This morning I ran across the news about noted anti-LGBTQ evangelical Christian activist Tony Perkins’ giving Donald Trump “a do-over”. Apparently Christians are fine with his adultery, his greed, his venality and his obscenity because he’s the kind of leader that America needs to “stand up to bullies like Obama.”
In disgust, I shared the story on Facebook with the Mirriam-Webster definition of Hyprocrite. 1: A person who puts on a false appearance of virtue or religion. Then I added a statement which is becoming increasingly true for me: This is why I cannot respect Christians.
A friend commented on my post in that I “shouldn’t lump all Christians into the same pile.” To be frank, I was expecting that response from somebody, because there’s always that response from somebody, it’s just a question of which of the Christians I know who would respond first. And you know what? I’m so damn tired of hearing it. I’m tired of links to articles about Christians who signed a petition (or whatever) and then patted themselves on the back about it. I’m certainly tired of being told to calm down.
So I replied: Sorry, but I am done saying “Not all Christians.” This guy is representing all Christians because he says he does and no one – no one – is standing up and saying otherwise. This is the face of Christianity.
Because increasingly, in this Age of Trump, bigots like Tony Perkins really are the public face of Christianity. They don’t have any compunctions about using their influence, their stature and their bully pulpit to pound on LGBTQ people or Muslims or women, or whomever it suits their purpose to bully for the sake of fat envelopes in the collections plate. And I don’t see very many – or even very few — of their coreligionists standing up and saying “Hey wait a minute, that doesn’t represent me.” And even when they do stand up they’ll spend endless amounts of time and effort claiming that they’re not the problem without ever addressing the actual problem – that a bunch of bigots have hijacked their religion and are using it to literally murder queer people.
Yeah, intellectually I can see the argument that Perkins – and other scum-suckers like him — don’t really speak for all Christians, however much they like to give the impression they do. But that’s the impression they’re able to project because moderate Christians don’t speak up.
I’ve said it before on this blog, and I’ll say it again: Moderate and progressive Christians need to stand up to these fanatics.
And they don’t. They won’t. The last time I raised this issue on my blog, I had a Christian acquaintance argue with me that, not to minimize my argument but as important as it might seem to me, it “really isn’t on our radar.” The implication, of course, is that since it didn’t effect them personally, they should be excused from having to give a shit about the bigotry and hate being perpetrated on innocent people in their names. That they don’t have to care that their religion, their holy book, and their so-called saviour are being used as weapons to marginalize LGBTQ people, to strip us of our rights and to line the pockets of the con-men doing the stripping.
And what really blew me away was how offended they were that I’d call them on it.
I’m done. I am fucking done cutting so-called Christians slack and giving them the benefit of the goddamn doubt. It’s 2018 and evangelical Christians are rapidly becoming the cornerstone holding up the corrupt, racist and homophobic Trump administration. They are selling the soul of the Christian religion for political influence and the vast majority of Christians are letting them do it because… well, I actually don’t know why. Greed, maybe? They just don’t want to rock the boat? It isn’t worth it to them to stick their necks out for a bunch of perverts and deviants?
I’ve stopped caring about why they’re failing. And I’ve stopped caring that their feelings might be hurt that I’m furious about it.
Every Christian who thinks I’m a lesser person, not entitled to the same rights and protections as them because I was born bisexual, is my enemy. And every so-called Christian who is such a coward and a hypocrite that they refuse to denounce their bigoted coreligionists is also my enemy. By refusing to stand up, they are allowing the bigots free reign. Period. No excuses, no justifications, no rationalizations. No “they aren’t really Christians” demurrals, as though those fucking work. Christians as a whole have allowed the bigots to take up the mantle of Christian moral rectitude and in so doing have proven that Christianity is nothing but a shuck-and-jive, a confidence game, and a self-righteous swindle.
Am I doing a disservice to moderate and progressive Christians?
Probably. I’m sure they think so.
But fuck them anyway: I don’t see moderate Christians on the news. I don’t see moderate Christians making any changes. I certainly don’t see moderate Christians pushing the bigots out of their allegedly inclusive Christian communities. I only see smug bigoted scum like Tony Perkins getting richer and more influential and claiming to speak for all Christians and not being contradicted.
As an LGBTQ person, I am sick to my fucking stomach of waiting for moderate Christians to grow a pair, to get woke, to stand up to the bigots. We are under attack. Queer people are dying, literally dying, and Christians are saying it “really isn’t on our radar.” They can’t be bothered. They’re comfortable in their privilege. They’re just fine with letting LGBTQ folks have our rights trampled, our lives marginalized and our deaths ignored.
There’s no middle ground here. I don’t have the privilege of turning a blind eye, because where I stand the sides are brutally clear-cut: you’re either with the queers or you’re with the bigots. And I don’t see a whole lot of Christians standing up with the queers.
So this is a call-out for Christians: Prove it. Prove to me that not all Christians are bigots. And I don’t mean send me links to internet articles showing how a bunch of other Christians did “something” to prove I’m wrong, I mean fucking do something yourself. Call out a bigot in your faith community. March in a Pride parade with a sign that clearly identifies you as a Christian. Write an op-ed in your parish newsletter. Send a letter to the Pope.
Pick a side, stand up and take action.
And just because I’m pissing people off today, I’m also going on record with this statement: I sincerely doubt any of the so-called Christians who read this are going to do a goddamn thing. Or at least a goddamn thing more difficult or introspective than denouncing me as the bigot for writing this piece and unfriending me in a huff.
Update: 24 January
“I sincerely doubt any of the so-called Christians who read this are going to do a goddamn thing. Or at least a goddamn thing more difficult or introspective than denouncing me as the bigot for writing this piece and unfriending me in a huff.”
Update: 30 January
It’s gratifying to know that — despite the personal consequences of me saying this — I’m not the only person who has made this statement.