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Thursday, October 06, 2005

Gays and Lesbians Did Not Threaten Our Marriage Or Destroy New Orleans

The other day, that nasty man, Franklin Graham, made some horrible remarks about New Orleans and the gay and lesbian members of its population. He has proven that he, like his famous father, is a champion of ignorance, bigotry, and intolerance.

My last post celebrated our 26 years of marriage and included the values upon which my husband and I base our marriage. After listening to the ugly words of the self-rightous Mr. Graham, I realized that I neglected to mention some rather important values that are very basic to our relationship.

My husband and I are tolerant of other people and embrace diversity. We do not care what color, what religion someone has chosen, what gender, or what their sexual orientation may be. We value people for who they are. We celebrate love.

I grew up with gay people and we both have had many gay co-workers and friends over the years. Consequently, I found Mr. Grahams hateful words insulting toward our gay and lesbian friends, the people of New Orleans, and embarrassing for our nation.

I thought about our 26 years of marriage and I thought of the two men I knew when I was growing up who had been partners for 30 years! They loved one another and had a very sucessful relationship. When my parents were fighting and having problems, I saw these two men treat each other with such respect and love that it made a lasting impression on me that I am sure has contributed to our sucessful marriage.

Did I TURN GAY because I had gay and lesbian friends throughout school, in the military, and later on in civilian life? NO! Why should it matter to me what a consenting adult does in bed or with whom? I do not feel threatened at all sexually or otherwise by gay people. Was I worried about my children being around gay people? NO. My children all have a diverse mixture of friends including gays and lesbians. My husband and I are proud of our daughter and both of our sons for being tolerant, inclusive, and cherishing their friends.

I did worry about the possibility of my children being abused by heterosexual pedophiles like I was. Three of the men who stalked and abused me in my own home, over a period of eleven years, were Christian, or had been brought up Christian. The fourth one was Jewish.

I am pretty sure that the man who raped me when I was in my 20's was a Christian. He kept asking Jesus to forgive him while he was raping me. He apolized as he left saying, "I'm sorry but my wife won't let me touch her".

I do not fault Mr. Graham his religion. I do fault him for his meanness and his intrusive, controling, evangelical religious adgenda. I question the sexual intentions of a man like Mr. Graham who seems to waste a great deal of time and effort picturing in his mind what other people do sexually with each other. While he rails against something that is SO none of his business; he is only responsible for "HIS OWN SEXUAL BEHAVIOR"!

Children are in far more danger of sexual abuse by a members of their own families, members of the community who work with children or frequent places where children play, other children, and members of the clergy. Watch the straight people around your children if you want to protect them!

Gays also DO NOT THREATEN MARRIAGE. That is a lie. Our marriage is a testimony to that fact. Our gay friends have enriched our marriage. Many gay and lesbian adults would like a chance to promise themselves to one another with vows of marriage. That fervent Christians condemn the love shared between gay and lesbian couples is the result of sick sexual hatred and obsession. LOVE between two people "Is An Expression of God".

Mr. Franklin Graham has implied that his god destroyed "The Big Easy" to teach a lesson. He has been praying that New Orleans will be rebuilt without a place in the community for the gay and lesbian victims of Katrina along with others that he has labeled "sinners". What an UGLY god he claims to speak for.

Devoid of any real spiriuality, Mr. Graham has missed his calling. He should go to work for a living.

We have been married for 26 years without listening to people like Franklin Graham and I am thankful.

I feel better now........
....Kitchen Window Woman....


Blogger Ken Grandlund said...

I was driving down the road last night when I saw a sign that said "God loves us and gave Jesus to Die for our sins." It got me to thinking about a couple of things...

1- The Old Testament (pre-Jesus) has God saying "Thou shall Not Kill" yet all the while he is smiting and killing his own enemies or encouraging others to do so in his name.

2- God killed his own son (according to christian dogma)

I wondered how anyone could worship a duplicitious god as this and how killing the one true "savior" for all of our benefit shows love.

Anyhow, though my comments are a bit off topic, it may shed some light on the nastiness and seeming irrationality of the extreme christian agenda. with a god like this, who needs enemies?

9:16 AM  
Blogger ielle said...

you know, it's funny, my mother who is so accepting of so many things is completely and utterly against gay marriage. I have no idea why. I have gay friends, she knows them and is completely comfortable around them. She works in a art college town as a bank teller and often waits on the gay community. Again, perfectly fine with all of this, but for some reason she doesn't want them to marry. WHY? It's piece of fricken paper that lets them have the right to healthy insurance and other spousal rights which were so painfully withheld from them during a crisis such as 911 and Katrina. Love is love, no matter who loves whom. Is it too much to ask that they a)can express their love equally and b)protect their loved ones even after they are gone under the marital right laws of our country? Mom thinks no. I don't get it. She says it would cheapen the meaning of her marriage. I can't figure out why. Dad will still love her. He still married her, who cares if my friend Scott gets hitched with his boyfriend Rodney. No different than if my cousin gets married to her boyfriend. I'm just going to chalk it up to be old fashioned and set in her ways. Strange, I've always considered her to be such a kind hearted and open person. I guess some things just rub people the wrong way.

12:08 PM  
Blogger Kitchen Window Woman said...

I am somewhat unique as I was raised outside of "the church" or any of the three religions of middle eastern origin that claim the ONLY god. I feel no guilt about being a non-believer and do not respond to threats of damnation, hell, etc. I feel that I am fortunate.

The lack of indoctrination has allowed me to view the very points that you brought up and question as well.

I think that people believe and follow because they have been indoctrinated since early childhood, threatened with punishment if they choose not to believe, and ask questions, etc. It is also easier and less scary to be told what to think than it is to face reality. And some people enjoy the sense of power they gain by "lording over" others while suposedly representing god or Jesus.

When someone's identity is based on a religious mythology they preceive those whose beliefs differ as a direct personal threat.

I think that the idea of killing the "one true savior for the benefit of all" is not god-like but very human in that it seeks to justify and deem acceptable any type of greed, violence, cruelty, and punishment. The "this is for your own good" or (the benefit of all) justification is being used over and over again to paint the Iraq war and the thousands of deaths as "necessary" and actually a good thing". It used to be what parents said while they beat their children, "I am doing this for your own good".

And I agree, with a god like this, who needs enemies?

12:07 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

I've heard Franklin Graham is even worse than his father. Your post seems to confirm it. All their hysteria about gay marriage and gays being a threat to children, their gloating about God punishing New Orleans for being tolerant -- these people are sick.

3:38 PM  
Blogger Unadulterated Underdog said...

Good call Kitchen Window Woman!

It is regretable that there are folks like Graham in this nation still at this late hour. What nasty demonic trick turns people so evil and inward I wonder? It would be easy for one to assume that these people are few and far between but to think thus would be folly for they are many and multiplying in this day and age. The real question we should ask ourselves is: What can we do to fight back?

The elusive truth is a hard catch. What is it about our society that breeds such bigotry and unwanton hatred? Is it politics? Is it extremist religious stripes? Is it a failure to properly raise our children? You tell me.

Good post KWW. I am sorry that these things are a part of our society but then again, what can good be without evil?

7:53 PM  
Anonymous JollyRoger said...

It has been my experience that the hate-spewing Jesusistani is usually that way because of something about him or herself that is on contradiction to the "beliefs" that they spew.

And I am from a family of 9 Baptist Ministers, so the subject is not an alien one to me.

The Shakespearean "He doth protest too much" is almost always an accurate yardstick by which to measure the hating Jesusistani. I have heard Mr. Graham on a few occasions and as a result harbor deep suspicions about what it is he's trying to deflect my attention from. His closet's contents, perhaps?

2:33 AM  
Blogger Kitchen Window Woman said...

It's almost as if denying gays the legal status of marriage has become the punishment for being gay. It is truly sad because couples who have made a commitment to one another based on love are denied the right to attend that loved one if he or she should be hospitalized.

Many people fear what they do not know much about. The church has been responsible for making people fear many things about life. The church also teaches that its members are BETTER, in a superior sort of special way, than others.

Perhaps, that is why your mother feels that her marriage would be cheapened if gays were allowed the legal status of marriage. Gay people have been labeled sinners and enemies by the "big three"- Judiasm, Christianity, and Islam. These dogmatic middle eastern religions pit themselves against preceived enemies to maintain their power and status. Let's face it most people sense that their gay brethren are "different" and difference is an easy target.

Your mother's marriage is what it is "for better or for worse" regardless of whether or not gays marry. Her union will not tarnish or become tawdry becuse a same-sex couple down the block legally formalizes their love for one another. Her relationship with your father is based on the love between them and how they behave toward each other. It does not involve other people. She probably thinks otherwise because the church has done a good job demonizing an entire group of people. Maybe she should focus on the similarities of love rather than differences based on sex.

Not very tolerant, brotherly, or inclusive, this type of morality. Perhaps you will help to pave the way for change as you seem to have sorted through all of the negatives to come up with a tolerant understanding. Good for you!

8:06 AM  
Blogger Kitchen Window Woman said...

Mr.Graham is a real piece of work! He has stepped into a fortune and will never have to really do anything but spew hatred and spread his diseased religious concepts for the rest of his life. How hypocritical to condemn "The Big Easy" when you live off of the pickins' on Easy Street".

Graham's "good works" are harmful to the health of good people.

8:13 AM  
Blogger Pat Kirby said...

I read a story in Newsweek sometime after the last election. The gist of it was that, for The Faithful, gay marriage was a bigger deal than abortion.

I'm pro-choice, but I can see how someone would object to abortion on the grounds that life is involved. The fact that the Christian Right sees anatomy (gay marriage) as being more important than "life" is rather...ironic? Sad? Culture of life, my shiny, white...bleep!

The Fundamentalist Christian's interest in the gay bedroom is downright perverse. I think they spend more time thinking about gay sexual practices than do gays and lesbians.

As another commentor said, "They doth protest much."

8:59 AM  
Blogger Kitchen Window Woman said...

My mother walked out of a Baptist Church and away from Christianity way back in the 40s'. She had proposed forming a relationship between a black Baptist church (being a sister church...like a sister city) and the white one that she and her family attended.

She stood before the congregation and explained that they could share goals and plan activities together. She thought it strange that churches should be separated by race. She wanted to plan a potluck and invite members of "the sister church" to attend so they could all get to know one another.

She was met by a stunned and angry silence. Later on, her mother was asked repeatedly by members of the congregation, "how could she(my mother) do something like this?" Needless to say, there was never a potluck or a sister church. Did this occur in the south? No, it took place in Detroit.

Hypocracy is ugly but often reveals the true nature of a person or an organization. That Sunday revealed to Mom the true nature of the religion she had been raised to believe.

I am amazed that you did not become a Baptist preacher as well given your family history! Maybe, you are more like my mother was.

11:26 AM  
Blogger Kitchen Window Woman said...

I am pro-choice also. It is strange that the Christian fundamentalist's fixation on gay marriage surpasses their fixation on abortion. I think it is easier for them to attack gays.

Fundamentalists from all types of religions share in common obsessions with sexual behavior. The Wahabi fundamentalists of Muslim origin, for example have all sorts of rules, regs, and punishments that are based entirely on sex.

Just about every religion has a set of taboos that probably started out a means of sexual protection and a promotion of sexual responsibility. Somewhere down the line as some of the religions became more dogmatic and controling sex became a means to keep its members in line.

I have long felt that various religions use sex because it is the most intimate (aside from death which they also try to control) of human physical and emotional experiences and EVERYONE has sexual impulses even little babies...its normal! Paydirt for a church which is in seach of a guilt button.

When I was a kid sex was talked about in hushed, secretive tones. It was "dirty"....dirty jokes, dirty old man, etc. Why would sex be labeled "dirty" when it is a natural function in all living creatures? Hmmmmmmmm.........

I also think that religion is the root cause of a lot of sexual problems. I have a recent article around here someplace about the incredible amount of American clergymen who are addicted to computer pornography. Could this be the result of life-long sexual denial? Good men who are preachers are not sexual beings because the enjoyment of sex is bad (a sin) and dirty? Porn is bursting out all over!

Abortion is an issue that stems from a need to prohibit the enjoyment of sex....especially women enjoying sex! If sex education were comprehensively taught and birht contro readilty available, there would be little need for abortion. Gays are easy to target because they are visibly different. Now, preachers panting in front of computers behind closed doors, that's a real problem!

12:03 PM  
Blogger Kitchen Window Woman said...

That was supposed to be "birth control".

12:07 PM  
Anonymous JollyRoger said...

It's interesting you posted this now-I have a little story about one of those gay hating, family loving Jesusistanis as the featured article on Reconstitution right now. A story you've heard before, and will hear again, because it happens all too often.

9:57 PM  
Blogger Liquidplastic said...

You are right about this KWW ... there are 'gays and lesbians' in all our lives, and in my life I have been very enriched by their presence. My brother-in-law was a wonderful teacher -- he died young, but he taught me a lot about humanity and acceptance. I can't see him not being loved by anyone.

On the other hand, I believe in a god/creator --- but it's hard for me to come to terms with the god of my youth, because it taught me to accept persecution and slavery. Also I and other children were raped by preachers and Sunday school teachers (even in the church building) who tried to tell us it was god’s will … I have always denied this god, and even today I don’t go to church.

I think individual beliefs based on experiences are such a wonderful and refreshing thing. My family condemn me, says my soul is going to hell --- well, I am living in hell right now, so how do they explain that?

I so enjoyed the post and the comments. There are times when I think I will get more help from my Blog friends then the ones I am paying. Does this make sense to you?

By the way, I thank you so much for your candor. It saved my sanity, and that’s putting it lightly. You are loved and appreciated by this old one.

5:00 AM  
Blogger Kitchen Window Woman said...

I went and read what you had posted. I had not herad of that case but am not surprised.

I think of god as life...the living of it. I do not think god is a male with all the bad human traits that the three "only" gods of the middle eastern tribal religions seem to embody (the gods of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism).
I think of god as being the earth and the universe and the breath we breathe.

It is a shame that so many of us were hurt when we were young. It is a type of hurt that scars for life but can be lived with. I hope that if we speak out we can stop it from happening to others.

Experiences can always be learned from if one looks right at them and thinks them through. I think that we both respect and learn from the experiences of others. Many times I have been helped along by the wisdom that friends gained through their experiences. It's kind of a circle.

I love reading what you write because you are able to put your emotions into the words that you paint with. I do not have the ability to express my emotions so powerfully with such beauty. You make it all ring so clear.

1:33 PM  

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