Archive | August, 2012

Chick-Fil-A and Bible Thumpers

2 Aug

Let me start off right off the bat: it’s okay if you don’t like gay relationships.

Obviously, it bothers me, but there’s nothing I can do if you don’t like homosexuality. I just have to deal with the fact that some people are uncomfortable with the concept; and you know what? That’s okay. I don’t know what kind of upbringing you had or what kind of culture you’re part of; if gays just aren’t your thing, that’s perfectly fine with me.

What does bother me is when you try to stop gay people from getting married because of your opinion.

Now I’m sure almost all of you are aware of all the controversy swirling around regarding Chick-Fil-A. The company has been giving money to anti-gay organizations for quite a while, and recently Dan Cathy, the president of the company, said some things about how he supported the ‘biblical definition of marriage’ and the ‘traditional family’. Now of course those statements seem innocuous enough, but the reason I and so many other people are riled up is because of what that statement implies.

When someone says that they support traditional marriages, it directly means that they don’t support gay marriages, because no one considers those to be ‘traditional’. And by not supporting gay marriages, they are implying that they are against the legalization of gay marriage. And that’s where my problem starts. So this is to anyone who doesn’t support gay marriage.

Again, it’s okay if you have a problem with homosexuality. It’s just not okay when your problem starts affecting other people lives. When your opinion of someone else starts infringing onto their legal and state rights, that is 100% wrong. When you make a certain group of people a hot-button political issue because of how uncomfortable you are with their sexual orientation, that is 100% wrong. When you deny a certain group the rights and liberties that you possess because they want to love someone you don’t approve of, that is 100% wrong.

Why should someone’s opinion have anything to do with someone else’s life? I could obviously understand if the opinion is about rapists being locked in jail, or thieves running rampant, but love lives? Seriously? Why is everyone so obsessed with the gender of who someone else loves?

There isn’t enough time in the world to touch on every anti-gay argument out there. Like the ‘what’s next, marrying animals? We can’t change laws based on every random romantic whim people have.’ Romantic whim? Homosexuality has existed for centuries upon centuries. It exists in almost every species on the planet. There are literally millions of homosexuals living on our planet right now. It is of utmost importance that this is understood: homosexuality is neither a whim, nor a choice. If it were a choice, straight people would have also had to choose who to be sexually attracted to at some point in their life. People are not automatically born attracted to the opposite gender, and gay people do not purposefully deviate from this orientation simply because they want to. Who would? Who would want to be ostracized and denied rights?

Like I said, I don’t have time to address all anti-gay arguments. But the biggest one that I will touch on is religion.

The bible states that “Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.” (Leviticus 18:22)

In another version, Leviticus 18:22 states “Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.”

Okay. Alright. So Christianity spells it out clear as day: homosexuality is a sin. And everything in the bible must be believed, correct? Because it is the word of God, and it cannot be denied, correct?

To go against God’s teachings would be a sin; absolutely. Do you agree that picking and choosing certain teachings to go with someones own opinions is wrong, because they’re denying some of God’s teaching based on what they want? Do you agree that certain teachings must be ignored as times change and society adapts?

Raise your hand if you like shrimp. Raise it again if you don’t coordinate your outfits based on their material. Again if you ladies keep forgetting to take two birds to your priest to sacrifice a week after your period.

These are all teaching that are in the bible. Eating shellfish is an abomination (11:9). Wearing clothing of two different materials is a sin (19:19). Women are unclean during their periods, and must sacrifice two birds to their priest to become clean again (15:28).

You may be thinking that that is absurd. Everyone knows that the times have changed. People have changed, customs have become outdated. So you simply disregard ones that have become irrelevant, correct?

Well, who is a mere mortal to decide what is irrelevant and what isn’t? No one can play God. No one can decide for themselves what teachings to follow and which to deny. Can they?

If so, then you must admit that to some extent, personal opinion is injected into the situation. Their personal beliefs are affecting how they interpret their holy book. Well, if someone personalizes their beliefs, it’s not really the bible’s teaching anymore, now is it? It’s their teachings. Their beliefs. They pick and choose what they want.

So using the bible as a reason for hating gay marriage is simply not valid. Because if one doesn’t support their holy book in its entirety, they are only using their religion as an excuse to fuel what they personally believe as wrong or right.

Even if you still support the bible’s views on homosexuality, this bears reminding: the United States does not have a theocracy as its government. Just because someone’s religion states that something is wrong, doesn’t mean that the government has to support and follow along in their beliefs. Christianity, nor any other religion, has no place in our governing system. So just because ‘homosexuality is a sin’, that doesn’t justify wanting it to be outlawed, even if they think that that is justification enough. I mean, Hindus believe that eating beef is a sin. But they are not the majority of the religion in this country, so even if they were trying to make eating meat outlawed, their commands would not become law.

But trust me, I am in no way trying to insult Christianity. I do not in any way hate Christians or believe that all of them are ignorant or hateful. I just can’t condone the usage of certain isolated sections of the bible to support political views.

And now back to Chick-Fil-A. Dan Cathy supports the biblical definition of marriage. And when you go to Chick-Fil-A to proudly show your support of the traditional and biblical family, do you understand the implications of supporting an anti-gay organization? Do you understand that allowing gays to marry is in no way affecting your current or future marriages? Do you understand that by not allowing gays to marry, they are not allowed to have many of the rights that you take for granted? They cannot have special visitation rights to each other in the hospital because they have no legal connection to each other. They cannot get tax breaks or marriage benefits because they cannot marry. They cannot receive any family benefits or legal privileges because as far as the law is concerned, they have no connection to each other.

Is it really that big of a deal that gay people get all of these things? Are you so determined to keep marriage between a man and a woman that you are ready to make an entire community second-class citizens?

I know it’s easy to smile, buy chicken, and say “I support traditional families. I support the bible’s view on marriage.” But there is a lot of weight in statements like these. There are a lot of implications that come with these words. There are a lot of people who suffer because of laws that stem from these words.

There may be some people that may be thinking that this girl seems a little angry. She seems kind of accusatory and spiteful. Isn’t she supposed to be representing a community filled with love, rainbows, and equality or something? Isn’t her entire community supposed to be happy and accepting of all people?

Well, so is theirs.