I appreciate the calm voices in the middle of this Gay Marriage cacophony.
But if you’re trying to make me feel better by assuring me, “Gay isn’t contagious,” I’m afraid you’re misunderstanding my problem.
First of all, the idea that “Homosexuality won’t affect you” just isn’t true. But, more to the point, you need to understand I’m not scared of catching gayness or having to wear a mask and gloves to protect myself.
A friend’s recent Facebook post was meant to encourage, but it sort of did the opposite:
“For those afraid for our country, it’s going to be FINE. Gay marriage doesn’t have to hurt you. It’s not a disease. It’s not contagious. Even IF God disapproves (which I just don’t know either way and I’m ok not knowing), He’s big enough to handle it. Our children aren’t going to suffer. Teach them what you believe and, just like everything else, they’ll make their own decisions when they grow up. Maybe those decisions will hurt because they aren’t what you want for them, but it will still be ok. Just love them. Stick up for what you believe, sure, but love those who disagree. Yes, the world is going to look different, but that’s ok. Even if you disagree with the change, you don’t need to be afraid. Just love God and love people. Love wins.”
Again, I appreciate those who want to settle things down.
But it’s hard to comfort someone when you don’t know what they’re afraid of.
So I’d like to explain why the “It’s-FINE” speech actually makes me feel worse.
(I hope my points will be taken in the spirit of digging deeper together, and not like Holier Than Thou preaching…)
These are the reasons I’m afraid for the direction things are going in this country.
#1. I’m afraid we’re only really skeptical of the Bible–but we accept MANY OTHER THINGS without question.
I love inquisitive people. But when was the last time you heard someone ask “WHY don’t we (humanely) kill the people in third world countries who are starving to death anyway?”
Or…how about, “WHY do we assume a Creator would be loving and fair? WHY can’t he be cruel?”
These questions are just as important as “Why is homosexuality wrong?”–but I’m afraid we live in a culture that prefers saving all the toughest questions strictly for the biblical worldview.
For some reason, we never say, “The kids who work in sweat shops will be just FINE! Relax.”
We’d never say, “Stop obsessing about the fact that genital mutilation is legal in certain cultures, because God is big…”
You’d never say, “Sure, extramarital affairs can hurt individual families. But affairs aren’t contagious. So there’s no reason to be afraid.”
…the only reason my peers say things like “don’t fear” and “It will be fine” about gay marriage is because we’re not convinced homosexuality is wrong.
Which brings me to Fear #2:
#2. I’m afraid our distrust of Scripture is causing us to accept crazier and crazier things.
The real issue for this generation is a basic distrust of the Bible. We’re not convinced it’s true–or we don’t trust our own understanding of it–so (for all practical purposes) we don’t use it. And, since we’ve never put anything concrete at the cornerstone where the Bible once stood, we don’t have a foundation at all.
If you don’t think homosexuality is wrong, then it’s probably because you don’t trust the Bible, for one reason or another…
Unfortunately, everything we think we know about right/wrong becomes shaky, when the foundation is gone.
I know this is a controversial statement, but it becomes clearer if you try to answer this question, “When I’m not sure about something, I know I can trust __________.”
If the answer isn’t “I can trust God’s unchanging Word,” then what can you put in that blank?
#3. I’m afraid our mouths say “I just don’t know what God thinks of homosexuality,” but our actions speak differently.
There’s nothing wrong with not knowing things. But the types of things you “don’t know” are just as important as your hard-and-fast beliefs. Whether you get very loud and passionate about a topic, or you shrug your shoulders and go silent, both say a lot about your values.
Thus, you can’t really live out the “I Don’t Know” philosophy. Your decisions and your comments are going to err on one side or another, whether you realize it’s happening or not.
Consider my examples about sweat shops and genital mutilation again. Even if you think you’re being unbiased and unsure about a controversial issue–it’s pretty obvious how you really feel when you tell those who are concerned to calm down…
Furthermore, your “maybes” are just as important as your “yes/no” when it comes to influencing your children, as well.
Thus, point #4.
#4. I’m afraid future generations will take sexual liberation even further, and there won’t be anything to stop them.
It’s hugely significant when today’s parents say things like, “Meh, our kids are going to believe whatever they’re going to believe, and all they need is love!”
A parent’s unanswered “Why?” question quickly becomes a child’s “Well, why NOT?!?!?”
So what are we going to say, when our babies honestly start to wonder “Why CAN’T a man fall in love with four women at once?”
Or “Why CAN’T a person have a fulfilling sexual relationship with an intelligent animal?”
I understand bestiality is taken for granted as “obviously wrong” in this generation. But it’s considered wrong by the same people who argue we should lighten up and let our kids make their own decisions about moral issues…
If there’s no concrete, trustworthy standard, then maybe the only problem with bestiality is society’s negative stigma of it?
How do we know, with 100% certainty, that gay sex can be healthy/satisfying but animal sex never can be?
Those are things our children and grandchildren will be debating. And I’ve yet to hear a parent in my generation offer a satisfying answer to those questions–apart from the foundation of the Bible.
The scary thing about accepting homosexuality isn’t whether it’s “contagious.” The problem is, we’re proving we are a generation of humans who don’t have a foundation and can be convinced to agree or disagree based on feelings alone.
Our basic defense of what’s “right” and what’s “wrong” boils down to what seems good to the biggest group.
On top of that, we’re not even motivated to teach our own children that certain urges always need to be controlled, because we’re just not sure of anything ourselves…
Thus, I’m afraid this Culture War over homosexuality is a muuuuuch bigger problem than simply getting used to a “slightly different world” that’s going to be just FINE.
It’s the destruction of foundations and the endless moral rabbit hole that leave me feeling helpless and concerned for the future my children will have.
Yes, I know God is big.
No, I’m not worried about catching cooties from my gay neighbors.
And of course I won’t stop loving my kids, even if they choose something very different than I want for them–and they get tangled in abominable, animal-related sexual activities.
I’ll still love them.
But none of those things speak to the point.
My fears run much deeper than whether my kids will want tax benefits from the government for their same-sex unions.
I’m afraid because a huge number of people think everything is “fine” since “gay isn’t contagious”–but they’re virtually blind about what’s really at stake.