Sunday, March 26, 2017

When is it allowable for heterosexuals to reject homosexuality?

These days, there isn't a more divisive topic than homosexuality.  People are touchy about the LGBT issue, it's a lighting-rod issue no doubt.  The latest fodder for the conversation is Disney's "Beauty and the Beast," so now everyone on social media wants to know if you'll see the movie or boycott it.  Which by the way, my wife and I just saw the movie today - if you think it's a pro-gay movie, you need help.

The contemporary social gauge to measure your level of tolerance seems to be your views on homosexuality.  You are allowed to hold divergent views on almost any topic in our culture, save homosexuality.  If you claim to reject homosexuality, in most circles, you are immediately written off as a hateful, antiquated, homophobic bigot.

The amount of peer-pressure our society imposes on the masses to accept the homosexual lifestyle is immense.  I think all lifestyles that are great and correct should speak for themselves and shouldn't need to be defended.  What my views on the subject of homosexuality are, aren't important or even what I'm interested in discussing.  

What does interest me is, everyone is just expected to accept homosexuality, but no one seems to be asking the question: Do heterosexuals have the right to reject homosexuality?  Can someone who disagrees with a given lifestyle, choose to have a different view without feeling like they are going to be crucified for speaking up?

What's gone wrong in our culture when people are intimidated into silence?  If it's wrong to reject homosexuality on the grounds of intolerance, then isn't it equally nefarious to force people to acquiesce to a worldview they disagree with?  Where's the fairness that's being demanded?  This modern pendulum swing seems to be quite unfair.

I feel that the main reaction to any suggestion that homosexuality is inappropriate, from most people who embrace homosexuality, is going to be negative since it's probably being filtered through the experiences with the harsh, hateful, judgmental fundamentalists who claim to represent Christianity.  I get it, there are some nasty people who use religion like a hammer.  There are some really mean people who say some very hurtful things.

But what about people who love others, who don't want to be combative, but they simply hold different values?  Why are their voices being silenced?  Is it because some knucklehead spouted off and said something demeaning or even a whole bunch of somebodys?  Does that give anyone the right to dismiss everyone who disagrees with you?

I do think it's possible to lovingly reject a lifestyle, to keep the dialogue open, to be respectful, and to speak your mind without having to insult those who you disagree with.  And that's something that should go both ways.


Mark Cooperstein said...

I think the best way to approach dealing with people that differ from you in **** (fill in the blank: lifestyle, politics, religious preference..) is to look someone in the eye and say: I don't agree with your belief in (fill in blank), but I respect you as a person! Some people might find this to be hypocritical because it acknowledges that you don't like their life choice, but you still value their life! Nobody is beyond redemption, including ourself. Showing love is the only way that barriers can be broken down, and our values, Christ's values can be shared.

Mark Cooperstein

Craig Cottongim said...

Well said Mark. I think love & respect are powerful tools to building relationships with people we disagree with.