You know, I think I'm just going to do one cartoon on a person or a news item, but then something happens that compels me to contribute yet more to the conversation.
I already did one cartoon for Vicky Beeching, but I had to do another one today. A friend pointed me to an article in Charisma News, Vicky Beeching and the Reason So Many 'Christians' Are Coming out as Gay.
Ed Vitagliano is the director of research and news editor for the American Family Association. Although I wasn't surprised, I was disappointed and sad that Charisma would publish such an article.
I'm not surprised because both the American Family Association and Charisma are very conservative and predictably would take a negative stand towards homosexuality.
I was disappointed because the article, even though it pretends to be loving, is not.
I was sad because it's obvious we've still got a long way to go.
I thought to myself, "Read the article as if you are Vicky Beeching. Try to read it from her angle." I'm not Vicky Beeching. So this is just a guess. But here's my imagined response to Vitagliano:
If I may summarize for you, because I am gay, this is what you think about me:
- In the title, when you put the word Christian in quotes, it's obvious right off the bat that you don't think gays can be Christians. So even before you start writing I'm an outside sinner reading an inside believer.
- When the first sentence out of someone's mouth is "I love homosexuals", I expect a huge "but" to follow, redefining what I think love is. You did not disappoint.
- What is "homosexual activism"? Is this what you call it when a homosexual opens their mouth to speak? Is this what you call it when homosexuals make themselves known and live amongst you and desiring equal rights and opportunities?
- When you say "homosexual movement" you presume this is a political thing, when, as an individual, this is just me being me. I'm suspicious of¬†your conspiracy theory.
- Is homosexuality a part of the "sexual revolution"? This isn't just about sex. It's about identity, personhood, empowerment, dignity, belonging, justice. For me it's about being human.
- You claim this sexual revolution of yours has been destructive to individuals and society. In other words, you believe homosexuality is destructive to individuals and society. Rather, is it possible that homosexuality is destructive to your ideal¬†American family fantasy?
- Why did you draw attention to my appearance? Why did you have to say I'm "a pretty lady"? You sound like those men who think pretty women who are lesbian are "such a waste". It sounds like you're speaking from the position of male privilege.
- Why does my appearance make the subject of sexual orientation "rather difficult to understand"? Is it because you can't imagine a pretty lady with another lady and not a man? Is it because you think lesbians look more like men? You know‚ "butch"? Or is it because your mind can't accept that the human being is far more mysterious than your tradition allows?
- I'm glad you've been happily married to the most beautiful woman in the world that you first met when you were 6 years old. But why did you tell that story? Just to say you can't imagine having done that with a male? Just because you can't imagine it doesn't mean it can't happen. Are you offering yourself as an example of how to be the perfect sexual being?
- What "causes" homosexuality? Okay, so now it's starting to sound like a disease. Can I ask you, "What causes heterosexuality?" In that one question you've really exposed your negative and uninformed disposition towards homosexuality.
- So the causes of homosexuality are "sexual abuse", "traumas", or "some sort of deficit". In other words, we are sick and in need of healing, and the way we try to find healing is through same-sex attraction? I kind of hear an undertone of, "Ew! How did THAT happen?"
- You presume you've offended homosexuals. You haven't offended me because I've heard this discriminatory argument¬†my whole life. In fact, you articulate so well the very reason why I've experienced the struggle I have endured for so many years. Your attitude and words are nothing new.
- Having a same-sex attraction you say "appeared" to me as natural as your opposite-sex attraction. So you think it isn't natural. It just feels like it to me. But my feelings are wrong.¬†I'm delusional.
- You resort to the age-old argument of sexual equipment, that God designed man and woman to fit together sexually, and to go against this is to rebel against the way God designed things.
- You say I'm "broken". Then you compare my same-sex attraction to a physical handicap‚ blindness. Did you use blindness to also suggest I am spiritually blind? Or was that just a coincidence?
- There's a disconnect between the way homosexuals are designed and the way they operate.
- Since I'm sick and broken, I have to be healed in this life or wait until I'm healed in the next. These are my only options?
- According to you, in order to be a Christian I have to accept that my sexual orientation is a "manifestation of my brokenness" and I have to reject it. In other words, if I embrace my sexual orientation and do not see it as being broken, then I'm not a Christian.
- I am broken.
- I need healing.
- If I don't admit I'm broken and get healed I am not a Christian.
But at least you love homosexuals.