*Voicing messages of hate toward homosexuals, African American clergy continuously perpetuate America’s ongoing cycle of discrimination and intolerance. If this type of behavior is permissible in an increasingly diverse world, any form of racism should also be tolerated without protest or consequence: both fall under the same vile category.
Although 73 percent of Americans identify themselves as Christians, a growing number of liberal people encourage tolerance as a means to create harmony between the gay community and the rest of society. I second this belief: it’s simply irrational to condemn LBGTs based on literature published many centuries ago.
According to scripture, God detests homosexuality: it’s one of the few sins he calls “abominable.” The book of Leviticus (18:22) states: “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.” Romans (1:26-27) provides additional perspective, it reads: “Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.”
In Christian theology, the Day of Judgment (also called The Last Judgment, Final Judgment, Judgment Day, or The Day of the Lord) will take place after the Resurrection of the Dead and the Second Coming of Christ. Unless granted atonement by God, sinners will be sentenced to an eternity of anguish and perpetual suffering. Among the innumerable sins mentioned throughout the Old and New Testaments, same-sex copulation is ranked higher than most others (“blasphemy,” denying the existence of God, is the only unforgivable sin).
The religious fanaticism rampant in the black community is well-documented. According to the U.S. Religious Landscape Survey, conducted in 2012 by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life, Black Americans “are markedly more religious on a variety of measures than the U.S. population as a whole.” It cited that 87% of Blacks (vs. 83% of all Americans) are affiliated with a religion. It also found that 79 % of Blacks (vs. 56% overall) say that religion is “very important in their life”.Today 83% of African Americans are Christian.
In response to the proliferation of gay marriage and increasing support from liberals and equal-rights organizations throughout the country, various leaders of Christian faith have ramped up their level of protest against homosexuality and other behavior characteristic of the lifestyle.
“It’s [gay marriage] getting out of control and it has to be addressed,” says evangelist and spiritual advisor Margret Houston. “I’ve been teaching the gospel more than 50 years and there’s not a single verse in favor of homosexuality. I teach holiness; the bible says that all sinners will burn in the lake; that means gays, lesbians and whoever else. I won’t turn a blind eye to what’s going on; not while I have a bible in my hand.”
She added, “It’s not just the elder pastors speaking out. There are a lot of young preachers in this fight, too. It’s our job to make sure God’s will is done. We’re living in the last days. I’m not here to sugar coat the word of God. ”
The black church routinely expresses its disdain for those “afflicted” with the malevolent spirit of homosexuality. This unfair indictment has forced a schism between the LBGT community and various Christian institutions, particularly those under black leadership.
“I don’t feel welcome at any church in my neighborhood and there is at least one on every block,” confessed Los Angeles resident Joseph Lawson. Proudly gay, Joseph, 26, spent his adolescence in rural North Carolina, “a church town.” He and two brothers grew up under parents imbued with old-world Christian values like many households in the South traditionally.
“When I told my father I was gay, he took me to the pastor of my church then and presented me to him like I had AIDS or something. During church one day, I was called up to the altar in front of everybody and they looked at me like I was possessed. I guess word travels fast; I was never a football player, but I didn’t act like Betty Boop either. They must have known something.”
Near the end of last November, Joseph migrated west to indulge his fascination with Hollywood (and to escape “the holy rollers” back home). Despite his waning faith in organized religion, the country boy with stars in his eyes packed one suit, his father’s favorite tie, and a smoky-gray pair of wing tipped loafers in case he felt the urge to try church again. When the urge finally came, Joseph donned his Sunday best and sauntered into a rusty building with a half-decayed wooden cross hovering above its double doors.
“It was the closet one [church] to my little raggedy apartment,” Joseph quipped. I started going every week for about a month until the pastor went off about gay people being demon possessed. He’s one of the old-timers who aint got nothing better to do than preach sermons that scare and intimidate folk. I stopped going after that. I thought LA had a different vibe. They just as crazy over here. I don’t see much difference between being called a demon and some white guy calling me nigger. Both words make me wanna slap somebody.”
Joseph’s story is hardly unique: it represents countless examples of Christian leadership consciously alienating members of the gay community. The harshness of bigotry is not exclusive to race: it’s a divisive issue eating at the soft-belly of modern culture. Church goers across America—many of whom occupy positions of influence in the mainstream media—willingly embrace varying manifestations of Gay and Lesbian hatred perpetuated by snarling black male and female evangelists.
Although it’s clearly a form of terrorism, anti-gay expression is none-the-less admissible for public consumption under the protection of the First Amendment. A growing consensus among many of America’s do-gooders is that provisions to “free speech” be enforced to avoid civil-unrest and racial disharmony. This ever-deepening can of worms persists in exacerbating the sensitivity level of minorities across America. African Americans, particularly, have developed a reputation for exercising self-defense against abhorrent signs of racism (seen and unseen).
However, if our legal system allows black Christians to be homophobic in public, people like Donald Sterling have the right to be racist also. Bible touting folk shouldn’t dare bat an eyelash when subjected to any form of verbal discrimination, or tacitly expressed racism. Doing so demonstrates the most fundamental example of hypocrisy (otherwise known as “the pot calling the kettle black”). Pun intended.
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