John Shore has a couple of essential posts up on the subject of Christianity and its fundamentalist contingent’s connection to the bullying and suicide of gay teens. They are both required reading, but let’s start with his explanation, as a Christian who affirms the dignity of LGBT people, of that connection:
In the conversations centered around such tragedies as the recent Jamey Rodemeyer suicide, we very often find conservative Christians defending themselves against the accusation that the theology in which they believe–and specifically their belief that homosexuality is a sin against God—ultimately contributes to that which informs, motivates, and encourages the bullying of gay teens. I thought I would make this video as a way of illustrating for such Christians how the reasoning by which they absolve themselves of all responsibility for gay teen suicides and the bullying of gay teens tends to sound to those who do not share their religious convictions.
Here’s the video. Stop and watch it, please.
In the post just prior to that video, he speaks directly to fundamentalists who love their dogma more than they love people:
If you’re a Christian who believes that being gay is a morally reprehensible offense against God, then you share a mindset, worldview, and moral structure with the kids who hounded Jamey Rodemeyer, literally, to death. It is your ethos, your convictions, and your theology that informed, supported, and encouraged their cruelty.
We Christians who believe that God created gay people as much in His own image as he did straight people are begging you to reconsider your theology — to do nothing more than be open to an alternative, fully credible, scholastically sound interpretation of one or two lines from Paul.
How can you be unwilling to do something so simple, when you see the horrible ultimate cost of that refusal?
Christ died so that you could love more. And now you’re part of a system that allows that same Christ to be used as a moral justification for the most vile kind of abuse. How could that have happened? How could something so right have gone so wrong?
People who affirm LGBT people have the moral high ground, whether atheist, Christian, Jewish or whatever else. This is not bragging — it’s a simple fact. It’s particularly powerful and refreshing, though, to hear a Christian speak so firmly to those of his own religion who inflict so much harm [whether they realize or admit it], for the sake of a couple of Bible verses they love to misunderstand. Keep on, John Shore.