I appreciate your recent email characterizing me as a “sick, twisted, homophobic, right-wing, piece of slime.” Compared with most of the homosexual hate mail I receive on an almost daily basis, yours was really quite articulate and civil. As such, it deserves a lengthy response.
After your initial string of epithets, you outlined an argument against my attitude towards the homosexual lifestyle. Your argument enumerated several assumptions and positions I hear in many letters from gay readers.
First of all, you argue that homosexuality is genetic, not learned. Since these sexual urges are “natural,” they are also “God-given” and, therefore, you say, should be acted upon. And, since I am critical of homosexuality, you assert that I am interfering with God’s will. Finally, since Jesus never explicitly criticized homosexuality, you conclude that I am “un-Christian” to do so.
The bulk of your argument can be discredited by considering the following true story that was told to me just a few weeks ago:
A 43 year old businessman was tired of working seventy hours a week and enjoying virtually no social life – especially since he was still a bachelor. So he decided to invite a couple of his neighbors to put aside their yard work and spend a Saturday at the beach throwing back beers and taking in the sun. Somehow, the neighbors both convinced their wives to let them go for the day.
By late morning, the beaches were filling up with girls in bikinis and the three musketeers were rating each one as she passed by. Just before noon, the bachelor saw a tanned blond in sunglasses who appeared to top them all. She was about 5’3”, maybe 110 pounds, and must have worn a size “D” cup. Without hesitation, he tapped one of his friends on the shoulder and said “Perfect 10! Kind of makes me want to go back to college.” Both of his friends soon lifted a thumb in concurrence with the judgment.
But then, something funny – funny “strange,” not funny “ha ha” – happened. As the tanned young blond approached, the businessman recognized the girl. She lived just down the street in his neighborhood and attended a local middle school. In fact, she was only in the eighth grade. As soon as he did the math and realized she was around 13 years old, he felt a sickness deep inside his stomach.
A few moments later, one of his married friends also recognized the girl as his 13 year old neighbor. He felt a similar sickness in his stomach. But neither of the first two guys felt as nauseated as the third. Within a few moments, he recognized the girl as his 13 year old daughter.
The question I have for you, Christopher, is whether you consider the sexual urges of these three men to be “natural”? And, if so, would you also consider them to be “God-given.” Should any of these three men act upon these urges simply because they came about naturally? And, if one or more were to act upon the urge, should I keep my objections to myself to avoid interference with the will of God?
Perhaps you are of the opinion that it would be wrong for the businessman to have sex with the 13 year old because she is not a consenting adult. But, remember, Christopher, Jesus never spoke out against statutory rape in the New Testament.
But, fortunately, we do have a basis for preventing the second man from having sex with the 13 year old. Since he is married, the act would constitute adultery, which Jesus specifically condemned in the New Testament.
Of course, that would also provide us with a reason to condemn the third man if he were to have sex with his 13 year old daughter. But, according to your twisted logic, he would be no more culpable, morally speaking, than the second man if both were to act upon the sexual attraction to the 13 year old. Incest was never mentioned by Jesus in the New Testament so it has no relevance in your theology.
Having sinful sexual urges is not the thing that separates homosexuals from the rest of the population, Christopher. It is the arrogant tendency to characterize the sinful urge as the will of God, to yield to it, and to make it the center of his being that makes the average homosexual too self-absorbed for me to tolerate. And you are simply not let off the hook by Christ’s refusal to state the obvious.
I know this response was not what you wanted to hear, but I must respectfully ask you to keep your epithets to yourself. If you feel the urge to unleash another hostile email, please do me a favor and try to control the impulse. It is the very thing that separates the citizen from the savage.