Kelly

      How do you make a statement like "human love and relationships...something that is against the christian agenda.".

      Love thy neighor so anyway. I think you confuse the actions of humanity with Christian beliefs.

      Moving on

      "Look at the way nature works"
      praying mantis eat the mate after mating... so if we mimic nature my wife has the right to kill me

      Hippo males attempts to kill the offspring if it is a male, in fear that they will take over the herd.

      In your follow nature example do you support this?
      Or would it make more sense that in nature like humanity something has gone wrong, that it is broke and fractured?

      November 11, 2010 at 2:47 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      "...now, that is sick" you were the one that defined it that way.
      Question how do you know what and what not I am capible of understanding, that is a very bigotted view?

      If "that definition was not for you" and no one can explain it to me why do you expect me or people like me to change?

      November 11, 2010 at 2:50 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me.

      Actually, my definition included "life partner," you are the one that brought up your children as "life partners." Your inability to grasp that distinction is not my fault, you are just not capable of understanding the distinction. Again, you totally misunderstand. We have no intention of changing minds that cannot be changed, it is a waste of time. The only reason I respond to you in this forum is for the seculars that have not converted, so they can see for themselves the true face of christ that shines through your postings. You are, according to your bible, a witness for christ...what that means, is that we see him through you. If someone likes the way your are, and the way the christ is, then that faith is for them. If they do not like the christ they see in you, then they know that faith is not for them.

      November 11, 2010 at 3:00 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Glad you posted that, like you say in case someone else is wondering

      I am not the face of Christ. Please for the love of God do not confuse Him and I. I am called to be a witness not for Christ but for what Christ has done for us.

      To say that Christ is awful because I am awful would be like me accusing Frogist for being dense because you can not accurately draw the line as to why in one case all you need is "one that you care for, and love above all others...the one you would give your life for" and in the other case more rules around the defination for the same thing.

      As I have stated before do not confuse human action with the beliefs of Christianity.

      Would you stop believing in baseball if I told you I am a fan but yet I can not play the game to the same level as a professional?

      November 11, 2010 at 3:13 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me

      Human beings are not Praying Mantis...that diversity thing is confusing you again. Quite simply, you have the intellectual, spiritual or emotional depth of a Texas mud puddle in August. Of course you do not understand nature, your god is an abomination of nature. It is not natural to even try to exterminate all diversity in thought amongst a species that has 7 billion individuals. Christianity started to split and break down after Constintine invented it...it was torn apart by Mother Nature with the very thing you try to exterminate...diversity. You kill amongst your own kind, and point fingers at each other proclaiming them to be false. If you cannot tolerate yourselves, what right do you have telling others how to behave? You are like that neighbor, standing backside deep in the weeds that he calls his front yard, and pointing to the single strand of crabgrass in teh neighbors yard and telling them what bad neighbors they are. Mow your own grass, before you start on us.

      November 11, 2010 at 3:28 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me

      Yes, look at what the christ has turned you into. All the seculars have to do is read through the exchange between all of us, and you. For those that like the results, they can pick your god. For those that do not like what he has made you into, and don't want to be that way, your god is not for them.

      November 11, 2010 at 3:34 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      "point fingers at each other proclaiming them to be false."– Yes we are warned about and to practice such things.

      Acts 20:28-30

      and again 1 Peter

      "For those that like the results, they can pick your god. For those that do not like what he has made you into, and don't want to be that way, your god is not for them."

      That is your sense of right and wrong..

      So the person that like to bully [the result], they can pick to be bullies.
      For those who don't want to [don't want to be that way] be law abiding citizens, it's just not for them.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Kelly: I like the ideas about diversity. I can't say I completely buy into them. I myself haven't felt the need to explore why we have gay people, and penguins and giraffes, so I am not familiar with any scientific theories about it. But it's an interesting idea.
      BTW You seem to be doing a good job of displaying Mike, not me's position as one with a total lack of relevance or grounding in reality. Other people seem to have the same issue with him either being deliberately obtuse or spiralling off into illogical contortions. The idea that people can be different and still love each other as much as a "normal" can be scary for people who have lived their whole life in isolation. But maybe one day Mike, not me's god may throw him a curveball in the form of a gay friend or family member, and he won't be able to be as hard-hearted towards gay people anymore. That's my hope anyway.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:20 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Frogist, have to admit that hurt coming from you... What hard heartiness have I shown. I have just been asking questions?

      November 11, 2010 at 9:55 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Mike, not me: I'm sorry that you are hurt. But your hard-heartedness lies in your comparing gays to pedophiles and adulterers. And I admit I did mean to levvy some of what you have been putting out there against you. Maybe it is important that you recognise that hurt is also the hurt and harm that you cause against gays when you are so deliberately antagonistic. I am willing to retract my statement and offer an apology if you tell me what exactly is your position on gay marriage and whether or not being gay is a sin.

      November 12, 2010 at 3:54 pm |
  18. David Johnson

    As I was reading this, a little bit of vomit came up in my throat.

    Gays are often the target of violence and ridicule. This event contributes to the hatred.

    I have heard it said, "Hate the sin, but love the sinner".
    I see two problems with this. 1) People do not separate the two. This event legitimatizes the violence. 2) Who says being gay is a sin? Christians pick and choose from the bible, what they will obey. Who says the bible is the word of any god?

    My daughter's cat came up missing 2 years ago. I told her it wasn't coming back after a year. Jesus hasn't been heard of for over 2000 years. Jesus and the cat share the same condition – death.

    Prayer does not work. There is no more proof for the Christian god, than for Thor or Odin or Zeus or Isis.
    Why would you terrorize a group of people, in the name of a god that more than likely does not exist? What gives you that right? Prove your god is real, first.

    I believe people are born gay. When a car has a defect, don't we blame the manufacturer? God is an underachiever, if he exists at all.

    Gays won't hurt the other children. You can't catch "the gay". We need to teach our children tolerance. We need to teach them math and science. All the god stuff is a waste of time. Have an event that praises science! Science is real.

    I play cards every Friday evening with a gay couple and several guys from the neighborhood. I still love my wife of 30 years. I haven't caught "the gay". None of the other guys have either.

    I would leave my kid with the gay couple down the street, way before I would leave her with the Catholic Priests.

    Why can't believers just be content to praise their desert war god in their homes and churches? Why must they insist on making the rest of us dance to their tune?

    November 11, 2010 at 10:26 am |
    • James Swanson

      I agree with you that being a Christian (or priest) doesn't make people good people and that being gay doesn't make people bad people and I wish more followers of Jesus would be as willing as you to invest in all people's lives.

      I do, however disagree with only believing in Science. Yes it is completely awesome to figure out the known universe, but it is only a tool to describe what we can observe. So if you think that the Big Bang Theory is the origin of the universe then you also believe in something, just not God, because that is an event outside of scientific study because (if it did) it happened before anyone could observe it.

      November 11, 2010 at 10:41 am |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @David Johnson,

      Well said. You highlight something that is really giving christianity a big problem...you. When it was just he gays fighting them, we had little power. Since we have "come out," normal Straights are meeting us, playing cards with us, dropping their kids off with us to baby sit... It is this familiarity with us in "normal" society that is really defeating their views.

      As far as that old, tired, cold, shallow slogan "Hate the sin, love the sinner" goes you are correct, but that marketing slogan is for them, to make them feel better about how they treat others. Notice they are supposed to HATE something, because it is in the slogan...so, hate is OK. Most Gay people would prefer them to just call us teh "f" word, than hear that tired little slogan...it means nothing to us.

      November 11, 2010 at 10:55 am |
    • Colin

      @James Seanson

      The Big Bang Theory is not something that occured outside of the physical universe. It created the physical universe. It is also equivalent to the theory of gravitation in that it has a substantial amount of evidence backing it, and it has been tested and tested, and tested again for validity. None of which can be said your ignorant belief system.

      The Big Bang is a recent scientific theory, much like the theory of Plate Tectonics, and only have religious zealots like yourself use your hypocrisy of identifying and trying to validate your own beliefs by using scientific knowledge but only when it suits your own purpose. The bible says nothing of a big bang, or anything scientific at all. You try to use science to legitimize yourself, but at the same contradict yourself by trying to deny it's potency.

      November 11, 2010 at 11:03 am |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @James Swanson,

      From a secular view, you are right. From the christian (biblical) perspective, however, that is not the case that being gay in itself is not bad. The christian god disagrees with you there. There is not a single act of loving intimacy (I am not talking about lust) that a Gay couple can have between themselves that is not a sin to the christian god. Straights, however, can have loving intimacy between each other that is not a sin. Most of us Gays know this, so our very being is the sin, not the acts. We will always be inferior, and abominations, in the eyes of that god, no matter what. This attempt amongst some backsliding christians to say that "all sins are equal" falls on deaf ears in our community, just as it does in mainstream christianity. All sins are not equal to the christian god. Trying to say that all your god cares about is that we "love" each other does not apply in our situation...our lives are abominations to him, whether our acts are based on the expression of spiritual love, or hedonistic lust...there is no difference as far as that god is concerned when we are involved.

      November 11, 2010 at 11:04 am |
    • David Johnson

      @James Swanson

      You said: "I do, however disagree with only believing in Science. Yes it is completely awesome to figure out the known universe, but it is only a tool to describe what we can observe. So if you think that the Big Bang Theory is the origin of the universe then you also believe in something, just not God, because that is an event outside of scientific study because (if it did) it happened before anyone could observe it."

      The Red shift, microwave background radiation, density, etc. all "prove" the Big Bang occurred. Only Gravity and Inertia and time were needed to produce the existing universe. As yet, science does not know where the singularity originated from or why it exploded. There are promising theories on this. None require the existence of a god.

      Science is not a belief system. Science is driven by evidence. Religion is driven by faith. Faith is a belief in something, for which there is no evidence. Big difference. If a scientist was to submit a paper for peer review, and in it he stated some of his conclusions would have to be be taken on faith...He would be laughed at and humiliated.

      Faith is what animates the gods. When faith ran out, Zeus and Isis, ceased to exist. Faith is keeping religion alive today.

      So, why do you think the Christian god is the one true god? The Muslims and the Hindus disagree. Why are you right? How can you state the will of the one true god?

      November 11, 2010 at 11:05 am |
    • CW

      @ Kelly,

      You keep telling yourself that it's "normal" for people to be G-a-y because its a lie. That is the reason the God created Adam and Eve...not Adam and Steve...Eve and Eva....or anything else our people try to twist things into.

      Not saying I couldn't have a conversation with you...or pray for you as I do all g-a-y people to be released and repent from this and all sins but...it is wrong period.

      As for our slogan....you'll find it in THE BIBLE. Its not something we just picked up...just like...we love someone who is cheating on their wife but we're not going to say its okay....just live the way you want....but we're to try help steer people to the right way according to THE BIBLE. So in the above example we would tell the husband that he needed to end the relationship...and repent and make things right with his wife.

      November 11, 2010 at 11:05 am |
    • Colin

      @CW

      Take a dump in one hand and pray into the other. Which one fills up faster? And by the way, when did you choose to be straight?

      November 11, 2010 at 11:13 am |
    • David Johnson

      @CW

      You said, "You keep telling yourself that it's "normal" for people to be G-a-y because its a lie. That is the reason the God created Adam and Eve...not Adam and Steve...Eve and Eva....or anything else our people try to twist things into."

      CW, have you heard of evolution? Adam and Eve did not really exist. There was no talking snake. No original sin. And since there was no original sin, there was no need for a redeemer.

      Don't believe in evolution? Then, how do you explain all the transitional fossils? There are tons of them. Did god keep making organisms until He got it right?

      Also, we have genes that are vestiges from previous more primitive organisms.

      Man has the genes for a fully functional tail.
      Whales have the genes for making legs
      Chickens have the genes for teeth
      These genes are simply not activated.

      If god created every animal in its original form once, these genes would not be included.

      Also you are stuck on the "gay people are not normal" thing. So what? The only thing they seem to differ with me on, is their choice of a partner. They like cards and beer. I like cards and beer. Stop trying to find the differences, and find things you have in common!

      November 11, 2010 at 11:25 am |
    • James Swanson

      @ Colin
      I didn't say that it happened outside the universe, I actually said the opposite. All I said was that it couldn't be observed and that is what Science is/does.

      @David Johnson
      Each of those are great theories and I'm not saying they are wrong. What I am saying is that it can't be scientific to project into the past where you can't see the result if it went another way. The null hypothesis must be in scientific study, meaning you have to be able to prove something false if it is not the truth. Since there is no way to show that these tests would be different if the Big Bang hadn't happened they can only stay theories as relating to this occurance.

      November 11, 2010 at 11:32 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Colin

      You said, "And by the way, when did you choose to be straight?"

      That is a good question. I am straight. When I was about 12 or 13, I decided girls were totally nifty! I never pondered this. It just happened. I didn't choose to like girls. But from that time, you could not have convinced me that I had chosen wrongly, which is what gay people are told.

      I make the assumption, that gays feel the same way about people of the same $ex, as I do about women. I think neither of us could ever be changed. It is not a choice. We are born the way we are.

      It makes no difference to me, who a person sleeps with. It puts no hardship upon me. If my gay friends moved away, I would miss their company. They are funny, warm and intelligent. Get over it!

      November 11, 2010 at 11:38 am |
    • David Johnson

      @James Swanson

      In science, we can ask: "If this is true, what would we expect to see?"

      Well, would expect to see the constructs of the universe still hurtling away from each other. Red shift. Check!

      We might expect to hear the aftermath of such a horrendous explosion. Microwave background radiation. Check!

      In any explosion, the debris isn't deposited evenly. So I would expect to see different densities in the universe. Yep. Check!

      We also can say to ourselves: What would we not expect to see if the Big Bang did occur. So far everything Checks out.

      Example: In evolution, we would not expect to see mammalian fossils in Precambrian rocks. The presence of bunny fossils in these rocks would overthrow the theory of evolution instantly. So far, none of these fossils have been found.

      The cool part about science, is that it can change. A theory can be falsified. New information is learned all the time. Science learns from its mistakes. The Big Bang is what seems to be the best explanation today. Tomorrow, it could be discarded.

      Religion, is locked in. Each of its silly stories must be defended or explained. Fundies like to claim context, translation error or that the stories are allegorical etc. for this purpose.

      When I was about 12, I use to use my mom's vacuum to suck up my sister's hamster. The poor thing would strain with all its might against the suction. He always lost. Fundies are a lot like that hamster. They strain against science. But the suction is unrelenting.

      Cheers!

      November 11, 2010 at 12:00 pm |
    • MadPanda

      Whoa, you are going to hell. Did the hamster survive? It strikes me as appalling, I’m sure I could find a way to condemn that action if I looked in the bible.

      November 11, 2010 at 12:16 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @MadPanda

      You said, "Whoa, you are going to hell. "

      I guess I am if I'm wrong about that whole all powerful and totally pis_sed god thing. *sigh*

      You asked, "Did the hamster survive? It strikes me as appalling, I’m sure I could find a way to condemn that action if I looked in the bible."

      Yes, he lived for about 2 years. He would get on his little wheel and run like the dickens, every time my Mom vacuumed my sister's room. There may well a biblical prescription of stoning for traumatizing a rodent.

      I am so damned.

      November 11, 2010 at 12:45 pm |
    • Frogist

      @DJ, Colin, James Swanson: Whoa whoa boys! Keep it in yer pants! 😉 Love that you guys are so passionate about science. But I just want to point out that it seems you guys are all on the same side when it comes to being supportive of our LGBT friends and neighbours. I know we can get caught up in our differences. But it looks like you guys have a lot of similarities too.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:05 pm |
    • MadPanda

      Glad to hear the rodent survived. Ill see you in hell, we can have a luau. Ill invite the gays, the shellfish eaters and the people who use condoms.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:09 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Mad Panda: Sounds like a party! Can I come too? I'll bring the Harry Potter fans and the transgendered! Heck I'll bring the transgendered dressed as characters from Harry Potter!

      November 11, 2010 at 3:00 pm |
    • MadPanda

      Well, if you are going to bring the harry potter fans we should probably bring the people who celebrated Halloween on Sunday. There better be a lot of room in hell.

      November 11, 2010 at 3:13 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Frogist
      @Mad Panda

      You said: Sounds like a party! Can I come too? I'll bring the Harry Potter fans and the transgendered! Heck I'll bring the transgendered dressed as characters from Harry Potter!"

      I wonder, should we decide ahead of time who we will hate? Or, is this best done when we have arrived and see who we have to choose from?

      November 11, 2010 at 6:03 pm |
    • James Swanson

      @ David
      I do have one question for you.....where did the universe get all this energy for an explosion or momentum for a redshift moving away from a single point? Even out in the furthest galaxies you still need either momentum or a force to move from one spot to another.

      November 11, 2010 at 8:13 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @James Swanson

      You said: "I do have one question for you.....where did the universe get all this energy for an explosion or momentum for a redshift moving away from a single point? Even out in the furthest galaxies you still need either momentum or a force to move from one spot to another."

      No one knows, James. Prof. Hawking has a theory about black holes that may apply to the singularity. According to Hawking, a black hole "evaporates" much like a puddle in the sun. When the black hole finally completely evaporates, it explodes giving off heat and light. And maybe other matter. It remains to be proven or falsified. The Big Bang may have occurred this way.

      Where did the material come from for the singularity? Again, no one knows. The latest theory is a theory of multiple universes. Hawking and other physicists are keen on this. Especially the theory of everything – M theory.

      I'm not sure of your mind set. After I admit that no one knows where the material for the singularity came from or what caused it to explode, fundies usually rush in with a hearty "God Did It". "Everything has to have a first cause".

      But if this is so, where did God come from? Who designed Him? Who created him?

      Science may one day, "discover" that god did indeed create the universe. But so far, science does not see the need for a creator. Time will tell.

      Cheers!

      November 11, 2010 at 9:19 pm |
    • tt

      When a car has a defect, we send it back to get it fixed. Should we treat a defective human with less value by leaving it in its current condition?

      November 11, 2010 at 9:42 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @tt

      You asked: "When a car has a defect, we send it back to get it fixed. Should we treat a defective human with less value by leaving it in its current condition?"

      If at some point in time, science discovers a way to make gay people straight, I think many gay people would be interested. The gay lifestyle, at least to date, has been very hard for them.

      I would also bet, many gay people would choose to stay "as god made them". Read the comments from Kelly Garrett. She talks about relationships and loving life partners. Some gay people, I suspect, would just not want to forsake this love.

      The present cure for gays, where a gay man first bangs on a couch with a tennis racket and then is held by the "therapist", is trash. Worse than trash. It is criminal.

      Cheers!

      November 12, 2010 at 7:36 am |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @David Johnson,

      Actually, for the record, I am a guy...LOL. I get that a lot...it's a "Charlie's Angels" thing, I guess.

      November 12, 2010 at 8:48 am |
    • James Swanson

      Thanks David, that's all I wanted to know. So you believe one day science will have an explanation, maybe it will, maybe it won't. Nevertheless it is still belief in the unknown, I choose to believe that this unknown is God and you don't which is fine.

      November 12, 2010 at 9:06 am |
    • James Swanson

      I forgot to answer your other question....

      I believe that God is outside time and space and therefore is not subject to the rules He imposed on this universe so it also comes down to belief and not proof. I'm not sure what you mean by "fundies" either, because there is a huge difference between believing that the God of Israel created the universe and being a hard fundamentalist of which I am not.

      November 12, 2010 at 9:12 am |
    • Frogist

      @David Johnson: We could go with the classics and hate the jews... or the muslims. Islamaphobia seems to be chic these days. Heck they'll both be sufficently appalled when we dig that pig out of the ground...

      November 12, 2010 at 3:29 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Kelly Garrett

      I'm sorry dude! I made an assumption. I meant no disrespect.

      November 13, 2010 at 10:45 am |
  19. noh8

    Glad to see hatred is alive and well in Christendom.

    November 11, 2010 at 10:12 am |
  20. Kelly Garrett

    The old PR and spin game. Dialogue is a two way street, and the bible cannot change, so there is no dialogue possible between the two groups. I find the christian idea of "freedom of speech" to be quite hypocritical, since they have been suppressing our views for years with the only view being expressed was the christian one. I am quite happy, however, that the christian event is going forward...they more they scream, the more the seculars see the faith for what it is...their pool of converts continues to shrink by the day, and these events just hasten it.

    November 11, 2010 at 9:41 am |
    • Mike, not me

      Please explain how your views were supress... please don't confuse that with your views were not agreed with.

      November 11, 2010 at 9:48 am |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me,

      If we spoke out, we risked losing our jobs, our housing and our freedom. Those so-do-my laws that were recently struck down by the Supreme Court were used to keep us underground, and cost many people their freedoms just because of what two consenting adults were doing. With the advent of the Internet we were capable of finding each other, and forming communities. We aren't sneaking into the back doors of anonymous meeting places, anymore. We have many acquaintances and friends out in the secular world, now. Christianity is not interested in us, necessarily, as much as they are the seculars that they are failing to reach and inspire, and one reason for that is they now know many of us. They are finding that the false witness borne against us by the christians is not matching the real people they know. Whether one believes that being gay is a choice or not, one thing is for certain...christianity is a choice, and many are no longer choosing it.

      November 11, 2010 at 10:09 am |
    • Mike, not me

      "two consenting adults were doing." oh you mean like Amy Fisher and Joey?

      November 11, 2010 at 12:13 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me

      November 11, 2010 at 12:30 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, not me,

      I suppose your non-sequitur is just replacing your inability to come back with a response. Kinda put you in your place, didn't I?

      November 11, 2010 at 12:32 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Mike, not me: Really... you went there?! Seriously... the law has defined the age of a consenting adult according to each state. That is why we have statutory r@pe laws. And you might be interested to know that teenagers who sleep with each other do not fall under these laws because of the proximity of their ages. An adult who sleeps with a child obviously don't fit into what you're saying. I honestly don't understand why you would stoop so low as to equate being gay with being a pedophile.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:19 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Mike, not me
      You said, "No it doesn't... the ongoing debate if you support ga-y s-exual orientation, why not teenage ped-ophila, we allow 16 year olds to drive so they are also consenting adults. If you support h-omo-se-xual you must also accept teenage ped-ophila"

      I don't know about where you live, but where I live, the age of consent is 18. This would apply to gay and straight alike. If I support gay rights, it certainly does not mean I think taking advantage of an underage child is acceptable. I also would prevent brother and sister from getting married. Marriage to animals or any other straw man you can come up with. Most gays would not want to allow marriage between close relatives or animals. There is no down side to society allowing gay marriage. None.

      Not too long ago, interracial marriage was going to ruin society. The Bible Belt was dead set against it. Society survived.

      Happy Trails!

      November 11, 2010 at 1:25 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Part 2
      So then in some sta-tes dat-ing a 1-4 yr old ok? Again we are back to relativ-istic mor-ality

      November 11, 2010 at 1:33 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Mike, Not Me

      Hmmm...another non-sequitur. Your illogical jump from supporting gay civil rights to to mean one must also, therefor, support abusing children is not working in secular America, anymore. We expect nothing from you christians, except the same old false witness. Our hope lies in the shrinkage in christianity, and that is happening, exactly because of the irrational rhetoric of you christians. No one is born christian, you must recruit... It ain't working no more, buddy, and your religion has already shrunk to below the majority. We Gays, and other non-christians, can only lay out the case of inherent christian bigotry...where would we be without you christians posting in places like this, and proving it.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:34 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      "It ain't working no more, buddy, and your religion has already shrunk to below the majority. We Gays, and other non-christians, can only lay out the case of inherent christian bigotry...where would we be without you christians posting in places like this, and proving it.

      Do you not see your own hypocricy by claiming to not accept my beliefs but calling me a bigot for not believing yours.

      By the way Majority rule is a horrible, horrible, horrible argument. Go back in time and ask some western slaves.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:40 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      wow not even one web site, banned by moderation

      just search ... "top 10 myths of tough" should be the first one.

      November 11, 2010 at 1:44 pm |
    • ScottK

      @Mikenotme – There are no LGBT groups out there demanding that Christians start teaching their children that being g ay is OK with God or the bible. They are out there demanding equal treatment under the law in the workplace, in schools and in government. No one is forcing you or your children to go g ay. But the Christian right doesnt want equal rights for all, they don't want protection under the const itution for everyone, they don't want freedom of speech for all if they dont agree with the message or the messengers. See the difference? LGBT wants freedom for everyone, the Christian right would rather stick that portion of our community back in the closet and lock the door.

      November 11, 2010 at 2:01 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Mike Not Me

      All morality is relative. Subjective. Murder is wrong. But not if you are at war.

      Society must decide what it will allow or not allow, based on an actions effect on society.

      No god is needed for this.

      There is no objective morality. No moral giver.

      Cheers!

      November 11, 2010 at 2:12 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Mike, not me: Are you deliberately ignoring the "consenting adults" part of the equation? Because it's "adults" – plural. Not consenting adult and other being unable to comprehend or give consent. And yes, unfortunately in some states, like Arkansas, it is ok for to date a 14 yr old. As for a 1- 4 yr old... none of our laws say that is ok as the child is not deemed to have the capacity for consent. How this relates to two adult males or females who want to get together, is beyond me.

      "Do you not see your own hypocrisy by claiming to not accept my beliefs but calling me a bigot for not believing yours."
      Since you don't seem to comprehend relativism, of course you would think Kelly is a bigot. But some beliefs are not worthy of acceptance. Like blacks are inferior, men are dumb, gays are evil... Black and white statements like that are almost always hopelessly false because we live in a world of grey. Your way of thinking about LGBT people is not valid or relevant. That's why Kelly is not a bigot, but you are approaching that classification at subsonic speed.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:03 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      The 1-4 was not ment for one to four but my fustration with the auto moderation that I put hyphens and tildas every where it should read 14, as you suppose for arkansas.

      November 11, 2010 at 4:21 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Can you elaborate on

      "Your way of thinking about LGBT people is not valid or relevant. That's why Kelly is not a bigot, but you are approaching that classification at subsonic speed."

      I did not say gay's were evil (other than you may have seen a different post that we are all evil and need a Saviour). But I will say that ga-y s-ex is a pervision from the creation, as glutteny is to food, and alcholism is to wine.

      The discussion was why is this form of se-xual orie-tation acceptable but not the fourteen year old version?

      November 11, 2010 at 4:28 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Again if moriality is realitive? Then by what standard is wrong? If moriality is "always chaning" in what time period do you expect the Nazi to be "right?"

      How can you ever make the statement this is right, or this is wrong?

      November 11, 2010 at 4:31 pm |
    • A S

      Hi Kelly,

      I am a Christian and I am sorry you have such a negative impression of us, although I understand why. Just so you know, I support gay rights, marriage equailty, and standing up to bullying of anyone for any reason. We're not all bigoted, judgemental, unreasonable people. It just seems that way sometimes, and is disheartening to those of us who are trying to live a compassionate life in the pursuit of social justice.

      November 11, 2010 at 5:19 pm |
    • MM

      First off, FOCUS ON YOUR OWN FAMILY. These crazy Christian groups just want to get the right people positioned in Congress so that they can legislate our morals. This is the pinnacle of all wedge issues that affects less than 2-3% of all Americans. Give gays their rights, call it a union and lets get on with solving problems that affect most Americans, not just a select few. I also find it quite ironic that some of these people that are so firmly against gays end up coming out of the closet. If a progressive is gay, he just says so, if a conservative is Gay, he slams all gays. Pretty telling about one's character………………….Yeah Ted Haggard!

      November 11, 2010 at 5:29 pm |
    • Frogist

      You are trying to equate two things that are not equal. Age differences and gender differences are not the same.
      Would a 35 yr old woman and a 14 yr old boy be suited for marriage? Most likely not. Would a 35 yr old man and a 35 yr old woman be more suited to marriage? Yes. This is because our society has recognised that we cannot putting the responsibilities of an adult relationship on someone who cannot fully comprehend them. It would be unfair to the 14 yr old.
      Is a 35 yr old male the same maturity as a 14 yr old male? No. But a 35 yr old male and another 35 yr old male, barring other circ-umstances, are similarly mature, capable of entering into a contract with each other, and understanding the ramifications of an adult relationship.
      The only objection you seem to have to gay relationships is that it goes against your personal and biased philosophy and maybe it makes you squeamish. You have not a single valid reason to oppose it, yet you do.
      As for the Nazis... they seemed to think their actions were moral and just even if the jews thought otherwise. So for the Nazi he was behaving just as morally as the allies. They just happened to be looking at things from different points of view. The Catholic church didn't exactly object too strenuously either. Where was their black and white morality? Out the window because they had a different viewpoint.
      I, in my time and society, do not condone the actions of the Nazis because I recognise that cold-blooded murder is harmful to us all. However as David pointed out, we still perpetrate and justify murders on a grand scale as "for the greater good" in war. How moral is that to the Iraqi family who loses all their children because of a poorly executed bomb strike? Morality depends on your circu-mstance and point of view.

      November 11, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
    • Doug

      This is one event this country does not need.. Why would anyone want to listen to this crap ? They should call it the day of hate.. That's all I ever see from any christian group !

      November 11, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
    • Dan

      So Mike, not me, do you follow everything the bible tells you? Jesus never said anything about hom-ose-xuality but he did speak directly about the sin of divorce. Should that be outlawed too?

      Also, Christians love to quote Leviticus. Right after the quote about ho-mos-exuality it says that you should not wear garments made of different fabrics. Should we legislate this too?

      Who decides what parts of the bible are important and what parts aren't? Or is it just picking the parts that allow you to hate your fellow man?

      November 11, 2010 at 5:42 pm |
    • Allie

      I have said this time and time again......as soon as Conservative Christians (those who oppose legal marriage between g-ay adults) fight for a legal ban on divorce and extra-marital affairs, I will begin to respect their political viewpoint on this issue. Until they are truly for the sanct-ity of marriage, it is strictly a red herring. Has anyone else heard the statistic that by percentage, more divorces occur in households that identify themselves as Christian than those who identify as non-christian? Of course, this is more likely because they marry far too young in order to have s-ex while the hormones are raging....but it's still an interesting statistic in any conversation surrounding the "sanct-ity" of marriage.

      November 11, 2010 at 5:46 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Mike, not me
      You asked: "Again if moriality is realitive? Then by what standard is wrong? If moriality is "always chaning" in what time period do you expect the Nazi to be "right?"

      To the Nazi, what they were doing was not immoral. If they had won the war, we probably wouldn't think so either. Might often makes right. How many Nazi war criminals do you think would have been hanged, if Germany had won the war?

      A tapeworm seems evil. But from the perspective of the tapeworm, humans were supplied by god for the tapeworms benefit.

      Religion has been responsible for many people being tortured and burned. Did the torturers feel like what they were doing was wrong? No, they believed they were doing the work of the lord. Jesus was smiling down on them, as they tightened the thumb screws.

      Americans enslaved a people. They read from their bibles where god approved of this. They did not feel evil. They convinced themselves slavery was acceptable. It took a Civil War to decide slavery was wrong.

      Do some do evil, knowing it is evil? Sure.

      Christians like to say that god is the objective moral giver. But was this god of theirs moral? He killed thousands of men, women and children, including babies. In what context would this be moral?

      God allowed a man and his son to believe the son would be sacrificed to Him. Just to see if Abraham loved Him best.

      God took a man who loved him, and on a bet with Satan, let the man's processions be taken, his children killed and the man be tortured with sores. Is this a moral god? Humans died, so god could win a bet.

      Jesus had this to say about this:
      Matthew 7:17 Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.
      Luke 6:43 "No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.

      You asked, "How can you ever make the statement this is right, or this is wrong?"

      In the U.S. and in the rest of the world, we have developed laws. Codes of conduct if you will.

      The U.S. population is ~83% Christian. We have many Christian values. If you lived in Iran, you would have Muslim values. This is another reason, there cannot be one true god giving moral values. If there were, all the values would be the same.

      Happy Trails Pardner!

      November 11, 2010 at 5:54 pm |
    • Gretchen

      fr the article:

      >...Focus on the Family's web site for the Day of Dialogue discourages participants from bullying other students.

      "Any form of bullying and harassment of others is always wrong, including making fun of others, speaking down to them and saying things that hurt people," the site says. "Christian students in particular should be bold in speaking up to oppose that kind of behavior because it goes completely against the model Christ gave us."...<

      fotf is a CULT. They are also the clowns who discourage anti-bullying programs in schools. Please, people, do NOT follow fotf. They know what they do, and they are NOT a Christian group. If they want to "focus on the 'family'" let them focus on their own families, and leave GLBT ones alone.

      November 11, 2010 at 6:10 pm |
    • Ebelray

      Actually Christianity continues to make great strides. The fastest growing force in Christianity can be found in China where there are now over 60 million Christians . . . all this after missionaries were thrown out of China in 1950 and Bibles were not allowed as recently as 1980. God's word . . . challenging though it may be . . . continues to thrive.

      November 11, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
    • kcfq58

      If you were in an Islamic country there are no gays or lesbians because they are killed by Islamic law!
      Christianity condems the gay act not the gay person.
      Do not bash Christianity on this because if you do you must also bash the Jew also as that is also part of the Old
      Testament and the Torah......

      November 11, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
    • Chandler

      Hello Kelly,
      First off I want to apologize for Mike's very nonbiblical actions. In the Bible God forbids people to judge others and encourages them to love one another regardless of belief or choice of lifestyle. Christianity is actually the fastest growing religion in terms of per person/year, so I don't see it dying out anytime soon. Unfortunately you have ignorance in all beliefs and Mike happens to be an example of such ignorance within the Christian demographic. If Jesus did not come to condemn the world then what right do us as Christians have to do so?

      November 11, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
    • Modern Family

      Why are Christians such sad, ignorant and hateful people? I'm really glad we made the decision to teach our children to avoid Christians when they can.

      November 11, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @ A S

      Oh, it is not just me. Those kids that commited suicide, the ones affected by the christians in charge of that school district in Arkansas...almost ALL of us are those kids. There are millions of us that have had that experience with your god. You backslide if you support our goals, your god just wants us dead, his christ is just making him wait until his return.

      November 11, 2010 at 7:03 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Chandler,

      Yes, your cult is growing in China, but as a percentage of population they are a very small part. I am of the west, and my concern is with where I live, the Chinese will have to solve their christian problem in their own way, in their own time. But, your cult has shrunk very rapidly over here. In America only 37% say they are religious...and to be christian, is to be religious, and one has to add the Buddhist, Hindu and other religious groups in that said they were religious. While christians may believe they have the only true religion and think those of other faiths should answer no to that question, you people do not get to dictate over here anymore.

      We gays have had increased access to civil right in an almost direct, reverse relationship to the "religious" population. Mike, not me is not judging me, or my kind. Nice try on the lie. We know that your god has already judged us. The jailer is not the judge of the prisoner, they are just carrying out his sentence. Likewise, Mike, not me, does not have to judge, his god has pre-judged. Your bible is quite clear on that, and Mike, not me is just following that...though, he is doing it incorrectly. He admits that he is too flawed to speak with a christian voice, but his ego will not let him stop...he had too much love for his god, and he cannot stand our abomination any more than his god can.

      Let's face it, dude. Gays and the christian god do not mix...never have, and never will.

      "When nature, herself, decides there should be only one kind of flower, only one kind of bird and only one kind of human being will I believer there is only one true god above all others, and there is only one true way to worship."

      November 11, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
    • miguel

      "Suppressing our views for years?" I thought it was an orientation.... The only scientific explanation for such orientation is that it is a genetic defect or mutation and a sad one since you can't pass on your traits... Psychological nurture from birth maybe another explanation.

      November 11, 2010 at 8:29 pm |
    • mike (no not that one)

      Look at all the wonderful dialogue this topic opened up. I'd like to say it is all good dialogue but unfortunately there are too many hypocrites out there to make that a reality.
      Too many "non-believers" feel it is acceptable to bash the Christian faith and label all Christians with the same negative connotations while not, at the same time, realizing that what they are doing is exhibiting the exact repulsive behavior they themselves claim to abhor.
      Ironic don't you think?

      November 11, 2010 at 8:36 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Miquel,

      I have 14 children, and many gays I know have children. While it may be true that many of us chose not to have children, especially since the christian laws forbade it, many of us do have them. Mine are all biological, so my traits are passing down quite nicely, thank you...LOL. Contrary to the chrisitan lie, we would not just sit around and let humanity go into oblivion, we are capable of continuing the species. Fortunately, nature provides a lot of Straights to handle that...and we like Straights and would want them around. Well, that is one christian lie, shot down.

      November 11, 2010 at 8:43 pm |
    • mike (no not that one)

      Kelly,
      You could not be more wrong in your statistics. I'd like to know your source.
      Just do a quick Google search and you'll find that 70+% of Americans claim to be Christian. 76% according to Wikipedia.
      While another 8-9% are made up of Hindus, Muslims, Jews, and Buddhists.
      Then yet another 15% make up a demographic that simply refers to themselves as religions with no particular affiliation.
      So as you can see, those of faith are alive and well in the good ol' USA and the statistics tend to trend up for those who classify themselves as "people of faith."
      Do the work next time before you spew false statistics. And if your statistics come from a source that is a gay and lesbian publication I would suggest you find another source.

      November 11, 2010 at 8:44 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      Depends on how the question is asked. It was one on "religion" in America, not one on whether one "identified" as a christian. The later is post-9/11, when westerners basically thought they had to choose between Muslim or christian...and, of course the Jews. Many secular Americans will answer "christian" in that environment. However, if you look at those that say there are religious, then the numbers drop drastically. One is not a "religious" christian (that is, of the christian covenant, born in christ) is one is not religious. I don't care, myself, if someone identifies as "culturally christian," my interest is in the faithful. Almost every christian sub-cult in this country is discussing the "shrinking." If christendom wants to go along thinking everything is just dandy, fine with me...in fact, that is exactly what I want. Those that think nothing is wrong, will do nothing about it until it is too late.

      November 11, 2010 at 8:53 pm |
    • mickeyspal

      I am a Christian who believes in most of what you have said. The only objection I have is in lumping all Christians in with the radical right wing of the Christian faith. The "radicals" will say that man lying with man is an abomination. They will fail to see that there are many other abominations such as eating shellfish. Most everyone I know is in the "abomination" category for one reason or another.

      November 11, 2010 at 9:03 pm |
    • Curt Collier

      Many devout Christians are gay. In fact, half of the clergy conference I belonged to were gay (although many were in the closet). Being openly gay helps Christianity to come to terms with the reality of its own truth.. People don't choose to be gay. And being gay is not simply who you sleep with, but whom you truly love. Unless you can deeply love another, even if it means you loose friends, family, or upsets your God, you must be true to yourself. It is that commitment to uncompromising love that makes gay people the new prophets of our age.

      November 11, 2010 at 9:25 pm |
    • Mike, not me

      Dan
      You can not legislate morality, so no do not outlaw it but still it is a sin and needs to be recognized as such, unless marital unfaithfulness.

      "Christians love to quote Leviticus."
      Not true unless they clam to be a Leviticus Priest and believe that God is making himself known by setting a group of people apart/

      You can not use omission of a subject as your argument. Jesus does not speak against bestiality. What is the point in teaching the Jews something they already had a grasp of.

      "Who decides what parts of the bible are important and what parts aren't?" God did went it was put together.

      "Or is it just picking the parts that allow you to hate your fellow man?" You, all of you, need to stop twisting the discussion, who have I hated. What hateful thing have I said, I just asked you to look at morality figure out what Standard you think you are using and then why do you not use that standard across the board.

      "Chandler"
      Don't ever apologize for my actions. Are you taking on the role of Christ?

      And "Chandler"

      "then what right do us as Christians have to do so"
      Explain 1 Cor 5 to us. If I am as ignorant as you claim, then why would you not speak edification to lift a brother up.

      Modern Family,
      Again like so many you confuse humans with Christ.

      November 11, 2010 at 9:51 pm |
    • DanW

      @Kelly Garrett; One of the weakest argumements possible is "argumentum ad populum" - basing your argument on what the majority believes. The majority of Germans voted for Hitler. Were they reight?

      November 11, 2010 at 9:56 pm |
    • ssdwcc

      Again I state: Christianity/Jesus Christ is one of the biggest hoaxes ever. Common sense and research : Christianity / The Bible is a fairy-tale, a creation myth so how can this idiocracy be germaine to important aspects of our lives today.

      November 11, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Curt Collier: I'm loving what you are saying with one addendum. The many gay christians who are "devout" have decided to ignore the parts of the bible that are apparently anti-gay. I am actually ok with that. People have long rejected bits of the bible because they are no longer valid. It's the hard-liners who make things difficult. But these same gay christians are being caught in the middle and rejected by both sides. I think they need to speak out and explain their position and their interpretation. Because I think we all do put our own spin on whatever philosophy we embrace. But we run the risk of becoming irrelevant because we are in the middle if it is a polarizing issue. So if they speak up against the ignorance of the fundamentalists and speak about inclusion to the gay community, they could recruit others from both sides and make coexistence and tolerance all the more feasible.

      November 12, 2010 at 3:22 pm |
    • Kelly Garrett

      @Frogist,

      That is a very, very irresponsible thing. Someone from the outside gets in the middle of an extremely emotionally charged event like you just did is beyond naive. Are you willing to accept the violence you are advocating?

      November 12, 2010 at 6:05 pm |
    • jmarno

      Hi Kelly- I agree with you and your views and I don't blame people for hating the right wing christian who forgot how to speak with grace, kindness, love and FREEDOM FOR ALL. I love Jesus and I love ALL PEOPLE and I am also sick and tired of my brothers and sisters who would rather condem than support, point their fingers rather that wrap their arms around all people, etc etc. . .

      THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT IS TOBE PUT IN OUR OWN HEARTS AND NOT TO SLICE AT OTHERS. There are hypocrites, and ugly in every faith. . . but not the person of JESUS, I believe. . . good luck and may the force be with US.

      November 14, 2010 at 4:56 am |
    • Frogist

      @Kelly Garrett: Please explain your comment to me. I am not advoacting violence of any kind. And I don't understand what you are talking about. Thanks.

      November 14, 2010 at 4:15 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.