It was pointed out to me today that I might be too harsh on Christians in my blog postings, citing a complaint by Matt, a friend of my cousin’s.
I beg to differ.
I am harsh on fundamentalist Christians who seek to impose their will and values on others. The same way I am harsh on any other group who force their views upon others, be they religious or political — and that line is blurred beyond recognition these days.
Matt seems to be under the mistaken impression that I have singled out Southern Baptists for this treatment. Let’s look at the record.
I’ve mentioned Southern Baptists 5 times in the 2,363 entries here:
- This entry is a quote from Garrison Keillor who mentions the Southern Baptists as an example of how the government panders to religious groups. It was a tiny, tiny part of a long, long quote. I just quote it, I didn’t write it.
- This entry notes that the Southern Baptists have pulled out of a world alliance because it is too liberal toward women and homosexuals. I don’t see any disputing those facts. Meanwhile, I defend individual Baptists in that entry by stating that I believe their religion has been co-opted by a small minority of intolerant people.
- In this entry, I point out that ultra nutcase Fred Phelps often pickets the Southern Baptists because he feels they are too liberal. Matt, I’m defending the SBC here. Does any reasonable person think that Fred Phelps is a true Christian, that the pain and anguish that he causes is in any way righteous and good?
- This entry simply states that George Bush addressed the Southern Baptist convention but would not address the NAACP convention. He used the SBC as an excuse to claim that homosexuality can be cured by accepting Jesus as savior. What does this mean to the millions of gay Americans who are Christian, like me? We’re just not Christian enough?
- Finally, in this entry, Matt’s argument that I make sweeping generalizations about Southern Baptists is shoved aside. In it, I come right out and say that not all Baptists are bent on forcing their beliefs upon others, and that “people cannot be pegged into pigeon holes because of their faith”.
I have read plenty of the Bible, Matt. I simply take it as a whole and do not pick and choose which parts I want to concentrate on. I haven’t memorized it chapter and verse so that I can attack someone with a certain passage if they don’t conform to my values or claims on morality. Heck, my stepmother is active in her church, takes classes in theology and Bible studies, and still manages to lead a life that does not include demonizing people.
I am a Christian, and I believe in the values taught by Jesus Christ. And I believe that his values of tolerance, love for his fellow man (and woman), and peace are simply not what a large number of very vocal Christian fundamentalists are preaching.
Matt is free to read my opinions or not, and he is also free to voice his. That’s the beauty of our American freedoms, something the internet has made so much stronger. And he and other people who have a differing opinion than mine are always welcome to comment here — I’ve never deleted an opposing viewpoint from this blog, and I’m not about to start now… unlike many right wing websites, I don’t censor opposition or stifle dissent.
So tell me: do you think I am too harsh on the religious right?