Exgay youth advocate Chad W. Thompson wrote a Sept. 1 article for Christianity Today, declaring “Banning Gay Marriage Is Not The Answer.”
Thompson is founder of Inqueery, previously discussed here at XGW.
In the CT article, adapted from his upcoming book, Thompson attempts to steer a more moderate course than many affiliated with the religious right:
Today many churches have created an emotional Catch-22 for LGBT people by opposing their right to marry but neglecting to provide them a safe place to heal. From the gay person’s perspective, it seems that Christians are demanding that they simply disappear.
While he does not concede that there are more than one Christian viewpoint on gay marriage, Thompson does recognize that conservative Christians and gay-marriage proponents tend to talk past one another:
Knowing how to show love begins with knowing how to communicate, and it’s important to understand how people think before trying to communicate with them
Thompson greatly weakens his claim as a moderate by casting only slight skepticism upon propaganda by Dr. Paul Cameron, referring to it as an example of “current research on the health hazards of homosexuality.” But he comes back with an effective statement on the irrelevance of religious-right pseudo-science:
For the purposes of this article, I don’t want to take the time to dissect the research methods that were used to draw these conclusions. I will only say that, while some of the findings in such studies are true, throwing these numbers around while talking to someone who is homosexual will only reinforce, in their minds, the fact that you have stereotyped them. Can you imagine telling your son or daughter that that heterosexual activity is intrinsically wrong because America has a divorce rate estimated at 43 percent, or because three of every ten women killed in the United States die at the hands of a husband or boyfriend?
Promiscuity is more prevalent among gays, but there are many LGBT people in relationships consisting of genuine love. But for many Christians, the only thing that comes to mind when they hear the word homosexual is the militant gay activist marching in a parade and shouting, “We’re here, we’re queer, and we’re coming after your children!”
If we are to be effective purveyors of God’s love, we must commit ourselves to viewing all lesbian or gay people we meet as an individual, rather than making assumptions about who they are or where they’ve been.
While offering tips for antigay Christians to get to know gay people, he nevertheless encourages them to continue battling gay people at the ballot box — without stating what exactly is being voted on: Antidiscrimination laws? Hate crimes laws? Family benefits?
Thompson’s conclusion is similar to that of the antigay jet passenger in a recent commentary by gay columnist Michael Alvear. After a long flight, a Jewish operative for the Christian Coalition comes to realize that her gay columnist seatmate does not fit her stereotypes. But instead of readjusting her stereotypes, the woman pretends Alvear is someone separate from, and unaffected, by her stereotypes and discriminatory agenda.
XGW has ordered Thompson’s new book Loving Homosexuals as Jesus Would: A Fresh Christian Approach and we will review it when it is released.