Punch A Gay Child? Beat Him Up? Kick Him Out Of The House? Is That What Jesus Teaches? Or Is That Satan's Work?
You may be aware that there's a major anti-bullying campaign going on across the country, a campaign that discourages kids from antisocial behavior towards classmates perceived as "The Other," and thereby a legitimate target for abuse. That campaign wasn't bolstered last week when some Satan-worshipping phony minister in North Carolina, Sean Harris of the Berean Baptist "Church," urged fathers to punch and beat their sons who show signs of being gay. Listen to Harris in the clip above. To a normal person he sounds like someone in serious need of psychiatric help and spiritual counseling. To the Satan-worshippers in his coven... well listen to them yelling "Amen" when he works himself up into a violent tirade against 4 year olds with limp wrists. Jesus has a lot of work to do with impostors like Harris running around pushing Satan's message to morons who wouldn't know Jesus if the GOP was crucifying with on their front lawn today.
Judging by recent studies of homophobia, Harris and many of his most vocal supporters are repressed-- or closeted-- homosexuals who just can't come to terms with who they are. It's ugly. But it isn't new. I was reading some reminiscences of Pansy Division drummer Luis Illades in the new issue of Out that struck a chord.
A couple times, especially in the Midwest and South, kids wanted to run away with us. One kid ran away from the home of his super-Christian family and came to our show. He had all of his belongings with him, and he came to see Pansy Division because there was nowhere else for him to go. He asked us to give him a ride to wherever we were going next. He was 15, and it was heartbreaking. He had come out to his family, and his father tried to beat him up and kicked him out. He wanted to escape with the gay circus.
Yes, heartbreaking. It makes me realize how lucky I was when I finally figure out I was gay. I was living in Amsterdam at the time and hadn't seen my family in 4 or 5 years. I flew home for a visit to share the news. What I found was love and unconditional acceptance (well... one condition-- my mother said I couldn't borrow her wigs). A lot of homophobia stems from authoritarian parents, many of whom may themselves have same-sex desires, albeit undercover ones.
"Sometimes people are threatened by gays and lesbians because they are fearing their own impulses, in a sense they 'doth protest too much,'" Ryan told LiveScience. "In addition, it appears that sometimes those who would oppress others have been oppressed themselves, and we can have some compassion for them too, they may be unaccepting of others because they cannot be accepting of themselves."
...In all of the studies, participants who reported supportive and accepting parents were more in touch with their implicit sexual orientation, meaning it tended to jibe with their outward sexual orientation. Students who indicated they came from authoritarian homes showed the biggest discrepancy between the two measures of sexual orientation.
"In a predominately heterosexual society, 'know thyself' can be a challenge for many gay individuals," lead author Netta Weinstein, a lecturer at the University of Essex in the United Kingdom, said in a statement. "But in controlling and homophobic homes, embracing a minority sexual orientation can be terrifying."
Those participants who reported their heterosexuality despite having hidden same-sex desires were also the most likely to show hostility toward gay individuals, including self-reported anti-gay attitudes, endorsement of anti-gay policies and discrimination such as supporting harsher punishments for homosexuals.
The research may help to explain the underpinnings of anti-gay bullying and hate crimes, the researchers note. People in denial about their own sexual orientation, perhaps a denial fostered by authoritarian and homophobic parents, may feel a threat from other gay and lesbian individuals. Lashing out may ultimately be an indicator of the person's own internal conflict with sexual orientation.
This inner conflict can be seen in some high-profile cases in which anti-gay public figures are caught engaging in same-sex acts, the researchers say. For instance, evangelical preacher and anti-gay-marriage advocate Ted Haggard was caught in a gay sex scandal in 2006. And in 2010, prominent anti-gay activist and co-founder of conservative Family Research Council George Rekers was reportedly spotted in 2010 with a male escort rented from Rentboy.com. According to news reports, the escort confirmed Rekers is gay.
"We laugh at or make fun of such blatant hypocrisy, but in a real way, these people may often themselves be victims of repression and experience exaggerated feelings of threat," Ryan said. "Homophobia is not a laughing matter. It can sometimes have tragic consequences," as was the case in the 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard, a gay man.
And that brings us to another Ryan, one of Congress' most virulently homophobic members, Paul Ryan. The Wall Street-owned Beltway media goes to great lengths to paint Ryan as a reasonable, mainstreamish conservative. But he's voted against every single bill that has pushed equality-- or even life itself-- for the LGBT community. His voting score on gay issues is a 0.00-- the exact same record of hatred and bigotry as outré sociopaths like Michele Bachmann (R-MN), Virginia Foxx (R-NC), Steve King (R-IA), Louie Gohmert (R-TX) and self-loathing closet queens Patrick McHenry (R-NC) and Trent Franks (R-AZ). Look, I'm not trying o insinuate that Ryan is returning the affections of silly little Peoria hypocrite Aaron Schock (R-IL), who's always glancing at his ass and talking about it breathlessly. But... who knows what goes on between those two gym bunnies. Interestingly, the gay-friendly Gap just washed Ryan right out of it's hair over his homophobia, canceling a fundraiser just over a week ago. A spokesperson from the Gap denied that the company was ever hosting a fundraiser for Ryan-- although I'm suspicious about the veracity of that and fear they're just trying to weasel out of their association with Ryan because it was made public.
“Gap Inc. is not hosting or organizing a fundraiser for Congressman Ryan. The fundraiser is a private event, and the location of the event has been moved. To say that Gap Inc. was or is hosting a fundraiser for Congressman Paul Ryan is factually incorrect.”
“Gap Inc. and our brands have a very strong record on LGBTQ community issues as shown by our perfect rating by the Human Rights Campaign annual Corporate Equality Index for seven years in a row. In addition, we are proud of the “Be One” Gap brand ads featuring a gay couple sharing a Gap t-shirt. This ad is part of a “Be Your Own T” campaign which expresses different personalities, heritages, styles and passions. (Incidentally, the men in the ad are a real couple).”