The religious right is out of the closet. No, not THAT closet (although I’m sure that door could swing open and reveal some hidden friends).
No, the religious right is out, loud and proud in an entirely different direction. They have no qualms declaring the (widely-disproved) success of reparative therapy. They have unbound enthusiasm for protecting the so-called sanctity of marriage (an institution that began with women as property). And they have limitless enthusiasm for ‘love the sinner, hate the sin’ rhetoric that marginalizes, condescends to and inflicts vicious damage on the LGBT community.
And they gladly – zealously – pair their religious belief with their political activity, citing verse and line to back up their discriminatory views.
How did theirs become the dominant religious voice? How did theirs become the dominant political voice?
In part, from our silence. Check out what Public Religion Research Institute recently uncovered: “Among Americans who support same-sex marriage, a majority (53%) say if their representative supported this issue it would not make a difference in their support, compared to 44% who say they would be more likely to support the candidate. In contrast, among Americans who oppose same-sex marriage, only 30% say if their representative supported this issue it would not make a difference in their support, compared to more than two-thirds (67%) who say they would be less likely to support the candidate.”
Did you catch that? Those who oppose marriage equality care more about the issue – as evidenced by their voting record – than those of us who favor marriage equality. Bruising, huh? Well, given the way this early Presidential race is going, it’s only going to get worse.
It is time for those of us who believe in LGBT equality – regardless of political bent – conservative, moderate, liberal – to INSIST on LGBT-inclusion as a bottom line issue. We must insist on it from our politicians and we must insist on it from our churches.
So…what’s keeping you in the closet?
To help nudge you out, I suggest the following:
- First, read John Shore’s recent blog “Secretly Gay-Affirming Pastors: You Are Not Alone”. With wit and compassion, John reminds all of us that this LGBT-inclusive train is getting ready to leave the station and we better get on board before we’re left hurling Bibles at its caboose.
- Second, make your church reflect your heart’s desire by attending a Building An Inclusive Church workshop offered by the Institute for Welcoming Resources. They will guide you – step by step – in how to make your church outwardly reflect the LGBT-inclusion your heart already embraces.
As always, thank you for your commitment to LGBT inclusion in the church and everywhere.
Break the Silence. Join the Movement. Believe Out Loud.
Image flickr bestarns