Monday, May 7, 2012
It has never been my intention, nor is it my intention now, to turn this blog into something political. I always intended my writing here to act as a catalyst for ideas, an exchange of thought or even unpopular expression. Be that as it may, it is not unknown for me to receive hate mail. This is generally the sort condemning me to hell, accusing me of pederasty and/or other heinous acts, all in the name of defending morals and protecting precious orthodoxies from my unsavory brand of thought crime.
None of this has forced me from my perch. Indeed, there have been times when my chest has swelled with pride at these take downs, because if there's push back, someone's reading, thinking, considering. What does disappoint me is rote hate. I always prefer imaginative, one-off hate if I have a choice, but that doesn't seem to be part of the sturm und drang of those who read my thoughts and then insist that I shall burn in hell for all eternity. At least identify to which circle of hell I am to be condemned so I know who to expect for cocktails.
Of late, however, there has been such a hue and cry against homosexuals and such a concerted effort to keep us from expressing our love, that I feel compelled to bring up a few points that may be worth noting... or not... depending on how much comfort you experience running with a mob or how much of your precious reason you have ceded to religious fanatics. Either way, these points carry political ramifications whether I like it or not.
First of all, I'll say that I'm not opposed to religion... that is, I'm not opposed to the private, dignified practice of following one's beliefs in a church, mosque, synagog or temple... even a living room. But when those same beliefs are dragged into the public square and inflicted on a group against their will, in the name of a 'morality' based on a deeply flawed book, and told that if they do not bow they will be condemned to hell, then the only response is defiance. As noted by Christopher Hitchens, given one verse from one chapter of the gospel of St. John, the one where Jews bring down the blood of Jesus Christ on their heads for all generations, hundreds of years of pogroms were evoked in the name of that very same morality. And in that same book and according to that same morality, the warrant exists for slavery, for the subjection of women as chattel, for torture and for ethnic cleansing. So don't lecture me on what's right or wrong. You don't have the credentials. If your reasoning capabilities are that seriously impaired go and live in a cave so you don't hurt anyone.
A quick look on the Net yields six verses condemning homosexuality in the Bible, none of them attributed to Jesus, by the way, so the evidence is a bit thin, especially when you delve down into some serious translation problems or consider that, after all, the whole reason for this game is because St. Paul decided to grab the religion and run. Still, my right to love must be subject to a vote of my neighbors, many of whom do not only not share my belief system, but actually place their personal convictions above mine, because all has been revealed to them. A conviction I not only don't accept, but hold up to ridicule and condemn as unproven, hateful, bigoted superstition, as is my right.
Here's the point: we're none of us going away. Myopic religious have been trying to get rid of us for two thousand years, usually in pretty awful ways: roasting alive, sawing in two, throwing us into pits with starving dogs (a favorite of monks in the New World intent on eradicating a thousand year old Berdache tradition that was so far beyond their feeble comprehension that they may just as well have been on Mars). In any case, we're still here, stronger and more established than ever and getting stronger every day. Great job!
The overwhelming tragedy here is not only that millions are condemned to suffering and despair because, in some very narrow judgment, they are sluts, layabouts and sinners, and I cannot accept that such a moral imperative lies within anyone's pervue in any case, but that it's all so senseless. The research is there, facts abound, regarding the benefits of same sex marriage, the positive consequences of a woman's right to choose, the betterment of children raised in ANY loving home. But it's all ignored in favor of radical, willfully ignorant superstition at a level close to witch burning. Where are your minds, people? This is so very serious.
Just in case you missed my point. Watch it. Learn from it. Share it.
Selections from the photo essay Simply, In Love (2009) by the French photographers Exterface via the always wonderful, fascinating, maybe even disturbing, Homotography.com (http://homotography.blogspot.com)