tim: text: "I'm not offended, I'm defiant" (defiant)
Tim Chevalier ([personal profile] tim) wrote2017-03-06 10:02 am
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'You only hate what we “do”. But what we “do” is living.'

Quoting this in its entirety because it's a better version of some posts I wrote years ago about why Brendan Eich was so off the mark when he said that even though he supported anti-queer legislation, he didn't hate queer people.

"OK, as a queer person who grew up in a genuinely loving, caring, utterly wonderful, and still deeply homophobic Church, let me try to fill in what you’re not understanding about this whole “Love the sinner” deal.

When we refer to people like you as “Homophobic” I want to be clear what we’re saying here. This is not a judgment of your intent. We are not describing you as a hateful person, as an aggressive or violent person. But we are saying that your actions and your attitudes participate in and reinforce a system of rhetoric that encourages violence against LGBT people, and, far, far more importantly, that forces millions of LGBT people to live in shame.

That’s really what this comes down to. Not hate. Not violence. Shame.

Consider the point purely theologically. Jesus tells us that to desire a sinful thing is as bad as to act on that desire. My lusting after another mans wife is as bad as actually sleeping with her. My genuine desire to hurt someone is as bad as actually hurting them.

So when you tell me that loving another man is a sin, you’re not just talking about physical acts of intimacy. You don’t get to draw the line there. You don’t get to pretend that I can be bisexual so long as I never actually physically act on it (which is already a terrible burden to place on someone). You’re saying that every time I look at a guy and imagine how soft his lips would be, or think about how beautiful his eyes are, I am sinning. I am a sinner every time a dude walks past me with a tight sweater on that shows of his arms. Every time he has nice hair or a nice smile.

My love, according to you, is a sin. That is the burden you are forcing people to live under. That burden forced me so deep into the closet that I didn’t even know I was there. It forced me to repress every genuine feeling of sexual attraction for other men, and to live for years with those feelings straining to get out, whilst I struggled with the constant guilt and shame that came from having those thoughts.

And I am one of the lucky ones, because I’m alive to have this conversation. Because for many, many LGBT people that guilt and shame manifests as self-harm, substance abuse, low esteem that leads them into abusive relationships, and very often suicide.

You tell yourself that you’re one of the good ones because you don’t hate us. You only hate what we “do”. But what we “do” is living. It’s being alive and whole and a part of this world, and if you genuinely believe that we can’t have that then you might as well put the gun to our heads and pull the trigger. Because you’re already doing that, you just don’t have the guts to admit it."

-- Peter Brunton, via Tumblr. Emphasis added.