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When Christians become a 'hated minority'
Evangelical Christians say they are the new victims of intolerance - they're persecuted for condemning homosexuality.
May 5th, 2013
06:00 AM ET

When Christians become a 'hated minority'

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - When Peter Sprigg speaks publicly about his opposition to homosexuality, something odd often happens.

During his speeches, people raise their hands to challenge his assertions that the Bible condemns homosexuality, but no Christians speak out to defend him.

“But after it is over, they will come over to talk to me and whisper in my ear, ‘I agree with everything you said,’" says Sprigg, a spokesman for The Family Research Council, a powerful, conservative Christian lobbying group.

We’ve heard of the “down-low” gay person who keeps his or her sexual identity secret for fear of public scorn. But Sprigg and other evangelicals say changing attitudes toward homosexuality have created a new victim: closeted Christians who believe the Bible condemns homosexuality but will not say so publicly for fear of being labeled a hateful bigot.

As proof, Sprigg points to the backlash that ESPN commentator Chris Broussard sparked recently. Broussard was called a bigot and a purveyor of hate speech when he said an NBA player who had come out as gay was living in “open rebellion to God.” Broussard said the player, Jason Collins, was “living in unrepentant sin” because the Bible condemns homosexuality.

“In the current culture, it takes more courage for someone like Chris Broussard to speak out than for someone like Jason Collins to come out,” says Sprigg, a former pastor. “The media will hail someone who comes out of the closet as gay, but someone who simply expresses their personal religious views about homosexual conduct is attacked.”

When is disagreement hate?

Bryan Litfin, a theology professor at Moody Bible Institute in Illinois, says Christians should be able to publicly say that God designed sex to take place within a marriage between a man and a woman.

“That isn’t so outrageous,” Litfin says. “Nobody is expressing hate toward homosexuals by saying that. Since when is disagreement the same as hate?”

But quoting the Bible doesn't inoculate anyone from becoming a bigot or hater, some scholars say. There's a point at which a Christian's opposition to homosexuality can become bigotry, and even hate speech, they say.

Crossing such a line has happened many times in history.

A literal reading of the Bible was used to justify all sorts of hatred: slavery, the subjugation of women and anti-Semitism, scholars and pastors say.

“Truly damaging speech cannot be excused just because it expresses genuine religious belief,” says Mark D. Jordan, author of “Recruiting Young Love: How Christians Talk about Homosexuality.”

“Some religious beliefs, sincerely held, are detestable. They cannot be spoken without disrupting social peace,” says Jordan, a professor at the John Danforth Center on Religion & Politics at Washington University in St. Louis.

The point where religious speech becomes hate speech is difficult to define, though, scholars and activists say.

The Southern Poverty Law Center in Alabama is a nonprofit civil rights group that combats and monitors hate groups. Three years ago, it designated the Family Research Council, the group that Sprigg represents, as a hate group - a characterization the group stridently rejects.

Mark Potok,  a center spokesman, says there’s no shared definition of what constitutes hate speech.

“There is no legal meaning. It’s just a phrase,” Potok says. “Hate speech is in the ear of the beholder.”

'One of the most hated minorities?'

Intolerance may be difficult to define, but some evangelicals say they have become victims of intolerance because of their reverence for the Bible.

The conservative media culture is filled with stories about evangelicals being labeled as “extremists” for their belief that homosexuality is a sin.

Their sense of persecution goes beyond their stance on homosexuality. There are stories circulating of evangelical students being suspended for opposing homosexuality, a teacher fired for giving a Bible to a curious student, and the rise of anti-Christian bigotry.

A blogger at The American Dream asked in one essay:

“Are evangelical Christians rapidly becoming one of the most hated minorities in America?”

The reluctance of evangelicals to speak out against homosexuality is often cited as proof they are being forced into the closet.

Joe Carter, editor for The Gospel Coalition, an online evangelical magazine, wrote a blog post entitled “Debatable: Is the Christian Church a ‘Hate Group’?" He warned that young people will abandon “orthodox” Christian churches that teach that homosexuality is a sin for fear of being called haters.

“Faux civility, embarrassment, prudishness and a fear of expressing an unpopular opinion has caused many Christians to refrain from explaining how homosexual conduct destroys lives,” Carter wrote.

Some Christians fear that opposing homosexuality could cause them to lose their jobs and “haunt them forever,” Carter says.

“It’s easier to just go along,” says Carter, who is also author of “How to Argue Like Jesus.” “You don’t want to be lumped in with the bigots. That’s a powerful word."

Edward Johnson, a communication professor at Campbell University in North Carolina, says we are now living in a "postmodern" era where everything is relative and there is no universally accepted truth. It's an environment in which anyone who says "this is right" and "that is wrong" is labeled intolerant, he says.

There was a time when a person could publicly say homosexuality was wrong and people could consider the statement without anger, he says. Today, people have reverted to an intellectual tribalism where they are only willing to consider the perspective of their own tribe.

“They are incapable of comprehending that someone may have a view different than theirs,” Johnson says. “For them anyone who dares to question the dogma of the tribe can only be doing so out of hatred.”

Sprigg, from the Family Research Council, says his condemnation of homosexual conduct does not spring from intolerance but a desire to protect gays from harmful conduct, he says.

Sprigg, a senior fellow for policy studies at the council, wrote in a council pamphlet that homosexual men are more likely to engage in child sexual abuse than are straight men. He also wrote that gay men are also afflicted with a higher rate of sexually transmitted diseases and mental illness as well.

Sprigg says he does not believe homosexuality is a choice and that “personal testimonies" and "clinical experience” show that some people “can and do change from gay to straight.”

“Maybe we need to do a better job of showing that we are motivated by Christian love,” Sprigg says. “Love is wanting the best for someone, and acting to bring that about.”

'That's a lie'

Potok, from the Southern Poverty Law Center, has little use for the love Sprigg talks about.

He calls it hatred, and his voice rose in anger when he talked about the claims by Sprigg and other Christian groups that gay men are more predisposed to molest children and that homosexual behavior is inherently harmful.

He says the Southern Poverty Law Center didn’t designate the Family Research Group a hate group because they view homosexuality as a sin or oppose same-sex marriage, Potok says. There are plenty of Christian groups who hold those beliefs but are not hate groups, he says.

A group becomes a hate group when it attacks and maligns an entire class of people for their “immutable characteristics,” Potok says. The Family Research Council spreads known falsehoods about gays and lesbians, he says, such as the contention that gay men are predisposed to abuse children.

“That’s a lie,” Potok says. “These guys are engaging in straight-up defamation of a very large group of people. There are not many things much worse than you can say in America about somebody than they are a child molester.”

Potok scoffed at Spriggs’ claim that the council and other evangelical anti-gay groups are victims of intolerance.

“That’s whining on the part of people who spend their days and nights attacking gay people and then some people criticize them and they don’t like it,” he says. “That’s pathetic. It reminds me of slave owners complaining that people are saying ugly things about them.”

What the Bible says

What about the popular evangelical claim, “We don’t hate the sinner, just the sin” – is that seen as intolerance or hate speech when it comes to homosexuality?

There are those who say you can’t hate the sin and love the sinner because being gay or lesbian is defined by one’s sexual behavior; it’s who someone is.

“Most people who identify as gay and lesbian would say that this is not an action I’m choosing to do; this is who I am,” says Timothy Beal, author of “The Rise and Fall of the Bible: The Unexpected History of an Accidental Book.”

Beal, a religion professor at Case Western University in Ohio, says it should be difficult for any Christian to unequivocally declare that the Bible opposes homosexuality because the Bible doesn’t take a single position on the topic. It's an assertion that many scholars and mainline Protestant pastors would agree with.

Some people cite Old Testament scriptures as condemning homosexuality, such as  Leviticus 18:22 - “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination.” But other Christians counter by saying they are not bound by the Old Testament.

There are those who also cite New Testament scriptures like Romans 1:26-27 - “… Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men. …”

Beal, however, says Jesus said little about sex. And the Apostle Paul, who wrote Romans, was probably referring to male prostitution and men having sexual relations with boys, a practice in the Greco-Roman world.

“Paul does not understand genetics and sexual orientation the way we understand it now as something much more than a choice,” says Beal.

Some evangelicals say Christians can’t change their view of biblical truth just because times change. But some scholars reply:

Sure you can. Christians do it all the time.

Denying a woman’s ability to preach in church was justified by scriptures like 1 Timothy 2:11-12 - “… I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet.” But many churches have abandoned that teaching - and some scholars say a woman preached the first Christian sermon, when Mary Magdalene proclaimed that Jesus had risen.

Slaveholders in 19th century America justified slavery through a literal reading of the Bible, quoting Titus 2:9-10 – “Teach slaves to be subject to their masters in everything. …” And anti-Semitism was justified by the claims that Jews killed Jesus, such as Matthew 27: 25-26 - “Let his blood be on us and on our children.”

Litfin, from Moody Bible Institute, acknowledged that the Bible once sanctioned slavery, but he said that practice was a “cultural expression” that changed over time. Evangelicals who oppose same-sex marriage by citing the Bible are on more solid ground, he says.

“Marriage is a universal and timeless institution that God set up for maximum human flourishing. He set it up in the first book of the Bible with the story of Adam and Eve. It is consistent throughout the whole Bible. … Marriage is in a different category than those cultural things.”

Public jousts over the Bible's stance on homosexuality rarely change people’s minds. What changes is when people get to know gay and lesbian people as friends and hear their story, says Beal, author of “The Rise and Fall of the Bible.”

“If you open up to that other person genuinely, you basically come to a point where you have to sacrifice them to your ideology or crack open your ideology to make a hospitable place for them,” Beal says.

One Christian pastor who is gay says the uproar over the ESPN commentator’s comments can actually be good,  because debates help settle moral disputes.

“What appears to us as antiquated and prejudicial now was once a disputed issue that required debate,” says the Rev. Richard McCarty, a minister in the United Church of Christ and a religious studies professor at Mercyhurst University in Pennsylvania.

Until the debate over homosexuality is settled - if it ever is - there may be plenty of evangelical Christians who feel as if they are now being forced to stay in the closet.

Carter, the evangelical blogger, says he foresees a day when any church that preaches against homosexuality will be marginalized. Just as many churches now accept divorce, they will accept sexual practices once considered sinful.

“It’s getting to the point,” he says, “where churches are not going to say that any sexual activity is wrong.”

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Belief • Bible • Christianity • Church • Church and state • Culture wars • Protest • Sex • Sexuality • Sports

soundoff (10,982 Responses)
  1. Ryan M.

    The problem secular society and sacred belief face today are one and the same- since the Reformation, the individual, not the Church Christ created (the Catholic Church) are the sole arbiters of truth. Notice I said arbiters, and not arbiter, because this state of affairs does not allow for any true arbitration, but just a collection of opinions then decided upon by the most vocal group; usually the group that makes their viewpoint look "progressive" and "tolerant" in the modern age.

    The Evangelical and the Secularist (and, sadly, most Catholics) do not differ in any important respect, except that they form their "individual" opinion from different sources: the Evangelical from their personal interpretation of scripture, and the secularist by some secular ideology (such as Marxism, Fascism and most recently Scientism). This state of affairs have led to the most violent years of human existence, making the Crusades look like a slightly unpleasant disagreement in comparison.

    The only way for human society to survive and thrive into the future is to return to the Catholic faith, which is the most logical religion, evident in it's strong connections to the Greek philosophy of Plato and Aristotle, still two of the greatest minds put forth by our civilization.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:52 am |
    • Edward

      Christ did not create a church. He was a Jew and worshiped as a Jew.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:09 am |
  2. Dana

    How irritating and irrational. It seems many conservative Christians declare that its perfectly okay to behave hatefully but are outraged when some small measure of that hate rebounds back at them. You reap what you sow.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:52 am |
    • Bill Mitchell

      Why do you describe the fact Christians disagree with your lifestyle on a moral basis to be hate? Don't we have the right to disagree with you? You disagree with us, is that hate?

      May 5, 2013 at 8:54 am |
    • derp

      "disagree with your lifestyle"

      If you are too stupid to understand the difference between lifestyle and orientation, than calling you hateful is the least of your problems,

      May 5, 2013 at 8:58 am |
    • John

      And then they try to turn it around, and expect others to be tolerant of their intolerance.....

      May 5, 2013 at 9:00 am |
    • wisdomchoice

      its hypocrisy.. but actually, the hypocrisy is just part of the hide-n-seek game. Keep oneself unspotted from wwrong doing by making the focus of conversation onto the speaker. In other words, it goes like this:
      A persons exercising of their free will may have immorals tied to them.
      Someone questions it
      Instead of discussing the actual topic, they create a new one.. a fantastic dodge-n-weave tactic. It typcally goes like this:
      "Who are you to judge!?" bam... topic change... and now I'm hidden... *whew*

      May 5, 2013 at 9:07 am |
    • canderson71

      I think you should read who is the hateful crowd here. Its seems to me thats its not the Christians. God Bless!

      May 5, 2013 at 9:09 am |
    • wisdomchoice

      Huh.. I read Bill's responsem and then I read derp's response.. Anyone who cannot see the difference between those 2 responses when it comes to moral conduct, tolerance, hate, etc.. is either 1) Purposely ignoring what is obvious to the eyes in favor of ego or 2) blind

      May 5, 2013 at 9:14 am |
  3. Conrad

    If you believe "the truth will set you free," read Joseph Atwill's "Caesar's Messiah," in which he demonstrates that Christianity was invented by the Romans as a way to pacify the rebellious Jews.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:51 am |
  4. Offworld Express

    First of all, having a belief that something an individual is doing is wrong is NOT the same as trying to impose will upon that person. To assert such is to redefine the debate from truth to opression. It is false. For example, if you pick your nose and eat it, I might tell you that it is disgusting. You may or may not believe it, but the fact that you are partaking of it suggests that you do not. This, however, is NOT insisting that you stop or forcing you to stop. In fact, the act of trying to redefine the debate from one of truth to opression IS trying to force one's beliefs upon the other dissenting opinion. Quite the opposite of what is portrayed. You cannot assert your belief because I don't want to hear it. THAT is oppression. Notice I've left religion out of this post entirely...

    May 5, 2013 at 8:51 am |
  5. Name*K

    Do not be afraid to stand up for what you know to be true... Imagine a world without God. You have to fight for what you know is right. God's law trumps man's law ever time. " I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."

    May 5, 2013 at 8:51 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      I live in a world without god every day. So do you.

      Men wrote gods law so don't believe everything you read.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:53 am |
    • jw

      RIchard is right... no ones gonna save you but yourself Name...and if you follow those fairy tales in the bible, you are gonna end up pretty lonely in the world and then go to the boneyard like every other human will. you reap what you sew,,, if you want a happy life full of fun love and friends , you better put away your religion and self rightousness. If there were a Jesus, I have a feeling he would not be happy with your misguided interpretations of his philosophies.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:01 am |
    • BaZinga

      . . . .so, I was reading this book that says all fundamentalist christians are bigots, narrow minded, racist and an abomination to humankind. Nothing personal, just something I read in an unsubstantiated book proven to be erroneous on several accounts, so don't take it personal. Isn't that the jist of how a portion of the article is written, that the christian is simply stating what is written in his life guidance book therefore they shouldn't be considered bigots? Seems very hypocritial

      May 5, 2013 at 9:51 am |
    • Boggy Creek Rocks

      Your god is so powerful, he can do ANYTHING......right ?
      He could fix this whole mess in 5 minutes by making a short visit.
      Or maybe he just AINT real.

      May 5, 2013 at 11:29 am |
  6. tara

    Church: "We're going to treat people like trash!"
    People: "We refuse to be treated like trash."
    Church: "We're being oppressed!"

    May 5, 2013 at 8:50 am |
    • Rob

      Christians: "Jews are the chosen of God, and anyone who goes against them will be destroyed."
      Jews: "Christians are evil."
      Christians: "Jews are the chosen of God, and anyone who goes against them will be destroyed."
      etc.
      etc.
      etc.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:54 am |
    • JR Ewing

      Hey everybody! Rob's really, REALLY antisemitic!
      Just thought you'd like to know, in case you missed his postings.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:06 am |
    • BaZinga

      Kudos. Accurate interpretation

      May 5, 2013 at 9:53 am |
  7. vic powers

    our job, as true Christians, is to love other sinners but hate the sin that dominates them (and us)... we all fall short of the glory of God, and none is righteous, no not one... BUT we are instructed to tell sinners they are sinners, not to condemn them, but to tell them that they have a way to eternal life with Jesus... he died for ALL sinners, that if they would come to him and ask for mercy, they would be saved... we are obligated to do so, and if we knowingly refuse to speak out against their sins, we are held responsible... who, given eternal salvation, could possibly hide their light under bushel basket?... suffering ridicule for the sake of someone else's eternal salvation is such a small price to pay, is it not?... and for those who DO hide, remember that the Word says that God will spit you out of his mouth if you are lukewarm, meaning neither hot nor cold... TAKE A STAND... CHRIST STOOD FOR YOU, SO DO LIKEWISE... HE EXPECTS NO LESS!!!!!!!

    May 5, 2013 at 8:50 am |
    • JR Ewing

      Religious nut job. I hope you aren't raising any kids in that warped little world of yours.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:02 am |
    • Boggy Creek Rocks

      BUT we are instructed to tell sinners they are sinners,

      If I don't believe in your "sin" you are in fact forcing your belief on me.
      Thanks for caring, but S T F U !!!!!

      May 5, 2013 at 11:31 am |
    • Unsure

      Wait, was that from Lord of the Rings?

      May 5, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
  8. JimMan!

    Why do people get so upset when someone says they are against Gay Marriage? I for am against it. It's so wrong in many ways. But I will not get into it details cause people will start hating on me. If someone wants to choose to be that way so be it. But marriage is between a Man and a Women!! Amen!

    May 5, 2013 at 8:48 am |
    • Jen B

      The reason everyone mocks Christians for their stance against gay marriage, is because they cannot come up with a single LOGICAL reason for why it's bad.They offer what they think are logical arguments and then as soon as you shoot them down with facts, real portrayals of gay marriage, and real logic, they pull out their Bibles and expect you to just accept what it says without question. Most of them would probably be up in arms if a Muslim or a Hindu strolled into their homes, tossed their holy books down and then expected them to accept the teachings as law.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • Sadie Boyd

      Look, it doesn't matter what you think...it is what Jesus would do? Would he support hatred and condemnation or would he say love thy neighbor? The evangelical movement in the United States has removed itself away from the teachings of Jesus. There is evangelical hate and there is spiritual work as Jesus would do. Those who walk in the way of the lord are not yelling from their pulpits. They are washing the feet of the poor, feeding the poor, protecting the elderly against the ruin of social security and medicare, they are helping people find homes and they are delivering firewood. The loud evangelical right do nothing but shame and belittle. I can't imagine Jesus hanging out with Pat Robertson, Glenn Beck, Franklin Graham or any other useless loud mouth.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:02 am |
    • Boggy Creek Rocks

      But I will not get into it details cause people will start hating on me

      You cannot come up with one good reason, without using your bible.
      I don't hate you for it, what I hate is your special little group
      wanting to pass laws against me.
      You use your book to attack me, then scream victom when I fight back.

      May 5, 2013 at 11:35 am |
  9. Michelle

    I'm impressed that CNN has engaged conversation about Christianity and hatred. I have met many Christians who did not discriminate towards another person but I have met just as many that hate someone else because they are different and don't believe what the Christian bible says. We are all different and I think it's important for differences to be accepted in order to stop the hatred that seems to infiltrating our society.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:48 am |
    • JR Ewing

      Oh, you poor christian victims! What, are we non-christians preventing you from spreading your hate? You wonder why people hate you so much? It's because you behave like spoiled, over-privileged, insane, HATEFUL children. That's why the entire world is turning against you. Don't you get it? Hate does NOT sell, except for in that tiny bubble you've created around yourself.
      Keep acting like you are, because christians are killing their own religion with hate.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:54 am |
    • JR Ewing

      By the way, that message was directed at all the nasty little christian bigots out there, not Michelle.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:56 am |
    • Rob

      Just replace "christians" with "jews" in JR's rant, and you've got an accurate picture of history.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:57 am |
    • JR Ewing

      Rob, we get it. You hate Jewish people. Point taken. What do you want? A medal? A yacht? A Scooby Snack?
      This pathology of yours should be looked into by a trained professional.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:08 am |
  10. Vera Waitress

    Did the guys who wrote their portion of the bible ever think, "Gee, it's curious that God's law is exactly the way I'm living right now." I mean, how stupid. Wasn't there ANYTHING that God told them to write that didn't exactly match what they were already thinking and doing? Like, "Hey, women should be equal." Never made it into the bible. Or, "Don't enslave people." Nope. Never made it in. This book turns out to be the laughing stock of all humanity, where the people who wrote the Bible were conveniently mandating their own Middle Eastern way of life as God's law. And conveniently mandating how the entire world should live only based on their own provincial views of food, clothing, subjugation of women, and the disposal of their own human waste, which was about the extent of their scientific advancement. Throw the thing away. It's an embarrassment to the planet.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:47 am |
    • Kevin

      I never thought of it this way, but you are exactly right.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:58 am |
  11. Rob

    Well, if you're going to worship jews, while they spew nothing but vitriol and venom at you, you kind of deserve contempt.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:47 am |
    • chris

      Surprised no one here called you on this venom you spew. But leave your rancid thought in you vile little head please.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:56 am |
    • JR Ewing

      Vile, nasty little person.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:57 am |
  12. Funny people.....

    History have showed us that the ones predisposed for child molestation are in fact employees of the church 🙂

    May 5, 2013 at 8:46 am |
    • Rob

      For some reason, it's always been boys being molested by men in these situations.

      It's the gays that have demanded "acceptance" by the church that have committed these crimes.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:52 am |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Rob: Maybe if the church would stop denying their priests the right to be married this wouldn't happen as often but it is the young innocent boys who are chosen as altar boys, so they become prey for the pervs who are not being allowed by church doctrine to act on their natural instincts. Pedophiles are sick minded individuals and criminals and are in no way a direct relation to people being gay. Educate yourself and stop being a hateful bigot.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:05 am |
    • Sane Person

      Probably because the catholic church refuses to allow alter-girls or female priests. Duh.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:50 am |
    • Sane Person

      Altar*

      May 5, 2013 at 9:51 am |
  13. jim atmad

    Oh, I long for the day when we can have an openly Christian President, Senator, Congressperson, or Governor.

    Until that day comes, Christians will be an oppressed people.

    (Ack! Thbbft!)

    May 5, 2013 at 8:46 am |
    • UncleBenny

      I long for the day when we can have an openy atheist or agnostic President, and politicians can stop trying to out-Christian each other.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:51 am |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Jim: Where have you been? Obama is an openly christian President and he's never denied his belief in the Christian god. The thing is that given the Constitution states separation of church and state, he can't use his belief to dictate how he runs the country,.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:08 am |
  14. Tjt

    I do not equate the Evangelical movement with Christianity. Yes they are Christian but Catholic and Protestants sects are far more global and tolerant. Evangelicals are a minority and because they are politically mobilized they are polarizing.

    I equate this southern religious movement with the Right wing, and therefore, I do not hold them in high regard.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:46 am |
    • Kevin

      If you think the Catholic church is tolerant, clearly you did not grow up in it.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:00 am |
  15. steward

    Ridiculous. When it's illegal for Evangelicals to get married in many states, and the Federal Government stops recognizing their marriages, then they're a hated minority. Right now, they're a politically powerful hate group based on religious principles – witness Proposition 8 in California – and they're pulling out all the keywords to avoid losing political and social power.

    The saddest part is, many of the rank-and-file aren't even aware of this.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:45 am |
  16. Colin Morgan

    Christian Beliefs? "Oh born gay? No. That's impossible, but we love you anyway." Also Christian Beliefs? Serpents talk, the world is only 9000 years old and oh yeah, invisible sky fairy. Totally believable!

    May 5, 2013 at 8:44 am |
    • shadow

      I dont know who or what told you about the bible or god, but who ever did has no form of education. who ever said 9000 years for creation was paying too much attention on how long creation was, not why creation was. The "sky fairy" (im suggesting god) lives in a demension where time does not pertain. 7 days of creation could be 7 million years or more. no, im not a know it all goody perfect christian. i make mistakes just like everyone that has lived. If a christian judges you, ignore him.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:52 am |
    • JR Ewing

      Shadow, you mock Colin's intelligence, yet your own post was filled with grammatical errors.
      The scary thing is, in your mind that gibberish about time and dimensions and God are absolute fact! That is scary. You are totally disconnected from reality.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:17 am |
  17. Michael

    There is a difference between being a hated minority and a hateful minority. In many cases today Evangelicals are the hateful minority trying to keep others down.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:44 am |
    • chris

      All you posters who are spewing venom at religous people should re-read this article . It says When .Cant teach stupid

      May 5, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • JR Ewing

      Yep, Michael, like any bully, christians are good at pushing people around. But when someone strong enough stands up to their bull they revert immediately to victim status. Classic bully behavior.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:19 am |
  18. Bill Mitchell

    Liberal definition of a HATE GROUP: Anyone who disagrees with their lifestyle choices. On the other hand, when they disagree with Christians lifestyle choice that is not hate.

    The hypocrisy in incredible.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:44 am |
    • steward

      Bill, the article was about Christian hate towards a gay basketball player. Not about the lifestyle choices of Christians, but against fighting hatred by a group that calls itself Christian. One problem with many Christians is that they seem to be utterly incapable of reading (because if they actually read the Bible as critically as they read everything else, they wouldn't be Christians.)

      May 5, 2013 at 8:48 am |
    • jw

      keep your fairy tales and hate to yourself....that's what freedom of religion for the weak minded sheep that need it– is about.....but don't bring your hate and disrespect out in to the public and use it to justify poor behaviour and bigotry.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:50 am |
    • jim atmad

      If the Christian 'lifestyle choice' involves passing laws discriminating against people based simply on who they are, that is no longer just a a lifestyle choice but becomes a political act deserving of the same type attention as any other political act.

      Keep your religion out of my politics, and your politics out of my religion, and we'll all be much better off.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:52 am |
    • Scott

      Bill, you're the kind of stupid who gives religion a bad name.

      May 5, 2013 at 8:56 am |
    • Vera Waitress

      Some people clutch tradition harder and harder until they kill any underlying meaning it was based on. It's like watching Wiley Coyote on a road-runner cartoon. So hilarious, and after a while, depressing.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:01 am |
    • Brian Petersen

      The difference is liberals aren't pointing to you and saying that your behavior is the cause of the destruction of society and that you'll rot in hell for eternity. Liberals think fundamentalists of any religion are ignorant and deluded but we draw the line at damning them to hell for all eternity.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:10 am |
  19. Ponchos raincoat

    The parading of ignorance and bigotry is the issue with Christianity and most other religions to boot. Also leaving a massive death toll in its wake over the centuries.

    May 5, 2013 at 8:43 am |
  20. Meki60

    more talk about h0m0s, this subject is getting a bit long in the tooth

    May 5, 2013 at 8:43 am |
    • Vera Waitress

      Sixteen centuries of subjugation? It will take at least that long to discuss it.

      May 5, 2013 at 9:04 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.