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CWH: the dangers of abstract discussion
> Abstract discussion will not get us much of anywhere, in my opinion.
I wholeheartedly agree. That's why I was quite specific in examples of
ways that lesbigays serve heterosexuals quite without regard to whether we
approve of the kind of heterosexual arrangements that they might have. I
can best illustrate welcome by showing what welcome looks like with people
not like me.
Heterosexuals don't have to approve of the morality of lesbian and gay sex
to defend lesbigays when we are booted out of our jobs or out of our
housing, or when we are denied access to our children or to our lesbigay
spouses who are ill...... Heterosexuals don't have to approve of the
morality of lesbian and gay sex to speak out against the abuse and gossip
about us which fills hetero space...... Clearly not many are speaking up,
for the abuse and gossip grows rather than diminishes.
"Love the sinner but not the sin" has much to recommend it as an abstract
doctrine, but many conservatives have so cheapened it that the doctrine
has less and less cogency even among many straights. Most people know
what real love looks like, and one is hard put to find anything except its
counterfeit in the ways that most conservatives treat lesbigays, or stand
by in silence when others abuse lesbigays.
We diminish God when we throw the word *love* around glibly. I share your
serious concern that love not be considered just as an abstraction.
For example, when the church really loves, it sends doctors who stay until
the last leper is healed, teachers who stay until the last last illiterate
can read and write. It does that in even where a majority of the lepers
and illiterates refuse to convert. With a few individuals who are
exceptions, I can think of no analogous way that conservatives have
manifested love toward lesbians and gays. Where have most conservative
Christians been when AIDS has swept through the lesbian and gay community?
Their silence has been thunderous.
Even those who believe that lesbigays can and should be "cured of their
homosexuality" have done very little to act on that belief. There is
probably not a program in the church that has been as seriously
under-funded as the ex-gay ministries, and they were not even started in
earnest until well after other, more affirming responses had developed in
the churches. For hundreds of years the church made no pretense
whatsoever of curing, but instead underwrote the death penalty in the
penal codes. The last execution for a homosexual act in England occurred
in 1857, only four years before the American Civil War.
> I will repeat again that this meeting should not be used to argue the
> separate question of whether homosexual behavior is wrong. That question
> is not up for discussion in this meeting. Okay?!
I have never argued that question here.
I note that you have not yet spoken a word as person after person has
challenged or tried to diminish your other stipulation of what the meeting
should not be used to argue, "Welcoming homosexuals."
I realize it might be easier for you to feel that you are welcoming if
those whom you consider the moral equivalent of an "unrepentant thief,
embezzler, wife-beater, anti-Semite, or some such" keep our mouths shut.
Be of good cheer. God has already welcomed us all!