Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Since When is Tolerance a Four Letter Word

With a recent bullying induced teen suicide fresh in our minds, I ask...Since when is tolerance a four letter word? Since when is privacy something you have to work at?  Since when do we have to protect our privacy from out friends?

I guess whole thing stirs two emotional buckets for me.  The tolerance and privacy buckets...while they're both really important to me, they don't generally coalesce in such a singular terrible event.

A little background for those who have no idea what I'm talking about...Basically a friend asks another friend if they can have the dorm room to themselves.  Friend2 says of course and goes to hang with his girlfriend.  Friend1 goes about his evening, without knowing that Friend2 has setup a camera in the dorm room and is streaming an intimate moment Friend1 is having across the internet.

Agreed, generally speaking this sounds like a harmless prank...an invasion of privacy yes, but for the most part harmless.  Now, what I haven't said is that Friend1 is gay and still hasn't come out.  Now of course I can't possibly fathom what it's like to keep a secret of that magnitude, but certainly this is a life altering revelation meant to be shared with family and friends in a very personal way.

Hint: When I say "in a very personal way", what I mean to say is...NOT ON THE FUCKING INTERNET.

And so, long story short, Friend1 killed themselves because he found out that Friend2 Asshole2 had been broadcasting his personal life to anyone and everyone willing to join the appropriate channel.

I won't say that Asshole2 should be charged with murder, even if he was the catalyst for the suicide I believe that we make our OWN choices and as such we should be held personally responsible for those choices.  While Asshole1 may have metaphorically put Friend1 on that ledge he certainly didn't do it physically.

While I've never felt lust for another man, I can only imagine it's an extremely confusing feeling.  With society bombarding us with two very opposing ideas, on one side people say that it's unnatural to have these feeling, while another part of society tells us that it's okay.  As a young person, at least when I was young, I know it can be difficult to come to terms with the fact that not everything society says is true.

A number of times I've heard the word tolerance spoken by individuals in the Christian community with a great deal of disdain and I have to admit I find it confusing.  According to the Bible we're to love our neighbors as ourselves.  It doesn't make a special exception for gay people.

The Bible does not say "Love your neighbors, so long as they are just like you and believe everything you do."  It just doesn't.

Sorry guys...I know that's a bitch and all.

If fact, the Bible does say, that in the eyes of God all sins are equal.

So with that in mind, why is that some people in the Christian community choose to put homosexuality on some kind of pedestal of hate.  They treat it as if its the the Superbowl or the World Series of sin.

Welcome to the inappropriate section of the post.

I don't not believe that all homosexual people are born homosexual.  I do believe that there are some people that, for whatever reason, choose homosexuality.

While I DO NOT believe that those born with the predisposition to homosexuality are sinning (I say predisposition, because I don't feel like it's a defect or a retardation, but simply a slightly different ordering of chromosomes.  Like mutants...and mutants are fuckin' cool right?).  I do believe that those choosing it are.

I don't think God would hold a genetic occurrence against one or any of His children.

And so with this endorsement for tolerance, directly from Jesus Christ himself, I pray we can all go forth and except each other for who we are and what we bring to life and not exclude those that live a different lifestyle from our own.

I promise, there are homosexual Christians out there and I'm sure they don't appreciate being made to look like ignorant bigots.

And with the sheen of sweat upon my brow, I will step down from my digital soapbox and go forth and tolerate.  And I'm gonna try real hard to not peek in windows and stuff.

17 comments:

niassne said...

I can't disagree with much so I won't at all. Good post.

Sara said...

What's funny is that lots of Christians would say I'm setting a bad example because of my blog. I may cuss and make inappropriate jokes, but at least I don't spread hate.

pia said...

Really good. I'm not Christian but live in coastal South Carolina where tolerance seems to becoming a four letter word. It's sad and scary
I don't usually pimp my blog but my 3WW is part of a memoir--Seventh Grade and yes I was bullied

Cristian0 said...

You said, "I don't think God would hold a genetic occurrence against one or any of His children."
In the whole Nature vs Nurture dilemma, you are assuming than there is in fact a gay gene (Never been proved or denied). Therefore, you arrive to the conclusion that Jesus endorses this behavior. Just saying.. I don't think the religious crowd is going to buy into that.

You said, "The Bible does not say "Love your neighbors, so long as they are just like you and believe everything you do." It just doesn't."
I find it funny how you quote a non-existent quote that you know does not exist. I guess I am more confused that anything else.

You said, "If fact, the Bible does say, that in the eyes of God all sins are equal."
I am not sure where in the Bible says this. I was raised in a Catholic school and I was actually thought the opposite. It is true however the church sometimes seems to make a bigger deal of homosexuality as opposed to... lets say.. genocide.

Angel said...

Very deep topic to use the words for this week.

I believe we should all concern ourselves with ourselves and be kind to one another. Everybody will have to answer for themselves.

K said...

This was beautifully and honestly written. Thanks so much for addressing this. I found it to be an awfully tragic and UGLY occurance beyond my own words to even comment. Thank you again.

The Bear Monk said...

@Christian0 - In the particular occurrences where I'm using " I'm paraphrasing how Jesus responded to the Pharisees when they asked him about which were the 2 most important commandments. I believe that a " is the recommended grammar for this particular mechanic. I may be wrong.

So far as the gay gene thing goes...I don't know. I know what I believe and that is what I posted. I do believe that there is at least some specific ordering or something biological that makes some people born with the predisposition for homosexuality. I do not however believe that all homosexuality is of biological causes.

And finally...I also grew up Catholic and that is one of the few things from the up bringing that I no longer believe. I may be wrong in my beliefs, but honestly I do believe that a sin is a sin is a sin. We all do it and I feel like what is pleasing to God is the attempt we make when we try not to.

@Everyone else - appreciate the kind words. Honestly I felt kind of bombarded with this topic and really wanted to put something out there.

Tumblewords: said...

Indeed. What's with the hatred against people that aren't exactly like others. Kindness and acceptance are missing.

ThomG said...

Tolerance is the key to world peace and harmony. But getting there is a bitch.

Cristian0 said...

I wasn't really questioning what you believe. I am saying you draw several conclusions from stuff that is not truth. The bible never says anything about all sins being equal and there is no proof that sexual orientation is determined in our genes.

The Bear Monk said...

The bible also does not say that one sin is greater then another.

There is also no proof that sexual orientation is not determined in our genes. And as I tried to say it may not be a genetic thing so much as some biological factor in general. A slightly different formation of cells in the brain perhaps?

Also...just because there's not concrete proof one way or the other doesn't not make a thing true or false. And thus enters faith.

The Bear Monk said...

Oh...and check out James 2:10 concerning the equality of sins.

Cristian0 said...

The bible does say that some sins are greater than others.
Corinthians 6:18, Ex. 32:30, Ezek. 23:11, John 5:16, Mk. 3:28-30

It almost sounds like you are saying that it is your faith that God makes Gay people even though there is not scientifical evidence to prove it.

The Bear Monk said...

Exodus 32:30 - In this verse MOSES says that the sin is "great", not God. Moses was known for kind of known for flying off the handle though.

Ezekiel 23:11 - I assume you're referencing the "depraved" here. Depravity isn't necessarily sin, but perhaps the lack of repentance for a sin. Also if you continue reading on to verse 14 you'll see that she sinned in greater quantity. This "more depraved" in this instance is talking about the amount of sinning she did vs. the quality(can't really think of a better word here) of the sin.

Corinthians 6:18 - This one concerns sexual sin. Not how great or small a sin that it is. Just that it's bad.

John 5:16 - This one is all about the context. If you read the whole chapter John is clearly talking about salvation and repentance.

Mark 3:28-30 - Jesus is clearly talking about the difference between man and angels. In verse 29 Jesus says that "all the sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them" (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Mark+3&version=NIV). The operative word here is men. He continues to say that Satan will not be forgiven. We are held in the highest regard of our Lord and thus we are allowed special forgivenesses that angels who are held in lesser esteem would not receive for there sins. The sin is "eternal" not because it was a greater or lesser sin, but because it was a sin committed by an angel.

On Faith...I was simply trying to say that Faith is an example of a person believing something that isn't provable.

gautami tripathy said...

Some people just don't understand right from wrong.

a subtle hint

G. Graham said...

You have written this really well, and I enjoyed it. Love thy neighbour as thyself indeed. I do not, of course, agree with everything you said, namely the geneticly affected sexual disposition, but I'm no scientist.

Anonymous said...

Actually, the Bible says that homosexuals will not go to Heaven. I do not hate homosexuals. I pray that they will accept Christ as their Savior and repent of their sins. You can't be a Christian and homosexual. No one is born homosexual. That is just the world trying to justify their sin.