Send the gay agenda to the back of the class with these great Christian back-to-school tips!

Aaron Shafovaloff Christians Gay Agenda Hypocrisy

I know, we’re supposed to be talking about Mormonism here at Main Street Plaza. Thing is, I happened to notice this tweet from a young Christian street preacher who’s been complaining that he might have to move his Free Speech to a different spot in Manti at the next Mormon Miracle Pageant:

“No gay jokes … the more we laugh at sin the more it gets normalized.”
Aaron Shafovaloff

Which got me to thinking, does that mean – if I laugh at the Christians in this video – that I’m helping them appear to be normal?

This is me trying not to laugh.

It’s not easy.

Especially when I see anti-gay Christians like Aaron claiming to agree with a sentiment expressed here at Main Street Plaza, that we “would do well to respect the needs of the minority.”

Guffaw.

43 thoughts on “Send the gay agenda to the back of the class with these great Christian back-to-school tips!

  1. The book they bring up as a scare tactic — Queer 13 — is an excellent book. I don’t know if there exists a better book for learning what it’s like to be a gay young teen — in an amazing variety of different ways. (I mentioned it here.)

    I don’t think that the school library should be pandering to the lowest common denominator of parents’ censorship desires. In seventh grade, the teacher is not sending home every random book in the library against the wishes of the student and his/her parents. As a parent, I consider this book appropriate for seventh graders who are interested in the topic.

  2. I am always at a loss at how people can have an extended conversation about “gay activists” (or some other “enemy”) in such dismissive and condemning tones – not to mention the ongoing effort to limit civil rights – and in the same breath talk about how every person is created by God and has an inherent dignity and worth.

  3. Poor anti-gay christian folks. They don’t even realize how much they resemble their forebears, the anti-civil rights folks. the anti-ERA folks.

    i love how we only have innate worth if we are created by god (around the 7 min mark).

    i may have to buy this book they speak of. and others. i’m all for normalizing the crap out of GBLT stuff.

    i can’t laugh, i admit it. this stuff pisses me off.

  4. Chino Blanco, where have you seen me advocate taking away free speech forums from homosexuals? That would be the hypocrisy.

    You seem to assume that in order to advocate preserving key forums for exchange of ideas, including those of minorities, that I should then also avoid any moral disagreement with any social minorities. One of the beautiful things about America is that it is place where I can fight for the free speech rights of those I vehemently disagree with while at the same time expressing the vehement disagreement.

    Take care,

    Aaron

  5. I should qualify my statement: preserving key forums for exchange of ideas isn’t necessarily equivalent to fighting for free speech rights. I’m not completely sure what legal requirements there are on a city like Manti to preserve traditional free speech forums. But the spirit of my above comment still stands.

  6. So if a school library carries books that help students understand their own sexuality they are part of the “sneaky gay agenda'”? Come on.

    When someone is afraid of their children educating themselves through books, that should be a red flag. They being unreasonable and need to take a step back and soul search to see where that fear is coming from. It’s not easy but it is superior to a life of blind hatred and discrimination.

  7. In an effort to maintain free speech, I think I’ll start advocating teaching the merits of incest, bestiality, rape, and polygamy in the public school system, particularly to grade schoolers. If any have a problem with that, I’ll accuse them of being bigots and working to abolish free speech rights. That scares everyone.

  8. Worth pointing out that there are actually plenty of gay churches, even LDS ones (albeit not the mainstream one!)

  9. Aaron – I take it you mean the question you posed in #6. If so …

    Sorry, but nowhere in my post do I accuse you of being a hypocrite for having advocated taking away free speech forums from homosexuals.

    As far as I know, you’ve never done that. Good for you.

    That said, you apparently agree with the idea that we would do well to respect the needs of the minority.

    The hypocrisy I’m talking about has to do with how enthusiastically you embrace your own (perceived) minority status as a Christian vs. how you treat a (real) minority of gay brothers and sisters.

  10. Chino, how is that not equivocating?

    The context of the quote (“would do well to respect the needs of the minority”) concerned things like preserving free speech forums. Just because I value preserving free speech forums for minorities doesn’t mean I can’t disagree with minorities.

    Nowhere did I imply (nor did I see implied in the prior thread) that minorities have a real need to be somehow exempt from public expressions of scrutiny and disagreement. Both evangelical Christianity and homosexual activism are in the marketplace of ideas and should expect scrutiny and disagreement (and be grown-ups about it).

    So I’m still failing to see how I’m applying a hypocritical double-standard here.

    Take care,

    Aaron

  11. Aaron — it’s just that the comment you quoted from Hellmut talked about how the Constitution protects the civil rights [in general, not necessarily just free speech] of minorities from the tyranny of the majority.

    Perhaps you’re OK with gay people having the right of free speech, but perhaps you’re also OK with the majority voting away a minority’s right to have legal contracts honored (such as marriage).

  12. Chino,

    Ideally a monogamous heterosexual union would be privileged as a legal institution, but that’s fundamentally a religious view. If you had kept reading only a small number of tweets older on my account, you would have seen that I like the idea of removing marriage altogether from government and instead going the route of civil unions.

    But you didn’t even know my thoughts on the issue before you essentially heralded the charge of hypocrisy. Since most homosexual advocates don’t want extend legal marriage to polygamous relationships (which are a minority), one could argue that they are hypocrites, but I suspect you wouldn’t be so brazen in leveling that kind of charge?

    Take care,

    Aaron

  13. Aaron,

    Your endorsement of civil unions is still a long ways from respecting the needs of the gay minority. Respect requires letting go of straight privilege and admitting this minority deserves equal treatment under the law. Until you’re capable of that – or until you give up your objections to simple majoritarian diktat – you will remain a hypocrite.

    Not that it matters. If you oppose the “normalization” of homosexuality, your support of civil unions renders your position not only hypocritical but utterly incoherent.

    In any case, getting back to the matter of the Manti street purchase, my view is that efforts, like yours, to draw attention to the details of the deal are absolutely laudable. What I don’t take seriously is your suggestion that a public to private transfer would necessarily constitute an instance of majority tyranny. This is a local planning decision best made by the Manti City Council.

  14. I like the idea of removing marriage altogether from government and instead going the route of civil unions.

    So are you saying that as long as civil contracts use the word “marriage” for legal marriage, you’ll fight for a double-standard? Or are you saying that you’re OK with legal marriage for all, and if the legislatures of all of the states happen to change the word on the contracts, that would be a great additional plus?

    If the former, I’d say that it’s a pretty convenient way of side-stepping the actual issue. It’s a little like saying “When pigs fly, I’ll support civil rights for gays.”

    Since most homosexual advocates dont want extend legal marriage to polygamous relationships (which are a minority), one could argue that they are hypocrites.

    Actually, the ones I know tend to support decriminalization and legal status for consensual polygamous unions. Please see my post here. Heck, I’d even be fine with them using the word “marriage” for it.

  15. What I dont take seriously is your suggestion that a public to private transfer would necessarily constitute an instance of majority tyranny. This is a local planning decision best made by the Manti City Council.

    Even if it’s a planning decision that’s under the jurisdiction of the legislature, it’s still possible for the courts to strike it down. While I think that you’re probably right, I would have to know more about the relevant legal precedents before dismissing the case as obviously baseless. (Seth? Other laywers? Any opinions…?)

    Also, personally I’d prefer not to dismiss Aaron as a hypocrite. I’d rather say the same thing I normally say to the Mormons:

    When you think that you are a minority at the mercy of the tyranny of the majority, that is your wake-up call to take a consistent stand. It is critical to insist that the civil authorities apply the laws fairly.

  16. (Oops, looks like I confused chanson with Chino, sorry about that.)

    Both,

    Perhaps you missed my qualification. If “marriage” was removed from the sphere of government and civil unions were used across the board, then there wouldn’t be grounds for accusing unequal treatment under the law. That seems like a practical solution to me, since “marriage” is so pregnant with religious meaning. America has long shared a kind of “civic religion” over the issue of privileging monogamous hetereosexual marriages, but those days are almost over.

    But it seems clear that homosexual advocates want far, far more than equal protection under the law. They want social and moral normalization and cultural approbation (especially through the term “marriage”). This aspect of the agenda is often obscured with the dominant “rights” language. But morally affirming the supposed validity of homosexual “marriage” goes absolutely beyond the bounds of Judeo-Christianity. You basically want all Christians to abandon a clear teaching of their most sacred book, and you might as well be explicit about it. And your threat is clear: anyone who disagrees with you is a bigoted hypocrite, who I also presume would also be branded as someone who has personal hatred for homosexuals (if not by you two, then certainly by the general homosexual advocacy movement).

    Chino, you seem to have sidestepped the polygamy issue. Do you or do you not support the legalization and normalization of that minority practice called polygamy (polyandry included)? If not, then you’re hypocrite, are you not?

    chanson, I assume you’re referring to the following statement in the linked post,

    As a feminist, I dont think that the polygamist lifestyle is empowering for women or that it is even remotely a good idea. However, I have to conclude that at least some of the women in polygamy are consenting adults who are there by choice. Inasmuch as there is abuse within the polygamist community (coerced/underage marriages, etc.), it is easier to separate abusive situations from consensual situations if you dont categorically declare them all outlaws. Having a legal paper trail to document their marriages would help those women who want to get out of polygamy to have legal recourse, and those women who dont want to get out of polygamy would be better off if they felt like they could call on civil authorities (for whatever reason) without the worry that their family would be a priori broken up and punished. So I support some sort of decriminalization and legal recognition of the polygamous unions.

    This still falls far below the strong “rights” and “normalization” language being used here for homosexual marriage (as well as language used more broadly by homosexual advocates in the Prop 8 debate). You seem to be just conceding legalization here for mere practical reasons. By some homosexual advocacy standards this would make you a hypocrite. When you start allowing your second-grader’s teacher to speak of polygamy as morally equivalent to monogamy (i.e. when you start advocating the moral and cultural normalization of polygamy, polyandry included), then perhaps you’ll be at a point where you’re treating the polygamy issue like you want committed Christians to treat the homosexual marriage issue.

    Take care (I’m headed out for a Utah hike with the family),

    Aaron

  17. If marriage was removed from the sphere of government and civil unions were used across the board, then there wouldnt be grounds for accusing unequal treatment under the law. That seems like a practical solution to me, since marriage is so pregnant with religious meaning.

    I disagree. Marriage exists across cultures with totally different religions, and is not required to have any religious component. For example, my husband and I are happily married, and we’re both atheists. We have as much right to be “married” as you do. If you attach religious significance to your marriage, that’s your business, not the government’s.

    You seem to be just conceding legalization here for mere practical reasons.

    All civil rights are, at least in part, motivated by practical reasons. If we all agree together that we have the same rights across the board, that benefits us all.

    By some homosexual advocacy standards this would make you a hypocrite.

    Can we cut it out with the “Who’s a hypocrite?” debate? I’m really sorry that that word (and the polarizing/divisive pejorative “fundy” in the earlier post) came up all. It is derailing any kind of reasonable discussion of ideas.

    When you start allowing your second-graders teacher to speak of polygamy as morally equivalent to monogamy (i.e. when you start advocating the moral and cultural normalization of polygamy, polyandry included), then perhaps youll be at a point where youre treating the polygamy issue like you want committed Christians to treat the homosexual marriage issue.

    It is not my second grader’s teacher’s role to teach about “morals”. I’ll handle that myself. If my second grader’s teacher gives him accurate information about the fact that many human societies practice polygamy (including some in the US), I have no problem with that.

  18. Since most homosexual advocates dont want extend legal marriage to polygamous relationships (which are a minority), one could argue that they are hypocrites.

    Then you’re talking to the wrong activists. And the word is “gay” or “LGBT”, not “homosexual”.

    While I do agree that it is slightly hypocritical for someone to support gay marriage but not polyamoury, the vast majority of the time, gay marriage rights activists are just focussing on getting LGBT equality. Also, we’re often confronted with the argument that if we legalise gay marriage, then we necessarily will have to legalise polygamous/polyandrous/polyamorous marriage, bestiality, paedophilia, blah blah blah. It’s not true.

    And lastly, this gay activist very, very strongly supports the legalisation of multi-partner marriages, as well as the removal of marital privilege (where married people are privileged over single/unmarried people).

    When you start allowing your second-graders teacher to speak of polygamy as morally equivalent to monogamy…

    What Chanson said. Polygamy, as practised by fundamentalist Mormon sects is almost universally coerced, abusive, and highly problematic. I oppose the subjugation and abuse of women by patriarchies who indulge in polygamy. However, if by “speak of polygamy as morally equivalent to monogamy” you mean not daemonising non-monogamy, or talking about polyamoury and monogamy in factual ways, then I totally agree that’s what we should do.

    You’re making a lot of incorrect assumptions about people’s beliefs, and it’s biting you in the ass.

  19. That various religious and non-religious people share beliefs about marriage doesn’t mean marriage isn’t pregnant with traditional religious meaning. It just means that religious meaning has permeated culture. Just as with “rights”, I don’t have to attach religious significance to “marriage” for it to have it—it’s already there, assumed by much of the culture. Far beyond equal protection under law, homosexual activists want the benefits of that already shared religious meaning, value, significance, and moral affirmation.

    As an atheist, from which system of ethics and view of human value are you drawing the very idea of rights to begin with? If there is no God, then there is no real objective moral obligation to concern ourselves with rights at all. The very idea of “rights” to begin with in America was pregnant with traditional religious meaning that made no sense without metaphysics.

    Atheists also talk often (without knowing it) of intrinsic human value, transcendent purpose, unalienable rights, etc., but that doesn’t mean any of those things is in the end supportable by an atheistic worldview.

    All civil rights are, at least in part, motivated by practical reasons

    You’ve glossed over the point. The problem isn’t that you have practical reasons in mind, the problem is that you apparently don’t also have in mind (so far expressed) the goal of culturally normalizing polygamy as having equal moral validity as monogamy. Are you (in principle) treating the polygamy issue like you want committed Christians to treat the homosexual marriage issue? Most homosexual marriage advocates aren’t, and it’s evidently because they want to privilege and normalize some kinds of adult relationships over others.

    It is not my second grader’s teacher’s role to teach about “morals”. I’ll handle that myself

    Unfortunately, this is not something we can completely compartmentalize. The issue of whether homosexual marriage or polygamous marriage should be normalized is important for how school curriculum is formed and for determining how teachers are allowed to address the issue in class.

    gay marriage rights activists are just focussing on getting LGBT equality

    But this issue here isn’t one of focus, but rather of principles used to promote either one’s position. Conservatives complain that the principles used to promote privileging and normalizing homosexual marriages by extension also imply that polyamory/polygyny/polyandry should be privileged and normalized. But the response is usually that conservatives are engaging in a slippery slope.

    And lastly, this gay activist very, very strongly supports the legalisation of multi-partner marriages, as well as the removal of marital privilege (where married people are privileged over single/unmarried people).

    Craig, I respect you for your consistency (really), but it seems pretty rare.

    Polygamy, as practised by fundamentalist Mormon sects is almost universally coerced, abusive, and highly problematic.

    If this is fundamentally about the right to marry whomever, then this isn’t a sufficient reason. If a person has a right to marry whomever and however many partners, then they have a right to do it no matter if that marriage is more likely to be abusive.

    However, if by “speak of polygamy as morally equivalent to monogamy” you mean not daemonising non-monogamy, or talking about polyamoury and monogamy in factual ways, then I totally agree that’s what we should do.

    Some would argue that your stereotype of abuse is itself an act of demonization. Speaking critically at all of homosexual marriage is increasingly seen in today’s culture as hateful and bigoted. If you applied that same kind of sensitivity to your attitude toward polygamy, you’d be walking on eggshells.

    Take care,

    Aaron

  20. Chanson – I also regret my use of “fundie” in my previous post. If I’d known Aaron better at the time, I probably would’ve instead referred to him and his crew as “heterosexual activists” …

  21. @Aaron

    I did not say that all polygamy was abusive. I said that fundamentalist Mormon polygamy as currently practised is proven to be rife with abuse. It’s not a stereotype, it’s a fact.

    My point was that as a feminist, I am concerned with the extreme way women are taken advantage of in some forms of polygamy. I wanted to make it clear that I don’t approve of abusive relationships. Because of the overwhelming patriarchy in our society and the intense sexism women must battle, it is difficult to imagine a religious polygamous marriage that was truly equitable. But that in no way means I don’t wholeheartedly support the legalisation of polygamy and all forms of polyamoury. My problem isn’t polygamy, it’s sexism. And I agree that you can’t fight sexism my making polygamy illegal. I wouldn’t even if that did work.

    It’s true that many of the same arguments which are made to argue for the legalisation of gay marriage can also be used for polyamoury. But, it is not the case that one must necessarily legalise polygamy if one legalises gay marriage. That is the fallacy of the conservative argument. And almost without fail, bestiality, paedophilia and necrophilia are lumped in with both polygamy and gay marriage in this argument.

    They are two different but related issues.

  22. I think the “rule of opposites” vs. “rule of two” debate is a fair one. But, let’s at least be clear that they’re not the same rule. Neither side is defending a “right to marry whomever” and nobody is suggesting such a right is created when the rule of opposites is thrown out (nobody except for those who’re invested in tactical obfuscation of the real issue).

  23. “it is not the case that one must necessarily legalise polygamy if one legalises gay marriage”

    In practice, of course. But that statement falls short of saying whether or not one should, by the same principles used to privilege and normalize homosexual marriage, promote the privileging and normalizing of polygamy. But you’ve already indicated that you believe both should be, so I’ll let your other statements stand.

    If consenting adults (which is what I mean by “whomever”) want to enter into polygamous marriage together, I have a hard time imagining homosexual marriage advocates making a good argument against it all the while sticking to their previously-appealed-to principles.

    Take care,

    Aaron

  24. I agree there aren’t any really good arguments against polyamorous/polygamous marriages. The fact is that multi-party and non-monogamous marriages are even more controversial and less socially accepted than gay marriage is.

  25. That various religious and non-religious people share beliefs about marriage doesnt mean marriage isnt pregnant with traditional religious meaning.

    I know that a lot of people see religious connotations in the term. I’m just saying that as far as the government is concerned (in the US and other secular western democracies) it is a civil/legal question.

    If there is no God, then there is no real objective moral obligation to concern ourselves with rights at all.

    WTF? If you know nothing whatsoever about philosophy, I’m not going to derail this discussion in a futile attempt to explain it. You can look up the answer to that one on your own time.

    Re: polygamy.

    As Chino said, neither side is defending a right to marry whomever and nobody is suggesting such a right is created when the rule of opposites is thrown out (nobody except for those whore invested in tactical obfuscation of the real issue).

    That said, I support polygamy for practical reasons as well as on the principle that — as long as it’s only consenting adults we’re talking about — they should be allowed to choose that lifestyle. The practical reasons and the idealistic/philosophical reasons for having an objective, fair set of rights go hand-in-hand, as a general rule. In the case of polygamy (as I’ve said elsewhere, probably in the comments of this thread, but I’m not sure), the best way to ensure that it’s just consenting adults is to be sure that those who don’t want to be in it have a real opportunity to leave.

    Another important thing to keep in mind about rights is that there’s a big difference between believing “people should do X” and “people should have the right to do X.” For example, I find the protests by the Westboro Baptist Church offensive, and I think that if they had any common decency, they wouldn’t be doing them. But I will fight passionately for their right to do them.

    There’s nothing hypocritical in saying “I don’t think it’s a good idea for anyone to do X, but I think people should have the right to do X.” And anyway, that’s a lot more negative than my opinion of polygamy (which I’m more neutral towards on principle, not that it matters) — it’s more like my opinion of the eight most dangerous extreme sports. For another example, Ms. Jack has stated that she doesn’t want her church teaching that homosexuality is OK, and (like you) she’d prefer the word “marriage” be removed from the legal documents for all marriages, but (unlike you), if that won’t happen, she would rather gay marriage be legal than not legal. I don’t find her position hypocritical, and I don’t think that others here do either.

    The key point is this: You are conflating legalization with [cultural] normalization. They are two very different things.

    Legalization — in the case of gay marriage — is the question that’s concerned with fairness and objectivity. Cultural norms are essentially collective opinions. They may have an element of fairness or objectivity and they may not. You can try to influence cultural norms, but there is nothing you can do legally to control them.

  26. Aaron,

    I only skimmed most of what was said as I join the converstaion late, so if you have already addressed this point my apologies.

    In making the argument that if you are for homosexual marriage then you must be for polygamous marriage you are missing one key point. In straight marriage and homosexual marriage you have the union of two people to pool resources and recieve tax breaks and what not.

    In polygamy you now have a potentially unlimited number of people entering the union and recieving the benefits from three or more instead of two. It is very likely that legalizing polygamy would create an unfair advantage for polygamists in society, and society would be incentized towards polygamy. This does not/will not happen with homosexual marriage.

    On a side note, this is not an argument I have developed deeply and fully admit to the possibility of your having a strong counter, which if you do I would love to see.

  27. Celestialbound — That point hasn’t come up yet, but Chino kind of alluded to it @28.

    There are a lot of ways that the two issues (gay marriage and polygamy) aren’t parallel. In addition to the points you mention, there’s also the question of immigration rights — how many foreign spouses are you legally allowed to bring into the country?

    Plus there’s the fact that some of the legal rights and responsibilities of marriage imply some sort of exclusivity. If you’re married to two people, which one is your next-of-kin? Which one inherits your things when you die? Which one is empowered to make medical decisions for you if you’re incapacitated?

    I think these questions could be sorted out in the various marriage laws and contracts, but they don’t have obvious, canonical answers. So you’re right that polygamy is a more complex issue — it isn’t just a trivial extension of gay marriage.

  28. Ugh. I flagged it as promoting hatred. Notice how its YouTube rating is staggeringly negative. At least the YouTube community recognizes hate when they see it.

  29. There is no doubt the gay agenda is rabidly anti-Christian. So then why do bigoted knob jockeys & pillow biters want to bang each others butts in Holy Matrimony anyway? Bigoted anti-Christian gay activists love to scream “discrimination!” and “Freedom of Expression!”, yet they relentlessly mock Jesus, the bible, any & all Christian symbols, AND Christians themselves. They relentlessly attempt to silence Christians’ right to Freedom of Expression by demanding that students NOT be allowed to pray silently on school grounds, yet advocate teaching children the “virtues” of being a Cream-puff knob-jockey. All the while being FREE to slurp each other at the bus stop and call anyone whom THEY offend a “bigot”.
    Talk about a double-standard.

  30. JDM — Please read our commenting policy. If you’d like to have a discussion about the relation between criticism and freedom of expression, we’re happy to have it with you — but only if you can express your point in a civil and constructive way.

    Until you do, I’d like to ask everyone to please try not to feed the trolls.

  31. Seriously, chanson, what does one say to a troll who uses terms like knob-jockey and pillow-biter? That’s almost too trollish to be covered under the term.

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