Semmler, Pollnitz and Focus on the Family’s Day of Dialogue.
A post by Neil Hart on homosexuality, LGBT lesbian and gay stuff and the Lutheran Church of Australia.
Hey Reader! I went to type homophobia and typed hobophobia by mistake. I think I invented a new word. I’m definitely hobophobic. It’s the fear that some homeless person, sitting shivering in the recess of and empty shop doorway, will accidentally catch my eye as I walk by and make me feel guilty and bad. :(
Today is the 16th. I’ve been hanging out for today. So exciting! It’s the Focus on the Family Day of Dialogue. Yup, this is the day when all the Christian kids go out into the schools and colleges in America and tell them how God hates fags. They are all organised. Little hand out cards and everything! But, we will get to that in a minute.
I remember, not so very long ago, when my own homophobia fed on my fears for my children. There is a prominent argument that the “gay lobby” is out to get our poor vulnerable innocent children in our colleges and schools and i was ready to believe it. Kids are vulnerable…kids can be manipulated…things that happen in schools can have lasting effects..school can be a confusing time as kids try to sought out who they really are.
I can remember imagining some gay person trying to “convert” on of my kids. it seems funny now but I did actually “feel” that it was possible to be talked into being gay. I say “feel” and not “think” because if i had given it a moment of actual “thought” i would have realised how stupid my fears were. No one has ever been talked into being gay and no one has ever been talked out of being gay.
I’m sure some people have experimented with their sexuality. For all I know, most people have at one time or another. I have vague recollections of games of “show me yours and I’ll show you mine”. I remember that they involved boy as well as girls. I even remember (God help me!) being the instigator of some of those games! (OH NO! I was a part of the manipulative “gay lobby” and their evil agenda and I didn’t even know it!) But, despite my own attempts to apparently manipulate of my vulnerable self, I still turned out straight.
The truth is, our sexuality is a fundamental part of us, from birth until death and there is very little we can do to change it.
In my post connecting the LCA to the Ugandan “Kill the Gays” Bill, I made mention of a comment from Dr Pollnitz, the head of the Lutheran Church of Australia’s Commission on Social and Bioethical Questions. He voiced his fears that gay people have the intention of using the schools to convert our vulnerable school children to homosexuality. One of the gay readers of this blog, Marginalised Lutheran, made the following comment.
The President of the LCA Rev Dr Mike Semmler included this statement in his recent submission to the Federal Government opposing marriage equality.
In Quebec Canada an ethics course has been imposed by the government on public and private schools and even for some home schooled children teaching that homosexual activity is “normal”…
OMG! They are forcing gay propaganda into the minds of our children!
But the argument is based on fear, just as all ungodly things are.
You know reader, I am amazed at the capriciousness of my own mind. Even now, If i let myself, I know i could drag out my recently shelved but ever ready Fear Focal glasses, read Rev Dr Semmler’s and Dr Pollnitz’s statements and feel the “truth” of them in my gut. But that’s how ignorance and prejudice work. They are about gut feelings and not about information, reason, logic or anything resembling real truth.
What is happening in the schools in Canada? Take off the fear focals and have another read. They are telling students that some people are gay and that it is normal and OK. And what will happen because of this information? The School children will, hopefully grow up thinking that some people are gay and that’s OK. Hopefully they will learn to treat their gay brothers, sisters cousins and friends as normal human beings. Hopefully children who are gay themselves will start to think that, maybe, just maybe, they are normal and OK and not some weird perverted sinner outcast. I think that’s called education and I think that’s what schools are supposed to be about. Then, hopefully, our children will grow up more informed that us.
I add another comment from Marginalised Lutheran regarding the Semmler and Pollnitz statements
These are church leaders, shaping our church’s views…They should be the MOST informed on these subjects and not make statements based on some vague opinion or gut instinct.
So, into this mix of fear versus fact, gut feelings versus real information, education versus manipulation…I give you “Focus on the Family’s Day of Dialogue.”
Focus on the family is a conservative Christian group who are very influential in American society and politics. They are actively anti-gay and are supporters of the psychologically damaging idea that homosexuality is some kind of disease that can be “cured”.
They have marshalled their army of naive, idealistic and super motivated Christian school kids for a campaign to wage war against the “gay” directly in the schools and colleges. They will be handing out invitations to a lunchtime conversation about Jesus who loves everyone and about standing up against people who bully, tease and harm.
Here is the card.
But if you look at the Day of Dialogue web page you will discover their real agenda.
Go to the “dig deeper” section and start digging. It doesn’t take long before you are reading the usual conservative Christian hurtful diatribe.
Anything other than a distinctly male and female relationship is a reflection of sin, brokeness, damaged and confused sexuality that is linked to abuse, pornography, rape, unfaithfulness, lust and casual hookups. You are probably gay because of trauma in your life but don’t worry because if you have faith and patience, God can heal you and make you straight.
So…who is actively lobbying and campaigning in our schools to attempt to convert vulnerable young people? Who is it that is sticking their nasty and manipulative little fingers in where they don’t belong?
Someone suggested printing these off and handing them out instead. :)
I like the second card better. At least it is honest.
You know who will end up the victims here? Almost Everyone. The gay people who read the cards today. The ones who react by hiding further. The ones who react with violence. The ones who decide to withdraw from the homophobic society that surrounds them and the church that gives them voice. The ones who will, once again be presented with a distorted, fear driven picture of God.
The other victims will be the kids who are handing out the cards today. The vulnerable, willing and idealistic, beautiful young christian kids who will put on the tee-shirt and go out boldly into their campuses believing they are doing the work of God. In years to come they will remember their involvement and blush and cringe and wish they could forget. They are directed by church leaders who should know better, to participate in a program that continues to spread hate rather than the love of God. So, lets not judge the idealistic messengers too harshly.
But…Focus on the Family? In the name of Jesus…stop doing this bad stuff!
Focus on the Family! “I BIND thee evil spirit and cast thee OUT!”
Has anyone heard of this program being run in Australia? I hope not. Let me know if you hear of it, yeh?