Opposing the Already Oppressed
Nothing says "un-Christian" more to me than the responses of some Christians, organizations and churches to the recent ruling in Washington and to today's announcement that California's Prop 8 is unconstitutional.
When thousands (millions?) of American-Christians start to rally up the troops once again to combat any progress the LGBT community makes.
I just can't fathom the spirit that says, "oh yeah! you think you gained some steps toward equality and respect and dignity in this country!? Well we will just see about that! We'll rally together enough people to shoot you back down again! And if you don't stay down THIS time, then we'll just keep trying! Every time you take two steps forward, we'll gather enough support to push you three steps backward!"
It just feels unChristian, doesn't it?
I realize I'm bias. I realize that since I'm a straight-ally, and in full support of human equality when it comes to the rights people ought to have regardless of their sexual orientation, that my opinion on whether the above posture is "Christian" or not is going to be slanted. My version of Christianity, in my mind, takes after its figurehead: Jesus. And Jesus, as best as I understand him, was concerned about things like love, justice and unity. Not so much concerned with fighting to oppress the already oppressed. And certainly not concerned with a persons sexual orientation.
Nonetheless, when people who profess to also follow Jesus actively fight and campaign to continually keep gay and lesbian couples as second-class it makes me question their fundamental understanding of Jesus' message, his Way, and his Kingdom.
Part of me can kinda-sorta understand a Christian's commitment to what they view as the only acceptable form of marriage, and how that leads them to actively support movements to protect that belief. I don't agree with them, but I respect their actions as coming from their convictions. But at some point, on some level, to just continue and continue to fight and campaign and appeal and argue, it just feels mean. I realize this sounds contradictory, and I'm okay with that. But to me there is a difference.
What am I proposing, then? I'm not entirely sure. I suppose it's silly to say, "if at first you don't succeed, then happily give up and go home."
It's just the immediate sense that I get from reading people's response. The instant state of, "quick, assemble the crew, the enemy has gained some ground and we need to respond immediately!" I guess there's just something innate to that that rubs me the wrong way, and feels less "Christian." Less "Jesus-y." (Although, to be fair, I think opposing gay-marriage in the first place is not Jesus-y).
Some day, in the (hopefully near?) future, arguments like this will be behind us. We'll reminisce about these days with a strange sense of, "wait, why did our country not let gay people marry?" in similar ways that we now reminisce about the days when blacks and whites had to drink from different fountains. That doesn't make any sense to us now. And one day this won't make sense to us either.
In the meantime, if you find yourself to be one of the millions of followers of Jesus who don't think gay people should be allowed the same basic right as you, then I ask you to hold that conviction kindly. Handle it with love. If your sense of "what's right" is so strong that you just have to fight gay-marriage, then please do it with grace and humility. Don't immediately rush to kick the man again who just started stumbling to his feet.
I guess that's what the above movements feel like to me.