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At evangelical colleges, a shifting attitude toward gay students
A group of Wheaton College alumni formed OneWheaton to offer an alternative view on sexuality from the evangelical school.
March 30th, 2013
09:15 AM ET

At evangelical colleges, a shifting attitude toward gay students

By Sarah Pulliam Bailey, For CNN
[twitter-follow screen_name='spulliam']

Wheaton, Illinois (CNN)– Combing through prayer requests in a Wheaton College chapel in 2010, then-junior Benjamin Matthews decided to do something “absurdly unsafe.”

He posted a letter on a public forum bulletin board near students' post office boxes. In the letter, he came out as gay and encouraged fellow gay Christian students - some of whom had anonymously expressed suicidal plans in a pile of the prayer requests - to contact him if they needed help.

In a student body of 2,400 undergraduates in the suburbs of Chicago, at what is sometimes called the Harvard of evangelical schools, Matthews said that 15 male students came out to him. Other students seemed somewhat ambivalent about his coming out, he said.

No one told him he was wrong or needed to change, Matthews said some students were obviously uncomfortable with someone who would come out as gay and remain a Christian.

“I don’t think most Wheaton students knew what to do because they've been given ‘love the sinner, hate the sin’ rhetoric, but they don't know how that plays out in real life,” said Matthews, who graduated in 2011. “They would mostly just listen, nod and say, ‘Yeah man, that’s hard.’”

As is the case at many evangelical colleges, Wheaton students sign an agreement to not have sex outside of marriage, including "the use of pornography ... premarital sex, adultery, homosexual behavior and all other sexual relations outside the bounds of marriage."

On campus, the college created an official group in February for students to explore questions of gender identity and sexual orientation. The group is intended as a “safe place for students who have questions about their sexual orientation or gender identity,” where students may self-identify as LGBTQ.

But cultural and political changes have created tensions for the academic and student life environment. As more mainline denominations ordain openly gay clergy and more states pass same-sex laws, some gay evangelicals – and their allies - are openly deviating from Wheaton’s official and long-held positions. Well-known Christian author Rob Bell, a graduate of Wheaton, came out in favor of gay marriage in mid-March.

OneWheaton, a group unaffiliated with the college, wants to offer an alternative view on homosexuality from that of the evangelical school. The group, which is not explicitly religious, wants GLBT students to feel affirmed in their sexuality, acting as a support network for students struggling with their sexual identity, whether they choose to be openly gay or whether they choose to remain celibate. But leaders of the group say that gay Christians do not need to be celibate to retain their religious identify.

“For those of you feeling alienated, it gets better,” says OneWheaton’s founding statement, signed by about 700 GLBT and straight, alumni, echoing Dan Savage’s national “It Gets Better” campaign for gay youth. “Your desire for companionship, intimacy and love is not shameful. It is to be affirmed and celebrated just as you are to be affirmed and celebrated.”

A widespread question

Wheaton is hardly the only evangelical college that’s seeing a growing spectrum of responses toward homosexuality among students, alumni and staff.

Last year, a group at Biola University in southern California came out with posters and a website called Biola Queer Underground. The group describes itself as “like-minded LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) students and allies who have formed a private underground community in which we share our life struggles, as well as our love and support for one another.” Biola then issued a “statement on human sexuality” saying, "God’s design for marriage and sexuality is the foundational reason for viewing acts of sexual intimacy between a man and a woman outside of marriage, and any act of sexual intimacy between two person of the same sex, as illegitimate moral options for the confessing Christian.”

Groups from at least two Christian schools, Eastern University in Pennsylvania and George Fox University in Oregon, have formed OneEastern and OneGeorgeFox, which launched public websites in 2012.

About 200 LGBT and straight alumni from California’s evangelical Westmont College co-signed a letter to the student newspaper suggesting they experienced "doubt, loneliness and fear due to the college's stance on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues."

Many Christian schools have different regional, historical and denominational ties that keep issues related to sexuality complex and keep these institutions from responding monolithically.

Wheaton’s well-known alumni include evangelist Billy Graham, former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert and former George W. Bush speechwriter Mike Gerson. To come out at the college, OneWheaton’s organizers say, is to risk losing a network of fellow-minded alumni.

“Part of OneWheaton is showing that while people are risking their networks, they'll have people they can turn to,” said OneWheaton spokeswoman Kristin Winn, who came out six months after graduating in 2007.

The married-sex-only agreement that Wheaton students and faculty sign is part of the college’s Community Covenant, which says that students agree the Bible condemns “sexual immorality, such as the use of pornography, premarital sex, adultery, homosexual behavior and all other sexual relations outside the bounds of marriage between a man and woman.” Few students self-identify as gay, and if they do, it has different implications based on their expressed beliefs and behavior. Students can self-identify as gay, but college officials consider each student on a case-by-case basis if it comes into question.

Members of OneWheaton attend an athletic event on campus.

“What matters is the moral understanding of the person and how that matches with our institutional identity and the moral behavior that flows from the understanding. There’s no formula to how this gets applied," said Wheaton's Provost Stan Jones, a psychologist who has written several books on sexuality.

Students who openly deviate from or openly advocate for deviation from the covenant may be dismissed from the school, Jones said.

Alumni say some gay students have been asked to leave or been counseled to leave Wheaton. No member of Wheaton would be asked or counseled to leave this institution on the basis of sexual orientation alone, Jones said, and he is not aware of any cases where people were dismissed only because of sexual orientation.

Jones said it would be difficult to say whether a student who signed OneWheaton’s statement would be in open disagreement with the covenant, though he is not aware of any student who has left or been dismissed over involvement with the group. “We’re not in a rush to show people the door,” Jones said. “We want Wheaton College to be a community where people can wrestle with these issues.”

The balance, college officials say, is between preserving the theological integrity of the school while leaving room for questions.

“Articulating orthodox Christian theological beliefs and moral convictions itself is and ought to be an expression of grace,” said Philip Ryken, president of Wheaton, explaining the college's stance on sexual behavior in response to OneWheaton's emergence. “Those theological principles and moral guidelines are an expression of God’s character and the best way to live.”

Homosexuality is not a focus at Wheaton more than any other college, said Ryken, but culture places a priority on sex. The college does not keep track of the number of students who leave over homosexuality, he said. “There are a variety of challenges that different Christian colleges and universities face from people advocating homosexuality,” Ryken said in an interview in his campus office. “OneWheaton has been clear in saying they’re not interested in changing the college, but it remains to be seen what kind of influence they desire and may seek to have.”

A growing trend

Evangelical colleges likely face generational differences in attitudes toward sexuality as younger evangelicals develop friendships with people who are gay, says David Kinnaman, president of the Barna Group, a Christian market research firm.

“There has been a shift from rightness to fairness,” Kinnaman said. “There’s a real sense in which their institutional loyalty and their loyalty to theoretical morals and ethical choices are trumped by their peer relationships.”

About 40% of evangelicals between the ages of 18 and 29 are likely to say homosexuality should be accepted by society, compared to 24% of evangelicals who are older than 30, according to the 2007 religious landscape survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. But there is still less acceptance of homosexuality by evangelicals than by other young people. The same Pew poll found that 63% of Americans age 18 to 29 say homosexuality should be accepted by society, as do about half of Americans ages 30 to 64.

As a younger demographic is less opposed to gay marriage, they are also are more likely than before to identify as pro-life. Forty-one percent consider themselves "pro-choice," a record low since Gallup began asking the question.

“During the last five to seven years, there has been a definite uptick in interest [in homosexuality],” says Michael Hamilton, a history professor at Seattle Pacific. “As evangelicals and the main currency of American culture converge, an increasing number of gay students are going to say, ‘Wait a minute. I don't see a problem.’”

Last year, students at Seattle Pacific University received student support and a faculty letter backing a group’s desire to discuss being gay. Its administration approved the request but declined to give it official status. In 2010, Abilene Christian University declined to grant official status to a gay-straight alliance.

Michael Lindsay, president of Gordon College in Massachusetts, said that homosexuality is just one of a basket of issues that evangelical schools are dealing with now for the first time.

“Any moral issue dealing with the body gets a visceral response,” said Lindsay, who said future important issues will include bioethics, disability and other questions dealing with life. “Because sex is tied in with the body, naturally it’s one of those issues folks will have highly charged responses.”

Facing alternative views

The Wheaton alumni group, OneWheaton, was initially a private Facebook network that went public partly in reaction to an April 2011 chapel service at Wheaton featuring Wesley Hill, a gay Wheaton alumnus who says he chooses to be celibate, a path that some gay students and alumni take. Hill wrote the 2010 book “Washed and Waiting,” about being gay, Christian, and celibate, and told students how he came to his position that sex is between man and a woman in marriage.

“I found myself convinced of the position the church has held with almost totally unanimity throughout the ages, that although many people find themselves, through no fault of their own, to have sexual desires for members of their own sex, this is not something to be affirmed and celebrated, but is a sign that we’re broken, in need of redemption and recreation,” Hill told students.

“Gay people are not uniquely broken,” he said. “That’s a position we share with every other human who has ever lived or will live. But we are, nonetheless, broken. And following Jesus means turning our back on a life of sexual sin, just as it does for every other Christian.”

According to a survey conducted by the Wheaton student newspaper in 2008, about 5% of students (mostly male) reported having "had a homosexual experience." About 56% of students agree or strongly agree that homosexuals are not welcome at Wheaton, the survey reported.

OneWheaton is working to change that in some in-your-face ways. During one homecoming weekend, the group held a concert featuring Jennifer Knapp, a former contemporary Christian Music musician who came out as a lesbian in 2010. “Although I disagree with painting sexual orientation and gender identity as a biblical sin, Wheaton has a right to that interpretation,” Knapp said. “But I don’t know how you can be welcoming but not affirming.”

Knapp questions whether colleges such as Wheaton present alternative theological positions.

“Whether it’s alcohol or premarital sex, is Wheaton an academic institution willing to present both sides, or is it wanting to churn out soldiers that believe exactly the same things they do?” said Knapp, who used to identify as evangelical but now disassociates herself from the movement.

The college does not typically host speakers who espouse theology that affirms same-sex behavior, but it does not forbid such discussion from taking place. Administrators say they know that students might end up differing with the college theologically.

“This is not a place of indoctrination,” said Jones. “This is an educational community. We need to have a high level of patience and tolerance for students working through those issues.”

In many ways, Jones said, students need to be thoughtfully engaging the issues.

“Many students have only heard about homosexuality in the context of ‘Those bad people who we must oppose,’” he said. “There are many in our student body who want to engage these issues sympathetically, but there are others who are prone to thoughtless speech that can lean in the direction of incivility.”

At the same time, he said, Christian colleges are facing outside professional and political pressure on gay issues. Wheaton administrators spent several months preparing for a 2006 visit from Soulforce, a group aiming to change religious leaders' minds on gay issues that was co-founded by Mel White, who was a ghost writer for some evangelical leaders, including Pat Robertson and the late Jerry Falwell.

Soulforce members had been arrested at other Christian campuses that ban same-sex behavior, but the group had a cordial gathering at Wheaton and visited again last year.

In 2009, the American Philosophical Association adopted a procedure to “flag” ads from employers that ban same-sex sexual conduct.

“I find that extraordinarily ironic for a discipline that prides itself on spirited debate about fundamental issues,” Jones said. “You are inviting the erosion of your distinctions if you don’t draw some boundaries.”

Administrators also are carefully watching court cases related to federal funding and hiring practices, where the government could pull funding if an institution is deemed discriminatory.

Faculty are expected to sign the same covenant as students, and those who advocate for something contrary to the stated beliefs would be called into question, Jones said.

“If a person disagreed with a clear assertion of the covenant, that has implications regardless of their status, even for those who have tenure,” Jones said. In faculty applications, he would consider where a professor stands on sexual intimacy as between a man and a woman in marriage, though questions about whether gay marriage should be legal at a state level would not necessarily come up. “We don’t ask about their civic views of gay marriage,” he said. “I would not be looking for their policies on a governmental policy voting.”

On the “Day of Silence” in April 2012, about 90 students wearing white T-shirts printed with "break the silence" attended a campus-hosted discussion about homosexuality, such as whether Wheaton can be considered a "safe place" for gay students. “You are telling LGBTQ students that no matter where they end up on their journey of identity, you care for them, respect them, and will remain their friend,” OneWheaton leaders wrote on a sign-up form for students who wanted to wear T-shirts. One alumnus came out to the rest of the group.

Matthews, the student who came out at Wheaton in 2010 – he now teaches middle school science in Connecticut - wrestles with whether the group OneWheaton will be an effective network since its views are far from the college’s stance on sexuality. He said he followed Wheaton’s agreement to refrain from premarital sex during school, but his personal views on the morality of homosexuality have shifted.

Matthews was attracted to men when he began college but hoped he would begin liking women.

He considered sexual orientation conversion therapy, which some evangelical Christians embrace but which the American Psychological Association has said is ineffective and could be damaging. After the Episcopal Church ordained its second openly gay bishop in 2010, Matthews began reading more and eventually embraced a theology that suggests gay Christians do not need to be celibate. At one point, he considered becoming an Episcopal priest.

Matthews said Wheaton was a safe place to come out because he could work through both being gay and being a Christian. If he had gone to another college, he said he might have stayed closeted because people might suggest abandoning his faith, something he wasn't willing to relinquish.

“Quite ironically, had I not gone to Wheaton, I might not have come out,” Matthews said. “They weren’t going to say what I presumed people at other colleges would tell me, which is, ‘If you have conflict between your faith and sexuality, drop the faith.’ No one at Wheaton was going to tell me that.”

Editor's Note: Sarah Pulliam Bailey is managing editor for Odyssey Networks.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity

soundoff (1,024 Responses)
  1. scott

    Do they still make that crunch and munch snack?

    April 11, 2013 at 10:24 pm |
  2. Aria

    In regards to DOUGLAS:

    "Douglas

    So before I trust that a man engaged in an "act of coitus" with another man is normal, when a woman is biologically the correct partner to engage in that act with, please explain to me why I should believe that gay coitus makes biological sense?

    In regard to the Gospels they were written by the Apostles who accompanied Jesus the "Lord" character (as you describe him), sarcasm not withstanding but understandable coming from you."

    Actually, Douglas, you're completely misguided. After taking many classes on the historical aspect of the 'gospels' at the University of Michigan, I have learned that it is not the Apostles, themselves, that wrote the gospels. In fact, it was the Apostles of the Apostles that wrote the gospels – referred to as the Presbyters.

    April 11, 2013 at 1:16 am |
    • sam stone

      "please explain to me why I should believe that gay coitus makes biological sense"

      you sure are obsessed with gay men having coitus, doogie

      April 11, 2013 at 9:10 am |
    • sam stone

      while we are at it, doogie, explain to us how left handedness makes biological sense

      April 11, 2013 at 9:21 am |
    • Douglas

      Sam,

      The left hand complements the right hand.

      Just as the male physique is made for the female physique.

      They complement each other.

      That is biology and science in its purest form the way God intended.

      April 12, 2013 at 12:40 am |
    • clarity

      Well sad to tell you Douglas that homosexuality is a naturally occurring phenomenon in the kingdoms of living things on this planet. Also, Douglas, there is some news on the marriage front in the world. The president of Uruguay is set to sign the same-sex marriage bill which has passed (in grand fashion evidently) the legislatures there. There are a lot of Christians down there, so I'm sure many of those churches will be soon performing gay weddings – can't stop the tide.

      April 12, 2013 at 12:48 am |
    • Douglas

      Clarity,

      The devil finds work in the pulpit.

      Any "Christian" church that marries LGBTQ is practicing apostasy bordering on the heretical.

      Just because a violation of Biblical guidance is voted and approved by a legislative body and signed
      by a president the transgression against God's plan remains intact.

      Nothing to celebrate about that.

      April 12, 2013 at 12:56 am |
    • clarity

      OK, Douglas, but it seems you are condemning the ~4,000,000 ECLS Lutheran members plus the ~1,000,000 members of United Church of Christ plus some Episcopals (i.e., Washington National Cathedral, for instance) plus the ~43,000 members of the Metropolitan Community Churches all to hell there, Douglas? Wow. And I didn't even include any Unitarian Universalists. Well, once things for sure, you've more than proved my point about the conflicted nature of the over "40,000 denominations of insanity".

      April 12, 2013 at 1:18 am |
    • Science

      Some back fill clairity for doogie................... might show a link ?

      Scientists Find Genes Linked to Human Neurological Disorders in Sea Lamprey Genome

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130224142915.htm

      Peace

      Facts work .

      April 12, 2013 at 10:39 am |
  3. SDCinNS

    Not sure why someone wanting to be gay would choose an evangelical school it knows has these policies – and then attend that school – and fight the policies. Wheaton is expensive. That's a lot of money to spend while chafing under their policies the entire time. Seems if you wanted to be gay, you'd fit better some place else?

    April 9, 2013 at 8:48 pm |
    • the real Tom

      Oh, for Pete's sake, Doogie, get out of the closet already.

      April 9, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • clarity

      Redemption???

      You have a lot of nerve talking about the need for redemption, Douglas.

      Let's take a look at the conflicted nature of Christianity and then let's have you explain how attending a Christian school would be good for a gay person:

      One sect calls homosexuality an abomination while the next one (over 4,000,000 members) in the same denomination is already performing gay marriage.

      One sect, the Westboro Baptist Church believes Americans are being killed at war because America is too kind to "fags".

      One sect believes women to be subservient, while another sect in the same denomination promotes equality between the sexes.

      One sect believes that Jesus and Satan were brothers and that Christ will return to Jerusalem AND Jackson County, Missouri.

      Some believe the Pope is the Anti-Christ. Some believe Obama is the Anti-Christ.

      Some believe that celibacy is appropriate for certain people, or for certain people or positions. As we read about each day, this unnatural practice continues to cause problems for the religious institutions that advise/employ it. Many of the people from these same institutions advocate against abortion, but pretend not to understand the realistic benefit of the morning after pill or even basic contraception; their unrealistic wishful thinking is causing the death of many at the hands of disease.

      In the U.S. recently we learned of the head of Lutheran CMS chastising a minister of that church for participating in a joint service for the victims of the Newtown school shooting.

      Conflicted right from the very beginning, Christianity continues to splinter and create more extreme divisions as time goes by, constantly subjecting others in its crossfire.

      April 9, 2013 at 10:37 pm |
    • the real Tom

      You are such a bozo. Nobody is going to remain celibate because you claim it's the best course of action. Get a clue, dingus.

      April 9, 2013 at 10:50 pm |
    • clarity

      So Douglas – I've been having trouble with some other here getting an answer on exactly who wrote the gospels. Because, you know, before we can trust in the words of Jesus and the supernatural "Lord" character, we need to find out who wrote those gospels – can you help me out with that? Once we get past that, we'll know if we can trust the Christian view of Christ and Satan, ok? So, those gospels – who wrote those? (And you know, I don't mean who's name is on them, but what do we actually know about who wrote them?)

      April 9, 2013 at 10:50 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Douglas, your problem is an obsession with the flawed concept of normalcy. If you use if in its strictes sense of that which is common, all sorts of things, including genius, are not "normal". And what is normal – at least in the US normal is being overweight and racking up debt. We want to look at what is good for individuals and society, and being with someone you can love is good for individuals, while those people's happiness and stability is good for society.

      April 9, 2013 at 11:07 pm |
    • clarity

      There are many things in the animal kingdom, including humans, Douglas, where things don't appear to make biological sense, and yet they just "are". Homosexuality, for instance, is present in many other place in all types of living things besides humans.

      Now, Douglas, regarding the gospels – you were not very careful. Maybe this is why you are having trouble with biology, because you are not thinking carefully. Many scholars, even Christians, are not on the same page as you as to the authorship of the gospels – that is, exactly who wrote them. Would you like to try again, Douglas?

      April 9, 2013 at 11:09 pm |
    • Pete

      "Remember, Jesus said that Satan is the father of lies."

      Dougy you are the king of lies, which is why you'll be the one burning in hell and not the gays.

      April 10, 2013 at 9:00 am |
    • Saraswati

      I think most would coose to go somewhere else, but kids often only come to terms with their se.xuality after they are already in college. As most good colleges require two years residency, a student who realises and accepts their se.xuality at the beginning of the junior year is stuck for almost two years or takes abig hit. Also a lot of kids at these places have parents who won't pay tuition if they transfer out, and they won't won't be able to make up that money.

      April 11, 2013 at 8:35 am |
    • 1stPrime

      None of this makes sense at all. Most people who make the claim to be both Gay and a Christian actually do not read the Bible at all. They pick sections of it and then ignore sections that speaks against the behavior. A 'gay chrisitian' is a 'oxymoron.

      This is crazy to see that so many are seeking to obliterate Biblical truths these days to embrace a behavior God has already passed judgment on in the first place. Its in the Bible clearly, but since many these days are seeking to be validated, many are willing to ignore clear Biblical truths on the subject matter. Not a good direction to proceed for any of us at all, especially those who should know better, because they were exposed (and understand) to the truth on God's position on the subject.

      To see so many seeking to mislead others is completely shameful. Well, people have choices and can choose to do right or wrong....definitely a choice.

      April 12, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
    • clarity

      1st Primidon: "Most people who make the claim to be both Gay and a Christian actually do not read the Bible at all."

      What kind of statistics do you have on that, 1st? Do you have any evidence of such? Could it possibly have something to do with the fact that there are over 40,000 conflicted denominations of Christianity that can agree on any interpretation of their "good book" outside of that supposedly someone died for their sins and was supposedly resurrected? Hmm???

      April 12, 2013 at 4:45 pm |
    • Judith

      "Well, people have choices and can choose to do right or wrong....definitely a choice."

      And you're choosing to spread hate which is one of our greatest evils in society.

      April 12, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
  4. Dr. Fricke

    To believe in a crucified man as the revelation of God's son will always be a stumbling block to the Jew and foolishness to the Greek.

    April 9, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • 1stPrime

      Not a stumbling block. A real person verified not by just Chrisitians, but non-Christians as well. Go look and read the testimonies of witnesses who were there, but were non-Christians back when Christ walked directly amongst the people.

      April 12, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
    • clarity

      Name them, 1st Prime. Then we'll take a look at the validity of their writings. Don't stop there. Oh, I guess you'd better not start with Josephus – there's all kinds of speculation about the tampering of his writings . . .

      April 12, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
  5. Just Call Me Lucifer

    Oh, I get it... gays have money, therefore bible colleges will accept them. A gay fool and his money will soon be parted.
    Religion makes baby Jesus cry.

    April 7, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
  6. John3:16

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-4eJ9cxVe0&feature=player_detailpage

    April 7, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
  7. Michael

    Great article. Please visit http://www.myliterarygenius.com

    April 7, 2013 at 1:07 am |
  8. animus

    It took Evangelicals about 20 years to accept racial integration after the Civil Rights victories of the '60s. At that rate they should accept gay people as a normal, natural part of human life by about the year 2033.

    April 6, 2013 at 7:38 pm |
  9. lol??

    lol??
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    lol??
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    lol??
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    lol??
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    The gubmint marries people?? You can't build a culture on lies.............

    April 6, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
  10. lol??

    lol??
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    lol??
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    lol??
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    lol??
    Your gubmint is a theocracy, a usurping one. It claims the power of God........

    April 6, 2013 at 3:56 pm |
  11. Over 40,000 denominations of insanity

    One sect calls homosexuality an abomination while the next one (over 4,000,000 members) in the same denomination is already performing gay marriage.

    One sect, the Westboro Baptist Church believes Americans are being killed at war because America is too kind to "fags".

    One sect believes women to be subservient, while another sect in the same denomination promotes equality between the sexes.

    One sect believes that Jesus and Satan were brothers and that Christ will return to Jerusalem AND Jackson County, Missouri.

    Some believe the Pope is the Anti-Christ. Some believe Obama is the Anti-Christ.

    Some believe that celibacy is appropriate for certain people, or for certain people or positions. As we read about each day, this unnatural practice continues to cause problems for the religious institutions that advise/employ it. Many of the people from these same institutions advocate against abortion, but pretend not to understand the realistic benefit of the morning after pill or even basic contraception; their unrealistic wishful thinking is causing the death of many at the hands of disease.

    Conflicted and unfounded right from the very beginning, Christianity continues to splinter and create more extreme divisions as time goes by, constantly subjecting others in its crossfire.

    April 6, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Not really, doug. If you don't want to get married, you don't have to. If you want to be ashamed of your orientation, you can certainly hate yourself to your heart's content. But enlightened nations all over the world have recognized that discrimination based on mythology is immoral and wrong. The United States is finally coming around do what is right. It really doesn't matter what you think.

      April 6, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • Over 40,000 denominations of insanity

      It's not from me, Douglas. Twist and scream all you want – you Christians are the ones who are conflicted on the issue. So, are you saying the over 4,000,000 Lutheran ECLA members plus the multitudes of members from Church of Christ, select sects from Unitarian & Episcopals are not Christians because of their drastically different stance on this issue? Is that what you're saying, Douglas? Because it sure sounds like it. And doesn't that get back to the point of my post Douglas – the conflicted nature of Christianity? Please Douglas, get a clue.

      April 6, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • Rick

      Douglas
      It would be "hedonism" if gays weren't at all interested in marriage. You could argue that sod0my and women having se.x with other women were a part of the pagan 0rgy scene, but not many people outside of Conservative Christians would argue nowadays that today's gays are just choosing to get wild with this. Like most religious folks on the other side of this argument it seems that what you imagine gay relationships to be is far from the truth.

      April 6, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • Marc Paolella

      It is not relevant to use the Bible as a source of moral authority. It is a confused and often times silly book. Since it says everything and nothing, everyone cherry picks it to suit their taste. It is largely an EMOTIONAL book, not one that is based in reality or relevant to real life.

      A better policy is to toss it and start with Reason as your guiding principle. Reason based on Reality. It must be remembered that the Bible is not the word of anyone, except men with agendas. And those agendas are based in emotion, powerlust, and mysticism. As such they are primitive and should be discarded by anyone who wants to live in the real world.

      Quoting "what the Bible says" is a confession of intellectual and emotional infantilism. In fact, in this day and age, it's really an embarrassment.

      April 7, 2013 at 9:51 am |
    • Barry Metcalf

      Excellent, Marc. I had related things to say here:
      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/04/04/north-carolina-getting-a-state-religion-no/comment-page-19/#comment-2268642

      April 7, 2013 at 9:54 am |
    • sam stone

      doogie: gay marriage will be a fact nationwide. feel free to eat the business end of your shotgun

      April 8, 2013 at 9:49 am |
    • Douglas

      Christianity is not conflicted....rather fornication is where the problem lies.

      April 9, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • clarity

      Christianity is extremely conflicted, Douglas. You're just blind to it. Maybe if you addressed a particular point of my post, you would start tp learn something. And fornication? You mention this way too often. You need some professional help for that issue.

      April 10, 2013 at 3:49 pm |
  12. Jerry

    [ I ran head-on into the following think-piece that I observed on the always invigorating web. Check it out.]

    (The following paper was inspired by Bill O'Reilly whose TV show favors God Dumpers and not "Bible Thumpers." Quotes are from "Vital Quotations" by Emerson West.)

    DANGEROUS BIBLE THUMPERS OF AMERICA

    ROBERT E. LEE: "In all my perplexities and distresses, the Bible has never failed to give me light and strength." (p. 21)
    DANIEL WEBSTER: "If we abide by the principles taught in the Bible, our country will go on prospering and to prosper." (p. 21)
    JOHN QUINCY ADAMS: "I have made it a practice for several years to read the Bible through in the course of every year." (p. 22)
    ABRAHAM LINCOLN: "I believe the Bible is the best gift God has ever given to man. All the good from the Saviour of the world is communicated to us through this book." (p. 22)
    GEORGE WASHINGTON: "It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible." (p. 22)
    HORACE GREELEY: "It is impossible to mentally or socially enslave a Bible-reading people." (p. 23)
    THOMAS JEFFERSON: "I hold the precepts of Jesus as delivered by himself to be the most pure, benevolent, and sublime which have ever been preached to man. I adhere to the principles of the first age; and consider all subsequent innovations as corruptions of this religion, having no foundation in what came from him." (p. 45)
    THOMAS JEFFERSON: "Had the doctrines of Jesus been preached always as pure as they came from his lips, the whole civilized world would by now have become Christian." (p. 47)
    BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: "As to Jesus of Nazareth, my opinion of whom you particularly desire, I think the system of morals and his religion, as he left them to us, is the best the world ever saw, or is likely to see." (p.49)
    WOODROW WILSON: "The sum of the whole matter is this--that our civilization cannot survive materially unless it be redeemed spiritually. It can only be saved by becoming permeated with the spirit of Christ and being made free and happy by practices which spring out of that spirit." (p. 143)
    PATRICK HENRY: "There is a just God who presides over the destiny of nations." (p. 145)
    THOMAS JEFFERSON: "Material abundance without character is the surest way to destruction." (p. 225)
    THOMAS JEFFERSON: "Of all the systems of morality, ancient or modern, which have come under my observation, none appear to me so pure as that of Jesus." (p. 237)
    GEORGE WASHINGTON: "The foolish and wicked practice of profane cursing and swearing is a vice so mean and low, that every person of sense and character detests and despises it." (p. 283)
    BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: "Here is my creed. I believe in one God, the Creator of the universe. That he governs it by his Providence. That he ought to be worshiped." (p. 301)
    CALVIN COOLIDGE: "The strength of a country is the strength of its religious convictions." (p. 305)
    GEORGE WASHINGTON: "The perpetuity of this nation depends upon the religious education of the young." (p. 306)

    Prior to our increasingly "Hell-Bound and Happy" era, America's greatest leaders were part of the (gulp) Religious Right! Today we've forgotten God's threat (to abort America) in Psa. 50:22--"Now consider this, ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver." Memo to God Dumpers: In light of Rev. 16:19, can you be sure you won't be in a city that God has already reserved for destruction?

    April 4, 2013 at 1:51 am |
    • tallulah13

      You may not have noticed this, but we are in the 21st century. Religion no longer has the stranglehold that it once did. Humans no longer fear the dark. We know now that lighting and earthquakes are the sign of a living world, not the sign of an angry god.

      As this is the United States, you are free to believe what you chose. But religion is giving way to reason, and old prejudices now seem hateful and immoral to good, conscientious people. You can keep your head buried in the sand, but humanity is moving on. Injustice based on superstition will no longer stand unchallenged.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:17 am |
    • John Brown

      JustThe"Facts" –

      You suggest tallulah13 is spiritually blind and ignorant. I suggest that she(?) likely knows much more about all the religions of the world (that's right–did you even know there are more than one religion?), including your own, than you do.

      Ignorance comes from the absence and avoidance of knowledge, which is what you seem to be demonstrating.

      April 4, 2013 at 9:25 am |
    • sam stone

      Just The Facts: You feel you are more spiritually discerning than others? Can you be any more fvcking arrogant?

      Keep on threatening people with hell, punk.

      April 4, 2013 at 9:26 am |
    • clarity

      In my opinion, it is important to know what our key founders said that sheds light on their vision for our government. For instance, with respect to Anglicans fighting with Baptists in Jefferson & Madison's home state, Madison had this to say to the Virginia General Assembly in 1785:

      During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What has been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the clergy; ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry, and persecution.

      Madison, of course, would go on to be chief architect of the Constitution, and several of the initial Amendments. Later in life he reflected on his work:

      Every new & successful example therefore of a perfect separation between ecclesiastical and civil matters, is of importance. And I have no doubt that every new example, will succeed, as every past one has done, in shewing that religion & Govt. will both exist in greater purity, the less they are mixed together.

      The Civil Govt, tho' bereft of everything like an associated hierarchy, possesses the requisite stability and performs its functions with complete success, Whilst the number, the industry, and the morality of the Priesthood, & the devotion of the people have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the Church from the State.

      (from letters to Edward Livingston and Robert Walsh)

      Jefferson, another Deistic Christian and follower of Jesus, was wary of the conflicted nature of Christianity:

      Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one half the world fools, and the other half hypocrites. To support roguery and error all over the earth.

      (from Notes on the State of Virginia)

      Perhaps John Adams best captures the mood of the founding of the new government in his 1788 reflection "A Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America":

      The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature; and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the influence of Heaven, more than those at work upon ships or houses, or laboring in merchandise or agriculture; it will forever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses.

      Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, and which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind.

      April 4, 2013 at 11:41 am |
    • fred

      clarity
      Just so no one is led astray, Adams also said:, "The Christian religion is, above all the religions that ever prevailed or existed in ancient or modern times, the religion of wisdom, virtue, equity and humanity, let the Blackguard Paine say what he will."
      The greatest superpower known to man rose out of the Declaration of Independence which closed with a plea for approval upon it by God. That was signed by all 56 representatives.

      April 4, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • tallulah13

      Actually, the Declaration of Independence used the terms “Nature’s God,” “Creator,” and “Divine Providence". These are deist terms, and markedly not christian.

      April 4, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
    • fred

      tallulah13
      The term “endowed by their Creator” is key in understanding the difference between the ways of God and the ways of man. There is a different attitude in a man that understands and humbles himself before the creator and a man that is no more than a carnal animal.
      In closing above their unanimous signatures is written: “We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions”. This is a prayer for blessing that represents the humble nature of one who fears God and understands the foundation of the soul. It is no accident that America was blessed. I see it as proof that God answers prayer of a humble and contrite soul.

      April 4, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Fred, they're not talking about the christian god. They are referring to the deist god - a god that created, then had nothing more to do with the whole mess. If they had actually meant your god, they would have said so.

      This country is "blessed" because extraordinary men created a new type of government, where citizens are allowed to vote on their own governance, where common people, not princes or priests, hold the power. Those of us who appreciate what was created will continue the fight to keep religion out of our laws. The truest threat this nation faces comes not from outside religious fanatics, but from the religious fanatics within.

      April 4, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
    • fred

      tallulah13
      Some were Christians but all believed in God. They were also tired of all the religious nonsense and knew that a generic name for God that all could agree upon was the only way to unite the different people and their faith.

      Regardless if there is or is not a God this nation was a nation of Christians and Jews at its founding. You cannot separate God or the delusion of God from the soul of its people. Sorry, but atheists were burned at the stake or worse so you did not see many around. God not man was at the root and I still cannot see how anyone would doubt that. Again I emphases real or delusional matters not as our actions were solidly anchored in the foundations and beliefs expressed through the Bible.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
    • danielwalldammit

      Quote-mining makes baby Jesus cry.

      April 4, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • Winston5

      "stoopid Flanders!"

      April 12, 2013 at 2:01 am |
  13. Reality

    From the Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011. Said review addresses the following “How do genes associated with ho-mose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?”

    "Most scientists who study human se-xuality agree that gay people are born that way. But that consensus raises an evolutionary puzzle: How do genes associated with h-omose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?"

    http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/evolution/Gay-gene-deconstructed.html

    April 3, 2013 at 11:02 pm |
    • tallulah13

      From what I have read, most studies link homosexuailty to hormones from the mother during gestation. It is statistically proven that a boys chance of being born gay increases with ever older brother born of the same mother.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:22 am |
  14. Fundies Gone Wild! They are panicking!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0-04VDrCbM

    _ _ _ _ _

    April 3, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
    • hdmedina

      Interesting...riveting article causing an emergence of Isaiah 5:20...

      April 3, 2013 at 10:59 pm |
    • tallulah13

      I'm not sure a song ever went so well with a video. This is hysterical.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:23 am |
  15. Chelsea

    Thanks for this article. After months in planning, OneGordon is finally launching publicly. We hope the word spreads to LGBTQ alumni and current students: https://www.facebook.com/OneGordonLGBTQ

    April 3, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
  16. Jon

    That which is a sin can never be made holy. God does not change his mind. The gay agenda is a trick of Devil dersigned to mislead the children of God. It will fail in the end.

    April 3, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
    • tallulah13

      There is more proof that homosexuaity is innate than there is proof for the existence of any god.

      April 3, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      It seems to me that God changed His mind on quite a number of things between the Old and New Testaments.

      And there is no "gay agenda" – unless you consider the struggle for equal rights an agenda.
      Did you rail against the "ne.gro agenda" back in the 60s?

      April 3, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
    • Science

      Science led to gay families: Law should follow
      By Debora L. Spar. Special to CNN
      updated 11:12 AM EDT, Wed April 3, 2013

      http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/03/opinion/spar-same-se-x-marriage-kids/index.html?hpt=hp_bn7

      Take dadsh out of se-x in url

      April 3, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
    • Akira

      Gay people are born that way.
      Why would God make them that way if God Himself didn't have a "gay agenda?"

      April 3, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • sam stone

      Jon: Marriage equality is coming. Choke on it

      April 3, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • Yeah right

      God never changes his mind, except about all those Old Testament laws you do not have to obey any more. So aside from everything he expects you to do, God never changes his mind.

      April 3, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
    • Really

      GodisZilla would not approve of this. All are His Children.

      April 3, 2013 at 10:05 pm |
    • tallulah13

      "JustTheFacts": There is no proof. There is hearsay, there is mythology, there are emotional experiences, but there is not a single ounce of proof that any god exists. Sorry. You fail.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:25 am |
    • tallulah13

      "JustTheFacts": There are multiple studies that indicate that people are born gay. There is real, verifiable, replicable proof. Unlike your so-called proof of god, this proof is real. Sorry. You fail.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:29 am |
    • sam stone

      JTF is obvioiusly god's chose boy toy. JTF...why wait here on earth? If you have a shotgun, make sure it is loaded, put the barrel into you mouth and Jeebus is only a click away. Bon Voyage

      April 4, 2013 at 9:48 am |
    • tallulah13

      Of course I have heard the name Jesus Christ. I have also heard the names Zeus, Osiris, Isis, Odin, Lugh, Mohammed, Gilgamesh, Krishna, and what the heck, Harry Potter. Names in books are not proof of existence. Your belief does not equate to proof.

      There is no proof of the existence of any god. Not even yours. You believe because you choose to believe.

      April 4, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • tallulah13

      JTF, if children know the difference between fictional characters and real ones, what is your excuse?

      Children believe what their parents tell them. When you tell a child to believe in a god when you don't even have proof that such a god exists, you are lying to that child. And even children know that lying is wrong.

      April 4, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @JusttheFacts

      You need to change your name to "Just assertions and polemic idiocy". You are not responding to any posts, merely using the same cop-outs, rationalizations, and ad-hominems. Does it make you feel self-righteous to come here to post bigoted idiocy? Does it ease the self-loathing your religion has brainwashed you into feeling?

      April 4, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
    • Agnes of Dog

      JustTheMythology would be a better moniker for one who hides behind . . . mythology.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @JustThe

      I guess that would be a yes to my questions.

      April 4, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • Akira

      What's up with the quotation marks around tallulah13's name? What an odd affectation.

      April 4, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
  17. Reality

    o "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:

    1. 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] "

    2. "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

    3. See also the Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011. Said review addresses the following “How do genes associated with ho-mose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?”

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

    And because of basic biology differences said monogamous ventures should always be called same-se-x unions not same-se-x marriages.

    To wit:

    From below, on top, backwards, forwards, from this side of the Moon and from the other side too, ga-y s-exual activity is still mutual mas-turbation caused by one or more complex s-exual differences.

    Yes, heteros-exuals practice many of the same "moves" but there is never a doubt who is the female and who is the male.

    As noted, there are basic biological differences in gay unions vs. heterose-xual marriage. Government benefits are the same in both but making the distinction is important for census data and for social responses with respect to potential issues with disease, divorce and family interactions.

    For example at http://www.census.gov/dmd/www/pdf/d61a.pdf , there is a check box for "unmarried partner" under Person #2. There of course is also a check box for "husband/wife". One assumes a gay couple could check this latter box but how does one choose which is which for a gay union?

    April 1, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
    • Akira

      Spouse. Check the spouse box. Jeez, you don't think that they're going to change that when gay marriage is legalized??
      You are entirely too interested in the roles couples take in any given marrital situation. It. Is. None. Of. Your. Business.

      April 1, 2013 at 7:19 pm |
    • Reality

      Why we care:

      As noted, there are basic biological differences in gay unions vs. heterose-xual marriage. Government benefits are the same in both but making the distinction is important for census data and for social responses with respect to potential issues with disease, divorce and family interactions.

      April 2, 2013 at 8:05 am |
    • Lola Bunch

      As noted, gay marriage will not change that inasmuch as the new census forms will reflect that.
      I don't care whether the partners in a hetero marriage live according to stereotyped gender roles, either. I also don't care what they call each other. The rights and responsibilities involved in the civil contract of marriage apply equally to both partners and both sexes, so it really doesn't matter to that contract whether the marriage involves a husband and a wife, two husbands, or two wives. All of those combinations can easily and fully carry out the civil contract, which is all that should matter to government.

      April 2, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
    • Akira

      That's why YOU care, Reality.
      What are you afraid of:
      "Eeek! I might look at a married couple and not know what stereotyped sex roles they play! They might even have the gall to assign roles and tasks within their marriage based on talent and inclination rather than on what dangly bits they have!"

      How silly, to treat people as individual human beings rather than as identical, interchangeable representatives of their sexes, defined exclusively by their genitals!
      Your census argument is absurd. Check the census forms from other decades to see exactly how they have changed over the years.
      Denying SSM because of the census is just plain ridiculous. And not Constitutionally sound.

      April 2, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Good gravy. Just write a fvcking book, already, Reality. Have you never heard that brevity is the soul of wit? Your long-winded diatribes are just stupid. Gay marriage will not be decided by anyone reading your drivel.

      My word, every time I see one of your brain-dumps here, I just cringe.

      April 2, 2013 at 7:37 pm |
    • The real Tom

      I'm surprised the bozo Reality didn't post his usual crap about being a man who enjoys intelligent s3x. Good thing. He'd have to prove he's intelligent first, and his posts are evidence to the contrary. So dumb: the wording on the census forms as a reason to deny marriage to gays and lesbians. What a fvcktard.

      April 2, 2013 at 7:42 pm |
    • Akira

      Well, Tom, I'm about to give him the rebuttal he deserves. Because he is wrong about the census.
      At least he isn't talking about how Ellen is plainly the husband and Portia is plainly the wife.
      "2009, the U.S. Census Bureau announced that it would count same-sex married couples. However, the final form did not contain a separate "same-sex married couple" option. When noting the relationship between household members, same-sex couples who are married could mark their spouses as being "Husband or wife", the same response given by opposite-sex married couples. An "unmarried partner" option was available for couples (whether same-sex or opposite-sex) who were not married."

      There. The census already thought of your little "which box will they check?"

      "The 2010 Census used only a short form asking ten basic questions."

      Your garbage about disease and such isn't even ON the census.

      "Detailed socioeconomic information collected during past censuses will continue to be collected through the American Community Survey."

      The Census is a head count. Period.

      http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_United_States_Census#section_7

      And, once again, it is None. Of. Your. Business.

      April 2, 2013 at 8:10 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Good. It's about time someone kicked Reality in his peanut-sized balls. This baloney about how it's necessary to get "accurate census data" being a reason to make a distinction between same-s#x and straight marriage is one of the dumbest pieces of crap I've read here in a long time-and that's really saying something.

      What a friggin' azzhole.

      April 2, 2013 at 8:28 pm |
    • Reality

      For the reading challenged:

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

      And because of basic biology differences said monogamous ventures should always be called same-se-x unions not same-se-x marriages.

      To wit:

      From below, on top, backwards, forwards, from this side of the Moon and from the other side too, ga-y s-exual activity is still mutual mas-turbation caused by one or more complex s-exual differences. Some differences are visually obvious in for example the complex maleness of DeGeneres, Billy Jean King and Rosie O'Donnell.

      April 2, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
    • Akira

      Tom, it's so absurd that I have to respond every time I read this...and I pulled a page out of his book and copied it so I can paste it every time he does uses this as an argument...
      I suspect he really objects to the word "marriage" being used. Tough.

      April 2, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
    • The real Tom

      If there were any justice in this world, the fvcker would just mas ter bate himself into a god damn coma and stop polluting the place with his brain-farts.

      April 2, 2013 at 11:34 pm |
    • jed clampett

      @Akira,
      I love the "dangly bits" reference. My wife's dangly bits are awesome. Gives me something to chew on and think about during the day.

      April 3, 2013 at 12:13 am |
    • Akira

      We are not reading-challenged, Reality; you are writing challenged.
      Do you not get the term "separation of church and state?"
      It doesn't matter what ANY religion believes; they are not pertinent to secular law.

      What YOU propose is STILL marginalizing people, STILL denying them equal civil rights under the 14th, because you have some weird idea of what "traditional" marriage is.
      Guess what? You don't matter. You have no say. You're happy with the way things are, because you're hetero. It doesn't touch YOU at all.

      And no, I don't want gay marriage to be accepted "the same as traditional marriage" – traditional marriage, in which the woman is no longer a legal person once married, is now illegal. I want it to have the same rights as modern, egalitarian, civil hetero marriage, which is by no means as "traditional" as you think it is.

      No matter how you try to package it, Reality, what you really want to know is who you think the "giver" and the "receiver" is, when in REALITY, there is just two people who want to wed the one they love, and all of your psuedo-intellectual BS makes you look like the closet bigot you are; evidenced by your "observation" of the women you mentioned.
      Inherent maleness, my ass.

      April 3, 2013 at 1:13 am |
    • Akira

      Jed Clampett: right on.

      April 3, 2013 at 1:16 am |
    • Akira

      Not to mention, "Reality", that sex ISN'T a requirement for marriage, so it doesn't matter what kind any two consenting adults engage in; it simply isn't an issue if it's mutual masturation or not.

      Your arguments are absurd, immaterial to the issue, and if you were arguing this in a court of law, you would most assuredly be ruled against.

      And telling people they are reading challenged when they point out where you are wrong is simply childish...although I am totally amused that you would use the word "union" while insisting what SS couples are doing is not.

      April 3, 2013 at 1:28 am |
    • The Four Fluffy Kittend of the Apocalypse

      I surprised that anyone even bothers reading Reality anymore.

      April 3, 2013 at 1:37 am |
    • .

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

      And because of basic biology differences said monogamous ventures should always be called same-se-x unions not same-se-x marriages.

      Why? Because you think it'ws "mutual mastur-bation? So the hell what? That's not a reason to deny someone equal rights. Don't like it? Don't marry a gay person. And does this apply to all of the gay people who DON'T believe in the Abrahamic religions? Logic fail. You lose.
      Tom is right. Mastur-bate yourself in a coma and let people live as they should: MARRIED TO THE ONE THEY LOVE, GAY OR STRAIGHT.
      Damn, you're awfully interested in the se-x lives of others. None of your business, asshole.

      April 3, 2013 at 1:45 am |
    • Akira

      4 Fluffy: normally, I don't. This one is just so absurd that I had to respond. The Census? Really? Mutual masturbation? C'mon.

      April 3, 2013 at 1:52 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      With regard to sex at its best, there are no wives and no husbands, just two (normally two) amazing beasts burning the bed up in wild-eyed... words escape me, but its not sex if it doesn't make you bleed from the eyes. I know it's insensitive to point that out to mono- (auto-?) sexuals (not to be called beat-off bugs), but remember what Boy George always said: "any love is good love" – Eh, Reality?

      April 3, 2013 at 2:18 am |
    • Reality

      Continuing:

      The general population to include many of the voters in California, rightly or wrongly, find g-ay s-exual activities, unionized or not, to be "yucky" and unusual and typically as-sociate such activity with the spread of AIDS which is of course wrong. Said AIDS epidemic in the g-ay male community at the start of the AIDS crises will always remain unfortunately a stigma on the ga-y community.

      April 3, 2013 at 7:12 am |
    • Akira

      NOW you're going to pretend that you are worried about the stigma of AIDS? Are you just as worried about all the straight people who have it?
      Not a valid reason to deny SS couples the right to wed their loved one.
      Health isn't a requirement to being married: witness all of the death-bed marriages.
      Prop 8 will be overturned.

      Just be honest to say what it really is: YOU find it yucky, Reality.

      Don't watch, then. Don't think about it. I do assure you that the gay couples who may find hetero activities "yucky" don't care what YOU do while you're "enjoying intelligent sex.

      You have not given one valid reason to deny equal rights to a whole segment of society. Not one.

      April 3, 2013 at 11:23 am |
    • Akira

      ...not to mention, Reality, that many, MANY men watch gay porn all the time...nd for many men, it's their preferred form of it.
      I am talking about, of course, woman on woman action.
      I'll wager even you have indulged in watching gay sex a few times...and found it "hot". You're not alone. Many men do. Just be honest enough to say you want to regulate WHAT kind you find "yucky." And you'll still be wrong.

      April 3, 2013 at 11:32 am |
    • Reality

      Continuing:

      From the Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011. Said review addresses the following “How do genes associated with ho-mose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?”

      "Most scientists who study human se-xuality agree that gay people are born that way. But that consensus raises an evolutionary puzzle: How do genes associated with h-omose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?"

      http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/evolution/Gay-gene-deconstructed.html

      April 3, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • Akira

      Continuing:
      ....and so? Your point? Nada.
      Now you're just reposting your original post, without providing any further evidence as to why gay people should be denied.
      Your reasoning is flawed, and your points invalid.

      April 3, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
    • Lola Bunch

      Nice article. Interesting.
      How does that impact gay marriage? It doesn't. Is that a reason to quash another's civil rights? No.
      Try again, without posting the same dreck that you've already posted, okay? Refute something we've posted.

      April 3, 2013 at 4:24 pm |
    • Reality

      Who is denying benefits?

      Again, as noted, there are basic biological differences in gay unions vs. heterose-xual marriage. Government benefits are the same in both but making the distinction is important for census data and for social responses with respect to potential issues with disease, divorce and family interactions.

      April 3, 2013 at 6:15 pm |
    • The real Tom

      the distinction is important for census data and for social responses with respect to potential issues with disease, divorce and family interactions.

      Why do you dream it's "important for census data"? What about it is significant to the census?

      What 'social responses' are you talking about, you dip wad? What "potential issues with disease, divorce and family interactions" are you yapping about and what would the census have to do with any of them?

      You are such a hard, Reality.

      April 3, 2013 at 8:11 pm |
    • The real Tom

      "there are basic biological differences in gay unions vs. heterose-xual marriage."

      So? Of what significance are those differences as far as a census is concerned? What difference would it make in the results of a census if some semantic distinction were made between gay and straight unions? Why would calling it a same-s3x union be any better/different than calling it a marriage?

      What is it with you, you silly man? The crap about mutual mastur bation seems to be a preoccupation with you. I feel sorry for your spouse if that's all you two ever do. And apparently, you think because you're impotent everyone else should suffer.

      April 3, 2013 at 9:30 pm |
    • Akira

      Why Reality's Census Argument Is Invalid: Priceles!!!

      To wit:

      "In 2009, the U.S. Census Bureau announced that it would count same-sex married couples. However, the final form did not contain a separate "same-sex married couple" option. When noting the relationship between household members, same-sex couples who are married could mark their spouses as being "Husband or wife", the same response given by opposite-sex married couples. An "unmarried partner" option was available for couples (whether same-sex or opposite-sex) who were not married."

      There. The census already thought of your little "which box will they check?"

      "The 2010 Census used only a short form asking ten basic questions."

      Your garbage about disease and such isn't even ON the census.

      "Detailed socioeconomic information collected during past censuses will continue to be collected through the American Community Survey."
      NOTICE THIS IS *NOT* THE CENSUS.

      ****The Census is a head count. Period.***

      http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_United_States_Census#section_7

      April 3, 2013 at 11:02 pm |
    • Akira

      Putting the kibosh on the Census baloney: priceless!!

      The 10 questions asked on the 2010 Census:

      1.How many people were living or staying in this house, apartment, or mobile home on April 1, 2010?

      2.Were there any additional people staying here on April 1, 2010 that you did not include in Question 1? Mark all that apply: (checkboxes for: children; relatives; non-relatives; people staying temporarily; none)

      3.Is this house, apartment, or mobile home – [Checkboxes for owned with a mortgage, owned free and clear, rented, occupied without rent.]

      4. What is your telephone number?

      5.What is Person 1's name? (last, first)

      6.What is Person 1's sex? (male, female)

      7.What is Person 1's age and Person 1's date of birth?

      8.Is Person 1 of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin? (checkboxes for: "No", and several for "Yes" which specify groups of countries)

      9. What is Person 1's race? (checkboxes for 14 including "other". One possibility was "Black, African Am., or Negro".)

      10. Does Person 1 sometimes live or stay somewhere else? (checkboxes for "No", and several locations for "Yes")

      Any reason to deny SSM? Nope.

      April 3, 2013 at 11:22 pm |
    • Reality

      Again!!!

      Who is denying benefits?

      Again, as noted, there are basic biological differences in gay unions vs. heterose-xual marriage. Government benefits are the same in both but making the distinction is important for census data and for social responses with respect to potential issues with disease, divorce and family interactions.

      April 4, 2013 at 8:00 am |
    • Akira

      AGAIN, you haven't read a damned word I've written, have you?
      The Census doesn't even ask for that information, as I have pointed out REPEATEDLY.

      It is important to WHO? YOU?

      And gay people ARE being denied benefits. Witness DOMA which DENIES them of this.

      And everyone is aware of the biological differences; this isn't a reason to deny the right of MARRIAGE to gay people.

      I wonder exactly how many people would yell if all marriages not performed in church would suddenly be termed "civil unions" by law.

      Yeah, Reality. Gay people want the same things heteros are given by law regarding marriage.

      Now, would you care to address these points, instead of taking your normal way out and c/p a response that totally doesn't address the points raised?

      And don't mention the Census again. That's been debunked.

      April 4, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Repeating the same crap and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity, you azz. You have yet to answer a single question about your claims. I don't think you are capable.

      All you know how to do is copy and paste. No thought is required, which is why you succeed at this task so splendidly, idiot.

      April 4, 2013 at 10:23 pm |
  18. Jan

    Why, oh why do gay people go to private Christian schools, sign their agreements, then complain, complain , complain?
    There are more schools where it does not matter–go there!!!

    April 1, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
    • Gay Christian College Student

      Some of us did it thinking that it would make us straight, actually.

      April 1, 2013 at 8:18 pm |
    • Hubert

      @GCCS

      How did that work out?

      April 1, 2013 at 10:47 pm |
    • hee hee

      Too bad all of those people weren't able to make completely consistent decisions at age 18 (as is possible in our simple world, if only they had your deep insight). Then you could stop being self-righteous, and go on with your life!

      Because that's what you'd do.

      April 2, 2013 at 9:28 am |
    • HotAirAce

      For the same reasons straights go to religious schools then engage in premarital s3x and use birth control – their beliefs are not that important.

      April 2, 2013 at 9:40 am |
    • The real Tom

      Why do Jewish kids go to schools founded by Protestants?

      Because they don't give a crap about religion–they want an education.

      April 2, 2013 at 9:45 am |
  19. Larry

    "... he said he might have stayed closeted because people might suggest abandoning his faith, something he wasn't willing to relinquish." and apparently no one at this "Christian" school might suggest that he abandon his sin, something he also seems unwilling relinquish.

    April 1, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
    • Bioengineer

      Indeed.
      I would urge to hold back on such criticism, but seeing as he chose not to actively seek change, dropped the pursuit of celibacy, and considered joining an arguably heretical denomination- seemingly because it accommodated his lifestyle rather than due to genuine theological convictions- I must agree with you.

      April 1, 2013 at 11:09 pm |
    • Darryl

      I was born to love sugar. Now I know too much sugar is not good for me, so I have to have it in moderation. However, just because some have determined it to be unhealthy in excess does not mean I should be banned from being able to have my sugar, even in excess, if it is not hurting anyone else. This is obvious in the "freedom" expressed by those in Mississippi which is the nations fattest with nearly 35% of the populace considered obese.

      If you want to stop gay's from getting married because you believe it's harmful to society, why don't you put down that corndog and big gulp and try shedding a few pounds of your hypocrasy.

      April 5, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
  20. Will Christards ever learn anything from Kirk and his banana?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfucpGCm5hY

    April 1, 2013 at 9:21 am |
    • Gilligan's Island Girls Gone Wild!

      That video actually comprises the entire science syllabus at most evangelical colleges.

      April 2, 2013 at 4:26 am |
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About this blog

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.