GLBTQ Organization

Posts tagged ‘berean’

Aside

Bigotry wrapped in Prayer is still Bigotry

(Title of today’s post is from a sign on the outside of The First Congregational Church -United Church of Christ)

Today is Monday May 7th of 2012. A week has passed since Pastor Sean Harris gave his sermon many have said is filled with hatred and vileness. I sit here and I try to find something to write about for this blog and of course most people would say “Write about Harris”. I don’t want to though, I think the more attention this man gets the more others like him are going to take up arms and attack the community.

But, I do owe it to the organization and those who support it to write something on it and state the reasons why The Alliance was not part of the huge protest on Sunday down the street from Harris’s church.

On the first of May I was called by a reporter to ask if I had read the article being posted on facebook along with listening to the audio clips. I had not at that time because I was extremely busy and had not had any time to check much on facebook. So he sent me the link, of which I read and listened to that night when I returned home.

I was sickened, I was so disgusted and angry that I had to take some time to calm myself before responding, or else I would have said some very demeaning words and probably have put myself and The Alliance in a very bad situation.

I have had words of hate spat at me from many kinds of people, and yes some of those were of the clergy. However, I have never, ever heard anyone like that talk about laying harmful hands on any child in that age range.

Here is a link for those of you who have not heard, or seen anything about this man (of which I would be totally surprised about) http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/anti-gay-pastor-parents-must-squash-like-a-cockroach-the-gay-out-of-kids/politics/2012/05/01/38837

There are hundreds and I mean hundreds of links, articles, and videos about what this man said to a church full of people. About this time you can google the man’s name and find it all.

Now we have had hate crimes of people in the LGBTQ community. People bashing in the heads of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people and leaving them to die a lonely painful death. We have had young, and old alike kill themselves because of the way they were treated by the public. This is the first time I have heard anyone condone, or excuse me, suggest child abuse against someone so young.

Being a student of psychology I know that children of that age are exploring themselves and the world around them. They do not always “act” the gender they were put into at birth. I also know that a lot of people have a problem with that, they cannot stand to see their little boy playing with Barbie dolls or “gasp” putting on a tutu. So they are punished in some form or another. Some parents have admonished their child so badly that they certainly get the idea that anything different from what “society“thinks you should be doing is bad and not tolerated. Some parents have actually gone through the act of physically punishing them resulting in deaths, or at the very least years and years of therapy.

Right now there is so much anger and hatred being spewed across this state because tomorrow is the big day. Tomorrow all of the state of North Carolina gets to vote on whether we are going to have discrimination put into our constitution. Ok, let me step back a little and look at it from the other side. The amendment keeping same gender couples from marrying. Ok fine, tomorrow will be the day that the state of North Carolina will (all of the residents who can vote) vote on whether a same- gender couple can ever be married, or recognized as a legal married couple in this state. Umm… Where was the vote on whether other people could get married? When did Mr. Smith ask the state to allow him to marry Ms. Jones and make her Mrs. Smith? Where!?!

Ok forgive me if this post today seems a little scattered. There is just so so much to talk about here. Besides all of the things that Amendment One can and will do to all citizens of the state, there is also the sermon Harris gave.

Did you read it yet? Here let me help you out.

“Now one of the problems is this creeping into your theology, into our thinking, into our

world view. So your little son starts to act a little girlish when he is four years old and

instead of squashing that like a cockroach and saying, “Man up, son, get that dress off

you and get outside and dig a ditch, because that is what boys do,” you get out the camera

and you start taking pictures of Johnny acting like a female and then you upload it to

YouTube and everybody laughs about it and the next thing you know, this dude, this kid

is acting out childhood fantasies that should have been squashed.

You were made by God to be a male and you are going to be a male.  And when your

daughter starts acting to Butch you reign her in.  And you say, “Oh, no, sweetheart.  You

can play sports. Play them to the glory of God.  But sometimes you are going to act like a

girl and walk like a girl and talk like a girl and smell like a girl and that means you are

going to be beautiful. You are going to be attractive. You are going to dress yourself up.”

You say, “Can I take charge like that as a parent?”

Yeah, you can. You are authorized. I just gave you a special dispensation this morning to

do that.”

Ok so there has already been dozens of articles and interviews and one huge protest about this part of his sermon. I was even quoted as saying that “We have our very own Westboro Bapist Church forming in Fayetteville” and I stand by that.

Why? Because you need to listen or read the entire sermon. Not only does he talk about child abuse and encouraging it (though he says he does not) He talks about Muslims and them breeding so fast that they will take over. He talks about homosexuality in that we are sick and twisted and cannot possibly have the ability to work through a marriage, insinuating that it is too hard for us to work through it because we are not with Christ.

“Ultimately the question is: How important is it for us to stay married? I mean, when can I

just dismiss her? I mean, what does it take to give me the freedom to say, “Enough”?  I

mean, we have worked hard, but we are done. You can’t seem to figure out eggs over

medium.  They are either too easy or they are too hard. And I have had enough.  Is that an

acceptable idea? Or when do we stop working it out?  And please let’s recognize that

staying married is plain out hard work.  If you are not married, ask somebody who is

married.  It is hard work.  Take two sinners, jam them into the same house and say, “Love

each other and live together,” and you have got nothing but work.”

“And the bottom line is this. Any marriage in which they are on the road to divorce one or

more of the partners has got a hard heart. You take two soft hearts and you can work

things out. Two soft hearts can sit down. Two {?} believers can sit down. Two people

who are born again and led by the Holy Spirit can sit down and work it out. But you take

one or more people who harden their heart and you have got a problem right there. You

have got a problem. Heard heartedness.”

So because we (homosexuals, or transgenders) who are in a committed relationship are going to not be able to stay together and have the ability to work through the hard times because we are not with Christ.

Ok so what about the couple who started the publishing Naid Press. Barbara Grier had two partners in her life. The first one she spent 20 years with. The second one who she started a life with in 1970s was with her until Grier died last year at the age of 78. Two partners.. two.. Can we say two? Ok one more than one, but I would say that that is a pretty long time to be with one and I am sure that all of those years weren’t fight free or conflict free and I am sure they had to work just as hard as anyone else and they did it. I don’t know what their personal faith was, frankly it does not matter. I have some really really personal views on some of this that I will save for my personal blog, go there if you want to see the personal side of me on this http://stormsilvermane.wordpress.com/

At any rate this man doesn’t just go after children or homosexuals or transgender people. He goes after people of other faiths as well and it just sickens me as a person and as a member of The Alliance.

So, why didn’t the Alliance participate in the big protest?

“As an organization that is NON-Reglious and NON-Political I feel as though the organization would be perceived as attacking religion itself by protesting the church. Even though the protest is ¼ mile from the church, it is about Pastor Sean Harris and his sermon at the church last Sunday. It is even about the congregation that supports his sermon. This does not mean that I believe that everyone in the congregation agrees with his sermon, but I did hear laughing and “Amens” during his heated sermon. This would indicate that the people supported his sermon.

Regardless, it is for the protection of this organization and maintaining the protections for any future members who have had issues with religion to feel safe coming to us for help. We have members who are atheists, humanists, Christian, Jewish, Wiccan, Native American and other faith or non faith basis. This organization is not based on religion; it is based on supporting, advocating and educating the LGBTQ community.

I had made a statement about Berean Bapist Church becoming Fayetteville’s own Westboro Bapist Church and it was published in the Fayetteville Observer. I stand by that statement and I have more to say.

This is our official statement on the subject of Pastor Sean Harris and others who believe his words are something to follow.

The Alliance does not support, nor condone Harris’s words or actions. We also do not believe his retraction was sincere. Members of the organization’s board have read the sermon and watched the sermon and have heard all of the demeaning and discriminatory remarks Harris made about gays, lesbians, transgenders, and Muslims. In his retraction he says he is sorry, but then turns around and says he didn’t say certain things. Yet, it is caught on paper and it is caught on audio and video recordings. So, no we do not believe it is sincere. The Alliance also believes that Harris needs to be held accountable for his words of hatred towards other groups. Whether this will happen or not is yet to be seen.

The Alliance is really working on trying to bring peaceful support, education and advocacy to the LGBT community. We are trying to do this in the most positive way possible. We have not nor do we intend to discourage any of the members of the board, or of the organization from going to the protest.

The Alliance has been committed, from its inception, to keeping our message and our presence here positive. We feel that participating in this protest as an organization goes against that positive message because the atmosphere surrounding this type of protest will most likely be negative and draw negative feelings and attention. We want to be a safe place for ANYONE, including members of Harris’ congregation, to come if they have sincere questions and are willing to sit down and have peaceful discussions surrounding LGBT issues. We feel that participating in this protest as an organization has the potential for alienating those who might be willing to take part in these open discussions and that is counterproductive to the goals we committed to when forming the Alliance.

The Alliance encourages its members to voice their opinions and do what they feel they need to in order to bring attention to injustice and discrimination. Some decisions must be personal decisions. The decision to participate or not in the protest against Berean Baptist Church is one of those personal decisions. We will support any of our members, regardless of the personal decision they make regarding this issue and this protest.”

That was our official statement that I posted to the facebook page for The Alliance and I am posting it here for others who do not follow us on facebook.

I feel The Alliance needs to focus its attention on more positive things now. Tomorrow the state will vote and the world will watch as another state decides who I can marry and when I can marry. Yet, the battle is not done we will continue to bring positive messages and support to this community and we will continue to be here for anyone, young, or older to help them get through the troubles they may face as they come to realize who they are. Regardless of the violent, hated, vile words that come from others.

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