You might have noticed there are some Christians still not on board with same-sex marriage.
One Jesus-centric group recently put forward five reiterations of tired old clichés whose unconvincing nature is becoming ever more apparent. Their second point began thusly:
The promotion and legal recognition of homosexual unions is not in the interest of the common good. That may sound benighted, if not bigoted. But we must say it in love: codifying the indistinguishability of gender will not make for the “peace of the city.” It rubs against the grain of the universe, and when you rub against the grain of divine design you’re bound to get splinters.
It was Hemant’s analysis that prompted me to think some more about this:
Aww… they’re trying to turn their bigotry into poetry. Isn’t that sweet of them.
I’d never quite noticed before that this is what happens in Christianity a lot. They’ll take up a conservative, narrow-minded stance on a very particular interpretation of Biblical values, but distance themselves from all those hateful Westboro Baptists and the like, by claiming that they’re motivated by love.
They’re not raging about queers burning in Hell; they’re talking about getting metaphorical splinters from rubbing against the grain of divine design.
They hate the sin, but love the sinner. Gay people, you should appreciate the compassion these Christians have for you – it’s just your actions in your personal relationships and the innate tendencies within you that they find contemptible and wicked.
The point being, of course, that there’s more to love than flowery language and a soft face and declaring aloud to all and sundry that love for your neighbour is what drives you. If you’re not going to be a hypocrite, you also have to actually love people. You don’t get instant credit for being compassionate just because you’ve replaced blatant spite and invective with worthy analogies built of purple prose.